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NPSF™ -- Are you trying to protect from noise and still be able to communicate in a loud environment Face to Face?

What to Try... ...And Why:
Reusable Pre-Molded Ear Plugs If your noise environment is at or below 100 dB, you may be able to use just about any reusable pre-molded ear plug. These generally range from about 19-27 NRR, which will let you carry on a conversation with someone close to you without the need to remove your ear plugs (though you may have to shout at each other) so you can have a conversation and still remain protected.We offer a trial pack of the industrial reusable ear plugs that can help you find one you like.
Musicians Ear Plugs If regular reusable pre-molded ear plugs make it difficult for you to understand the conversation, and this is usually more of a problem with higher pitched voices, then consider trying musicians ear plugs. These are specialized reusable pre-molded ear plugs that have acoustic filters in them. Musicians ear plugs are designed to drop the volume without changing the quality of the sound, so they make it much easier to understand the conversation while keeping you protected. Musicians ear plugs rated at 12 NRR will give you adequate protection up to about 97 dB. In environments noisier than that, you should consider a higher rated hearing protector or better yet, an electronic shooting or surround sound ear muff as discussed below.
Custom Ear Plugs with Acoustic Filters

For those who must wear their ear plugs daily, custom molded ear plugs offer a number of advantages. First, custom ear plugs provide a much more comfortable fit because they are molded specifically to fit the unique contours of your ears. Second custom molded ear plugs will provide a more consistent level of protection because they can only be inserted one way, so they always fit correctly. By contrast, universal fit ear plugs require more care to get them properly seated, and if you do not get them positioned just right, you can experience protection that is completely inadequate. Finally, custom ear plugs will ultimately save you money because with proper care, your custom ear plugs can last for years. The most common reason users buy replacement custom ear plugs is that they have lost one or both of them. The second most common reason for replacement is their dog ate them (no kidding!)

The specific custom ear plug models we suggest for face to face communications in high noise environments include our top pick, the Westone Defendear Industrial Convertible. Defendear Industrial Convertible ear plugs give you a choice of full or filtered protection. Just move the neck cord anchor points any time you want to switch.

Other great choices include the Westone ES49 Musician ear plugs, Westone Tru, and Perfect-Fit CMP. All provide the user with a choice of attenuation level through user changeable acoustic filters, so you can change to a higher or lower attenuation acoustic filter if you need to adapt to a different noise level situation. All of the custom ear plugs that are equipped with acoustic filters enable you to have face to face conversations much more easily than you can with any kind of solid ear plugs, while still providing you with the hearing protection you need.

Electronic Shooting or Surround Sound Ear Muffs Electronic shooting or surround sound ear muffs are passive ear muffs with the addition of microphones, sound processing amplifiers, and speakers. The mics pick up all the ambient sounds, then amplify the low sounds, such as voices, and reduce the volume of dangerously loud sounds, then transmit this transformed soundscape into your ears via the built in speakers. This setup is generally referred to as sound compression, and it lets you clearly hear and understand conversations, even in very noisy environments, all while protecting your hearing from the excessively loud environment. By retaining the full soundscape, electronic shooting or surround sound ear muffs also improve safety by helping you maintain situational awareness. Situational awareness is a five dollar way of saying that you continue to hear things going on around you.
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