Today’s hot topic is our 2nd Amendment rights, but there’s something else at risk that ALL shooters and hunters need to consider…
by the ShootingDaily staff
We don’t see it every time we go to our rural public shooting range, but we see it often enough. No doubt you’ve seen it a few times yourself. In fact, we saw it on our last visit—someone shooting a rifle with no hearing protection.
Call it the “I’m a tough guy” syndrome if you will, but we call it downright stupid. These are the guys that will be going, “Huh? HUH?” in a few years because their tough man act has cost them their hearing.
Sometimes, though, ignorance plays a part in hearing loss within the shooting and hunting community. We’ve seen many people shooting .22 caliber rifles and pistols who never give a thought to ear protection because, “It’s only a .22.” Guess what? Even a .22 caliber report causes irreparable hearing damage. You may not realize it since most .22 reports aren’t as painful as that of, say, a .270 or .30-06, but the effects are accumulative and the damage is done to our very delicate ears.
Don’t believe it? Check out this chart…
As you can see, shooting is a hazardous activity on our ears. That is why hearing protection is mandatory at all supervised and properly operated gun ranges. “Tough men” need not apply.
But what about hunting? “One shot won’t hurt anything,” some will say.
Many lifelong hunters who routinely wore hearing protection on the range now suffer from degraded hearing due to repeated exposure to muzzle blasts in the field when they were younger. This also has a seriously negative impact on their hunting ability today. Where once a hunter could hear a whitetail slipping through the crisp fall woods at a hundred yards or more, now they’re lucky to hear a deer walk within 30 yards of their tree stand. You may know some hunters who are in this boat already.
So, what does it take to get shooters AND hunters to wear hearing protection whenever they’re using a firearm? Performance, comfort, and, for most of us, affordability. Fortunately, we’ve found all three criteria to be met by the Razor series electronic muffs from Walker’s.
These muffs are extremely light and fit your head like a glove. The slim profile helps keep you from knocking them against your rifle stock when you’re shooting. The large volume dial is easy to reach and operate even when wearing gloves. Stereo sound is crisp and clear from all directions, even at low volume, so you can hear perfectly well on the range or in the field without any static or the “sea shell” effect. The quick sound-activated compression circuitry is lightning fast (0.02 seconds), so your ears are always protected.
The Razors are stylish as muffs go, with ultra-low profile rubberized cups, a sound dampening composite housing, smooth matte finish, and a variety of colors. All Razors operate on two AAA batteries.
One of the things that make the Razors an easy add to your mandatory hunting gear is that they amplify ambient sound, giving you “superhuman” hearing, if you will. You can adjust the volume until it’s just right for your hunting conditions, allowing you to hear game animals rustling in the brush or turkeys gobbling in the far distance. Thus, rather than consider wearing hearing protection to be a burden, think of it as a valuable asset and enhancement to your hunting skills.
We’ve been using various Razor models over the last couple of years and have been completely satisfied with their performance, fit, and modest price—especially when compared to other electronic muffs we’ve used in the past. Our favorite is the new Razor Slim Quad with Bluetooth. With its independent volume controls for ambient sound and Bluetooth media, it allows us to use our phone at the range or on the stand. Connecting our phone to the muffs took seconds, and now we can make or receive calls (there’s a pickup mic located in the headset), listen to media, or get email or text notifications—all without creating ambient noise that can spook game.
Yes, we all wish that hearing protection wasn’t necessary, but when we find a solution that takes the hassle out of the equation, the burden becomes much more palatable. And in the case of hunting, sound amplifying ear pro actually helps more than it aggravates.
For these reasons and a few more, we give the Walker’s Razor series electronics muffs two thumbs up.
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