Serious shooters need heavy duty hearing protection and two popular products are the Peltor Comtac III and MSA Sordin Supreme Pro X. These advanced ear muffs usually cost over $250 and offer superior sound protection and advanced functionality.
Good hearing protection for gun users can be purchased for around $100 or less, but these ear muffs are designed for serious shooters who want superior hearing protection. Users include people who frequent shooting ranges, people who hunt often and people engaged in combat training exercises.
Doctear’s Analysis of The Earmuff Models
When choosing between the MSA Sordin vs Peltor, users will want to consider several factors. These features include hearing protection (noise reduction rating), amplification of soft sounds, ease of use, comfort and other features.
Hearing Protection / Noise Reduction Rating (NRR)
Noise protection is one of the most important features to consider when choosing hearing protection.
3M’s Peltor Comtac III offers NRR 20dB and is NAVLAP certified. They are tested at a 3M NAVLAP accredited facility.
MSA Sordin Supreme Pro X has an NRR of only 18dB in comparison. However, the Sordin can compress sounds up to 82dB and some reviewers of the product have stated that the product does a good job of protecting hearing. The 18dB NRR may in fact be a worst case average. The seal is very good even when wearing eye protection.
The volume can be lowered so that all sounds or suppressed or increased so that low volume sounds are amplified. With amplification, the user can more easily hear footsteps and people talking.
When comparing the MSA Sordin vs Peltor, both items seem to have good hearing protection although the Peltor Comtac III seems to have a higher NRR rating.
Another notable comparison is the Howard Leight Impact Sport vs Peltor Tactical 6S.
Ease of Use and Comfort
Ease of use and comfort is another important factor when comparing Sordin vs Comtac, especially for users that will be wearing these on their heads for a long period of time. People that are hunting or doing military training exercises will want something that is comfortable over a longer period of time.
3M designed the COMTAC to be used with other ballistic helmets and firearms. The sizing of the head piece is designed to be adjustable so that it can fit different users. The ear cup was also designed to provide a better fit. COMTAC offers gel cushions designed to improve the comfort of wearing the device over a long period of time. The fit is adjustable for different users.
The MSA Sordin comes with comfortable ear seals equipped. Gel covers fit well around safety glasses for those who use them and are more comfortable than the foam cups that come with other hearing protectors. The batteries can be easily installed and can last as long as 600 hours. The slim and foldable design makes it easy to carry around. The size is easily adjustable so that it can fit on anyone’s head.
When comparing Peltor vs MSA, both of these hearing protection devices have positive ratings for ease of use and comfort as one would expect for a higher priced product.
While hearing protection is important, another really important aspect of a good hearing protector is the ability to hear conversation and softer sounds. One notable difference between the MSA Sordin vs Peltor COMTAC III is that some COMTAC models come with an optional noise reducing microphone whereas the MSA Sordin does not. COMTAC are thus a good choice for team exercises or combat training. The boom microphone can be easily removed if it is not needed.
The COMTAC uses compression rather than clipping, which makes conversation more audible. Clipping can cut off the parts of the conversation, so compression provides an improvement of overall sound quality and makes speech easier to understand.
Talk-through technology allows safe audio to go through while still protecting from harmful loud noises. The microphone uses advanced digital circuitry to filter out loud sounds while allowing safe sounds to get through. Loud sounds are compressed to a safe decibel level while weak sounds are amplified so that they can be more easily heard.
The MSA Sordin comes with comfortable ear seals and can amplify safe sounds up to 4 times. Like the COMTAC, the Sordin also compresses loud harmful sounds while amplifying weaker sounds. When comparing the less expensive Peltor Tactical Sport vs MSA Sordin, the Sordin does a noticeably better job of amplifying weak sounds and transmitting conversation without clipping.
Both the MSA Sordin and COMTAC cost $250 or more as they are higher end products. The COMTAC sometimes costs twice as much as the Sordin and can be priced as high as $600-$700.
The MSA Sordin also comes with a 5-year guarantee on electronics. Generally, when comparing pricing between the Peltor Comtac III vs MSA Sordin, the Sordin is usually more affordable and typically the more popular choice for casual gun users.
COMTAC is also salt water resistant, which makes it a good choice for outdoor use and extreme environments. The kit includes camo bag, batteries, gel cushions and adapter.
The MSA Sordin also is waterproof and splash proof. Another nice feature is that it automatically shuts off after four hours to conserve battery life. The unit has a low battery indicator and requires two AAA batteries, which are included.
To sum it up, both the MSA Sordin and Peltor Comtac III are top quality hearing protection devices. Choosing between the MSA Sordin vs Peltor Comtac will depend on your budget and what you require in your hearing protection head wear.
The Sordin seems to be a popular choice for people who frequent shooting ranges. Some users advise using ear plugs as well if you are using higher powered fire arms due to the lower NRR rating.
The COMTAC, although usually more expensive, is a great choice for combat training, particularly with the included microphone to communicate with team members. The amplification of soft sounds allows users to maintain situational awareness while louder harmful noises are compressed to safe decibel levels.