Rating of the Best Active Shooting Ear Protection

Active earphones are an essential piece of equipment not only for hunters, but also for those who engage in professional or amateur shooting. During hunting, noise levels can reach the 150dB mark, while the maximum permissible level that will not harm a person, depending on the time of day, is 40-55dB. Ignoring this accessory, therefore, can lead to hearing loss or even permanent hearing loss.

Unlike passive devices that drown out everything, active devices not only reduce the noise level of a gunshot, but also allow other environmental sounds, such as human speech, to be heard better. The integrated stereo microphones automatically raise or lower all frequencies depending on their intensity, and convert them to an average frequency that is most acceptable to the human ear. As a result, loud noises are not damaging and weak noises are more clearly audible. The hunter, for example, can better hear the rustling of the animal as he moves about in the forest.

The performance of the device is directly related to its quality. In well-designed models the sounds are heard very clearly, the speed of the electronic cut-off is minimal, and there is no delay in cutting off the noise.

Pro For Sho 34dB Shooting Ear ProtectionBUY
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AKT1 Sport Sound Amplification EarmuffBUY
Ear Protection for Shooting – Compact Foldable PortableBUY

Disadvantages of active headphones and earplugs

Despite a number of advantages, active headphones are not recommended for constant wear. The increased skin temperature of the ear, which is unavoidable with prolonged use, may provoke a number of illnesses, primarily fungal (mycosis).

If you replace them with active earplugs, which are also very popular among hunters and shooters, you may encounter another disadvantage. Earplugs do not protect the bones around the ear, which also play a direct role in hearing. Adverse effects on them can cause hearing loss. Nevertheless, earplugs are more comfortable, less cumbersome, and there is no fear of overheating the ear surface.

New additions to the market for active hearing protection devices

The market for hunting and shooting accessories constantly offers various new products. Intelligent ear protection has recently become popular. They have gradually made their way from the world of professional sports into the consumer world of shooting enthusiasts. Noise waves are processed online without the slightest delay.

Best active headphone manufacturers

Shooting equipment is produced by many companies. Their products differ not only in quality and price, but also in usability, noise reduction characteristics, composition of the materials used for them, etc.

Among manufacturers of shooting accessories the best is considered to be KB Priboy. Its products feature a combination of quality and quite adequate price, which makes them popular.
There is also a demand for Russian-Chinese products from the company Veber. Their shooting equipment has a budget price and has good enough protective characteristics. Their advantages include high quality of assembly and comfortable fit on the head.

International manufacturers include Peltor, Howard Leight and MSA Sordin.

  • Peltor is a Swedish brand with a long history. The brand has been in production for 65 years and has a proven track record. The 3M™ Peltor™ range of equipment is based on the latest developments in military technology and is compatible with most types of ballistic helmets and other shooting equipment.
  • Howard Leigh is an American company with a thirty-year history and one of the market leaders in hearing protection. The active application of innovations, the use of the most advanced materials and technologies is a distinctive feature of their products.
  • MSA Sordin is another brand from Sweden. The company has been in existence for over a century and is rightly regarded as a pioneer in the hearing protection industry. The company’s main aim is to protect people’s lives and health. The accessories produced by MSA Sordin are not only of the highest quality, but also offer unparalleled after-sales service. On average, this company’s products are guaranteed for at least five years, no matter where or in what country the purchase was made.

In addition to those listed above, the products of such companies as EarShield and SportEar are in demand among shooting enthusiasts.

How to choose the best ones?

There are a number of factors to consider in order not to make a wrong choice. The first thing to consider is the manufacturer. For high hearing loads, protection must be of high quality, and products from budget brands may be insufficiently effective. This is very important when choosing devices for competitions, where requirements for durability and reliability of operation are high.
The second thing you can easily find out on fitting is sound proofing and noise reduction. To do this, while wearing the equipment, make a few loud claps. In quality accessories, the clapping will be instantly muted to an acceptable volume, while human speech, mobile device ringing and other noises within the acceptable range will be heard clearly and distinctly.

An important indicator is that there is no discomfort when wearing them. They should sit well on the head, fit snugly against the ears, not slip, but not squeeze.
The next step is to look at the technical specifications, such as

  • The construction and size of the shell;
  • The number of stereo microphones;
  • level of noise reduction;
  • wind and water resistance;
  • weight of the device;
  • battery or battery life;
  • suitability for left- or right-handed people;
  • auto-off function;
  • the ability to connect an optional headset;
  • equipment and many others.

Ear protection devices for shooting come in a variety of colours. They are available in black, khaki, camouflage and bright red, pink and orange. When choosing a colour you should be guided by the rest of the outfit, but the important factor for hunters will be their invisibility against the background of the surrounding landscape.

Rating of the best active ear protection headphones

The ranking is based on customer feedback on the Yandex Marketplace. For convenience, it is divided into two sub-ratings. The first one contains a number of budget models that are in high demand among shooting enthusiasts. The second rating contains more expensive professional models.
Budget headphones

Budget models are well received in amateur environment as value for money ratio makes their purchase not too burdensome for the budget and the benefits of operation are obvious.

#1 Veber Bear Black

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This is one of the most budget-friendly devices with a simple design. Equipped with a built-in microphone with sound filter. It provides good protection against noise above 82 dB and amplifies weak sounds. Due to its low cost it is perfect for beginners to shooting.

  • combination of cost and quality;
  • comfortable fit on the head;
  • low background noise;
  • good autonomy.
  • no auto-off button;
  • poor moisture protection.

#2 Veber Bear Camo

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This unit is much the same as the one above, from the same manufacturer. The difference in price is due to the fact that they not only suppress noises above 82dB, but also amplify weak noises from the range up to 24dB. Each bowl contains two microphones, so that all ambient noise can be picked up regardless of its direction. The volume in both bowls can be adjusted with a single lever. The wire from it is placed inside the headband, eliminating the chance of accidental breakage. Two AAA batteries are used for power, providing 180 hours of continuous use. The device conveniently folds and the cups fit into the curve of the headband, which reduces the risk of damage during transport. Note: Visit my favorite online ammunition webstore – AmmoCave – you will find TOP ammo calibers at best prices and price comparison through popular ammo stores (Optics Planet, Lucky Gunner, Brownells, etc).

  • budget cost;
  • ergonomic design;
  • good battery life.
  • No auto-off function;
  • slight background noise;
  • insufficient wind and water protection.

#3 Veber Bear-2 Camo

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This accessory is suitable for both shooting and hunting and can be used both indoors and outdoors. It features a built-in automatic filter that cuts off noise frequencies above 82dB without delay. The adjustable headband and elongated shells ensure a good fit for your ears and comfortable use.

  • the price corresponds to the quality;
  • Good autonomy – up to 350 hours of continuous use;
  • The camouflage colouring is suitable for hunters;
  • stereo mode allows you to identify the direction of incoming sound;
  • comfortable volume control.
  • noticeable background noise;
  • poor protection against moisture.

#4 ShotTime 32

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This device, manufactured by SHOTTIME, is the counterpart to the most popular Howard Impact Sport headphones on the Russian market. The comfortable shape of the cups with a specially designed bevel allows a comfortable fit for any type of shooting weapon. Stereo microphones provide perfect audibility of soft sounds and precise detection of their direction. The volume control on the left-hand cup has been integrated with the electronic on/off function. The right-hand bowl contains a compartment for two AAA batteries which provide power.

  • ergonomics;
  • low cost;
  • Long operating time – 350 hours on one set of batteries;
  • auto power off after four hours of inactivity;
  • connectivity of additional external audio devices such as a radio or player is provided by the design.
  • Insufficient longevity compared to the original;
  • mediocre build quality.

#5 PMX Tactical PRO PMX-40B

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This hearing protection accessory is suitable for both indoor shooting and hunting. It actively suppresses noises above 85 dB and amplifies weak noises below 26 dB. Includes headset and external instrument connection cable, two AAA batteries and microfiber pouch.

  • affordable price;
  • good equipment;
  • ergonomic design;
  • reliable assembly;
  • universality of use.
  • no moisture protection;
  • weak wind protection;
  • eco-leather headband begins to crack quickly.

#6 Allen Axion

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This accessory from the American company Allen is perfect for hunters not only because of its technical features, but also because of its invisible outdoor camouflage colouring. It’s also available in black. The product meets the requirements of ANSI S3.19 and CE EN352. Its advantages include dynamic sound compression, four-channel stereo sound, and a response time of only 1.5 milliseconds. The accessory is equipped with an independent volume control and an automatic amplifier. A built-in microphone with stereo sound enables precise identification of the direction and location of the sound source.

  • Excellent noise isolation thanks to comfortable, snug-fitting ear cushions;
  • ergonomics;
  • adjustable headband;
  • colour choice.
  • Noise cancellation level only starts at 92dB, which can be a source of discomfort;
  • poor protection against moisture.

#7 Awesafe GF01C

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This device from the Chinese manufacturer is characterised by high quality construction and good technical performance. It is suitable for hunters, shooters, military and special forces. The state-of-the-art technology used in its production ensures a clear, natural sound. Noise pulses are blocked out if they go over the upper limit of 82 dB.

  • clear sound;
  • Air Flow Control technology ensures optimal noise reduction at all frequencies;
  • reliability, the manufacturer’s warranty is 5 years;
  • comfortable sound control system;
  • low profile beveled earcups ensure comfortable operation;
  • compact, easily foldable design;
  • AUX output allows connection of external MP3 player, radio station, telephone;
  • Autoshutdown feature after four hours of inactivity;
  • Several colour options (khaki, camouflage, black);
  • complies with Tr/tc requirements.
  • Weak package (box only);
  • insufficient amplification of weak noises.

#8 PMX Tactical PRO PMX-35

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This device already cuts off noise at a frequency of 80 dB, which makes it very comfortable to use and can be recommended for people with hearing loss as the gentlest option for outfitters. The amplification of sounds goes from 0 to 26 dB. The softest noises are quadrupled. Equipped with two stereo microphones and comfortable ear cushions with foam inserts. AUX output for external instruments is available. They are powered by two AAA batteries.

  • effective hearing protection;
  • The kit includes a cover;
  • excellent amplification and noise-cancelling characteristics.
  • no wind protection;
  • no moisture protection;
  • No automatic switch-off;
  • only available in black.

#9 Caldwell E-Max

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The accessory is made of high-quality polymer and is perfect for shooting at the range and in other confined spaces. The foam ear cushions and comfortable headband make it comfortable to use.

  • decent ergonomics;
  • good durability.
  • no wind and moisture protection;
  • no outputs for connecting external devices;
  • quiet sounds are only 2 times stronger;
  • no automatic shutdown function.

#10 Earmor Hunting Edition HE1

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This device is primarily designed for hunters. It is made from high quality polymers and eco-leather, which makes it reliable, comfortable and durable.

  • excellent ergonomics;
  • AUX output for the connection of external devices;
  • IPX5 protection class;
  • good water resistance.
  • no Bluetooth connectivity;
  • the only thing included is a box.

Best Professional Hunting & Shooting Earmuffs

Professional level active headphones are characterised by a greater number of features and higher performance. They can be used by athletes competing at the highest level, professional hunters, military and security personnel.

#1 Howard Impact Sport

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The most popular active hearing protection devices in the Russian Federation, leading the way according to numerous surveys. They are an excellent combination of price and quality. Manufactured in China.

  • comfortable folding design;
  • low weight of 286 g;
  • AUX output for connecting external devices;
  • affordable price.
  • presence of background noise;
  • only a box is included.

#2 Earmor ME5-BK-NOGEL

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This accessory is equipped with a microphone and tangent cable, making it very comfortable to use. The folding body made of impact-resistant plastic and extended foam ear cushions ensure a comfortable fit on the head.

  • Possibility to connect to a walkie-talkie;
  • tangent connection;
  • Excellent quality of materials;
  • auto shut-off after 4 hours;
  • reliability and robust construction.
  • Not very long operating time – 350 hours;
  • Weak IPX-5 water resistance (possibility of being caught in the rain and briefly in a puddle).

#3 Peltor Pro Tac Shooter

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They feature stepped noise reduction: instead of an immediate and abrupt mute that is detrimental to the ears, the sound is lowered in a more gradual fashion. Frequencies above 82 dB are instantly reduced to an acceptable level and then lowered a few more times until they reach midrange.

  • comfortable folding design;
  • excellent noise reduction;
  • ability to connect external devices via a special connector;
  • low battery indication;
  • informative voice menu.
  • low battery life – only 100 hours;
  • high cost;
  • poor packaging.

#4 Pyramex AMP BT EarMuff VGPME30BT

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This practical and handy accessory will be useful both when shooting and in overly noisy environments. The ability to connect to your phone, player or radio via both AUX 3.5mm and Bluetooth makes them particularly convenient to use.

  • ergonomic;
  • Excellent quality materials: impact-resistant plastic and eco-leather;
  • ample connectivity for external devices.
  • no protection against moisture;
  • short battery life, only 200 hours.

#5 Option Stereo Folding

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These Swiss-made accessories offer excellent versatility. They are specially designed for hunters, sports shooters and for professions with a high level of noise.

  • Noise reduction starts at 75 dB;
  • high ergonomics;
  • possibility to use with helmet or headgear;
  • comfortable folding design.
  • Lack of connectivity for external devices;
  • high cost;
  • only a box is included.


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A device based on the latest digital technology developed by one of the leading manufacturers of hearing protection technology. Allows noise to be reproduced and detected with maximum accuracy. The headband is made of stainless spring-loaded wire and is easily adjustable. Its outer surface is covered by a soft polymer “cushion” which is not afraid of moisture and atmospheric precipitations.

  • Peltor SportTac electronic unit with instant cut-off;
  • ability to connect external devices, including a radio;
  • interchangeable red and black sports cups included;
  • insulated battery compartment;
  • up to 600 hours of battery life.
  • high cost;
  • large weight – 318 g.

#7 PRO-300

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This accessory works in both active (85dB) and passive noise cancellation mode (26dB). They are individually adjustable to ensure an optimal fit on the head.

  • two separate volume controls allow for individual cup settings;
  • The natural leather ear cushions do not sweat or crack;
  • Low weight of only 215 g.
  • lack of moisture and wind protection;
  • poor packaging;
  • no possibility to connect external devices;
  • no automatic shutdown;
  • only available in black colour.

#8 MSA Sordin Supreme Pro Neckband

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The textile-coated waterproof headphones from one of the leading manufacturers of hearing protection devices impress with their cleverness and ergonomics.

  • easy to use;
  • excellent protection against moisture;
  • 4 times the amplification of weak sounds;
  • ability to connect external instruments.
  • considerable cost;
  • only a box is included;
  • are only available in khaki colour.

#9 MSA Sordin Supreme Pro-X Camo Led

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These noise-cancelling active shooter devices are part of the premium Supreme Pro-X Camo Led series and are manufactured in Sweden by the famous and oldest brand in the world, MSA Sordin. In addition to two independent volume controls, a leather-wrapped adjustable metal headband, a 3.5mm JACK cable connector and a built-in torch, this model also features silicone ear cushions that make the device especially comfortable to wear. The unique design is in orange with a camouflage pattern, and is also available in black.

  • Compliance with international quality standards;
  • excellent protection against moisture;
  • High-quality materials: genuine leather and impact-resistant matt plastic;
  • ergonomic gel ear cushions;
  • quadruple bass amplification;
  • memory function to remember the last setting;
  • AUX output for connecting external devices;
  • Excellent autonomy – 600 hours of use with one set of batteries;
  • 40 hours of low battery warning;
  • built-in LED torch;
  • includes 3.5mm jack cable for connecting headsets, radios, and other devices and a set of 2 AAA batteries.
  • undemocratic cost;
  • only two microphones;
  • not very convenient procedure for changing the batteries.

#10 3М Peltor Comtac XPI

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A high-end accessory equipped with the comtac xpi headset, with active protection and amplification of weak sounds in stereo mode, replacing the well-proven Comtac XP headphones. It also has a wealth of features. The headphone works with two AAA batteries. Looking for best ammo? Look at AmmoFire – one of the best places to buy ammo online on the web!

  • Low-profile cups and a comfortable headband make them very comfortable to use;
  • Four times the amplification of weak noises;
  • 80dB cut-off;
  • features active protection in stereo mode;
  • configuration menu with voice guidance has been implemented;
  • operation in saline environment possible;
  • Double redundancy of all electronic circuit functions practically excludes the possibility of device failure and technical malfunctioning;
  • watertight housing;
  • automatic shutdown after 2 hours of inactivity;
  • low battery alarm;
  • balance mode between left and right cups;
  • up to 500 hours of battery life;
  • available in two colours, khaki and black;
  • anti-noise mode allows you to use them in very noisy environments.
  • Affordable to few;
  • poor packaging (only the box);
  • lack of AUX output and other options for connecting external devices.

Mistakes when choosing active headphones

One of the main mistakes when purchasing this accessory may be buying it online from an online shop. While it is possible to study in detail all the technical characteristics of the accessories you like, the question of their actual soundproofing and comfortable fit on your head cannot be solved remotely. The best option in this case would be to try on the model you like in a real shop with subsequent ordering it online, usually at a more attractive price.

It is also necessary to pay attention to the possibility of connecting external devices. If you plan to wear the headphones for a long time, it is not very convenient to remove them every time you call your mobile, it is much easier to answer with a specially connected headset.

The practicalities of their use should also be considered. If you plan to go to a shooting range for your own pleasure from time to time, it does not make sense to buy expensive devices. But if you are a serious shooter or regularly go hunting, then expensive quality devices will help protect your health and increase your shooting efficiency.

Accessories for active duty earpieces

The first accessory that should be mentioned first is the ear cushions. These are soft pads on the inside of the earcup that allow them to fit more snugly on the ear and improve their noise-cancelling capabilities. In addition, the following accessories are available

  • wireless headset;
  • microphones;
  • walkie-talkie jack;
  • soft and hard cases.

The use of accessories will make the use of hearing protection devices even more convenient and comfortable. Shooting is a passion that people of all ages and genders can pursue. Proper hearing protection will allow you to have full enjoyment from this activity without fear for your health, and active earmuffs are one of the best ways to protect it.