The End of Noise
Noise Pollution is a problem so intrinic to modern city living that most of us hardly realize we’re affected by it. Whiles its specific affects may be debatable, there’s no denying its unfailing ability to increase our stress levels. A major group of people who are affected by prevalent noise are those who rack up frequent flyer miles. While occasional tourists might find the roar of that 747 engine tolerable, business flyers tend to want to get as much shut-eye as they can in the sky.
While often regarded by concerned parents as one of the biggest preventable causes of hearing losses, headphones are more than just entertainment conduits for the upwardly mobile. They provide that much needed isolation from our immediate surroundings and allow us our little sphere of personal privacy. Most of us are probably accustomed tot he various types of headphones available: regular ear-buds, headphones which go on top of as well as around ears and canal phones that fit inside the ear-canal. What most of these headphones have in common is that they are all a form of passive noise reduction. What noise-cancelling headphones do is to actively reduce this noise with the help of a tiny onboard computer.
How it works
There are some basic construction elements distinct to noise-cancelling headphones. First, they tend to be over or around-the-ear headphones. This design provides for more comfortable long term usage as well as good degree of passive isolation. While there are some canal-phone varieties that have added noise-cancelling circuitry, the in-ear design makes them slightly fatiguing for extended listening.
There are main three elements in a pair of noise-cancelling headphone. The first is of course the main speaker driver which plays the music. Next you have a microphone, or set of microphones that pick up ambient noise and lastly there’s the electronic noise cancelling circuitry which analyses the incoming sound waves from the microphone.
Whats Good out There?
Noise cancelling headphones are not a recent phenomenon, but they have been getting considerably more affordable over the past year and are no longer sole dominations of major players. We must admit that Bose’s choice of memory foam for the ear pads really pays off at creating a snug fit as well as a good grip on the ears. The cushioning on the headband is rather thin though which makes feel just a little less snug than they should.