Originally Posted by Dragunov-21
Not enough that you won't damage your hearing over time if you're racking up miles at highway speeds. How fast do you usually ride, out of interest? And what exactly is it so important that you hear when riding highways/country roads?
I'm not trying to pick a fight; I'm genuinely perplexed.
My motorcycle was my only vehicle for about 7 of the 20 years, up to 50 miles a day in mixed traffic and posted speeds in every road environment from rural podunk to Los Angeles rush hour. Most of my driving was in Los Angeles or Houston so big city, but 3 of those years was in smaller more rural mountainous conditions. The rest of the 20 years was mostly leisure travel usually at posted freeway speeds but much less frequent. I haven't done any cross country hauls, and drove more than a couple hundred miles in any one day. When I really had to rely on the bike for daily rush hour driving 50 miles a day I bought a good helmet which really reduced road noise to a very comfortbale and in my estimation non-damaging level.
But it is good to be concerned with hearing loss and if your helmet or lack of doesn't scratch the itch I suggest simple ear plugs that just attenuate the noise rather than headphones or simply don't drive a motorcycle. There are so many ways to eat it on a bike and if you do your chances of dying or serious injury are huge! Why would you want to limit your senses AND invite distraction. The payoff is so small I just can't see any justification for it.
And what are you listening for? Well, the most important thing you are listening for is ANYTHING! Anything that might indicate a problem, maybe its your tire making a funny noise because you hit a nail or something. Maybe you need to hear the horn of the guy who missed the red light and about to side swipe you. What about sitting at a stop light and the guy behind you who noticed it too late and is about to rear end you and the only indication you will have is the sound of a speeding car charging up behind you. You could easily die in either of those scenerios so why risk it?
What about simply not having the distraction of:
-The music to occupy you mind
-the ipod to find whatever you want to hear
-the phone ringing
-the cable that comes disconnected and you need to reattach it
-the volume to adjust when you go from recording to recording with different loudness levels and dynamics
-the speaker that pops out of your ear and you need to get your finger up there and tease it back in
and on and on and on
Why would you introduce that and affect your safety for the same song you've heard a hundred times?!? There is a reason I've been driving for 20 years as much as I have and only have one ugly bruise to show for it (which happened 20 years ago btw). That reason is I take this @#$% very seriously and don't mess around. My hearing is fine too. I have to get it tested every so often for work. I just had it tested and its still well within normal. Not bad for a guy who loves stereos and motorcycles!