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which passive noise reduction headphones are the most isolating ones(most reducing)?

  1. diazA

    I need headphones for my work environment.
    it is very common for workers in my office to sit with headphones in front of the computer.

    the noises I'm trying to reduce: a guy whistling his favorite song a few feet away from me, a guy stomping his feet and drumming with pens and pencils on his table right next to me, a girl popping her gum, and another girl clapping every time she makes a sale (about one every 30 minutes) and more.

    because of these noises are random - I doubt an active noise cancellation headphones will work here and think a passive noise reduction headphones will do better. (I may be wrong).

    which passive noise reduction headphones can block the noise the most? which ones are leading?

    the quality of the sound of the headphones are not that important.
    I only want to hear music in order to more block the noise from the outer world.
  2. rredge
    One option, although not cheap, is Remote Audio’s HN-7506: https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/283347-REG

    It’s used by sound recordists in high noise environments such as car race tracks and is based on Sony’s MDR-7506. It will probably do what you want with ease.

    If you’re making sales over the phone, you might also be able to adapt an aviation headset. Look up David Clark headsets.
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2018
  3. diazA
    Remote Audio’s HN-7506 seems pretty good with up to 45 dB reduction but other that at the link you gave me - I can't seem to find a place to buy it cheaper.
    not even on amazon or ebay.

    Sony’s MDR-7506 by the way don't have good NRR.

    how about the "Creative Sound BlasterX H5" headphnes ? I know their sound quality is crap but they seems to reduce about 32dB in tests which is pretty good:
  4. rredge

    You aren’t going to find bargain prices on the Remote Audio headphones. They are a niche product used by professional sound recordists who are working in high noise environments and want unusually high noise isolation.
  5. diazA
    any other suggestion besides Remote Audio’s HN-7506 ?
  6. serman005
    Have you considered in-ear monitors?
  7. PointyFox
    Shure ER4XR or ER4SR. They have the same attenuation as ear plugs.
  8. megabigeye
    All of these noises seem like they'd be relatively quiet... I'm a little confused as to why you need so much noise attenuation? Are you just going to be using the headphones to block outside noises while not listening to music? Almost all my headphones will block out (or, rather, drown out) all of those noises (with the exception of the clapping) so long as music is playing-- even the open back ones.

    I don't know what you want or need, obviously, but I'm wondering if what you're asking is overkill.

    On the recommendation front, in the past I've used a set of basic 3M hearing protectors with my usual IEMs underneath. Granted, you have to have IEMs that don't stick out from your ears too much. The attenuation was enough that I could hardly hear power saws, ventilation systems, etc. (yeah, yeah, yeah. Probably not the safest, having a dangly IEM cable hanging around power tools, but I kept the cable inside my shirt)
  9. rredge
    He explains the reason in his first post and specifies that he wants to be able to play music into them.

    I assume, perhaps wrongly, that he has tried ordinary closed back headphones and has found them inadequate.
  10. megabigeye
    I missed the last sentence. Basically sounds like they want to drown out their co-workers with music.

    My point still stands though: those noises are all relatively quiet and should be easily drowned out with almost any headphones, without having to get the most bestest noise-attenuatingest set. If that's not what the OP wants, I'm happy to be wrong. I just wanted point out what I thought was an incongruity.
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2018
    trellus likes this.
  11. rredge
    I think that the main problem with over ear headphones that offer high noise isolation, such as the Remote Audio HN-7506 that I mentioned earlier, is heat buildup. I think that this is a problem even in an air conditioned office.

    Heat buildup is a strong argument for earphones, which can offer very good isolation, especially if custom, without baking one’s ears. DiazA didn’t ask about earphones, but given his needs I really think that he should be considering them.
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2018
  12. diazA
    I have a problem with having something in my ears for more than 8 hours a day.
    I've tried it, it hurts after a while.
    so I'm not interesting in in-ears headphones.
    actually, as of today, i'm sitting with standard in-ear sponge ear protection and can still hear the talking/singing/whistling very loudly. (the guy whistling all day is less than 6 feet away from me).

    when I tried headphones with music to fight the noise, I got tempted to pump up the volume of the music to the point it could get hearing damaging - only than was it close to scrambling the noise around me.
    that's why I rather have the music in normal level and instead - get more isolation from the headphones themselves to begin with.

    by the way, I know this all seems ridiculous to you but it's no use talking to the guy whistling and tell him it's hurting my work because he is my boss and he told me to get another job if I can't take his noise. (I don't live in a western society like in america or Europe, I live in a third world country and there are no other jobs in thousands of miles from where i'm at so don't ask)
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2018
  13. megabigeye
    Oh, wow. That sounds like a really nasty situation. My sympathies. Your boss sounds like a really toxic personality.

    I'm a little surprised just regular music playing doesn't at least help, but we all have different sensitivities to this stuff, I guess. Is it that the noises are loud, or that they're irritating and therefor hard to ignore? If the latter, it might be hard to find any standard headphone that blocks out all the noise completely.

    I agree that having earphones in all day would be uncomfortable. I wonder if you could alternate between in-ears and over-ears throughout the day?

    Best of luck in what sounds like a really crappy situation!
  14. diazA
    it's the irritating, not the volume of it.

    my strategy is to use headphones in order to scramble the noise in order to decrease my attention to it.
    scramble it to some degree.

    regular music helps by the way, but very little without isolating. I can barely hear the music over the whistling.

    alternating between in-ear and over-ear headphones is a good idea.
    i'll try to over hear headphones alone first, than buying in-ear ones as well and alternating might the next step.

    looks like i'm going for the "Direct sound EX-29 Extreme Isolation" headphones.
    they are in the budget range and from the specifications seems to reduce high frequency sound pretty good.
  15. Dn2292
    I wish I saw this thread earlier!!

    Don’t know if you have ordered your headset yet but I have the Beyerdynamic DT 770 M and it has excellent ambient attenuation, 35dba I believe. One of the highest in the industry as far as music is concerned. I have had mine for less than a month and I love ‘em!

    Anyways I hope you get your situation taken care of so your work environment is tolerable!!
    megabigeye and trellus like this.

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