Meet Hans Troost


Mr. Hans Troost, who resides in the Netherlands, is a musician, piano tuner, sound engineer and dedicated user of the SensGard Ear Chambers. I recently contacted Mr. Troost to ask him about his experiences using the Ear Chambers. He was gracious enough to answer my questions not only promptly, but in English, which is handy since the only Dutch word I know is Heineken.

Hans began using the Ear Chambers in 2005. Back then they were referred to as ZEMs, for Zwislocki Ear Muffler. He had previously tried musician’s ear plugs and other hearing protection before that. His main reason for doing so had to do with symptoms of tinnitus (ringing) and hyperacusis (an increased sensitivity to sounds). Both of these can be symptoms of hearing loss, but sometimes can be found independently from damage to the ear.

Hans found that this element of increased sensitivity posed the biggest challenge.  A common reaction to hyperacusis is to cover up or plug up the ears. This may provide temporary relief, but does not help in the long run. We all have moments when a sound is too loud and we instinctively cover our ears. Think of a fire truck going by on the street. But imagine if everyday sounds had this same impact on a person. It would be difficult to go about one’s day in the average setting. This is the challenge of hyperacusis.

One benefit of the Ear Chambers is that it allows some sound into the ear canal, but can also provide some attenuation and relief.  Hans also notes that it is easy to put the Ear Chambers on and off, they do not irritate the ear canal and there is no feeling of fullness.

When Dr. Zwislocki was designing the SensGard Ear Chambers, his primary focus was not people with sound tolerance issues. It was to protect the ear from damaging external sounds. As with many inventions, there are unforeseen uses and benefits. We at SensGard are so happy that people in the music industry and other areas that may need hearing protection as well as possible help with hyperacusis use the Sensgard product.

Hans’ website: provides valuable information about hearing, noise exposure, hyperacusis and other information. There is also a link to order the Ear Chambers, referred to as ZEMs. Hans, who now serves as a sales representative for SenGard, stated most of the Dutch customers are musicians, those with hyperacusis, woodworkers and children who need help concentrating in noisy school environments. Hans recommends viewing for more information about hypercusis.

It’s often said that a happy customer is the best form of advertising, but a happy customer who believes in a product so much that he offers it on his website is even better! Hans highly recommends Ear Chambers for piano tuners and musicians to prevent hearing loss. Dank Hans!



Noise, noise, noise!


“That’s something I hate! All the noise, noise, noise, noise!”

-the Grinch from “When the Grinch Stole Christmas”

Noise, like beauty, is in the eye (or in this case ear) of the beholder. One person’s Beethoven is another’s Daft Punk. Music, voices, a child laughing, a train whistle. Sounds, or noise, have the ability to ignite a fond memory, make us smile, sing along or perhaps cover our ears. How we react to noise has to do with past experiences as well as our auditory system; so both learned and physiological.  As an audiologist working in a clinical setting, I learned this anecdotally. Within one day I had two patients who had recently been fit with hearing aids react very differently to the new sounds they were hearing; namely birds chirping. One gentleman was so appreciative to hear the songbirds again, another walked in with a frown, grumbling something about the the *#@& birds were annoying.

Is there too much noise? In some respects, society is getting louder. For those who live in a large metropolitan area, this is especially true. Noise from cars, trains, and busses is more prevalent than in the suburbs or rural areas. Studies have indicated that children whose school is near heavy traffic are more prone to memory and learning difficulties than children in a quieter neighborhood.  The suburbs are not immune, but the sources may be less obvious. Cells phones, iPods, and other devices deliver a seemingly endless stream of song and voice to our ear(s).  How much is too much and how loud is too loud? Unless you own a dosimeter and/or a sound level meter, you may have to rely on common sense.  Regardless of the sound source, if someone has to shout in order for you to hear them, it is too loud. If it’s an iPod, turn it down. If it’s a jigsaw, put on hearing protection. Sometimes it is not as obvious, and it’s the compilation of sound over time that may wear out one’s ears or nerves. Make it a point to unplug and let your ears ‘rest’ everyday.

Noise is here to stay, as the Grinch reminds us! Even if you lean towards the Grinchy side of the holiday season, chances are you will be picking up a few gifts. Keep ears in mind when you are doing this. Try to steer clear of toys with batteries, these most likely will also emit loud sounds. Even infant’s crib toys have been found to deliver a dangerously loud level of sound. Try to find toys that attract children’s attention in a different way. If you do end up giving an iPod-type gift, include some good quality earphones that block out external noise. This allows (but does not guarantee) the user to keep the volume at a lower level. Or you can go with my personal ear-friendly recommendation: a puzzle. Puzzles are great for all ages and are fun to work on together. May a puzzle of the Grinch would keep everyone happy!


Loud and Proud?

Loud and Proud! That was the banner I saw on the TV screen as I watched the Buffalo Bills game last Sunday. There was a movement in Ralph Wilson Stadium to not only beat the Patriots, but to set a new world's record for noise level in a stadium.  The current record of 142.2 dB was set by the Kansas City Chiefs.  Well, as you know, the Bills put up a good fight but failed to beat the Pats and  perhaps relatedly, failed to set a new record for loudness. I can’t help but ask “Why?”  Sure, I get the relationship between crowd noise and motivation, team support and excitement. But I want to look a little deeper, into our brains and bodies and try to understand why this is so. 

Sound is unique in that it not only has the ability to excite and energize us, but often we have the ability to increase the intensity of the sound with the intention of increasing the intensity of the experience. We hear a song we like and we want to turn up the volume; perhaps to become ‘consumed’ by it.  When looking at a beautiful painting, we do not have the ability to increase the intensity of the colors of brightness of the images. So what exactly is it about sound that makes us want it louder?

One theory is that these extremely intense sounds not only excite the structures in the cochlea (the sensory organ of hearing) but also, when intense enough,  excite our vestibular system, which plays a part for our sense of balance. Research highlights that above 105 dB, the saccule, a sensory organ for balance, also responds. So perhaps the brain interprets intense, rhythmic sound as a repetitive movement akin to rocking or riding a rollercoaster, which for most people is pleasurable.

Another theory is that loud sounds may creates a feeling of intimacy.  Vision and hearing can be categorized as distant senses, while touch, smell and taste are considered intimate senses.  When sound is intense enough, the sensation crosses over to more of a tactile experience, therefore creating a more intimate feeling, which we may find pleasurable. 

So now we understand some possible reasons why our biology is set up to crave this loudness. Fortunately, we also posses the ability to assess risk and act accordingly! An intact frontal lobe, the part of our brain responsible for decision making, will hopefully kick in and say "Hey, that's too loud!" or in the case of 142 dB, "Hey, that hurts! Get away from there and put on some hearing protection!"  I have to admit, my initial intention of this blog was to admonish the behavior of those behind the beat the record movement, but I doubt there was an adult in the stadium who was not aware of the damage that may be caused by that level of noise (well, maybe a few).  But to take it a level further and think about why helps us understand ourselves and also allows us to realize although this may be in our nature, we also know we want to keep our bodies healthy to ensure longevity of all our body parts and systems. So support your team and cheer, but make sure to whip out your SensGard  Ear Chambers first and make sure to pick a color that represents your team!

Stop and step away from the Q-tips!

It was a beautiful Saturday morning when my neighbor showed up at my door looking a bit sheepish.  He claimed to have the end of a cotton swab (from here on in referred to as "Q-tip ®) stuck in his ear canal. A quick look in with my otoscope confirmed this and I was able to safely remove it.  He claimed to have been 'itching' his ear canals with it when the end snapped off. Yikes! That was some itch. It was also a cheap brand of swabs, not the famed Q-tip brand, which may have added to the problem. Either way, sticking a Q-tip straight into the ear canal is a big No-No!  

Despite it's size, shape and reputation, Q-tips were not developed to use directly in the ear canal.  The official Q-tip website ( lists numerous uses of their product, under the tab 'Tip Jar".  So aside from using the swabs to apply make-up or cleaning small crevices on your dog's face (yes this is a real tip from the Tip Jar! Ew.), can you use them safely on/in your ears? The answer is Yes! And No. Yes, they can be used to clean the outer portions of the ear,  around the pinna, but not into the canal. What can happen if you give into the temptation a put the Q-tip into your ear canal? Sometimes nothing, but it's not worth the risk. The adult ear canal is less than half an inch long.  At the end of the canal is the tympanic membrane, or eardrum. When the sound waves travel down the canal, they cause the eardrum to vibrate and pass on the sound energy through the middle ear and on to the cochlea, the sensory organ of hearing. Some possible complications of inserting a Q-tip, or any small small object, into the canal include: 

  • perforating the eardrum
  • pushing the wax further into the canal, causing blockage, which may result in: 
    • hearing loss
    • dizziness
    • tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
    • pain 
    • infection of the ear canal 

Before you ask how to safely remove wax from the ear, keep in mind that the wax you are trying to eliminate has an important function in the ear. It acts as a protective layer in the canal, protecting it from water, infections and occasionally trapping foreign bodies. The ear also has a pretty efficient cleaning system: the wax and debris move laterally through the canal; from the eardrum out to the pinna portion.  As long as there is nothing obstructing the outer part of the canal, pieces of wax, skin and debris leave the canal a little bit at a time. The problem arises when we insert something into the ear canal, pushing the wax, etc. the wrong way, deeper into the canal.  If someone has something in their ear for extended periods of time (earbuds, hearing devices, etc) the wax may end up just sitting there and not fall out naturally, leading to impacted wax.  Other factors that may lead to 'wax issues' are hereditary: some people make more wax than others, and age. As we age the canal may narrow and wax may have difficulty getting out. 

Regardless of the cause, if you are worried that you have too much wax, visit a health care professional. The only way to determine if there is in fact a problem is to look in the canal with an otoscope. If there is wax that needs to be removed,  your audiologist, doctor or nurse can safely remove it.  If, like my neighbor, itchiness is the issue, it is time to visit a medical professional as to the root cause (allergy, infection).  

One last bit of trivia. Any guesses that the Q in Q-tip stands for? The answer is one of the following:  

  • Quiet
  • Quality
  • Quick 

The answer will be post later!



Hearing Well in Restaurants

Walk into any newer restaurant these days, particularly if it is a franchise, and you will be bombarded with noise. It seems that the combination of an open, somewhat industrial decor and loud music are the status-quo. This combination may increase the 'cool' factor, but does absolutely nothing to help interpersonal communication. Even if you and your partner have normal hearing, a large loud room with noises bouncing around create havoc when it comes to conversation. Couple this with a guest who has even a mild hearing loss and frustration levels will undoubtedly rise. Here are a few things to think about before you head out the door: 

1. Do your homework: check on line reviews, perhaps other patrons have commented on the great or not so great atmosphere and ease of hearing. Also look at the Hearing Loss Association of America/Rochester chapter's website. The members post the winners and losers for noise levels in many local restaurants (this is found under the accessibility tab).

2. Check your surroundings: look for rooms that have carpet, lower ceilings, heavier window coverings and perhaps sound absorbing tiles. All of these will cut down on the bouncing around of sound waves, creating a quieter environment. 

3. Seating options: ask for a booth or table in the corner of the room, but not near the kitchen. Sitting in the middle of a busy dining room is the worst option. The corners are a bit more protected from the ambient noise. If possible, chose a table that has adequate lighting, but not direct sunlight streaming through a window. Being able to see the speaker's face is a huge help when understanding speech. Even those with awesome hearing get a lot of information from visual cues.

4. Timing: try dining in the off hours, when crowds are thinner. Obviously, there will be less noise and who knows, maybe the service will be better too!

5. Advocate, advocate, advocate! Remember we are the patrons spending our hard earned money!  As mentioned before, requesting a table in a part of the dining room, or perhaps  side room, is a way to advocate for your self and your party. If the music is loud , ask the dining room manager to turn down the level of the music.  Although, we cannot go into an establishment and change everything, some minor tweaks may be possible. If enough people ask to have the music turned down, perhaps the message will get through that it's too loud. 

6. Don't talk with your mouthful: Okay, this may be unnecessary to mention, but it can greatly hamper speech intelligibility, and of course it just plain bad manners! 

Listen Up Dentists, Part 2

Dentistry is known for the adage “Ignore your teeth and they will go away.” Perhaps audiology can mimic this sentiment with a similar thought; “Ignore your inner ear hair cells and they too will go away”. Not quite as catchy, but an interesting parallel! I, like most people, am used to being on the other end of a dental drill or electric toothbrush. I am aware of the high pitch squeal that the equipment emits, and to be honest it is up there with fingernails on a blackboard when it comes to unpleasant sounds. The equipment associated with dentistry, like all sources of  noise, has the potential to cause permanent hearing loss depending on the loudness level and the amount of time a person is exposed to it. So why don’t those in the dental field wear hearing protection?  I recently met one that does.

Dr. James Nitschke, the owner of Canal Town Dental  in Pittsford,  has been practicing dentistry over 25 years, however his love of dentistry began at a young age since his father was also a dentist. Along with this early education came an early exposure to loud noise. I met Dr. Nitschke in his office to ask him about his history of noise exposure and his unique perspective on the use of hearing protection while practicing in the office.

He first began using hearing protection about 4 to 5 years ago, when he started to experience tinnitus (ringing in the ears). Tinnitus is often a predecessor of noise induced hearing loss; sort of the first red flag that something may be happening in the ear. He initially tried earplugs but found these too occluding, making it difficult to converse with patients.  He then tried the SensGard device after seeing the product first online and then in a retail store. What Dr. Nitschke likes about the SensGard is that he could still hear his patients while wearing it. This is the backbone of the SensGard brand, where the formula  Hear Now, Hear Later holds true. We know people in different settings need to continue to hear at some level to communicate or to hear other environmental sounds. SensGard achieves this while simultaneously protecting the ear from harmful sounds. Another feature that Dr. Nitschke liked was the ability to change out units between patients, cleaning and sterilizing one pair while wearing another pair.

Upon researching the topic of hearing loss in the dentistry field, it was evident that although it has been well documented that the potential for hearing loss is there, it is dependent on a variety of factors. The noise levels and time using the equipment are obvious. Other factors may be the underlying physiology of the person. Some people, based on genetics,  are more prone to hearing loss than others. Some have outside hobbies, such as woodworking, that may expose them to other noise sources. The bottom line is to recognize the potential for hearing loss is there with any profession, or hobby, that exposes one to noise above 85 dB. After recognition comes action. Have your hearing checked by an audiologist to establish a baseline test and to converse about hearing protection. The use of hearing protection may be initially embarrassing for some. Think of it as another layer of protection from a somewhat hostile world we live it. We guard our skin with sunblock, our eyes with protective goggles or sunglasses, why not protect our vulnerable ears from undue wear and tear from noise? Think of it as insurance to hear well into the future. Hear Now, Hear Later, Hear Long!

Happy EARth Day!

Despite what the thermostat reads, the month of April is here and holds the promise that spring is coming! This year Earth Day, which was first celebrated 45 years ago, will be on April 22.  The days of using something once and throwing it out are coming to a close. Conserving resources and thinking about how our actions effect things long-term are the backbone of Earth Day. Using SensGard products fits in well with this sentiment. Aside from periodically replacing the cuffs, the SensGard unit can last a long time. There is very little waste; conserve the environment and conserve your hearing: definitely a win-win. Hey I just noticed the first three letters of Earth are E-A-R.  So,  Happy EARth Day to you and your wonderful set of ears! Take good care of them! Here are some other ways to take care of our planet:


Safety First and Last Longer!

This catch phrase sums up lessons learned at the Western New York Safety Conference where I spent the day yesterday with Greg and Jeff Douglass, our newest addition to the SensGard family. We met so many dedicated people from various industries who all shared the common desire to keep their workforce safe. From heads, to toes, eyes and of course ears, no part of a worker is immune to potential harm.  The key, I believe is in education and opportunity. Simply handing someone a protective device and instructing them to wear it will not produce a good long  term outcome. Educating people on why they need to protect their ears, for example, as well as consequences will be the motivator to use hearing protection consistently.  And of course, the hearing protection of choice is SensGard! What awesome feed back we have received from the 'real world'; the men and women out their in shops, on industrial floors and in the field. They all agreed the SensGard products met their needs and expectations above and beyond other options! We appreciate the feedback: all of the happy 'users' out there are our best advertisement! If ears could smile, then the ones protected with SensGard would be grinning, well, ear to ear!

For other Safety Slogans, try this website:

Listen Up Dentists!

Think of the last time you visited your dentist. He or she most likely had on a full smock, gloves, a face mask and an eye shield. Chances are only their ears were visible. If audiologists had their say they would add one more wardrobe item: hearing protection. Some studies indicate that over time, dentists and hygienists are susceptible to noise induced hearing loss. The combination of noise sources (suction tubes, drills, ultrasonic scalars and motorized hand pieces) add up over the course of a day, a week, a year. Most in the profession do not notice a change in hearing until they have been practicing for about 10 years (controlling for aging effects), and by then it is too late to reverse the damage to the inner ear. The various studies I read agreed on a few points:

1) Have your hearing evaluated before you notice any changes

2) Use hearing protection if you are around motorized equipment throughout the day

3) Maintain equipment: worn out motors are more likely to produce more noise

 Another great use of the SensGard Hearing Protectors! They can be easily put on and removed as needed and allow the user to hear conversation when still in place. Think of it like flossing: something small done routinely with tremendous payoff! 

2015: Ready or Not, Hear We Go!

Hello and Happy Year! My name is Sarah Klimasewski and I am so happy to join Greg at SensGard. I am an audiologist and have been working in the field of audiology, off and on, for the past 22 years.  In the past, a large part of my job would entail counselling people about protecting their hearing.  Noise is all around us: at home, at work and even when we are out having fun! Regardless of the source, when I first learned of the SensGard hearing protectors, I was sold that this is the best product available to protect our ears.  I look forward to posting information about all things ears.  If there is a topic you are interested in, or if you have a specific question, please let me know and I will be happy to look into it and post findings here.

A few other things about me: I live in the village of Fairport with my husband and three kids, most days you can find me out running on the Crescent Trails, sometimes with my trusty side kick, Lola (see photo).  I cannot go a day without coffee, peanut butter or Netflix and at the risk of sounding really boring; I rarely stay awake past 9:30 p.m. 

Sarah Klimasewski, Doctor of Audiology

For Shooters

One of the largest user groups for hearing protection is sport shooters.  They include skeet, trap and target shooters plus hunters.  And they range from weekend shooters at the local range, to professional and competitive shooters.  What I have found all of these shooters have in common is a similar start.  Whether old or young, learning from a family member or a range instructor, universally the first thing taught on day one is gun safety.  Part of that training involves learning about personal protective equipment, including safety glasses and hearing protection.

Shooters understand right from the start that hearing protection when shooting prevents hearing loss.  This loss can occur instantaneously, with a single shot, or happen gradually over time.  I have spoken to many individuals that fall into both camps.  Knowing that hearing protection is a necessary piece of equipment, the next step is determining which type of hearing protection to use.

Several factor go into determining which hearing protection is best for you.  From a performance perspective, the level of sound reduction is extremely important.  And this can vary whether shooting is taking place outdoors, or at an indoor range.  They type of gun being used will also determine the protection needed.  To help compare various devices, the EPA requires labeling on all hearing protection packaging.  This label, called the Noise Reduction Rating, is a single number, in decibels, that helps the consumer determine performance.

The Noise Reduction Rating or NRR, is determined using an ANSI standard for testing.  All hearing protection follows the same test procedure, on a number of individuals, across multiple frequencies from high (high pitch) to low (deep low sounds).  All of the measurements, averages and standard deviations are compiled and put into a complicated formula that arrives at one number, the NRR.  in general, the higher the NRR, the more sound is being reduced.

Another important consideration is comfort.  Very obviously, if something is uncomfortable to wear, you won't wear it and if it is comfortable, you will be more likely to use it.  Comfort is very subjective and depends entirely on the individual.  That is why you see now three forms of hearing protection, ear muffs that cover the outside of the ear, ear plugs that get inserted deep into the ear canal and the SensGard ZEM that seats at the outside of the ear canal.

Once performance and comfort are determined, secondary features become important.  In general, the feeling of isolation or not being able to hear normal sounds while wearing hearing protection is considered a negative.  Electronic ear muffs were developed using electronics to allow the shooter to be protected and still hear important sounds.  There are also electronic ear plugs that do the same.  The SensGard ZEM technology also protects against damaging noise while allowing speech and other useful sounds to be heard, using patented technology that does not require batteries or electronics.

Another important feature is size and ease of use.  Again, in general, the smaller the better strictly in terms of taking up less space.  Several models of ear muffs are designed to fold down to a smaller size.  The SensGard units fold to fit in a shirt pocket.  Ear plugs occupy the smallest space.  Ease of use also includes how easy they are to put on and what you do with them when not in use.  Ear plugs, when inserted properly, take the most effort to insert properly.  The ear lobe should be pulled down with one hand while the ear plug is inserted as deeply as possible into the ear canal.  Ear muffs get pulled apart and placed around the ears.  The SensGard units have a quick three step process to wear properly.  Additionally, when not in use, they can be dropped around the neck, ready when needed.

Another important feature with sport shooters concerns the gun stock.  Ear muffs often interfere with the gun stock, while ear plugs and the SensGard units do not.  This really effects shooters of all types and skill level.

When choosing your hearing protection for shooting, determine the level of performance you need, what is most comfortable for you and what additional features are important to you.

Below is a link to a you tube video created by shooters that purchased our NRA logo units.  From a shooting perspective, this should give you some idea of how our product works on the range.

We Need Your Help!

Spring has finally arrived and we are planting the seeds of some new exciting products here at SensGard.  Working together with Syracuse University, we have several unique and interesting hearing protection products at the prototype stage.  We are 80 percent there, but the final 20 percent is what makes or breaks a truly great product.  That is where you come in.

The best products incorporate the ideas and desires of the consumer to really deliver.  Periodically, we like to take the pulse of users and non-users of hearing protection devices to determine how we can improve what is out there now.  If you have a few moments, we would greatly appreciate your answers to some simple questions about hearing protection.  Just click on the button below.

By taking this survey, you not only help us but help the marketing class at the Sauders College of Business at Rochester Institute of Technology.  The team of AJ, Evan, Ashley and Gus have researched and created this survey as their class project for this semester.  The idea is to work as market research consultants for a real world company.  In about six to eight weeks, they will take all the survey results, analyze them and compile a report, the results of which we will share with you in a future blog post. 

If you have any additional comments or feedback, please contact me at any time.  My email address is

My SensGard Story

In 2004 I was at a technology conference at Syracuse University and came across a prototype hearing protection device under the patented name Zwislocki Ear Muffler.  The concept intrigued me, but when I put them on, it really hit me. These are amazing!  The noise in the room was dampened, yet I could still hear Dr. Zwislocki speak very clearly.  It was at that moment that I realized that this little device was something special.

I think my background with hearing protection was pretty similar to that of most people.  When I was young, I never even considered wearing hearing protection.  Using power lawn mowers, attending races, going to concerts, exposed me to some very loud noise.  I remember going to see a band in my mid-20’s, a notoriously loud rock band called the Good Rats.  My ears were ringing for two days after.  I knew I had done some damage and it is the first time I can recall paying attention to my hearing.

Fast forward a couple of decades.  I now have a mild case of tinnitus, or ringing in the ear.  I’m lucky that it doesn’t hamper my daily activities, but when I am in a quiet room and conscious of it, it sounds like someone trying to dial in a radio station, constantly.  I also find myself asking my wife to repeat herself, seemingly more and more with each passing year.

I have tried wearing ear plugs from time to time, but they aren’t the right solution for me.  To be effective, they should be inserted deep into the ear canal.  Mine always seem to work their way out, so I guess that means I haven’t inserted them deeply enough.  I don’t like the full pressure feeling I get in my ears and I am nervous about wax and infections.

I would from time to time use ear muffs, the passive, non-electronic kind.  They were better than the plugs but still not the solution for me.  They seemed to block out certain sounds more than others, kind of distorting my sense of hearing in a negative way.  They also were uncomfortable, big, bulky and pretty tight on the side of my head.

So I try the Zwislocki Ear Muffler and I am amazed.  I can hear everything, just at a reduced volume.  They don’t go into my ears, but seat at the outside of my ear canal.  I don’t even feel like they are on because they are so light.

Now that I am taking the protection of my hearing seriously, I finally have a device that can help me do exactly that.  And I have an addiction now, a good addiction.  I always have my SensGard SG-26’s with me around loud noise.  That includes using the shop vac, the mower, the chainsaw, at the races, at the movie theater at the gun range – anywhere where noise could cause more damage.

I invite anyone that hasn’t found their “right” hearing protection to try these.  If you can find something you like, you will just naturally use them more.

Let me know your hearing protection story.

With the shop vac

With the shop vac

SensGard Relaunches Website

Hello and welcome to our newly redesigned website.  My name is Greg Post and I am the founder of SensGard.  I am thrilled to have an opportunity to share with you useful tips, information and articles related to hearing and hearing protection.  I have communicated with many customers over the years, using traditional phones and email.  Now I have a platform to provide answers to questions you send me.

One question I frequently get asked is the difference between the SG-26 and SG-31.  Both devices use the same technology.  The SG-31 chamber is slightly larger than the SG-26 which allows more sound energy to be dampened and reduced. 

Generally speaking, the SG-26 is a great universal model to be used in the wood shop, with power tools, in the office, at school, on the plane or at the race track.

We recommend the SG-31 for protection around very loud noise.  We have mechanics that work at O'Hare using this model.  Indoor target ranges are extremely loud and we'd recommend the SG-31.  Or, if you have some hearing loss and are concerned with protecting what you have, the SG-31 will provide maximum protection.

Sometimes just hearing the difference will help you.  One of our valued customers, Paul-Marcel, posted a video on his blog Half-Inch Shy.  It is seven minutes long, but it will give you an idea of the difference in sound reduction between the two units.  Click on the link below.  Then send me some questions and let me know what you think.