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Loud Enough Volume Limiting Earphones for Kids from Ultimate Ears

(with Brian Dixon)

Crank it up! We like our music loud -- and when we use earphones out in public we need to turn it up even louder to drown out all the outside sound.

But continuous exposure to loud sound can damage your hearing -- especially for children who may not be concerned with these kinds of issues. (If you pipe the noise of a rock concert (over 100 dB) into your ears, the recommended maximum exposure time is under 15 minutes -- see Ultimate Ears FAQ).

One answer is to use sound-isolating earphones, with a tight fit in the ear to reduce the outside noise so you can lower the volume from your music player. An even better answer for children and people with sensitive hearing is earphones like the Loud Enough Volume Limiting Earphones for Kids from Ultimate Ears, with built-in volume protection to reduce the maximum volume of the music source.

Compared to the Apple iPod ear buds, these can reduce the maximum sound level by 12dB, perceived as approximately 50% the loudness. And compared to other noise isolating headsets, they reduce the maximum sound level by 20dB, heard as about 25% of the loudness.

However, these are not "kiddie" looking earphones. Yes, they come in vibrant colors (Plum purple, Mint green, Blueberry), but they also have a clean, compact design, and are lightweight and rugged, with an included pocket-size hard case. Oddly, however, they do not have markings for the left and right ears.

But Loud Enough earphones still are designed for children, 6 and over, with three sizes of comfortable silicone ear tips (extra small, small, medium) that provide noise isolation to reduce the temptation to crank the volume up to hear clearly.

And you don't have to compromise on the sound quality -- the Loud Enoughs draw on the Ultimate Ears experience in professional and custom earphones for musicians and serious audiophiles (see previous post), with better than average sound, certainly better then standard iPod ear buds.

At $39.99, the Loud Enough earphones are not dirt cheap. Instead you get a nice design, good sound, comfortable fit, sound isolation, plus the additional bonus of protecting your children's hearing ...

See my Portable Audio Accessories Gallery for details on earphones and headphones.

    Find the Loud Enough Earphones on Amazon.com

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