Types of Ear Protection
There are quite a few different types of earplugs: single-use, multiple-use, banded and corded. Banded or corded earplugs are best if you move between a noisy place and a non-noisy place, like between the shooting range and your range’s lobby. Multiple-use earplugs are easier to use because they do not require rolling to fit in your ear.
Earmuffs are either electronic or passive. Electronic earmuffs amplify quieter sounds, allowing you to hear your range master’s commands. These earmuffs will have integrated microphones and some have independent volume controls. Ditch your traditional ear protection and upgrade to electronic ear protection. There are several benefits to electronic ear protection, but here are the top three reasons.
3 Reasons to Switch to Electronic Ear Protection
#1: Quality Hearing Protection & Increased Safety
This is the most important reason to make the switch. Electronic hearing protection amplifies quieter noises like voices, while simultaneously muffling loud noises that can be damaging to our ears. This will allow you to have a conversation at normal volume with someone on the range without shouting or removing your ear protection. This feature can be especially important while taking a shooting course because you will easily hear the commands of the instructor.
#2: Slimmer Profile
Over-the-ear electronic muffs tend to have a slimmer profile than the traditional over-the-ear muffs. This is really advantageous when shooting long guns because slimmer electronic ear protection is less likely to obstruct your cheek weld. “Cheek weld” is the firm contact your cheek should have with the top of your stock. When adjusted properly, a good cheek weld should allow your dominant eye to comfortably look straight into your scope or sights. Proper cheek weld can impact the speed of target acquisition, and more importantly, the accuracy of your shooting.
If you’re interested in learning how to shoot long guns (or hone your skills!), 88 Tactical offers multiple levels of Carbine (AR-15) and Precision Rifle training classes, starting with the basics. If you’re a beginner, try Intro to Carbine, Carbine Level 1, or Basic Precision Rifle.
#3: Bluetooth, baby!
This third reason qualifies as a “nice to have,” not a “need to have” feature, but it still counts. Convenience is key, right? There are tons of electronic ear muffs out there – most models range between $60 and $160. Many of them have Bluetooth capabilities, which means you can listen to music or take a phone call, if necessary, without having to leave the range. The biggest difference in price depends on whether or not the electronic ear muffs have Bluetooth capability.
Electronic Ear Protection at 88 Tactical
88 Tactical carries multiple models of electronic ear protection by Walker’s, Peltor, Howard Leight, and Pro Ears.
Here’s a look at 88 Tactical’s two best-selling electronic ear protection options:
Walker’s Razor Electronic Ear Muffs
Designed And Engineered In The U.S.A.
These ‘Razor’ thin muffs were engineered from the ground up with the goal of having the lowest possible profile without compromising the hearing protection and amplification properties of the muff. Delivering an impressive noise reduction rating (NRR) of 23dB, the Razor series is sure to protect your hearing, without interfering. The Razor series also feature Walker’s new comfort fit headband for all-day shooting and come in a host of color options.
- Ultra low-profile ear cups
- 23 Noise Reduction Rating
- Two Omni-directional microphones
- Full dynamic range HD speakers for clear balanced sound
- Low noise/ frequency tuned for natural sound clarity
- Single knob volume control
- Sound activated compression circuit (SAC)
- 0.02 second response time
At $59.95, this is one of the most economical options for quality electronic hearing protection.
- Upgrade to Walker’s Razor Electronic Ear Muffs with Bluetooth for $130
Razor Slim Electronic Muffs feature Bluetooth technology with volume control. This allows the shooter to control the volume of the ambient noise around them separately from the volume of their Bluetooth-connected device.
Peltor Sport 100 Electronic Hearing Protection
Featuring proprietary 3M technology that suppresses harmful gunshot noise while amplifying low-level sounds, the Tactical 100 Electronic Hearing Protector is ideal for both indoor and outdoor shooters and hunters. Adaptive Frequency Response reduces background noise for clearer conversations and hearing of commands. Plus, the Variable Suppression Time feature provides optimal echo reduction in indoor shooting environments. With improved performance, enhanced comfort features, and greater functionality – including a tethered battery door, streamlined design, improved noise reduction rating, and enhanced electronics – the Tactical 100 Electronic Hearing Protector combines innovative 3M technology with the Peltor™ Sports Brand to give shooters and hunters an excellent hearing protection experience.
- Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) 22 dB
- Ideal for both indoor and outdoor shooters and hunters
- Adaptive Frequency Response reduces background noise for clearer conversations and hearing of commands
- Variable Suppression Time feature provides optimal echo reduction in indoor shooting environments
- Re-engineered headband for improved fit and comfort
- Low-profile cups for rifle/shotgun use
- 2-hour auto shut-off
- Easy-access battery door with tether (Runs on 2 AAA batteries)
- 3.5 mm audio input jack compatible with most MP3 players and 2-way radios
- Made in the USA
- Upgrade to Peltor Sport 500 with Bluetooth for $160
This Bluetooth option has a slightly higher Noise Reduction Rating (26 dB) than the Walker’s Razor Electronic Muffs with Bluetooth (23 dB).