5 Best Earplugs For Drummers and Musicians

Best Earplugs For Drummers and Musicians

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Noise-induced hearing loss is a danger to a musician’s health. Musicians are likely to suffer from tinnitus after performing a show in a loud nightclub without any hearing protection, where decibel levels can exceed 120dB.

Hearing protection is essential for drummers because an acoustic drum kit is exceptionally loud, especially paired with cymbals.

The accumulation of hearing damage can go unnoticed and it is irreparable. For this reason, it’s crucial for drummers to wear noise protection such as earplugs, in ear monitors, or noise isolation headphones while playing drums.

In this article, we’ll look at the best earplugs for drummers on the market. I’ve compared comfort, noise isolation, design, and cost to present you with the top drumming ear protection available.

What are the Best Drummer Earplugs?

Image Recommended ProductsProduct Features Price
BEST
Etymotic Research ETY-Plugs High Fidelity Earplugs
  • 20dB noise reduction
  • Proprietary tuned resonators
  • Great affordable earplugs
BUDGET
earpeace earplugs
  • 26dB noise reduction
  • 3 Earplugs included
  • True-to-life sound
PREMIUM
Eargasm High Fidelity Earplugs
  • 21dB noise reduction
  • Attenuation filters
  • Easy to remove pull tabs
Vater Safe And Sound Earplugs
  • 20dB noise reduction
  • 2 Sets of filters included
  • Great affordable earplugs
Downbeats High Fidelity Earplugs
  • 18dB noise reduction
  • Discreet and comfortable
  • Clear sounds

In-Depth Drummer Earplug Reviews

BEST

Etymotic Research High Fidelity Earplugs

Offering up to 20dB in noise reduction, these Etymotic earplugs offer effective hearing protection and a natural sound. They're also comfortable and come with a handy carrying case.
Noise Isolation
4.0
Comfort
4.0
Sound
4.5
Value
4.5

    Etymotic Research High Fidelity Earplugs Review

    The impressive Etymotic Research High Fidelity Earplugs come in a ‘standard fit’ size that fits most ear canals. These earplugs are designed to reduce up to 20dB of noise whilst offering comfort and also enhancing the music listening experience as opposed to standard earplugs.

    These ER20 earplugs feature surprisingly technical proprietary tuned resonators and acoustic resistors to replicate the natural response of the ear canal.

    This means that you are able to hear all the frequencies clearly to help encourage you to perform even better than you would with standard foam earplugs. These are the best earplugs for drummers on a budget that help to preserve the clarity of music.

    Also included with these earplugs is a useful neck cord and carry case so you can have these earplugs with you whenever you might need them.

    These are a great set of musician’s earplugs that significantly reduce the risk of hearing damage from drumming and loud concerts.

    If you are on a budget this is an affordable set of musician’s earplugs that offer a great level of sound reduction and won’t let you down. They are the best earplugs for drummers on the market.

    Features:

    • 20dB noise reduction
    • Proprietary tuned resonators
    • Great affordable earplugs

    Pros

    • Clear, natural sounds
    • Affordable earplugs
    • Comfortable to wear

    Cons

    • Only one size of tips included
    • Cut a bit too much low end
    BUDGET

    EarPeace High Fidelity Earplugs

    These earplugs offer up to 26dB in noise reduction and are made from comfortable medical-grade silicone. Trusted by top musical colleges and professional musicians.
    Noise Isolation
    4.5
    Comfort
    4.0
    Sound
    4.5
    Value
    4.0

      EarPeace High Fidelity Earplugs Review

      Hearing protection is vital for drummers. Noise-induced hearing loss is irreversible and the statistics show that a drummer’s likelihood of suffering from hearing loss is quadrupled after picking up the sticks. Although hearing loss is a huge problem, fortunately, it is easily preventable.

      This professional-grade set of earplugs produced by EarPeace is designed to offer maximum comfort and ultimate hearing protection. Included in the package are three earplugs – a very generous offering to ensure you are still covered in case you lose one!

      Also included are three interchangeable filters to use inside the earplugs. You have the choice of medium, high or maximum noise filters. The maximum filter offers a substantial 26dB noise reduction! The filters evenly attenuate the frequencies to offer a true-to-life audio experience whilst offering significant hearing protection.

      These musician’s earplugs are designed and manufactured to a high standard to deliver supreme comfort and performance. The earplugs are made of medical grade, hypoallergenic silicone, and the acoustic filters go through 4 separate manufacturing steps to get a precise amount of unobstructed sound.

      Also included with these earplugs is an aluminum case with three chambers to house all three included earplugs. These EarPeace Earplugs offer excellent value and great performance.

      Features:

      • 26dB noise reduction
      • 3 Earplugs included
      • True-to-life sound

      Pros

      • 3 Earplugs included
      • Smooth frequency response
      • Trusted by top professional musicians and music schools

      Cons

      • A little pricey even though you receive 3 earplugs
      PREMIUM

      Eargasm High Fidelity Earplugs

      Offering 21dB noise isolation, this set includes two sizes of earplugs to ensure a snug, comfortable fit. The attenuation filters preserve sound quality while protecting your hearing.
      Noise Isolation
      4.0
      Comfort
      3.5
      Sound
      4.5
      Value
      3.0

        Eargasm High Fidelity Earplugs Review

        These Eargasm High Fidelity Earplugs are the perfect solution for drummers looking for significant ear protection without sacrificing sound quality. These ready-fit earplugs are designed for musicians to reduce noise up to 21dB whilst preserving the richness of music thanks to the attenuation filters.

        The attenuation filters inside these drumming ear plugs reduce noise to safe levels but allow you to hear everything with clarity as opposed to standard earplugs that muffle sound and block out high frequencies.

        With these earplugs the frequencies are smooth across the range, allowing you to hear everything as you normally would but with a significant reduction in volume.

        These are some of the best earplugs for drummers on the market right now that are not custom molded. In addition to their noise reduction properties, they are also very comfortable and practical.

        The earplugs feature elongated pull tabs for easy removal from the ear canal and also included is a compact aluminum carry case so you can have them to hand for every rehearsal and show.

        Features:

        • 21dB noise reduction
        • Attenuation filters
        • Easy to remove pull tabs

        Pros

        • Two sizes included to ensure a snug fit
        • Preserves richness of music
        • Comfortable to wear

        Cons

        • Expensive option

        Vater Safe And Sound Earplugs

        With two filter styles included offering varying levels of hearing protection, these Vater earplugs are an excellent choice for drummers looking to protect their ears while practicing.
        Noise Isolation
        4.0
        Comfort
        4.0
        Sound
        4.0
        Value
        4.0

          Vater Safe And Sound Earplugs Review

          These Vater Earplugs are made from high-quality materials to ensure a high level of comfort and hearing protection that is essential for drummers.

          Included with this set of ear plugs are two types of filters that are interchangeable to suit your desired level of hearing protection. The earplugs are soft and comfortable and are also easy to clean.

          Also included with the package is a lanyard that can connect to the earplugs to prevent you from losing them, as well as a high-quality aluminum case to house the earplugs.

          These earplugs are comfortable to use and offer a high level of noise reduction whilst still allowing you to hear the music and drums with clear detailing.

          Overall these are a great set of earplugs for musicians that are also highly affordable and will last many years of vital noise protection. These are some of the best ear plugs for drummers on a budget.

          Features:

          • 20dB noise reduction
          • 2 Sets of filters included
          • Great affordable earplugs

          Pros

          • Designed for drummers
          • Vital hearing protection
          • Comfortable and practical

          Cons

          • None

          Downbeats High Fidelity Earplugs

          An affordable set of drummer earplugs, these offer 16dB of noise isolation and include a sleek carry case. They are a low-cost solution for drummers and other musicians.
          Noise Isolation
          3.0
          Comfort
          3.5
          Sound
          3.5
          Value
          4.5

            Downbeats High Fidelity Earplugs Review

            Lastly on our list we have these Downbeats Earplugs that offer a really comfortable fit and 18dB of sound reduction in an affordable package. They have a low profile in the ear which means they are discreet and comfortable.

            These ear plugs offer a good level of hearing protection and are perfect for loud rock concerts, music festivals, and rehearsals alike. The design of these earplugs allows high notes to still come through crisp and clear.

            Included with these earplugs is a practical aluminum carry case that can attach to a key ring for maximum portability.

            If you are after a good set of earplugs that won’t break the bank but will sufficiently protect your ears then these are a great option for you!

            Features:

            • 18dB noise reduction
            • Discreet and comfortable
            • Clear sounds

            Pros

            • Comfortable to wear
            • 18dB hearing protection
            • Clear sounds

            Cons

            • Not the highest volume reduction
            • Better options available
            • No interchangeable filters

            Musician’s Earplugs Buying Guide

            Hearing protection is essential for musicians in order to prevent noise-induced hearing loss. A 2006 study by the Percussive Arts Society discovered that 57.6% of professional drummers suffer from tinnitus, and 44.2% of amateur drummers do also.

            This is an incredibly high figure, due to drummers being exposed to high sound levels for extended periods of time, while playing loud concerts and rehearsing for long sessions.

            All musicians face the threat of hearing loss, but drummers are susceptible to more hearing damage than any other musician because the drums are the loudest instrument. The proximity of drummers to the drum set and loud crash cymbals makes hearing loss such a threat.

            Ears have some ability to heal themselves but only up to a certain point. The regeneration rate is determined by multiple factors including genetics and overall health.

            You risk permanent damage to hearing when the ears aren’t given themselves the time to heal. Noise damage accumulates over extended periods of time when the repair process can’t keep up with the ongoing rate of damage.

            I’ve written a complete guide to ear protection for drummers that I recommend checking out, as it’s filled with helpful tips and advice for minimizing the risk of damage from noise exposure.

            What are the Warning Signs of Hearing Loss?

            There are many warning signs of early symptoms of noise-induced hearing loss. The most common example is tinnitus, which is the buzzing or ringing you can hear after being exposed to loud noises.

            The accumulation of damage can go unnoticed and it is very important to make the effort to reduce noise damage as soon as possible by wearing earplugs or noise protection while playing drums. Some of the warning signs might be:

            • You hear a buzz or ringing in your ears.
            • Your ears hurt from the noise.
            • You begin talking much louder than usual.
            • Your ears feel stuffed or blocked.

            If you experience any of these symptoms it will definitely be worth seeking medical help. I would advise you to see a doctor or audiologist and have a hearing test so you can have a professional assessment of your hearing and learn how to make changes so you can protect your ears as much as possible.

            What Else Can I do to Prevent Hearing Loss?

            Seeing an audiologist to have an assessment of the health of your ears is a good idea, in order to ensure there is no significant damage already.

            Drummers and other musicians will inevitably hear loud music for extended periods of time. Whether it’s rehearsals, shows, or going to other bands’ concerts. Musicians are constantly exposed to loud music.

            But there are still habits that can be formed to help prevent hearing loss as much as possible. The most obvious one is wearing hearing protection as much as possible. Other things you can do to help include:

            • Avoid standing in front of PAs at loud music venues.
            • Avoid listening to music at a loud volume with headphones.
            • Give your ears some time to repair between concerts.
            • Always wear hearing protection at shows.

            I’d also recommend adding sound absorption pads in your rehearsal space to prevent the sounds from bouncing around the room as much and reflecting off hard surfaces. It’ll be easier on your ears while also helping the drums to sound better.

            Why Are High-Fidelity Earplugs Better Than Foam?

            Foam earplugs are useful and still provide a good level of noise reduction. Lots of music venues provide them for free, which is a great bonus for people in the audience who might be struggling with the loud noise volumes.

            Foam earplugs are effective, but they don’t offer a clear frequency response like high-fidelity earplugs do. High-fidelity earplugs feature specially designed filters inside that replicate natural true-to-life sounds. The best earplugs for musicians are high-fidelity earplugs that are comfortable, offer a significant reduction in noise, and deliver smooth frequencies.

            High-fidelity earplugs such as EarPeace High Fidelity Earplugs are the best hearing protection available for musicians that demand high-quality earplugs to prevent long-term noise-induced damage, but can’t afford to pay for custom molded earplugs.

            Are Custom Molded Earplugs Worth It?

            Custom molded earplugs are absolutely worth it if you have the budget to stretch to afford them. They are roughly 20-30 times more expensive than the high-fidelity earplugs on this list.

            Custom molded earplugs are made by taking impressions of your ears with a professional audiologist, and having custom earplugs manufactured to fit your exact ear canal. The result is an incredibly sealed fit that is also super comfortable inside your ears.

            If you can afford custom molded earplugs I would recommend them, but otherwise, high-fidelity earplugs are the best option as they offer a comparable level of performance but at a much more affordable price. The options I have presented in this product guide are the best earplugs for musicians available on the market right now.

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