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Musician plugs are a custom moulded solution designed to prevent hearing loss. They are made by hearing professionals and require a specialised ear impression to be taken.
They have a much longer lifespan than either the ETY or foam plugs. Typically they replicate the natural response of the ear but at a softer and safer level.
When these plugs are used, the musician will find the sound to be clear but not harmful. On stage, musician plugs provide good clarity and actually help to hear rather than hinder, especially when using foldback speakers, as it removes the distorted sound that is often produced.
In Ear Monitors
In ear monitoring or IEM is the best method to hear what you are doing as a musician in a live circumstance (performance, rehearsal or recordings) and protect the ears at the same time.
An IEM is utilised as part of a system typically used with a wireless battery pack receiver that plugs into a transmitter at the front of house PA. In order for it to work it needs to be able to plug into the mix.
IEM’s often remove the need for foldback wedges as the sound is directed into the individual’s ears without distortion, and at soft levels. As a result IEM’s provide the same audio clarity as when in a recording studio without the excessive damage. It provides a consistency to the mix and high levels of protection. It is for these reasons that most major artists use them in their live performances.
The benefit extends beyond the live performance realm. For practice one can use in ear monitors with mp3 players and plug straight in, thus enabling one to play along with one’s favourite songs at a less harmful level and improved clarity whilst attenuating the extraneous noise.
|Level of Noise in dB(A)||Maximum Exposure Time||Example of Sound|
|85||8 Hours||Heavy Traffic, Leaf Blower,|
|91||2 Hours||Lawn Mower / Workshop tools / Diesel Truck 10m Away|
|94||1 Hour||Motorcycle, Jet Flying Overhead , Food Processor|
|97||30 Minutes||Noisy Train Carriage, Squeeky Toy|
|100||15 Minutes||Chain Saw, Yelling in an Ear, Riding Motorbike, Hand Held Drill|
|103||7.5 Minutes||Amplified Rock Music / Sporting Events|
|106||3.8 Minutes||MP3 player on full volume/ Pub Concerts|
|109||1.9 Minutes||Arena Rock Concert , Jack Hammer,|
|112||57 Seconds||Night Club / Chain saw|
|115||28.5 Seconds||Crash / China Cymbal|
|118||14.3 Seconds||Music Festival up close to the stage (Mosh pit)|
|121||7.1 Seconds||Threshold of discomfort, On stage at a rock concert|
|124||3.6 Seconds||Siren from emergency vehicle, Thunder clap, Balloon Pop,|
|127||1.8 Seconds||Rock Band in Rehearsal rooms|
|130||0.9 Seconds||Gun shot, Rim Shot of snare, Jet Engine Threshold of pain|