#1
Hello!

So my question is how you deal with high volumes and hearing damages.
Lets say volume when you are playing by yourself or with someone else?

I like to play loud but wouldnt like to get less hearing capability or tinnitus D:
So im scared to play louder even tough i want to.

Sometimes i use a pair of foam ear protectors but they are no good, they change how i hear things besides volume.
I have hear there are some musicians one specially made to ONLY lower volume...
Yesterday i went to a music shop and i think i found a pair of these made by fender... would they be good?

Also! With headphones?
Usually i use some of these big over the head headphones with cushion on it. My rule for volume with them is: "If i take them apart of my head and can still ear it- Too loud"
but i definitely want to have it on higher volume sometimes.
Is there any better and effective rule that you know of?

Graciaaas~
Sorry if my english is wrong .
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#2
I use these personally: http://www.thomann.de/gb/alpine_musicsafe_prosilver_edition.htm I wouldn't trust ones made by Fender; they make good instruments but hearing protection is an entirely different thing.

If you're really concerned though you can get ear protection that's custom fitted to your ears; they're expensive but obviously they're completely custom so you can't really get much better than that.

Headphones... I'm less strict about it. The dangers of hearing damage from earphones and headphones is pretty overstated by a lot of people; you need to be listening very loudly or for very large amounts of time to do lasting damage.
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#5
hang on, are you seriously talking about cranking the amp louder and then putting on ear protectors to make it quieter? are you trying to piss off your neighbors?

you didn't say anything about gigging so i'm assuming you're not talking about gigging.
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Last edited by vIsIbleNoIsE at Mar 8, 2013,
#6
Any protection is better than nothing, but as Zaphod said, some are better than others. When it comes to practicing, I don't use much. Just an old headset that doesn't work, but has nice foam padding that goes around the ears. But I also don't play all that loud. I've never had my amp's master volume past 3 when practicing, and it's usually sitting at about 1.5. When playing a gig however, I paid quite a bit of cash for custom fit in-ear monitors, so I can dial in the exact volume I want. I really like them for that and also 3 other reasons:
You can select which instruments in the mix you want to hear.
I find they give a clearer sound than traditional stage monitors
Properly fitted, they block out a lot of the background sound, so you only hear what you want to hear.

I personally haven't used the ones that Zaphod suggested, but some other options for you are:

Foam earplugs: Great for noise reduction and the price is certainly right, but with them, you can't really hear your tone too well. The notes themselves come through, but the tone doesn't.

Hi-Fi earplugs: Again, great noise reduction and you can more or less still hear exactly what you sound like. The only downside is the price increase.

Custom molded earplugs: Pretty much the best you're going to get for just straight noise reduction. But very expensive.

Quote by vIsIbleNoIsE
hang on, are you seriously talking about cranking the amp louder and then putting on ear protectors to make it quieter? are you trying to piss off your neighbors?

you didn't say anything about gigging so i'm assuming you're not talking about gigging.

Hearing damage can occur at as little as about 85 decibels. It's not hard to reach that level with even a small guitar amp.
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Last edited by Junior#1 at Mar 8, 2013,
#7
Ear plugs, I always used them during my band days.
During practice and gigs you can get a better awareness of all the instruments.
#8
Quote by Junior#1
Any protection is better than nothing, but as Zaphod said, some are better than others. When it comes to practicing, I don't use much. Just an old headset that doesn't work, but has nice foam padding that goes around the ears. But I also don't play all that loud. I've never had my amp's master volume past 3 when practicing, and it's usually sitting at about 1.5. When playing a gig however, I paid quite a bit of cash for custom fit in-ear monitors, so I can dial in the exact volume I want. I really like them for that and also 3 other reasons:
You can select which instruments in the mix you want to hear.
I find they give a clearer sound than traditional stage monitors
Properly fitted, they block out a lot of the background sound, so you only hear what you want to hear.

I personally haven't used the ones that Zaphod suggested, but some other options for you are:

Foam earplugs: Great for noise reduction and the price is certainly right, but with them, you can't really hear your tone too well. The notes themselves come through, but the tone doesn't.

Hi-Fi earplugs: Again, great noise reduction and you can more or less still hear exactly what you sound like. The only downside is the price increase.

Custom molded earplugs: Pretty much the best you're going to get for just straight noise reduction. But very expensive.


Hearing damage can occur at as little as about 85 decibels. It's not hard to reach that level with even a small guitar amp.

This^^^. If you can't afford it, then just use the foamies and deal with the degraded sound. It's better to have that now when you have the earplugs in than for everything to sound degraded like that forever because you didn't protect your hearing. Tinitus isn't fun, either. Also remember, foamies only give about 22 dB reduction, so if you're exposed to 110 dB or more for enough time (like a rock concert) you'd really need double hearing protection to be safe.
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#9
I also use the Alpine. They work pretty well. Most HiFi earplugs don't offer the db protection of the foam ones, so I tend to go back and forth between the two. If I'm at a show where I'm not especially into the groups playing, I'll use the foam ear plugs. If I'm playing a gig or rehearsing with a band, I'll use HiFis.
#11
Quote by vIsIbleNoIsE
hang on, are you seriously talking about cranking the amp louder and then putting on ear protectors to make it quieter? are you trying to piss off your neighbors?


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#12
If you're playing at home there's really no need to be so loud. You can quite easily get used to playing at lower volume if you make a firm decision to do so.

If you're playing with a band then ear plugs really are mandatory to prevent damage to your hearing. There are many kinds out there and foam ones are absolutely bottom of the list. The best kind are moulded silicon (moulded to your ear) with a filter that reduces volume evenly across the frequency range. In London most people get these from an audiologist so maybe have a look at what's near you.
#13
Hey thank you all

I think i will give the alpine ones a shot, but maybe the cheaper ones that only have the two strongest filters.

I use a small combo amp with 8'' speakers and sometimes i play with backing tracks, it doesnt sound good unless i turn the volume a bit loud...
Sorry if my english is wrong .
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Carvin 112 cab in White
#14
Quote by jetwash69
This^^^. If you can't afford it, then just use the foamies and deal with the degraded sound. It's better to have that now when you have the earplugs in than for everything to sound degraded like that forever because you didn't protect your hearing. Tinitus isn't fun, either. Also remember, foamies only give about 22 dB reduction, so if you're exposed to 110 dB or more for enough time (like a rock concert) you'd really need double hearing protection to be safe.

Yes, but rock concerts usually last about two hours (and it's not 110db all the time, I think the loudest parts are 110db of course depending on the band). You need to be exposed to 85db for a long time to get hearing damage (8 hours). And you don't instantly go deaf after 8 hours. (For example Kiss didn't use earplugs and their gigs were very loud, sometimes over 130db. And still they aren't deaf.)

But if it feels loud, I would always use earplugs.

And about those Alpine earplugs. I have them and I think they are OK but they make every amp sound fizzy. You lose some tone. It really doesn't matter that much though.

But really, when you "play with other people", do you have a drummer or is it just two guitarists? If there's a drummer, I would almost always use earplugs because drummers get loud very easily. If there isn't a drummer, just turn your amps down (obviously).

And about the headphone thing. It has to do with the time you listen to the music. If you listen to it all the time and have the volume at max, your hearing might suffer. But yeah, I would try to keep the volume as low as possible (not necessarily at 1) so that I can hear the music well but it's not really loud.

And when I play through my amp, I'm pretty sure it's over 85db in front of the amp. But I don't practice for 8 hours a day. I wouldn't really worry that much if you aren't playing with a drummer.
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Last edited by MaggaraMarine at Mar 10, 2013,
#15
I attended my fair share of rock concerts without wearing ear plugs. I have tinnitus in my left ear. Maybe it's not 120 Db, but you can certainly lose your hearing from listening to too many rock concerts without ear protection.
#16
Quote by Sloop John D
I attended my fair share of rock concerts without wearing ear plugs. I have tinnitus in my left ear. Maybe it's not 120 Db, but you can certainly lose your hearing from listening to too many rock concerts without ear protection.

Yeah, but I was talking about the "double protection thing". I of course wear earplugs in rock concerts.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
#17
Quote by YamiFrankc
I use a small combo amp with 8'' speakers and sometimes i play with backing tracks, it doesnt sound good unless i turn the volume a bit loud...




I'd understand the point of your question if you were a working musician on stage in front of a wall of amps. What do you mean by "a bit loud"? A bit loud can't really harm your hearing unless you stick your ear on the speaker.
#18
Quote by jetwash69
This^^^. If you can't afford it, then just use the foamies and deal with the degraded sound. It's better to have that now when you have the earplugs in than for everything to sound degraded like that forever because you didn't protect your hearing. Tinitus isn't fun, either. Also remember, foamies only give about 22 dB reduction, so if you're exposed to 110 dB or more for enough time (like a rock concert) you'd really need double hearing protection to be safe.


The foam plugs vary.
I use these, or stuff made by the same company. NRR 33dB, SNR 37

Hearos do some that have a 32dB NRR

With all foam plugs, the noise reduction varies with frequency. I like them, I think the music sounds better with them in. But I like bass.
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#19
Quote by MaggaraMarine
And about those Alpine earplugs. I have them and I think they are OK but they make every amp sound fizzy. You lose some tone. It really doesn't matter that much though.


I've been using them for 5-6 years now and have never found that to be an issue; I use the same set for both my own band and others I've seen live and have never had an issue with the sound while using them.
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#20
for playing: hifi

for seeing gigs: whatever box of crap that somewhat plugs your ears and doesn't cost a lot of money at a hardware store
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#21
Quote by Zaphod_Beeblebr
I've been using them for 5-6 years now and have never found that to be an issue; I use the same set for both my own band and others I've seen live and have never had an issue with the sound while using them.

OK, it doesn't sound bad but try it this way: Play your guitar without the earplugs, then don't touch your settings and wear the earplugs. Your tone sounds pretty different, doesn't it? I tried all the different ends that came with the earplugs (white, silver and gold) and all of them had that kind of fizzy sound. It's not bad but I would like it to sound like it sounds in real life. My point was that they change tone. They are kind of EQed differently than your ear. Again, I can live with the different tone but it would be good if it sounded the same as without the earplugs but just quieter. It's not an issue and I rather use them than suffer from hearing loss of course.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115