Best ear protection ? Specifically for bass.

Discussion in 'Sidewinders Bar & Grille' started by fattboyzz, Jun 8, 2021 at 7:16 PM.

  1. fattboyzz

    fattboyzz Senior Stratmaster

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    Ive just recently bought a bass. Im enjoying it alot. More than I thought I would actually ;).

    Ive got one issue though. The bass frequency is pretty rough on my ears, which are pretty sensitive already. Even at low volumes. Very different from the guitar & amp ,which really is not a problem unless I crank it a bit .

    Im looking for some good bass player opinions on what I can use to curb these frequency woes :(

    Thanks :)
     
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  2. ukoldgit

    ukoldgit Most Honored Senior Member

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    I'm not a Bass player but I have taken a course in Noise Assessment for what it's worth here's my opinion.
    You have something of a problem I'm afraid, It's the low frequency noise that's the most difficult to attenuate, most in ear protection is designed to protect against mid range frequencies (though there are some that purport to cover the lower ranges)
    In industrial situations anti noise headsets are available however not a lot of use to you if you still want hear what your playing, your best option would be an attenuation screen and good hearing protection offering 10-25dB reduction, the combination should provide around 30-40 % reduction in perceived sound.
    @simoncroft might like to chip in on this. (he plays Bass too)
     
  3. stormsedge

    stormsedge Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    Yup...what @ukoldgit ^^says^^. Tough problem.
     
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  4. stratelespaul

    stratelespaul Strat-Talker

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    Probably a stupid question but, have you already tried squishy ear plugs?
     
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  5. YohanTheMan

    YohanTheMan Strat-Talk Member

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    Best ear protection ya say:sneaky:
    k71ydsi.gif
     
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  6. dirocyn

    dirocyn Senior Stratmaster

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    The best ear protection is to turn the amp down. Human hearing doesn't pick up low frequencies very well, which means you probably have the amp up louder than you think you do. Play a high-ish note (12th fret on the G string, for example) and set your volume based on that.

    If the low notes in particular are bugging you, try turning down the "bass" knob on the amp.

    Another option is to use a cab with smaller speakers. 8 and 10 inch speakers are usually less efficient for making low notes than 15s are, they tend to make really punchy bass with less of the extremely low frequencies that seem to really bother some people.
     
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  7. s5tuart

    s5tuart Perfecting time travel since 2525

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  8. AncientAx

    AncientAx Still hacking ....

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    My wife , she will make you turn it down to barely audible or she will flip the breaker ....
     
  9. BuddhaFingas

    BuddhaFingas Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    Add some distance between you and the amp; SPL follows the inverse-square law. Double the distance, 1/4 the energy, 6dB drop in SPL.

    Unless playing at a venue with other instruments, there's no reason to amplify to the point you need hearing protection.

    Or for small money (less than $100 new for a Fender Rumble 15, for example) get a low-wattage amp.
     
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  10. gjohnson441496

    gjohnson441496 Senior Stratmaster

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    I played bass with a SUPER LOUD METAL GUY for a bit. I bought Hearos and they worked so well I couldn't here myself play. These work and you can adjust the amount of sound you want to hear.

    upload_2021-6-9_11-13-46.jpeg
     
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  11. gjohnson441496

    gjohnson441496 Senior Stratmaster

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    Haha! Whew.
     
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  12. fattboyzz

    fattboyzz Senior Stratmaster

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    Ive tried it down real low. It seems to be the frequency and not the decibels.

    I have a small 3w practice amp I plugged into. It wasnt quite as bad, but I still felt a dull pain for hours after . Really more of an annoying ache. Something I dont get with guitar .
     
  13. dirocyn

    dirocyn Senior Stratmaster

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    I suggest you consider visiting an ENT (ear/nose/throat specialist, not the tree dudes) OR and audiologist because what you're describing is a medical condition. It's possible there's a treatment (possibly involving specially designed hearing aids) that would give you considerable relief.
     
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  14. Hanson

    Hanson Strat-O-Master

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    My Limiter as well.
     
  15. Hanson

    Hanson Strat-O-Master

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    For practice, I turn down to almost not audible. I also use AmpliTube Ampeg a lot, through head phones on my computer and DAW.

    For live, I made sure that I was not right next to the drums and not right in front of my own speakers. I would stand off to the side of my cabinet. I was also starting to get used to in ear monitors, to block out a lot of the stage noise. I’m not a huge fan of IEM, but it’s better than loosing your hearing, of which I’ve already lost some.
     
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  16. simoncroft

    simoncroft Still playing. Still learning! Silver Member

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    I have a set of the Earpeace ear protectors @s5tuart recommended, and they are currently fitted with the maximum attenuation filters. https://www.amazon.co.uk/EarPeace-Concert-Ear-Plugs-Protection/dp/B076VTXWBP/ref=asc_df_B076VTXWBP/

    That kind-of works for me in a band situation, but it does make it a lot harder to hear what others are playing. TBH, for practice, turning the amp up until you can really hear it, then putting in ear protectors is a lose/lose. You'll be able to hear even less than if you turned the amp down, but you will be making a shed load of noise! :D Ear protectors make more sense when your ears are getting shot to pieces by having cymbals and drums just feet away from your ears.

    The only real solution I've found is to stop playing live almost completely. I no longer even own a bass amp, and when I practice bass, I play unplugged. That way, when I want to learn/record a bass part, it's in muscle memory.

    As I suffer from tinnitus for more waking hours than not, I'd recommend you stop doing anything that causes you 'dull pain' and get specialist medical advice. Once you've done the damage, there is no way back, believe me.
     
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  17. cranky

    cranky Senior Stratmaster

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    Bass makes me kinda trip. Like when a super bassy engine from a big work truck drives by, I feel it travelling up the back of my neck and brain and I go into a kind of trance, I can't think and I get really drowsy. Musical bass can do the same thing to me if it drones enough or if it's low enough. No earplugs could stop that.
     
  18. soulman969

    soulman969 Senior Stratmaster

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    I'm gonna join others who recommend a trip to an ENT to diagnose your issue with low frequencies. Somethings not right.
     
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  19. Monkey

    Monkey Strat-Talk Member

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    you are on the the right track to protect your hearing. I have 50% hearing loss ,the tinitus put tears in my when it first kicked in, 5 years on when I go to bed I put on a machine that makes a raining sound this helps to blockout the high pitched ringing. protect your ears its to late for me .
     
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  20. simoncroft

    simoncroft Still playing. Still learning! Silver Member

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    I'm not going to 'Like' this, because your situation today is my biggest fear for tomorrow. But thank you for sharing. It's really important that people understand what an impact exposure to dangerous noise levels can have for the rest of their lives. At the moment, tinnitus doesn't keep me awake too often, but who knows where I'll be in a few years' time? :(
     
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