Plugfones are a new gadget that help you kill two birds with one stone; they work as hybrid earphones and earplugs. Plugfones allow you to enjoy your music (with quality), while also blocking out and reducing excess noise around you. They have a standard 3.5mm stereo jack, which works well with both android and apple products (as well as most CD players), so that you can listen to music, podcasts, audio books, or whatever your heart desires! Plugfones are great not only for anyone who travels and likes to do so in peace, but also for workers that need hearing protection, such as in construction, factory, or motor-related occupations. Generally, these workers simply block out sound -- now they can enjoy listening to music, if their boss permits!
Plugfones offer a noise reduction rating of 25 decibels (yellow Plugfones in particular), which was obtained from the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). The range for typical hearing protection devices is between 0 and 30 decibels; the higher the number, the better the protection. In some environments, a volume delimiter may be required as well (also sold on the Plugfones' website). To understand the NRR (noise reduction rating), Plugfones gives an example on its website: if a bulldozer has an average noise level of 100 decibels, the Plugfones will bring this down to 75 decibels, which is the same level as an electric shaver. Without the Plugfones, you could run into hearing loss issues.
Plugfones look very much like regular headphones (see the picture below), with thicker earplugs on the ends. They come in both silicone and foam varieties. Purple or yellow silicone Plugfones retail for $14.95; if you want to customize both the color of the wires and the earplugs, you will pay $19.95. If you prefer foam earbuds, you can choose from green, yellow, or dark blue for $14.95, or, again, a customized selection for $19.95. Plugfones also has several other accessories available in their online store, including replacement earplugs, safety glasses, bluetooth speakers, clip-on MP3 player, lanyard kits, etc. I think that their products are very reasonably priced, given that many regular headphones can run more than 15-20 dollars, without the added benefit of noise reduction.
I was excited to be able to review a pair of Yellow Silicone Plugfones. I have purchased "noise cancelling earplugs" in the past, only to be very disappointed. I thought the idea of combing earplugs and earphones was innovative and probably more effective. I have a few occasions where Plugfones could be really helpful for me. For one, I do a lot of traveling back and forth from school on breaks, whether it is by train or in the car. If it's in the car, I'm usually the passenger, so I like to put headphones on when my boyfriend and I don't agree on music. If I'm on the train, I like to try and drown out all of the annoying people sitting near me, especially if I am reading one of my textbooks. I also have a problem concentrating while studying in public places. I typically like to mumble aloud to myself, but I can't really do that on my breaks, because I don't want people to think I'm crazy. However, sometimes even conversations that aren't that loud are distracting to me. Plugfones, I thought, would be great for use in the library, the classroom, or one of the cafes to keep myself focused on my work instead of what is going on around me. Sometimes I also just like a quality pair of headphones to pop on when I am going to the gym or going out for a walk -- it isn't as important that I block out noise in those instances, but sometimes it can get noisy and hard to hear my music if there is construction or if there are a lot of people at the gym.
I prefer the silicone Plugfones, even without having tried the foam ones, just because I know that foam earplugs often bother me, and I feel as if they aren't fulling blocking my ear canal. The silicone are a lot more comfortable, and I felt like the gripping design on the outside helped keep them in a little better than some standard headphones. Usually I'll be walking on the treadmill and my headphones will end up falling out, just because of the shape of my inner ear. I did not have this problem with Plugfones. They did not irritate my ears or make them hurt like some headphones. I like the design. For the most part, Plugfones did a good job of blocking out the noises around me, especially while studying. Although the noises weren't cancelled, they were definitely muted. I feel the combination of a more muted sound and having my music kept me in tune and focused. I can't speak for how they would work in construction or other occupations, because I know the sound levels are much higher, but I can say that they brought all the noise around me down to a much lesser level. For the price, I think that Plugfones are a good investment -- just remember that they REDUCING and not removing the sounds.
Interested in learning more about Plugfones? Check out the links below:
I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.