While the technology has been increasing at a fast rate in many sectors, the hunting industry has not been left out of the digital growth. Due to the technological advancement, you can find many modern electronic hearing protection devices that can be used in the shooting range and hunting activities. Even though these devices are highly advanced, they can be acquired at affordable prices. Unfortunately, not every shooter or hunter knows the reasons to use these hearing protection devices.
You can even find a longtime hunter who has just realized the usefulness of hearing protection while at his or her 40s. It should be noted clearly that hearing protection is not just putting some buds into the ears. The actual devices are technically designed incorporating technology to ensure they perform the intended work perfectly. Nowadays, earmuffs are the most common electronic hearing protection available in almost all retail shops locally. They feature over-the-ear muffs, making them easier to wear and maintain since they do not tend to fall off.
Electronic Ear Muffs and Their Benefits
There are ordinary or standard ear muffs usually known as passive ear muffs. They have cups with sound-absorbing foam that slows down incoming sound waves. The damaging loud noise from gunshots and other excessive noise cannot reach the internal parts of the ear. However, these typical ear muffs make it hard to hear sounds from low-level sources. You can easily tell who is using passive hearing as they are shouting when talking to the person standing next to them. So, failure to wear hearing protection when shooting, people will be shouting at you at all times.
Professional hunters who have been practicing for many years use earmuffs to protect their ears. Actually, some hunters say the ear muffs enable them to hear clearer. If you are a frequent hunter, firing shots without hearing protection can severely damage your hearing over time. Though there are loud sounds that can damage hearing instantly, exposing your ears to high levels of sounds for a long period of time can lead to permanent hearing damage.
Those cheap modern electronic ear muffs feature a shut off that blocks loud sound exceeding a specified decibel level. An amplifier blocks the sound by shutting off when a loud sound is detected, and when the sound fades away, the amplifier turns on again. However, these old or cheap ear muffs have two major drawbacks; If the shooters are firing constantly, you might feel as if the ear muffs are shutting on and off continuously. Due to the presence of a single microphone, it also becomes difficult to notice the direction of the incoming sound.
On the other hand, modern electronic hearing protection devices have advanced amplifier technology that provides sound compression. This feature allows the shooter to hear any sound coming from the surrounding regardless of its decibel level. You can hear people communicating next to you or even footsteps of a person walking. However, when a loud sound happens, the damaging decibel level is blocked by compressing it into a lower volume. So, the sound is not cut off, instead, it is lowered.
When using electronic hearing protection, you are not entitled to pull off the devices whenever you want to speak to someone. This is risky because someone next to you may start shooting unexpectedly after you have exposed the ears. This is common among shooters who use the traditional earmuffs or those bogus ear muffs being sold everywhere in the market nowadays.
The newest electronic hearing protection devices feature more than one microphone on each muff. This makes it easier to find out the direction of an incoming sound, which is quite important for the hunters. Interestingly, most electronic ear muffs are powered using AAA batteries that are easy to find and can last for several days before replacement. Other advantages include 9x hearing improvement, four hi-gain omnidirectional microphones, two autonomous volume controls, and sound dampening composite material.
With the current advancements, it is possible to find ultra-slim electronic muffs that offer excellent hearing protection. However, some users of ear muffs claim that these devices are a bit blocky when one wants to place a gun stock on the cheek. Most of the full featured electronic ear muffs are bigger in size, and therefore might be inconvenient when it comes to storing them.