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Old November 7th, 2007, 02:00 PM   #1
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Noise Canceling Headphones?

Noise canceling headphones for audio monitoring? Worth it, and what do you recommend for an indie filmmaker on a budget?

I already have a good pair of over-ear headphones but they're not noise canceling.
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Old November 7th, 2007, 02:35 PM   #2
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They're not 'noise-canceling' per se, but I recommend the Shure E3C in-ear monitors. As one poster said, "I can easily make critical decisions with them while riding the subway." They include caps for all different sizes of ear, and many people use the expandable foam covers for the tightest fit.

Anyway, they sound great, esp. for vocal range. They run about $180 new, though I have seen them for something like $130 used.
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Old November 7th, 2007, 03:24 PM   #3
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Noise-canceling headphones are not really a good idea for production. Two reasons:

1-They use DSP with questionable frequency response and quality.

2-The whole point generally of monitoring your audio is to know what you're really getting, i.e. is that refrigerator in the other room creating too much noise, etc etc. Noise cancellation while you're shooting will just cover up exactly what you need to be hearing in the first place.

Now using in-ear canal phones is a good idea, because they isolate and let you hear everything that's being recorded without being masked by outside sounds (like headphones would let in)
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Old November 7th, 2007, 03:26 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Boyko View Post
Noise canceling headphones for audio monitoring? Worth it, and what do you recommend for an indie filmmaker on a budget?

I already have a good pair of over-ear headphones but they're not noise canceling.
The problem with noise cancelling headphones, in contrast to noise isolating headphones, such as the Bose models that are advertised all over the place is that they work via electronic trickery that also introduces its own colouration and distortion making them less than ideal for monitoring. According to a survey by Trew Audio, the Sony MDR7506 and the Sennheiser HD-25 models collectively account for 75% of the 'cans' used by the mixing pro's, Sony alone accounting for over 50%, with Ultrasones and Beyer DT-48 neck and neck for third place. For extreme noise environments I've heard of using in-ear monitors such as Abe mentioned worn under the noise isolating muffs that you see being used by aircraft carrier deck crews and airport flightline personel.
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Old November 7th, 2007, 03:39 PM   #5
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Have you looked at Etymotic ER-x in ear phones? (x = 4, 6, etc)
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Old November 7th, 2007, 05:17 PM   #6
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What about the Shure E2c? Amazon's got them on sale for $50.
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Old November 8th, 2007, 01:26 AM   #7
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in ear headphones

even though in ears will block out outside noise by 25 to 32 db they dont always sound like what you're used to hearing from monitors (so they will not translate) in real life environments. get a real good set of headphones or monitors, the sony headphones 7506 will work great at this. in-ears rely too much on every ones personal ear qualities to make them great monitors unless you know where your ear deficiencies are and how they translate to the real world, so what works great for one person as far as in-ears , will not necessarily translate to some one else taste or measure of accuracy. but monitors and regular headphone will. because their sonic qualities happen outside the ear canal. and there fore can translate if you know the characteristics, and everyone hears the same source outside their ears. no matter which device you choose you have to compare it and learn the difference between it and the real world, so you can make your sound decisions in context.
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Old November 8th, 2007, 01:46 AM   #8
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You can get the "standard" Sony MDR-7506 set up in an industrial hearing-protection shell, used to be called "David Clark Straightaways", now, Remote Audio is making them.
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...Isolating.html

OTOH, I like my Etymotics a great deal - do a bunch of listening side by side with the 7506 to figure out what they're telling you. But I'm always thinking small, compact, lightweight, transportable because I do a lot of solo work.
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Old November 9th, 2007, 11:26 PM   #9
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sennheiser HD 280's. same price as 7506's but with a good 30db of outside noise attenuation. just got a pair and they work very well. they will let you hear what you need to. I never cared for 7506's because they don't have very hot output, let in ambient, and simply fall off your head too easily. HD280's will stay stuck on your head if running and are louder.
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