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Do Noise Reduction Head Phones have any benefit.

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Do Noise Reduction Head Phones have any benefit.


the wie and i are off to europe and that will take some 22 hours in the air.

last trip we noticed many travellers had their oun head sets and said that they were also noise reduction so that they arrived afer a flight much fresher than us.

is there any truth in this and if so what sort should we buy.

have searched on the net but the stories are all from manufacturers or sellers sites so they reackon that they are great.

do you use a set if you are a regular traveller ??

have noted that a special plug is required to fit aircraft seat plugs and as we will be flying Qantas economy is there any special size we need.

will value your advise



Sydney, Australia
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1. Re: Do Noise Reduction Head Phones have any benefit.

The big advantage is that they reduce noise, so you hear less of the dull roar of the engines. The plug used in aircraft seats seems to be the same in most aircraft. My Sennheiser headphones came with an adapter for this plug.

The other advantage is that these headphones are usually better than the one supplied by the airlines. so you get better quality sound.

Edited: 27 November 2010, 23:52
Detroit, MI
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2. Re: Do Noise Reduction Head Phones have any benefit.

Easily the best travel related purchase I have ever made. It does make a huge difference in how you feel after a long flight. I'm a fan of Sennheiser and have both the on-ear active canceling ones and the in-ear isolation ones. I like the in-ear better, but everyone will have a different preference.

There are several threads in the Travel Gadgets and Gear forum with ideas/reviews.

Hong Kong, China
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3. Re: Do Noise Reduction Head Phones have any benefit.

They absolutely make a difference. My partner has a great pair of Panasonic ones which were purchased in Japan-- same model outside Japan is double the price and I really wish I had purchased some in Japan before travelling outside :(

You can buy a "jack" (I think it's called) which has 2 prongs to fit in the seat. Another advantage is that some airlines take ages to hand out headsets, whereas if you have your own noise-cancelling ones you not only block out noise but also can start watching tv earlier ^^

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4. Re: Do Noise Reduction Head Phones have any benefit.


As #2 says , an invaluable purchase.

Travelled through China last July with them and will certainly take them again next year

Mine were a cheap pair from Aldi , about $80.00 and I was more than happy with them and they even had an sd slot so that you could listen to music.

Also came with a jack for the mp3 and a jack for the airline system as well

Cancelled out most of the noise on the plane seemed like I was floating in space , and even used them whilst sleeping. Invaluable on buses and in train stations whilst waiting

Came in their own carry case and were not bulky

One of the best tarvel items


Arcadia, California
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5. Re: Do Noise Reduction Head Phones have any benefit.

Agreed, these headphones are very good during air travel! They reduce the high tones of the engine (at least mine did), making the sound seem like a lower muted tone. You can still however hear people speak. It's great to reduce noise away from the seat (by removing the plug) also.

I had the Philips SHN9500's, but the plastic section in which the earmuffs move back and forth broke. They worked great on 747's, I was able to decrease the volume level to a more normal listening volume compared to w/o noise cancellation. This time, I'm going to try a pair of Sony noise canceling on a 777....we'll see how that goes.

Nicer headphones (more expensive usually) do give a auxiliary cable as well as special prongs for aircraft. For three prongs, two prongs will still work; at least it did for me.

I prefer over ears or on ears. On ears are slightly more comfy for me but they seem (maybe this is just mentally) to not work as well as the on ears due to more space between the ear and the speaker (?). Some in ears are noise canceling/reduction but those make my ear hurt after some time passes by. Take note of your usual listening habits if you listen to earbuds/headphones and decide by trying out various products. :) Good luck!

They're not just good for air travel, they're great for lots of other places e.g. aircraft lounges, libraries, etc.

Portland, Oregon
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6. Re: Do Noise Reduction Head Phones have any benefit.

I have to echo what others have said - they are invaluable in air travel, in my opinion anyway. I found I am much less tired at the end of a flight, not having to hear the dull roar of the jets and airflow. Plus I could hear people around me more clearly than without them.

I also found them helpful when playing the slots for several hours at the casino, blocking out a good amount of noise there as well.

The set I have is now 5 years old and is not top of the line - they were made by Maxell and where only about $40. They were the best $40 investment I made.

The only think I dont like about them is the "pod" along the cord to hold the batteries and the cord itself seems to be quite bulky compared to other headphones I have owned.

Perth, Australia
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7. Re: Do Noise Reduction Head Phones have any benefit.

We have a set of Bose each - mine are over ear, OH on ear. Personal choice for comfort. One of the best buys along with a neck pillow for long haul flights. Check out FlyerTalk for some impartial reviews. Remember to change the battery on arrival at your destination (if it is not a rechargeable) ready for the long trip home.

Edited: 28 November 2010, 07:56
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8. Re: Do Noise Reduction Head Phones have any benefit.

Massive effect, but be sure you know what you are buying, sometimes the in ear phones are sold as noise reduction, IME these are much cheaper but also much less good than the "active" noise cancellation headsets that go over ears and are 4x-5x the price.

I've only used the Bose sets handed out on American in business class, these are $200-$300 USD a pair though and unfortunately they collect them back at the end of the flight :-)

Sheffield, United...
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9. Re: Do Noise Reduction Head Phones have any benefit.

Absolutely the most useful travel item I have. I have a pair of Bose over Ear, (70th birthday presy), make a world of difference, the IFE is actually audible (for those of later years, who need hearing help, fantastic), the headphones provided in the zoo are deliberately rubbish to discourage "re-allocation" to private use. I also find I get a much better sleep, they are highly effective in reducing any continuous external droning noise, whilst giving good quality sound reproduction

Go for it,


Hong Kong, China
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for Hong Kong, Osaka
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10. Re: Do Noise Reduction Head Phones have any benefit.

They definitely do work as others have said. Before you buy though, be sure to try them out for comfort. There are different styles so it's down to your personal preference as to the type you feel the most comfortable with.