Custom in-ear buds: the music industry leading the way

In-ear monitors

in-ear monitors for concerts
© dogayusufdokdok - iStock

More and more producers, music executives, and fans are using in-ear monitors to listen to music on mobile devices and during performances. There is also a growing trend among musicians themselves, reports Billboard Magazine.

Doctor of Audiology, Julie Glick, has been keeping track of the trends in this area and says: “I have people in here every day buying monitors as custom earphones. And why not? The sound quality is at a professional level. Don’t you want to hear music the way your favorite artists hear it?” Glick has worked with artists like Beyoncé and Bruce Springsteen, and even fitted monitors for the New York Yankees baseball team.

The idea behind in-ear monitors is to enhance the listening experience producing higher quality sound by blocking out background noise, thus enabling listeners to lower the volume. This then helps to protect users from noise-induced hearing damage. “Music-induced hearing loss is at epidemic levels,” says Benj Kanters, an Associate Professor at the Audio Arts and Acoustics Department of Columbia College, Chicago, IL. He cited a 2015 World Health Organization finding that almost half of 12- to 35-year-olds in high- and middle-income countries are exposed to hearing loss in this way.

An important aspect to highlight is the costs of these custom-made devices. They currently range from USD 500 to 3000 and musicians often claim, according to the report, that quality is price-related. For the moment, the trend is primarily with musicians, but serious fans and other users are becoming increasingly interested in maintaining good sound quality while protecting their hearing.

Source: Billboard Magazine

C.S.