I bought my first pair of offbrand noise-cancelling earmuffs as soon as the price came down to where I could kind of afford them. When they wore out I saved my dimes and bought these. Which are wearing out.
But all the time I’ve lived here what I really wanted was something I wasn’t even sure existed: Noise-cancelling earplugs. Naturally I carry a package of earplugs with me wherever I go, because why wouldn’t I? I carry a pistol wherever I go, and it’s loud, and if there’s time I stick earplugs in before shooting it.
What I really wanted was that thing my Peltors gave me: I could wear them and still hold a conversation that didn’t consist 70% of “What?” And in a hot environment, earmuffs have an obvious inherent disadvantage.
So I did some research a few years ago and of course learned that electronic earplugs are indeed a thing – but at a big price for such tiny things. I did what I usually do in such cases: I bought the cheapest Chinesium crap on the market, telling myself it was only a proof of concept.
And I’ve carried them every day for something like 3 years now…
And they work…kind of. They don’t fit well, any wind at all blasts noise right in your ears, they don’t really amplify sound well at all – important when you’re getting to a certain age and the loudest thing in your life most days is tinnitus. But they did kind of work, and that made them marginally better than a package of foam earplugs.
The Peltors have pretty much worn out, as earmuffs will, and recently I decided it was time to take the plunge. Got my new earplugs a few days ago…
They don’t have a single button on them! And given that they have various functions, that was daunting for the boomer hermit: You have to tap or hold or slide your finger on the mike boom to get them to do this or that, in a sort of code I still find confusing but that actually does work when I do it right. And they’re way better and a lot less uncomfortable than the Chinesium plugs.
The only disadvantage is also kind of an advantage. Instead of a flat little nylon bag they store in this plastic coffin…
Look at me, all 21st century and stuff!