Your hearing is one of your most valuable assets, and once it’s gone you can’t get it back. It pays to do everything you can to preserve your hearing right from the start, which is why I’m writing this review on the Howard Leight by Honeywell Impact Pro model number R01902.
Shooters, hunters and outdoors-men alike understand that they need to protect their hearing, but they also don’t want to comprise their ability to hear what is happening in their surroundings. Whether they are in a competition or on the range, they need to be able to hear clearly to safely operate their firearms.
As a result, hearing protection that amplifies lower decibel noises has become very popular. They give shooters the safety they require while still allowing them to hear critical sounds such as range commands.
So now let’s dive into our Howard Leight Impact Pro review. You may also want to see a list of the top 5 Howard Leight Earmuffs, and see how the Impact Pro compares against other Howard Leight models.
My Criteria For Choosing The Right Hearing Protection?
First let’s talk about what it takes make a great set of electronic earmuffs. With any hearing protection the main numbers you want to focus on are called Single Number Rating (SNR) and Noise Reduction Rating (NRR). Both are measured in Decibels (db).
You don’t need to worry about the details of how these numbers are calculated and they both mean about the same thing – how much of the power of a sound is being stopped before it reaches your ears. In other words, the larger these numbers are, the more effective the hearing protection you are receiving.
Of course the other factors that we consumers are always worried about still apply, price, comfort and style. Fortunately, as you will see in this Howard Leight Impact Pro review, you don’t have to sacrifice on these measures to get outstanding noise reduction.
Howard Leight Impact Pro (R01902) by Honeywell
The Howard Leight Impact Pro is the beefed up cousin to the Howard Leight Sport model. The Sport model was originally designed for environmental noises such as those found on a construction site, or doing yard work with a mower or trimmer. As a result, it just didn’t offer the noise reduction necessary for shooting.
The answer was the Pro model. Designed specifically for the challenging noise environment faced by rifle and pistol shooters. As you’ll see when we dig into the details of this Howard Leight R 01902 review, this model delivers for shooters in a way that the Sport model can’t.
Both models work by the same principle of amplifying lower volume noises, such as voices, so that the wearer can hear them better through the noise cancelling effects of the headphones. This amplification is the opposite of the way that the more expensive noise cancelling headphones that many of us are familiar with operate.
Amplification is a superior technology to noise cancelling for noise environments where there are short duration, high volume sounds.
This made it the perfect technology for hearing protection designed specifically for shooters and the gun range.
The Howard Leight Pro also includes some other well thought out features as well. One that I particularly like is the inclusion of a 3mm headphone jack that allows you to listen to music or anything else you would like.
Of course this isn’t recommended if you are taking a shooting class or involved in some sort of competition, but it’s a great feature for a day on the range by yourself.
Comfort and Design
The comfort of the shooter was considered as well during the design process. They include a padded head strap and sit comfortably over shooting glasses for a long period of time.
What’s great is that they fit all these features in at a price that can’t be beat. As I’m writing this you can pick up a pair on Amazon for a great bargain. That’s an incredible deal considering that the closest competitor, the Tactical 7 model by Peltor, tends to retail for much more and only offers an NRR of 24db, compared to the Howard Leight electronic earmuff’s NRR of 30db. Less money for more protection is a deal that is difficult to pass up.
The downside of the extra features is of course size. The pro model can be bulky and the size can make it difficult to comfortably fit in a range bag. The design doesn’t allow them to fold down easily either.
That being said, the size difference isn’t drastic compared to other over ear hearing protection. So unless you are going to make the jump up to in-ear hearing protection such as the Silynx Clarius Pro it likely won’t make much of a difference in the size of your overall load out.
Howard Leight and Honeywell Company Info:
Howard Leight was founded in 1972 and has more than 40 years of experience in manufacturing hearing protection as well as safety eyewear. The company holds over 150 patents and is considered an industry leader.
In 2010 Howard Leight was acquired by Honeywell, they maintain an accredited NVLAP acoustical laboratory in the US to test hearing, which is one of only three in the whole US. This high-level testing facility allows them to design products which are suitable for professional, lifestyle and recreational users.
Honeywell continues to produce safety eyewear, and is the leader in the industry when it comes to eyewear design, materials and technologies that are used.
You may also want to compare Howard Leight against these competing brands:
If you are looking for high hearing protection, which you can take at the indoor range or another very loud shooting environment, then the Howard Leight Impact Pro is a clear winner.
They have 30 NRR and automatically block all hazardous noise above 82dB so your hearing is protected. The headband is padded and adjustable, so you have a comfortable and secure fit at all times. At the same time, there are built-in directional microphones which amplify ambient noise up to 4 times, so you can communicate naturally with people around you.