Best noise-reduction headsets for the buck

Aviator737

New Member
I used "search" to see if I could find any threads on this, but they were surprisingly few and none really answered my question ... so don't flame a poor newbie, please!

I've got a Flightcom 4DLX headset, having bought them at a local flight shop, being naive and poor. I've used them for a little while, and they've gotten the job done, but I'll soon be going off to a "full-time" flight school. Thusly, I will be exposed to a lot of loud noise and for a long time.

In addition, I'm very concerned about my hearing. Not that it currently is impaired in any way (it's very good, actually) but I don't want that to change! So I'm thinking it's time the Flightcom goes on the auction block, and that I need to put up the money for a decent headset that'll last. At least for the extent of my schoolin'.

The active noise reduction headsets are really steep price-wise. If to your folks' knowledge the passive noise reduction sets are effective enough, I, or at least my wallet, would prefer it. My budget is pretty tight, but I know hearing and headsets are an important factor.

In other words, what's the best bang for my buck, with an emphasis on hearing protection?
 

RiddlePilot

New Member
I'm looking into the DRE 6000 ANR headsets. They're cheap ($300 or so), and with gel seals have reported total noise cancellation of ~50dB. Worth a look.
 

SteveC

Really?
Staff member
Buy quality and they'll last for years and years and years. Your hearing will thank you for it.

Really the fit and comfort of the headset is the biggest factor in how happy you'll be. The only way I know is to wear them for a trial, and it has to be for more than 5 minutes in the store. I don't know how to suggest you do that other than demo a pair or ask other pilots to borrow theirs for flights as you get the opportunity.

I love my headset. I flew 6 legs on Tuesday, 7+ hours of wheels-up time, and not a bit of discomfort from wearing my David-Clark H10-13.4X's. I bought mine used from a fellow who was moving up to the regionals & paid a little over 1/2 of list price. I knew that I would like the fit since I had used a non-ANR pair of H10-13.4's before buying the noise cancelling set.

D-C service is top-notch and sets the standard for the industry. I understand that some of the other manufacturers are following D-C's lead on service, but I don't have any direct experience with them. Others will fill you in, I'm sure.
 

Cosmo1999

Well-Known Member
I personally like my Telex ANR 530 headset. It is more expensive but the dividends have paid off. The noise reduction is awesome and best of all its a very light headset. Something like 7 oz. It fits good and I forget that I have them on half the time. Its definately a worthwhile investment.
 

Josh

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
In other words, what's the best bang for my buck, with an emphasis on hearing protection?

[/ QUOTE ]

How much is your hearing worth?

Everyone seems to have a favorite brand. I'd recommend trying on as many sets as you can. Ideally, wear it around the store for an hour or more, or take it on a longer flight. May not always work, so maybe find others that fly where you are, and see if you can do a swap headset for a flight thing.

All that said, in my opinion, the best protection will be the Telex Stratus 50-D.

If you are looking to save money, you may want to look on ebay.
 

ananoman

New Member
I like the Pilot DNC 17-79. They have good ANR, are light weight, and have a built in rechargable battery. I have had mine for 4 years and no problems. They are also a good deal at about $450.
 

Aviator737

New Member
Thanks for the advice guys.

I have come to at least one conclusion: Before I leave for flight school in about three months, I'm definitely gonna need a part-time job.
So far, unemployment bennies haven't kicked in for the FBO I was workin' at that shut down a few weeks ago.

What are your guys' thoughts on using ear-plugs in conjunction with headsets?
 

Acadia

Well-Known Member
I know there have been a billion David Clark threads, but I cant resist since I just got my ENC (H10-13X) set back from D.C. customer service a few moments ago. I sent them out Monday because I had an intermittent problem with the mic (seemed to fade in and out). Keep in mind that this set has been through the wringer private – CFI and another year and a half of working as a flight instructor.

They replaced the entire mic unit and the earpiece on that side. They also gave me a new battery holder since mine was a little cracked from being dropped, gave me nice new gel ear seals, a new mic cover, and replaced the plugs at the end of the wires! Oh there is also a new set of batteries in the unit.

Charge to me? Zilch. Now that is customer service. The headset is great as well!
 

RiddlePilot

New Member
[ QUOTE ]
What are your guys' thoughts on using ear-plugs in conjunction with headsets?

[/ QUOTE ]

I don't see any reason either. I have a pair of DC H10-13Ss (no ENC) with gel seals, and even in the loudest of planes I've flown, it's not that bad.
 

montanapilot

Well-Known Member
I have to disagree. I had a David Clark passive with gels before I got my Peltor ANR (which is by the way an awesome headset) and I never went without earplugs under my DC. Just turn up the intercom and you'll be fine. I definalty recommend using earplugs under a passive set. Your hearing will thank you as an old man.
 

Aviator737

New Member
Interesting point, montanapilot.

Now, what if I happened to get that part-time job and got meself an ANR? Do you still advise ear-plugs?
 

RiddlePilot

New Member
[ QUOTE ]
I have to disagree. I had a David Clark passive with gels before I got my Peltor ANR (which is by the way an awesome headset) and I never went without earplugs under my DC.

[/ QUOTE ]

Next time I'm in a relatively loud aircraft, I'll give your suggestion a shot. By the way, what are you flying that warrants earplugs?
 

montanapilot

Well-Known Member
I dont use earplugs under my ANR though. It is super quiet so its all good. If you come up to Portland sometime I'll let you try out my Peltor ANR if you want to.

to answer riddle's question i was just flying 150/152's but i m pretty cautious about my hearing.
 

GatorFC

Well-Known Member
Anyone have any experience with Marv Golden's own brand of headsets (passive and/or ANR)? Their ANR one is priced relatively low, and if its any good that one would seem to give you the most bang for the buck.
 

Lima_Charlie

New Member
[ QUOTE ]
Anyone have any experience with Marv Golden's own brand of headsets (passive and/or ANR)? Their ANR one is priced relatively low, and if its any good that one would seem to give you the most bang for the buck.


[/ QUOTE ]

Yeah, I have Marv's ANR headset. For the $$$ it isn't a bad Headset. I have a pretty big melon, so after a while they get a tiresome, but other than that, I have no complaints. I too was looking for something w/ a little extra bang, and Marv fit the bill. Once I get to a point of actually making some $$$, I will probably upgrade to a better ANR set, but Marv does me good for now.
 

GatorFC

Well-Known Member
Thanks jojobean, I've been looking for any type of review of Marv's ANR headset, and yours is the first I've seen.

Have you ever used the CD or MP3 player input to it, and, if so, how well does it work?
 

Aviator737

New Member
Montanapilot, that would be cool. Probably trying some sets on would be wise. Go figure.

You wouldn't happen to be in the PCC Professional Pilot program, would ya? And going to Hillsboro Aviation for your flight training? I'm just down in Salem and have been considering that as a possible training place, what with the fact I'll be needing a degree. Overall, I've been leaning heavily towards Ari Ben in Florida, and earning my degree online, but I'm intending to tour Hillsboro nevertheless.

Anyway, if Hillsboro Aviation happens to be where you're at, I might just kill two birds with one stone.

jojobean, are the Marv's the same as the Lightspeed sets?
 

montanapilot

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
You wouldn't happen to be in the PCC Professional Pilot program, would ya? And going to Hillsboro Aviation for your flight training? I'm just down in Salem and have been considering that as a possible training place, what with the fact I'll be needing a degree. Overall, I've been leaning heavily towards Ari Ben in Florida, and earning my degree online, but I'm intending to tour Hillsboro nevertheless.

Anyway, if Hillsboro Aviation happens to be where you're at, I might just kill two birds with one stone.

[/ QUOTE ]

Nope I'm currently going to Mount Hood Comm College. I m just finishing up my private at Pearson over in Vancouver. Its a good place, tons of instructors, and priced very reasonably $52 for a 150, $60-something for a 172, $30 for instuctor and no sales tax, their 150's are pretty old but they are maintained well. I m working on Hotel Management at Mt Hood i figure it is a good backup in case the aviation gig doesnt work out. I m going the FBO route now but i am still open to looking at ATP or Ari-ben after i get my degree. DCA and RAA are definalty crossed off the list.

I dont know anything about the PCC program. They have an aviation program here at Hood that is a partership between the college and Eagle flight in Troutdale. Its an associates with a direct transfer to ERAU-online.

When i was considering what FBO to get my private at i looked at all of them in the Portland area. Took the Hillsboro tour, very nice school, big flightline, nice clean planes, big facility. When you take the tour there they show you everything, maintence, flight-line, classrooms, even all their helicopter stuff they show you the bell's that are used by the news stations. The bad part was the price -OUCH $66 for a 152, $84 for an older 172 and $36 for instruction. Anyway when you go up there PM me and i ll get you my number so we can meet up.

Hope this helps.

Also if your looking at headsets, you might wanna go to the Puyallup trade show Feb. 21-22 http://www.washington-aviation.org/ tons of exhibitors there. I'll be there.
 
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