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Best earplugs/muffs to minimise noise on flight?

Best earplugs/muffs to minimise noise on flight?

Old Oct 22, 15, 10:51 am
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Join Date: Oct 2015
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Best earplugs/muffs to minimise noise on flight?

Hi All

I find long flights very tiring due to the drone and noise, was wondering if someone could recommend the best passive solutions to reduce this noise, theres so many earplugs and earmuffs available not sure where to start, if it helps I'm in the UK

Advice would be much appreciated.

PS I've looked at active noise cancelling options already (e.g. Bose QC), really need a passive option as well however.

Many thanks
corp is offline  
Old Oct 22, 15, 11:52 am
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Interesting article about ear plug ratings here:


Go to your local drug store and look for some that are rated 33 dB, which is the highest I've found.
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Old Oct 22, 15, 1:16 pm
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I use those:
Amazon Amazon

Pro: you can still hear something, e.g. alarmclock, FA. No pressure issues and no overheating, if used overnight in the hotel bed or long-haul. But filters the "bad" frequencies.

Con: likely not in the -33dB area. Bit fiddly to insert, depending on ear canal.

Never tried them in a flight, since I use Bose QC20 in-ears there.

Noise reducted greetings,
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Old Oct 22, 15, 8:09 pm
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The best foam/disposable ear plugs are Howard Leight MAX-1. Rated for -33db and nicely pre-shaped. Cheap too. I prefer the non-corded version.

Amazon Amazon
RevJim is offline  
Old Oct 23, 15, 5:46 pm
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I like Howard Leight too, but I use the Laser Lites. The NRR is 1 less, but that is a fairly small difference.

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Old Oct 27, 15, 3:15 pm
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I actually don't like the foam/single use earplugs, I feel like they don't give nearly the complete coverage that silicone earplugs do (and least on my ears). I have a box of Max's in both my rollaboard and my work bag. I split 1 disc into 2 pieces...one piece in each ear. My brother snores like a lumberjack...and this has saved our sanity on countless vacation trips.

Amazon Amazon

And if I really want to block out ambient noise, I insert the silicone earplugs, then use my Bose Noise cancelling headphones. Pretty darn perfect.
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Old Nov 17, 15, 12:25 pm
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I use silicone plugs when swimming, but for traveling when I want maximum quiet I go with the Howard Leight Max plugs with my Sennheiser MM-550-X noise canceling headphones. Compared with the silicone plugs, the foam plugs are cheaper, lighter, quieter, and do a better job of minimizing noise and vibration transmission when resting your head against a pillow or headrest.
Daner is offline  
Old Nov 23, 15, 2:00 am
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Originally Posted by chgoeditor View Post
Go to your local drug store and look for some that are rated 33 dB, which is the highest I've found.
Ditto this.
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Old Dec 8, 15, 12:42 am
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I use a pair of Shure prosumer in-ear monitors (recommended by my musician SO) that can double as both earphones and earplugs. When I'm not playing music, I can make out the muffled FA/captain announcements. When the music is playing, that's all I hear. They're very comfortable for long wear and have swappable pads (your choice of foam or silicone in various sizes). The cord can be worn behind the head and tightened at the base of the neck, so they're easy to sleep in as well.
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Old Dec 9, 15, 9:52 pm
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I know a lot of people use earplanes. They're supposed to help equalize pressure, too.
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Old Dec 14, 15, 8:47 am
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Originally Posted by TUPilot View Post
I know a lot of people use earplanes. They're supposed to help equalize pressure, too.
Unless you're using Earplanes for pressure, I would use single use (really can use multiple times) foam ear plugs instead. Earplanes have plastic flanges that for me get uncomfortable after a while and have both a lower dB attenuation rating and are noticeably louder than foam ear plugs.

I get a bulk pack of 3M (formerly AOSafety) ones with a rounded end from either Amazon or my local home improvement store for using with outdoor power equipment. Works great.
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Old Dec 14, 15, 2:09 pm
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Foam 33db plugs + bose noise cancelling headphones = bliss.
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Old Dec 20, 15, 1:05 am
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Not sure you're budget, but have you considered custom in-ear monitors? In case you don't know, they're custom made earphones that are made to fit your ear. They block out noise very well (since they're custom fit), plus you get very nice earphones. I always wear them on the airplane even if I'm not listening to music, they're still very good. I can wear them during the whole flight, 30 hours my longest through three connecting flights, no issues.
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Old Dec 26, 15, 5:03 am
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I've found that the best combination are foam plugs with Bose QC headphones (or equivalent). If you google "foam plug attenuation charts" you will see that they work better at attenuation of high frequency sound energy. Active noise cancelling technology (e.g. Bose etc) works best at low frequencies and so the combo uses both strategies in a complementary fashion.
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Old Dec 26, 15, 10:27 am
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Which Shure model does the panel recommend?

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