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Review of high noise reduction rating earplugs

Scott E.

Forum Supporter
Joined
Sep 13, 2003
Messages
175
Location
Coppell
As a beginner rider I wore no hearing protection. Education exposed my ignorance to the risk of hearing loss, and I learned how much more enjoyable (and less distracting) a ride was with earplugs. I now wear them while using powered lawn and garden equipment.

Later I learned the proper way to insert them. Here’s a demonstration video https://youtu.be/xF1CjCugD_M.

The June 2019 issue of Ride magazine presents objective testing of the in-helmet noise environment. Read this if you have any doubt about the risk of noise exposure while riding.
My reviews here are based mostly on commuting and rides up to several hours. I don’t foresee any issues with all-day use though. Note: I suspect that my ear canals are on the small side.

Link for purchasing the sampler pack https://www.earplugstore.com/foearpltrpa2.html. The web site has comments on individual plugs and photos. Single pairs can be ordered.
E-A-R Earsoft Superfit : good sponginess and length, appropriate expansion rate. Good foam consistency. Looks like that gross Halloween candy corn.

E-A-R Earsoft FX: I don’t like the shape of this one, with a bulbous base. I had trouble rolling it without the wide part migrating to the portion of the plug that’s inserted into the ear, with resulting insertion difficulty.

E-A-R EarSoft Yellow Neons: Shortish, with moderate sponginess and expansion rate. It might be possible to insert these farther than one would like if plug is fully compressed end-to-end. Comfortable.
E-A-R EarSoft Yellow Neons Large: see regular yellow neons, larger.

E-A-R EarSoft Yellow Neons Blast: average length, above average density and expansion rate. Colorful design.

E-A-R Classic Plus: this is the ubiquitous wide yellow one with squared off ends. I wouldn’t wear these with no cost supply access. Insertion was a pain, even rolling up took extra effort.
E-A-R Taper-Fit 2: good length, a bit full for my liking, rebound is on the fast side

E-A-R Taper-Fit 2 Large: see above; larger

Elvex Blue: I would buy but these again. Length is slightly shorter, with flared base. Foam is slightly denser than others and a bit gummy. Personal preference toward these characteristics dictates purchase decision.
Elvex Uni-Fit: A bit long but decently tapered. Firm but compression and expansion are satisfactory. Slightly gummy but I like it. Best of the longer length ones for me.
Got Ears? Snow White: a bit shorter than some others. Exhaust low notes seem more pronounced. Easy to insert, soft and comfortable. I like.
Got Ears? Natural: slightly dense foam, expands quickly, blocks noise effectively. Feels a bit full and I wonder if would be uncomfortable during multi-hour use.

Got Ears? Back in Black: Snow White’s dark sister. Squeeze her and you’ll find she pushes back. Will appeal to the rider who likes firm, dense foam and a slightly rougher ride.
Got Ears? Red Hots!: See Got Ears? Natural. Red in color.

Howard Leight X-treme: less soft than the snow whites. Short length which is okay for me. Soft, easy to insert, quickly expand in ear canals. Recommended.

Howard Leight Laser Lite: Comfy. Easy to insert and with wide base. Foam less firm than some. Recommended.

Howard Leight Mulimax: too long for me. Rapid expansion in ear canals. I had difficulty inserting.

Howard Leight Max & Max USA (USA is red, white & blue): are big but expansion rate and ease of compression good. Feel full in ears but not too full. Large base.
Moldex Meteors: Good quality material, no gummy feel. Is tapered near base. Good quality but a bit big for me and I don’t like the taper.

Moldex Camo Plugs: a bit too long and wide

Moldex Goin’ Green: middle of road foam consistency/density/expansion rate but a bit big for my taste. Those liking larger plugs may find satisfactory.

Moldex Sparkplugs: dense foam, too long & wide for my liking. Difficult to insert and reduced pliability when cold.
Moldex Pura-Fit: I call it a good middle of road plug with a bit of extra length and girth. Compresses and expands at what seems to me the proper rates.

Moldex Softies: slightly large, down the middle foam characteristic. Should appeal to those who don’t want a smaller size.

Peltor Nitro: good expansion rate, easy to insert. Recommended.

Peltor Next: Similar to the Nitro. Rolls up easily. Almost put one too far in.

Radians Deflector: size, ease of insertion and expansion rate all okay. Slightly gummy feel. Recommended.
Radians Deviator: a bit large. Comfortable enough. I would buy but not in quantity.

Radians Detour: soft foam, easy to compress, good expansion rate not too fast or slow. Looks like a rocket with squared base. Comfortable. Nice.

Radians Resistor: a longer length plug that I’d buy. Hits the sweet spot of compression and expansion. Unpretentious except for the orange color.

Tasco Soft-Seal: fine but tend to expand too quickly. Noise reduction okay.
For the others in the pack they were lost by me, not shipped, or I forgot to review. Safe riding.
 
Joined
Jan 1, 2013
Messages
137
Location
Las Vegas
I've been using these, 3 pairs for $6 from Amazon. I buy a few at a time and give them to friends as needed. When I open one, I throw the cord away so I know they're not new ones anymore. These are similar to the orange ones I used in the army decades ago. I tried foam but it hurt my ears after an hour or 2. I've used these on all day rides.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0037F92RC/?tag=twowhetex-20
 

Diderich

Forum Supporter
Joined
Feb 1, 2005
Messages
3,460
Location
Texas
Are the beeswax ones reusable? or is that too gross? I ride everyday, twice a day, commuting.
 
Joined
Sep 4, 2017
Messages
877
Location
Katy, Republic of Texas
First Name
Nolan
I have been using the Howard Leight Laser Lite (they are pink and yellow) for years. I buy a pack of 100 pair and they last me quite a while (purchased 1 bag in 2015, another in 2018).
They are re-usable (about 8-10 times till they don't fit as well). They come in individual packs of 2, so I have a few in my saddle bag as well as in my inner jacket pocket in case I drop one. I keep them in my outer pocket in a baggie when no in use.
I also use these when I want a good nights rest. 8 hours with them in and they do not bother me at all.
Riding with them, I can't tell they are there, except much less wind noise, but can still hear important things.
I tend to be lazy, when I ride to and from work (3 miles each way) I don't usually put them in, but longer rides, I do, I will even stop to put them in if I forget.
 
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