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Etymotic Research ER20 ETY-Plugs Hearing Protection Earplugs Standard Fit Clear Stem with Blue Tip (Light Blue) by Review Summary ,  Sep 7, 2015

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Etymotic Research ER20 ETY-Plugs Hearing Protection Earplugs, Standard Fit, Clear Stem with Blue Tip (Light Blue)
Report Date: 01/02/2016
Based on 2411 customer reviews
Overall satisfaction: 4.2
Returned or considering to return: 1.7%

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Frequently Mentioned by Customers:


Individual Feature Rating
Communication5.0   above average
Value4.8   average
Video4.8   above average
Voice4.8   above average
Distortion4.6   exceptional
Comfortable4.5   average
Concert4.3   below average
Fit4.3   average
Level4.3   above average
Music4.3   average
Price4.3   average
Quality4.3   average
Plug4.1   above average
Sound4.1   average
Loud4.0   average
Packaging3.8   below average
Size3.8   below average
Headphone3.7   below average
Amazon3.6   below average
Design3.6   below average
Noise3.5   below average
Metal3.3   below average
Plastic3.1   average
Sensitive2.9   below average
Pain2.5   below average


Quotes from the Reviews - What People Say about:

Amazon

Amazon:
"Unfortunately, there was a mix up in size description on the Amazon website (now fixed I believe) which led us to receive the large size plug, with no time to return them for the standard size, however, as mentioned above, the larger size still worked well, just had to be put back in a few times."
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"THE BIG PROBLEM: the Amazon page clearly says these are a 20db noise reduction, and the model name ER-20 strongly hints at that too."
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"I had the same confusion, the Amazon product says 20 dB, but the package you receive says 12 dB."
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"Amazon is supposed to refund my purchase and isn't making me return them, so I don't have to pay for return shipping;, I'll continue to do business Amazon because of how they handled this problem and think they did the right thing."
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"Thank you #Amazon for this amazing product its the best thing that ever happen now I can go to my Gigs without a problem because their certain musician who have saxophone but don't know any scales yet they play and throw off the band with their horrible random notes.....The earplugs comes in handy"
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"But these that I bought on Amazon are a wonderful balance between softening the music to a manageable level, and keeping the sound clear."
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"Amazon was able to refund me."
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"First thing is the package states a 12db reduction, yet Amazon states 20db ((as well as the Etymoic)."
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"I purchased every brand of hi fidelity earplugs available on amazon, I wont say this product is perfect, but they do provide a substantial drop in db while allowing me to hear my guitar just a little more clearly than the Hearos."
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Balance

Balance:
"It's hard to balance in that situation, but on the other hand, you become acutely aware of even the slightest variance in your intonation."
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"But these that I bought on Amazon are a wonderful balance between softening the music to a manageable level, and keeping the sound clear."
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"I think the balance is a good one for musicians or people who like to be up close at concerts."
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"Good doesnt muffle and helps balance the sound levels recommended if you want to continue to listen to the music you love"
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"The nice thing is they can be adjusted for balance and volume by loosening tightening."
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"I like how easy they are to fit in my ears, and although i had to retune my balance on the radio, everything sounds great."
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Cable

Cable:
"When my cable broke over time, i replaced with a thin beige colored cable...which i find much better because its not very visible when i'm wearing the earplugs."
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"They fit well in my ears and come with a cord to connect them (and help you not lose them so easily), and also a clear rubber case keychain so you can store them and carry them attached to anything you plan to have on you all day."
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"After about a month of use at work the cord broke and I lost one of the ends that secures the string."
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"I love the included carrying case which is much like a coin pouch (squeeze ends to open).My only complaint would be the light weight cord that allows you to hang the plugs around your neck."
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"They come with a cord in case you have a problem with losing them."
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"Easy in and out and the cord keeps them handy."
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"Love the cord so I can take them in and out and always have them around my neck."
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"Cord and carry case are also a nice plus."
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"I would recommend using these without the cord, because it tends to rub on your shoulders and the sound travels into your ears."
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"Works good and also comes with a cord and small box to keep them safe when not in use"
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Color

Color:
"Just beware about colors and sizes."
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"Wish they came in a more day-glo color as they do get misplaced from time to time."
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"(2) The limited colors are frustrating."
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"My tip would be to look for foams that tailor more to your skin color so as to not be completely noticeable, as I myself hate being seen with foam sticking out of my ears, so I cut them a bit shorter and use them that way and they work great."
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"The ear plugs are great they come with different size and color."
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"Enjoying using these: it mitigate a huge amount of noise from coffee shop, I don't notice it after a while, and bright colors makes it easy to locate in stuffed bag."
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"However, the clear color does help conceal it and this is only an aesthetic preference, not a functional one."
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Comfortable

Comfortable:
"FWIW, I did not have any issues with fit or comfort, which some reviewers complain of."
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"They're a little irritating to my ears as far as comfort goes but taking them out every so often helps."
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"These are extremely comfortable and a great for blocking out loud abrasive damaging sounds, while not altering the frequency response of the world around you."
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"As I've read in reviews, it's important to insert these properly to get the correct sound quality, dampening, and comfort, but overall my results have been uncomfortable and too quiet."
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"I honestly hate having things in my ears but these were pretty comfortable in comparison."
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"They do fit very tightly in my ears and aren't perfectly comfortable (as compared to above mentioned cheap foam plugs) but the sound quality was far better and the attenuation was also greater."
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"They are easy to use, and comfortable."
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"Comfortable, and works well."
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"They are very comfortable and fit well in my ears."
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"They were easy to insert, and comfortable."
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"fit very snug and are comfortable to wear and are perfect for concerts and festivals!"
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Communication

Communication:
"These are great for a noisy environment while still needing to be able to communicate with people around you! "
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"As I ride a motorcycle, hearing aids are important, but it's also important to not attenuate volume too much, especially communication and vehicles, and comfort is very important."
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"I use these while flying, you can still communicate with the crew well and here voices clearly but it reduces the the high ambient background noise from the engines and airflow."
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"I was introduced to an young audio engineer who is a part owner of a global communication hearing protection company who recommended these."
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"They are comfortable, discrete, and allow me to communicate with others while still protecting my hearing."
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Concert

Concert:
"After damaging my hearing at a concert last spring, I decided I better wear ear plus to shows from now on."
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"I was not clever enough to come up with a comeback on the spot, but after the concert I came up with a few."
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"The only problem, my friends were unable to hear my insults because they were deaf from the concert."
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"I was SO disappointed the first time I tried to use them at a concert."
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"Not the most comfortable earplugs, but I tried them out at an avett brothers concert and they did exactly what they were suppose to."
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"wore it at a concert, my ears did not have ringing at all, great"
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"Excellent for loud concerts or movie theatres."
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"Best earplugs for concerts that you'll ever buy."
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"Great for loud concerts."
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"I love going to concerts, but the loud noise and ringing ears afterwards always bothered me."
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"These are great for concerts"
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Design

Design:
"My only complaint is that the stem on this design sticks out a bit farther than I would prefer."
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"When you finally do they're not too bad, but if you have to take them out once in a while it's a bit painful due to the design of the plugs, and you have to start the process all over again."
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"I would not recommend this earplug because of its flawed design."
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"The clear plastic sticks out to far & is not a great design."
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"Well designed, comfortable and efficient."
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"very cool, love the design and still being able to hear with out foam muffling the sound."
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"In a very loud concert setting, I think an audio engineer or musician could use these without much of a problem - which is actually what they were designed for."
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"I'm not sure if the design is different, or just the size, but these earplugs work great!"
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"Compact design makes them easy to take along."
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Distortion

Distortion:
"they eliminate some excessive noise but also distort clarity."
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"If you are anywhere where music is being played loud, these earplugs help with tuning out the harmful distortion and help you to just enjoy the music."
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"I use these earplugs for playing the piccolo, and they don't distort the sound at all, everything is very clear."
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"Music comes in crip and clear, maintianing the highs and lows with minimal distortion, but the volume is turned down so my ears aren't ringing for the next few days."
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"Enough attenuation for almost any situation (unless you stand near jet engines on a regular basis, maybe), decent filtering (sound doesn't become too muddy or distorted), good fit, easy to insert and remove."
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"If anything, music is now more enjoyable, rather than overly loud and distorted."
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"During the show, the sound was nice and clear, the only frequencies that got slightly distorted were the very high ones which is understandable, but other than that all the bass and mids came through nicely, like i was just turning the world's volume knob down."
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Fit

Fit:
"These need to be sold with interchangeable tips so that a first time user doesn't have to wonder, well, do I have standard fit ear canals?"
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"FWIW, I did not have any issues with fit or comfort, which some reviewers complain of."
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"I have always had issue with most earplugs and IEM as my ear canals are smaller than normal people so unless they are custom fit I tend to have a problem getting a good seal."
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"The fit was a little tight for my ears which did cause some discomfort after a extended period of time (5+ hours) and I did have a issue getting a quality seal occasionally but that it excellent for me normally."
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"Here are the details...FIT: This is my #1 complaint of the Etys."
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"This may be due to fit insertion problems mentioned above, but I just didn't feel they were going to really protect my hearing."
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"These fit great, and can be adjusted so easily to get the desired effect."
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"They are the fourth pair of nice earplugs I've tried (I'm not counting the regular foam ones, which don't even fit into my ears), and have so far been the best."
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"Fits my right ear really well but can't get a good seal on my left."
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"My girlfriend and both use the large and it fits perfectly."
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"This lets the user choose his or her best fit."
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Guitar

Guitar:
"He has bad hearing (which just adds to the problem) but can play a mean guitar...very loud."
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"I'm a guitar player in my 30s, and I'm seeing more and more musicians having hearing problems as they get older."
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"Pros:- reduce overall volume well- fit well and are comfortable to wear- decent priceCons:- makes your guitar tones sound weird- can't hear the mid-highs and highs very well at all, makes playing guitar hardThese are great for bass players, drummers, and concert goers, but not guitarists."
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"Cheap foam earplugs may work in a pinch, but the sound quality with the Etymotic plugs is far superior; vocals and guitars may be missing a bit of 'punch', but they still sound clear, and bass & drums suffer little to no sound distortion."
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"Great for concerts or playing your guitar on the loud side."
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"The sound quality was not compromised and I could still hear the vocals, guitar, bass, keyboard and drums without an issue."
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"Vocals, bass, drums, guitar all are easily heard through these."
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"I play bass guitar and I can easily hear what I'm doing with these in, where the foam plugs made everything much too muted to play along."
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"I also play lead guitar in a rock band and these are perfect for that (I can still hear all the notes clearly)."
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Headphone

Headphone:
"The stems stick out pretty far so putting a over the ear headphone can make it more uncomfortable."
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"When I first used these headphones I was disappointed!"
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"When I misplaced my headphones earlier this week I grabbed these earplugs from my travel bag and used them to block out the noise."
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"doesn't quite handle my problem as a performer, but superior to headphones for the purpose."
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"Perhaps this size is a little too large for me as I really struggled to get them in my ears, but when I finally do have them in, the protection from noise is no matter than my UltimateEars headphones and they are very uncomfortable and painful to wear."
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"Tested em with my headphones on full blast, normally painfully loud, and it was very comfortable."
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"The stems stick out pretty far so putting a over the ear headphone can make it more uncomfortable."
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"I can wear this comfortable with a pair of over the ear headphones as well."
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"Great headphones"
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"Cons: if you want to wear them with headphones, you can't or it's very uncomfortable."
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"These headphones are amazing!"
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Instruction

Instruction:
"I thought maybe I was putting them in wrong, but I read through the instructions and comments, trying multiple times, but I couldn't ever seem to get them to go in without hurting or to actually muffle the noise."
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"Another problem I have with these earplugs are that the instructions say not to immerse them in water, which makes it hard to get them clean."
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"If you follow the instructions, they should fit in well unless you got the wrong size."
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"These earplugs came with clear instructions, and the company was good about sending information by e-mail, too."
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"I only have two concerns with it is that it's slightly tiled, it's not straight like how it's shown in the picture so I guess it fits into your ear perfectly but I wish they told you on the website and as well on the instructions that it's tilted."
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"To put them well just make sure to follow the instructions that come with them, believe me that they will make easier to put them, and they will fit better and filter better."
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"I can also hear the conductor give instructions very easily."
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"I followed the instructions carefully and am confident that I did not put the plug in too far."
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Level

Level:
"From my first couple dozen motorcycle highway rides, I noticed my discomfort with noise levels decreasing."
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"If you've ever been to an event where the sound levels were a bit uncomfortable, then these are for you."
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"I commute on a train and the noise levels are sometimes painfully high and can cause hearing loss over time."
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"I was initially disappointed that these don't offer the same level of extreme isolation that you get from their headphones, but were instead designed to provide relatively minor isolation evenly throughout the entire frequency spectrum."
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"These earplugs are great for concerts and club nights where the sound level is really ridiculous."
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"It's not true, as they just filter the sounds down to a less painful level, letting you concentrate on what the person you're addressing is actually saying."
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"These earplugs are great - the small case is a great addition, and the earplugs truly do reduce the volume neutrally - the music still comes out great, but not at ear-blaring levels."
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"Yes, they dampened the sound but not even close a comfortable level."
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"I found that they got rid of a lot of the crowd noise and brought the sound level down to a more reasonable level, but I could still hear Katy and the music perfectly."
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"Great in terms of reducing the noise level without distorting what you're actually listening to."
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Loud

Loud:
"Maybe once in 30 shows I still had some ringing in the ears (hearing damage) after a show, but that was an exceptionally loud show."
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"These work very well for middle school rallies, where it gets excessively loud from 12-13 year old kids screaming in a gymnasium."
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"I have even worn them in nightclubs which has really helped prevent any ear damage to the loud music while not taking away from the experience."
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"14 dB can mean the difference between pain damage and just loud."
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"These are extremely comfortable and a great for blocking out loud abrasive damaging sounds, while not altering the frequency response of the world around you."
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"The opening sequence is painfully loud and these allow me to hear everything but in a much softer volume :) For my ears, the fit does start to feel uncomfortable after about an hour so I often remove them after awhile."
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"Excellent for loud concerts or movie theatres."
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"These earplugs do an amazing job at dampening loud noises to make the sound bearable, and, I think, safe."
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"Great for loud concerts."
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"I love going to concerts, but the loud noise and ringing ears afterwards always bothered me."
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"Work great, cut out the loud high end and but can still clearly hear people talking to me."
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Metal

Metal:
"Lost my original pair from 2012 some months ago when the metal chain broke off from my keychain."
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"I am a frequent concert (metal) goer so I wanted something to stop the horrible ringing and deafness (and fear of going deaf before 30) and these were geared for shows, so I took a risk and got them."
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"I've been going to metal shows for a dozen years, and I neglected to use plugs for most of that time, like many music fans."
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"However, I think a combination of factors contributed to my bad experience with these earplugs: the sound quality at the venue being terrible to begin with and this being a heavy metal concert, the acoustic filters worked differently than they would with other types of music."
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"I really wish they could give us a nice metal barrel style case like other earplugs! "
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"Wore them to a metal show and sound clarity was perfect."
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"I wore these to a death metal show and my ears felt great afterward."
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"Used it in a heavy metal concert and left the concert still being able to hear well."
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"My son loves metal music and is usually in the mosh pit in front of the stage."
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Music

Music:
"These really did a great job cutting down the painful loudness but you could still hear the music quite well."
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"I have even worn them in nightclubs which has really helped prevent any ear damage to the loud music while not taking away from the experience."
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"They filtered the sound just enough that I didn't feel like I missed the music but I didn't have any muffled, ringing ears afterward."
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"If you listen to a lot of electronic music and hate to lose your hearing by 30 this is for you."
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"As an avid music lover, this was incredibly scary."
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"It works fine for a place with loud music, but if you are a musician, it doesn't work as well when you are performing."
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"great for when i go to zumba class, they have the music louder than anything! "
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"As an avid music aficionado, preserving my hearing is imperative, but so is being able to actually HEAR the music."
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"I went to a slpknot show with these and that band is known for being very loud these protected my hearing but did not lose any Clarity In the music Highly recommend"
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"These earplugs are great - the small case is a great addition, and the earplugs truly do reduce the volume neutrally - the music still comes out great, but not at ear-blaring levels."
_

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Noise

Noise:
"I have never really found a pair of ear plugs that let me hear as well as I want to, yet blocks out the excessive stage noise."
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"They block out all the painful noise but you can still hear clearly, and no ringing the next day."
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"they eliminate some excessive noise but also distort clarity."
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"I've bought cheap cvs ear plugs before but their purpose is mainly to completely block noise, so they were terrible, not to mention they would fall out."
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"Good noise blocking, but uncomfortable in my ears."
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"From my first couple dozen motorcycle highway rides, I noticed my discomfort with noise levels decreasing."
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"These earplugs do an amazing job at dampening loud noises to make the sound bearable, and, I think, safe."
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"I love going to concerts, but the loud noise and ringing ears afterwards always bothered me."
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"These are great for a noisy environment while still needing to be able to communicate with people around you! "
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"Fantastic flat response noise reducing plugs... easy to talk to people with them in as well"
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"It was frustrating not being able to hear, but with these I wasn't struggling to hear through the engine and air noise in the cabin of the plane to have a conversation at a reasonable distance."
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Packaging

Packaging:
"Must say I am disappointed that the description of the product does not match the packaging of the product I received."
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"Maybe the wrong product was put in the standard package?"
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"I had the same confusion, the Amazon product says 20 dB, but the package you receive says 12 dB."
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"Happy to find these, love the package."
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"The packaging is perfect for keeping them in my purse."
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"The packaging upon arrival says they are large, yet the easily fall out of my ears."
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"They come in a convienient small package and are great for hunting, shooting range, loud concerts, etc."
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"The model number above the bar code on my package clearly says ER20-SMB (clear stem blue tip), but there is a giant noise reduction rating box that says 12 decibels in large letters."
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Pain

Pain:
"14 dB can mean the difference between pain damage and just loud."
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"Clear sound, no pain, happy ears."
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"I bought them for a variety of activities that are just a little uncomfortable for my ears, after learning that the damage threshold for hearing is actually below the pain threshold."
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"As anyone who listens to EDM would know, some of the songs can reach extremely high frequencies, and combined with the fact that they're being played easily above 90 decibels, those frequencies can cause extreme ear pain or even hearing damage."
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"In spite of the very poor fit they did protect me from the usual discomfort and pain I get at work (noisy workplace, using compressed air to clean machines dozens of times a day) but still allowed me to converse easily and understand what others are saying."
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"This neutralizes it all and I have no pain, but best of all I can hear everything crystal clear."
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"These make everything still sound great, but saves your ears from pain."
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"Since I have somewhat hyper-sensitive hearing, these allow me to still attend concerts without pain; I can still hear a good range of sounds without difficulty."
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"No problems, music sounded great, no pain or discomfort from the loud music."
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"Reduced tinnitus (virtually gone), reduced hearing pain (virtually gone), wonderful enjoyment of music, and able to hear speech in noisy environments."
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"Now I can stand up front directly next to the speakers and not have any pain (or negative affects afterwards from too much sound) and the sound clarity is perfect!"
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Plastic

Plastic:
"Unfortunately the plastic tube on the outside is rather long and has sharp edges, so if you plan on wearing these with something that goes over your ears like a motorcycle helmet, your ears will be in a ton of pain from them rubbing your ear."
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"Extremely uncomfortable, the hard plastic stems are painful and too large of diameter when inserted in my ear canal."
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"Uncomfortable, rigid piece of plastic."
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"It's not a big deal, but it's a kind of soft plastic, so much less annoying to have in my pocket if I'm out and I don't have a good place to put it."
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"However, they don't work well while sleeping because of the plastic stems that press hard against the ear while one sleeps on one's side."
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"They do stick out a little and the clear part is a solid plastic, so they are really uncomfortable to sleep in especially since I'm a side sleeper and I toss around a lot."
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"They also come with a very small plastic case thing that makes it very easy to just leave them in your purse (it's really small, takes up basically no space) so they're always there when you need them and keeps them nice."
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"Love the plastic carry case it's small and simply does its job well! "
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"Work well but because of the hard plastic pieces I can't sleep with them in."
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"These feel most comfortable and I can easily insert them and remove them by gripping the clear plastic tube."
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"They do stick out a little and the clear part is a solid plastic, so they are really uncomfortable to sleep in especially since I'm a side sleeper and I toss around a lot."
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Plug

Plug:
"There were the most painful ear plugs I have ever tried."
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"I'm always worrying that my hearing will be damaged at these events, and these ear plugs are the perfect solution."
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"These are decent, but not a good multipurpose ear plug since they are not comfortable to sleep in due to the long stem."
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"I wish the bars would turn down the volume, but since they won't, I highly recommend these ear plugs."
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"I've been to hip-hop and metal shows where I needed to switch to heavier plugs because the bass was just overwhelming and uncomfortable."
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"My review is mostly negative, but I'll still be using these ear plugs, as they help quite a bit while on the freeway, and you're not hearing anything other than wind on the freeway anyway."
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"With the Etymotic Research ER20-SMC ER20 ETY-Plugs, I find the sound to be more agreeable, and am able to resist taking the plugs out at a concert for a longer time."
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"Pretty solid, plain, no-fuss plugs."
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"Fantastic flat response noise reducing plugs... easy to talk to people with them in as well"
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"For me, these plugs fit comfortably for 10-12 hour flights and reduced the fatigue of having to listen to the constant noise."
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"Most ear plugs aren't painful for me (I don't think I am particularly sensitive as some people are) but instead, most ear plugs just don't stay in my ear canals."
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Price

Price:
"the purchase was a waste of money and the return was a hassle to boot."
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"Protecting your hearing has never been so inexpensive and easy!"
_
"They do fit very tightly in my ears and aren't perfectly comfortable (as compared to above mentioned cheap foam plugs) but the sound quality was far better and the attenuation was also greater."
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"Fit didn't feel that good and not really any difference than a cheap 69 cent ear plug"
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"They aren't perfect but they are the best for the price."
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"works well, no complains, good quality, good price, very reusable"
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"This was money well spent to protect my hearing while still being able to enjoy myself."
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"Good price prompt delivery, I will buy again."
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"Good price."
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"Effective, inexpensive, necessary."
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"spend more money on more comfortable earplugs."
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Quality

Quality:
"The reason that I only give these 2 stars is because after a few normal uses one of them cracked and then later broke, the string and connectors that they came with was very low quality and i often had to worry about losing them while they were around my neck and they carrying case cracked in half after just two days... for the amount I payed for these over other options i would expect better quality."
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"As I've read in reviews, it's important to insert these properly to get the correct sound quality, dampening, and comfort, but overall my results have been uncomfortable and too quiet."
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"Takes out all the irritating and harmful pitches without compromising the sound quality."
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"I have tried a few different industrial earplugs before, and while they do dramatically drop the volume of sounds coming to my ears, they also give everything a muddy dead quality, especially the vocals in music, due to their uneven sound dampening."
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"When I first tried them at a show, they gave me relief from the painfully loud speakers without compromising on quality."
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"works well, no complains, good quality, good price, very reusable"
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"Sound quality was still great without killing my ears."
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"Great quality."
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"These still maintain good sound quality."
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"These work well and the quality of sound is not deteriorated because of the sound dampening."
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"The attenuated sound quality of these is pretty good."
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Range

Range:
"The sound isn't perfect, the range is still affected, but less so than the foam plugs, and my hearing is worth it."
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"The major problem I have with them is that they really attenuate the vocal range and highs way too much."
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"I love these because they reduce the volume slightly so you can enjoy the music, but still provide protection against damaging hi and mid range frequencies."
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"However, when I tried to use them at the gun range, they wasn't that great."
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"I've read reviews of people taking these to a gun range and being fine, but I find that hard to believe."
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"I used them first for sleeping because it has to be dead quiet, then I started using them for when I was out on the shooting range."
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"I was able to stand front row at an electronic EDM show, complete with blown out volume and bass, and could comfortably hear the entire range of music (probably better than everyone around me."
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"perfect clarity throughout the entire frequency range."
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"These are perfect ear protection at the range."
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"Since I have somewhat hyper-sensitive hearing, these allow me to still attend concerts without pain; I can still hear a good range of sounds without difficulty."
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"Used for gun range, work well and comfortable."
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Rubber

Rubber:
"The plastic finger piece came out the first time I used them, and it took me 5 minutes to get the rubber part out of my ear ... very uncomfortable."
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"They fit well in my ears and come with a cord to connect them (and help you not lose them so easily), and also a clear rubber case keychain so you can store them and carry them attached to anything you plan to have on you all day."
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"My only complaint is that the rubber flanges on the plugs arrived bent because they were crammed into a package and not stored properly."
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"The three cups allow them to fit your ears quite well, and the little rubber case they come in is handy to keep from loosing them."
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"The rubber case is a perfect combination so they don't get lost plus you don't want to throw them into your pockets where lint and lord knows what else is hiding."
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"I think the rubber 'sponge-y' ones work just as well too."
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"'Excessive' being the operative word, not 'absolutely none at all'.I knocked off 2 stars for less comfort than alpine, and the standard size rubber feels a bit harder than the 'large size'."
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"They are also very soft rubber so they are comfortable to wear for long times, and are washable with soap and water."
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Sensitive

Sensitive:
"Came in handy for this girl that I dated who said she had sensitive ears."
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"I bought these to wear while driving my convertible on the highway, not so much for the wind road noise but rather to protect my ears from passing trucks, motorcycles, etc (I have rather sensitive hearing and these kind of noises were painfully loud)."
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"These headphones seem to work well, and for most people they probably will, but for me, I guess I have sensitive ears, -12db is not enough to be comfortable, I wore these at a band practice with a drum-set and several guitar bass amps in a medium sized rehearsal space and it was still too loud and uncomfortable."
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"The plug itself rests deep in your canal, so even light pressure on the end is very sensitive and painful."
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"The drawbacks are minor (loss of some clarity and mildly uncomfortable for sensitive ears), they can't be seen if worn correctly, they're easy to take in and out (the newer ones come with a cord to hold them around your neck), and will save you from wearing hearing aids when you're 60."
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"Most ear plugs aren't painful for me (I don't think I am particularly sensitive as some people are) but instead, most ear plugs just don't stay in my ear canals."
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"My ears are very sensitive and these are comfortable and protect them as well as an expensive set of muffs."
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"Great, affordable, reusable option for those with sensitive hearing."
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"He has sensitive hearing but enjoyed the show and wasn't fiddling with them because they were uncomfortable."
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"A good gift for those with sensitive ears"
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Size

Size:
"They are also very uncomfortable, I purchased the small ones."
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"Unfortunately, they ARE too small."
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"The normal size feel a little large for my ears and are uncomfortable after extended periods of time."
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"Second part of my review is for how Etymotic handled this, I was contacted by the Etymotic Research Customer Service after I wrote a grumpy report of receiving the wrong size, they researched and discovered that product name has been changed to read standard fit, instead of large, (for reference the white tip is large fit) They then sent sent us 2 packages of standard fit, which we will now have for future events."
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"Unfortunately, there was a mix up in size description on the Amazon website (now fixed I believe) which led us to receive the large size plug, with no time to return them for the standard size, however, as mentioned above, the larger size still worked well, just had to be put back in a few times."
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"Despite the fact that I ordered the wrong size (the size selection is annoying to navigate...) these have worked great and held up well for the few concerts I've now used them at"
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"Nice ear protection but even L is too small"
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"This is surely true of other brands, but it would be good policy to allow for a free exchange if the size you bought doesn't fit."
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"These earplugs are great - the small case is a great addition, and the earplugs truly do reduce the volume neutrally - the music still comes out great, but not at ear-blaring levels."
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"Get the right size and the seal will be more comfortable."
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"The ear plugs are great they come with different size and color."
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Sound

Sound:
"I know my ears are protected and I don't notice that the sound is degraded."
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"I actually tried using them the other night because the sound of the wind outside was annoying me so much I couldn't sleep."
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"The sound isn't perfect, the range is still affected, but less so than the foam plugs, and my hearing is worth it."
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"She says it doesnt attenuate the sound enough and are a little uncomfortable."
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"Sound attenuation is no where near as good as other options."
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"Not great for a musician; muffles the sound too much."
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"They fit snugly in my ear and really filter the sound well, and generally stay put well too (I dance in them, including fast spins, and they do not slip out at all - however, like most earplugs, you may notice when you smile or move your face in certain ways, they may open up slightly, or if you exercise vigorously in them like me and get sweaty."
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"they did a decent job of cutting sound, but i had a hard time understanding lyrics when wearing them."
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"Sound quality was still great without killing my ears."
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"With the Etymotic Research ER20-SMC ER20 ETY-Plugs, I find the sound to be more agreeable, and am able to resist taking the plugs out at a concert for a longer time."
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"Volume is lowered but the sound is muffled or muddied, everything is still very clear."
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Tone

Tone:
"While in the midst of a performance (playing OR listening), it's easy to forget about how loud everything is because the mind normalizes the volume of your surroundings, but those loud tones can still do damage over time."
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"Pros:- reduce overall volume well- fit well and are comfortable to wear- decent priceCons:- makes your guitar tones sound weird- can't hear the mid-highs and highs very well at all, makes playing guitar hardThese are great for bass players, drummers, and concert goers, but not guitarists."
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"Although, during the show, I always felt like I was missing some tones and sounds."
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"Great for musicians, doesn't affect tone much, but provides good protection."
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"Clear music just a slight muffling in base tones."
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"These earplugs are a great solution because they block out sound but not tone, making it seem like you're turning down life around you while still being able to hear things with clarity."
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"They're comfortable, they fit well, and they tone down the music just enough that my ears aren't ringing at the end of the night, but I can still enjoy the show."
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"I used them to listen to Bear Hands at an underground venue (pretty much someones garage) and my friend (who did not have these ear plugs) said the sound was awful (high tones too loud), but I thought they sounded great and my ears weren't hurting."
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Value

Value:
"Simply put... they are uncomfortable and provide fairly little value in noise reduction."
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"A few hundred dollars is good value to protect against irretrievable hearing loss and thousands spent on hearing aids."
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"I will be interested to compare the ease of use and value of these two different devices and price points."
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"I would recommend them for the casual concert goer if you value protecting your hearing."
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"Still, for the money, these Etymotics are a good value."
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"Great value, works perfectlySave your hearing and get to enjoy louad environments"
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Video

Video:
"I'm looking forward to using them at concerts and movie theaters too, which I also find uncomfortable in terms of noise."
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"Excellent for loud concerts or movie theatres."
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"I use these to stifle amped up movie theater trailers, the work well."
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"Also great for concerts, loud movies, etc as it takes just the edge off the top range of decibels."
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"I've given out dozens of these to musicians and music fans, as well as older people who find movies too loud."
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"Perfect for those with tinnitus in a movie, restaurant, or concert."
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Voice

Voice:
"The only caveat I have with the earplugs is that if you're going to use them, your voice will sound louder to yourself."
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"The sounds were drowned out, but in a great way and you can still hear the voices and chatter around you."
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"Voices are definitely muffled but more clear than other foam ear plugs."
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"I used to use the foam ear plugs but they just muffled everything, these ear plugs still have good music fidelity as well as voice fidelity."
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"These little guys bring the loudest sounds down to a comfortable volume and yet i can hear voices clearly and at a reasonable volume."
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"I use these while flying, you can still communicate with the crew well and here voices clearly but it reduces the the high ambient background noise from the engines and airflow."
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Volume

Volume:
"I wish the bars would turn down the volume, but since they won't, I highly recommend these ear plugs."
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"I love festivals but I hate excessive volume."
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"The opening sequence is painfully loud and these allow me to hear everything but in a much softer volume :) For my ears, the fit does start to feel uncomfortable after about an hour so I often remove them after awhile."
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"I ordered these because my husband turns the volume on the TV up periodically to where it is very uncomfortable to listen to."
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"While in the midst of a performance (playing OR listening), it's easy to forget about how loud everything is because the mind normalizes the volume of your surroundings, but those loud tones can still do damage over time."
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"Sadly, I have to use them often when my ears get pounded by excessive volume from speakers and music."
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"Makes the entertainment a tolerable volume while still being able to hear your conversations."
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"These earplugs are great - the small case is a great addition, and the earplugs truly do reduce the volume neutrally - the music still comes out great, but not at ear-blaring levels."
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"I was able to stand front row at an electronic EDM show, complete with blown out volume and bass, and could comfortably hear the entire range of music (probably better than everyone around me."
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"They seem effective at reducing volume without losing fidelity."
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"ER20 works good, I use them in loud clubs I also have a set of heros flesh color,when ppl have the volume set crazy loud...ery happy can hear music better that the hero foam plugs"
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