I’ve used my pair of in-ear canal Etymotic ER-4s since 2004, and they’ve provided stellar sound (for a guy that knows little about acoustics) and amazing[ly dangerous] isolation. They demoed a new product — back to their ear plug roots — at this year’s CES. Engadget’s scoop on the EB1 and EB15 Electronic Blast PLG Earplugs:
The analog earpieces are powered by a 312 hearing-aid battery and will last three weeks. There’s no on/off switch — just a high and low gain control. High gain is used for environments that require an amplification and the opposite applies for low gain. In other words, if a soldier is out on the battlefield and needs to hear an enemy inside a house, he’d switch to high gain to generate a louder sound. The difference between the plugs is simple: the EB1 is for people who are going to be around one-off noises and the EB15 are for those who are going to be exposed to prolonged noises.