Dubs Vs Etymotic Noise Cancelling Earplugs

Should I wear dubs, or do I prefer something from the range of etymotic. I shall write about both and give an opinion in the conclusion, thank you in advance for reading this article.

Why I Wear Earplugs!

This is a question that I have been asked many times and there is a simple answer in that headphones are awkward, do not in my opinion look good and they can muffle sound. I wanted something that didn’t protrude out of my ears or be embarrassing to wear in public at a sports event or other social occasion such as when clubbing while at the same time not restricting my listening experience.

Concert, Sports, Travel and Noise Pollution in Cities

While some people may think earplugs look odd, and ask why I wear them. Well the simple answer is look around you and listen. The amount of noise we accept into our daily lives is ruining our hearing and I prefer to retain the level of hearing I have. It took me a long time to realize how important my hearing is, something we all take for granted until we realize we have a hearing problem and take action.


Live music events can subject your ears to over 120dB. The record for a noise generated by the crowd at a sports game is 137dB. A plane during its take off procedure can produce 110dB of noise. The rating for noise pollution within many of the world’s cities has more than doubled in the last ten years.

Dubs Acoustic Filters v Etymotic

DUBS were created by a group of sound engineers, musicians, industrial designers and a few creative minds looking for a new superior option to offer adequate protection for your and my hearing. After lots of consultation, improvements to the original design and some acoustical innovation DUBS Acoustic Filters were ready to be unveiled to the world. Dubs allow me to go louder and for longer, reducing the levels of volume that may cause damage to my ears while still allowing me to have that optimal listening experience that I crave for.


Etymotic is a company based in Illinois, USA that does research, development and finally manufacturing of in-ear products. It is known for its pioneering work in being one of the earliest and at the forefront of the industry in producing canal phones for the use of its consumers. Other producers at that time were only producing similar products for musicians and not their listeners.


Etymotic is a Greek word and means ‘true to the ear.’ the research company was founded in 1983 and has patents for 89 of its products with another 61 awaiting their patent being awarded. The products are aimed at various markets or individuals including musicians, audiophiles, scientists and individuals like myself that have some form of hearing impairment. As well as earbuds, they produce earsets for cellular phones, microphones and hearing aids.

​The Plus Points For Dubs

Dubs can be used anywhere, I like to wear them while walking or cycling around in my local city, when I go to watch a sports game, at a concert, when clubbing away until the early hours or when I have to travel somewhere on a plane or train. They offer me comfort for my listening experience wherever I am or whatever I am doing. They also offer me adequate protection against the noises around me and of course they are fully reuseable.

 

Traditional styles of earplugs block all the surrounding noise, dubs are designed differently in that they are pre-tuned to filter out specific frequencies so I am able hear the world around me in a way that offers the least amount of damage to my ears.

 

The world today is full of busy cities full of noises that can be harmful to my or your hearing. On a daily basis the sounds of busy city traffic, construction sites, music in stores while shopping, music while eating or relaxing during a sociable evening not to mention the noise levels of a nightclub or rock concert. All these sounds have become acceptable to you and I, our ears do not adapt so easily and there is now a rise in noise induced hearing loss. All Dubs systems come complete with a 12 decibel NRR or noise reduction rating to help with protecting our ears.

Designed Differently With Advanced Filters & Built To Last

Dubs use a system known as Dynamic Attenuation, a mechanical yet intricate process that filters the sounds that were muffled and distorted by traditional styles of earplugs. They are built to last using durable plastic strong enough to last the pressure of today’s fast paced world. They also contain stainless steel, silicones and polymer foam, a durable product you or I can wear day after day, again and again. They sit comfortably, flush against the ear and have a convenient portable case so I can take them with me wherever I go.

Etymotic V Dubs

Etymotic have a range of products that are well known and aimed at professional use for musicians and others that are constantly in a loud working environment. The products they produce and aimed at the consumer market include their line of highly successful in-ear canal phones. The two products I like the best are the ER-4 and the ER-6 earphones. Each of their canal phones operates using the closed-canal system. The full range of musicians earplugs they produce also use the signature of ER. They are designed to offer protection to a musicians hearing while providing attenuation on all frequencies or to put it another way offer a softer version to the musicians ear.

Best Products By Etymotic

They are one of the cheaper models of Etymotic’s canal phones, and designed specifically for use with the iPod and similar low powered mp3 players. Together with the ER-6 they are cheaper versions of the ER-4, they all produce high fidelity with detailed sound reproduction. They do however have a lower bass volume than regular styles of headphones.
 

Both designs use the system of a closed canal, a specially formulated sleeve that prevents air from entering the ear canal. The ER-6i especially blocks out environmental noises enabling me to listen to my favorite music at a lower volume and reducing the risk of doing damage to my hearing. Etymotic and other producers of canal phones market their in-ear monitor against noise cancellation headphones by comparing their products against those competing in the similar market and are able to make the claim that their product cancels out far more sound than that of the competitive competition.

 

There is also some justifiable criticism of the ER-6 in that the thin cord is prone to getting tangled and this results in the micro phonics causing noises in the ear. The act of inserting the earphone into the ear may also be disturbing to some potential consumers (to get the earphone working correctly it must be inserted deeply into the ear). The design of the ER-6 means that if it is not inserted correctly then there is a severe loss of quality in the volume of the bass. The overall bass volume level is not to the same level in the ER-6i as it is in other headphones.

This is Etymotic’s original in-ear monitor and operates under the principle of the closed-canal. Etymotic claims it is the leader in this field of in-ear technology while some audiophiles believe this technology to be nothing more than a novelty. Etymotic are no longer alone the clear cut choice in this market of noise isolation or cancellation ear products with several rival companies creating headphones and canal phones.

 

The ER-4 has a P or portable setting with low impedance and an S setting for stereo that offers higher impedance. There are some disadvantages of the design of the canal phone in the ER-4, although it has aged well, criticism from audiophiles’ state that canal phones provide excellent detail but lack other attributes like soundstage and bass presence resulting in a cold and analytical sound. Critics will be expecting fresher and more dynamic designs containing multiple drivers. Opponents to those critics claim that when correctly inserted into the ear that the there is a sufficient bass quality and that canal phones are better than those that critics try to portray.

Bluetooth and Gaming

The ER-8, also known as the Ety-8 is one of the pioneering earphones using Bluetooth technology for its wireless operation. Edge Acoustics is a gaming subsidiary of Etymotic that caters for gamers via earphones. There is not a servicing or repair facility outside of the USA for dealing with defective products so these must be returned to the United States. If the unit is found to be defective then Etymotic will refund the postage costs involved, but for those consumers outside the USA this can be an inconvenience that sends them to another manufacturer.

In Conclusion

Dubs sit flush in your ear; they look stylish and are reasonably priced at $US19.99 from Amazon. In my opinion there is no reason not to buy this product it does the job it was designed to do. Etymotic have a bigger range of products to choose from but at a price. I like these as well but who really wants to pay $US298 for something as small as an earplug. It comes down to personal preference and for me that is dubs.

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