Looking for a concentration booster to put in/on/around my ears.
Oct 19, 2012 at 5:45 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 8

Somebaudy

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Hello this is my first post on this fine forum and I hope I post in the right sub-forum. (if not, mods, please feel free to move it where it belongs)
 
Here is my problem : babies crying in buses, the mechanical noises of the subway, traffic etc. are forbidden-by-Geneva-conventions tortures to me. Put me in a room full of crowded conversation noise for more than two hours and I lose all tolerance for other human beings. Whenever possible I go “smoke some silence” i.e. joining the smokers outside to enjoy a few moments away from all that noise.
 
Also multiple noises are diverting my attention span and concentration ability away from what I’m working on.
 
So my quest for a music-filled concentration booster.
 
Here is what I’ve tried so far : 
 
- a few years ago an in-ear, noise canceling Philips earbud (don’t remember the exact model). I loved the noise-cancelling effect but the battery was attached to the cable. The weight of the battery made its presence felt at every step : not really comfortable.
 
 
- Right now : Bose MIE2. They are not noise-cancelling, only passive earbuds. I find them comfortable and love the way they sound. If only they could erase *all* outside noise.
 
- What I’ve been looking at : the debate on active noise-cancelling (Bose Quiet Comfort, Sennheiser PXC 450, etc.) vs the around-ear,  not noise-cancelling headphone. Frankly, I’m lost. 
 
Here are a few questions :
 
How much dB does noise-cancelling systems erase from the outside world ? How much dB can be erased from the outside world by a passive, conventional, around-ear headphone ?
 
Money : a 4 figures price (in euro) like the very high-end headphones would be too much for my budget. Price range of the Quiet Comfort range (350 euros) or less would be ideal.
 
Thanks in advance.
 
Oct 19, 2012 at 6:11 AM Post #2 of 8

conkerman

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If Noise cancellation/suppression is your priority.
 
 
Active NC headphones.
 
Goldring NS1000. £60 from Play.com
Audio Technica ATH NC7 £100ish.
Others are available...
 
 
Active NC Buds
Lots available starting from pretty cheap, although batter location is an issue.
 
Before Jim gets here I would suggest the Noise Isolation of the Etymotic IEM's. Try the MC series first, as these have a warmer sound signature.
 
Oct 19, 2012 at 11:18 AM Post #3 of 8

davidcotton

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If it's isolation your after you are better off going with iems frankly.  Whilst ac may cut out such things as the rumble of the bus you will probably still hear talking etc.  Etymotic, Shure and Westone all have good reputations when it comes to noise isolation.
 
Cheers
 
Oct 19, 2012 at 12:26 PM Post #5 of 8

soundstige

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Oct 19, 2012 at 4:52 PM Post #6 of 8

kmhaynes

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I would suggest looking at the Etymotic HF5.  It is not their top model, but the price-to-performance ratio is excellent compared to the ER4, which is 100% more expensive, but anywhere from only 5-20% better, depending on what your ear can hear.  And they are very rugged and well-built.
 
The Etymotic earphones have such good isolation because of 2 reasons: 1) the housing is not vented -- most outside sounds come in thru small vents/ports in the earphone housing -- Ety's are closed; 2) most Ety eartips go deep into the ear canal, isolating you by effectively reducing most outside sounds especially when music is playing.  It takes a bit getting used to the deep insertion of the stock 3-flange tips, but the results are the best with them, IMO.
 
Oct 19, 2012 at 5:04 PM Post #7 of 8

micrors4

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Pickup a package of tips for the etys so that you can try every possible style of tips besides the ones that come with the headphones, personally I find a larger pair of tri-flanges to offer the most isolation as well the comply foam tips, and welcome to the forum.
 

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