motorsport earphones

Discussion in 'Ask The Experts' started by petehowell, Jun 5, 2011.

  1. petehowell

    petehowell Casual Listener

    Jun 5, 2011
    Hi, I'm going to the F1 at Silverstone soon and was hoping to listen to the commentary on the radio whilst watching. Unfortunately I've been warned I should wear ear plugs cause it is so loud. Would noise cancelling earphones work or would my normal earphones with comply foam buds be ok ?
  2. RobinHiFi

    RobinHiFi Super Moderator

    Apr 28, 2010
    Hi Pete

    Noise cance4lling works by taking an average of the sound on the outside and attempts to drop this sound by half using some of sounds more curious properties.

    When you play the same sound from two sources simultaneously it becomes twice as loud. The exact opposite of a sound actually sounds exactly the same to us but when viewed as a waveform every peak and trough is reversed. If a sound is played at the same time as its opposite sound we perceive this as sounding half as loud and this is how noise cancelling works. This is why a studio engineer must be very careful to only capture one side of an instrument to avoid getting half the volume from two microphones.

    Basically noise cancelling works much better on low frequency noise and constant unchanging noise so the electronic cleverness has time to react. I do not think it is worth buying noise cancellers for this purpose as the noise levels will constantly change and F1 engine noise is the exact kind of thing that Noise cancelling is not great at removing. Good isolation will provide an excellent barrier, however most noise cancellers also rely on good isolation to do their job too. If you will have plenty of use for a great pair of noise cancellers in the future then it may be worth it but otherwise foam tips will give 2/3 to 3/4 the protection for a lot less money:)

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