Is a level attenuator needed for E3s on a plane?
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little birdie

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It has these as an accessory on the shure website. I just bought my E3Cs and they should be in the mail, and I'm wondering if I'll need this to listen to them through an airplane input? It says that the output is much too loud for the in-ear phones and that the attenuator levels it out so you can listen to the plane movies and such. Is this true?
 
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toaster

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yes it is. frankly, i do not know who ever listens to the airplane music. but if you do want to listen to it, then you will need it so you don't hurt your ears.

what this does, is simply moderate the sound coming out of the source. so you can play it at lower volumes. without it, the volume control on the plane would only allow for you to adjust the volume from too loud, to just barely too loud.


honestly, if you have a portable, (ipod or any other mp3/cd player) why would you ever need to listen to airplane music?
 
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little birdie

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I would never listen to the music but I do watch the movies and such on the personal lcds on big jets. I guess I can just use the free headphones for them.
 
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toaster

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ah, the movies. good point. forgot about those. i usually just have a laptop for that though...
 
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Sugarfried

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The audio out in most airplane seats is pretty awful, especially at lower volumes. A slight chirping sound is present. As you turn the volume up on the seat control the chiping will be lower than the program material, but the program material will become extremely loud. So we offer the attenuator so that you can turn the seat voume up (to reduce the chirping sound) and still listen at lower overall volumes.

This issue is not exclusive to Shure earphones either. It's evident in any efficient listening device, especially ones that isolate.
 
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