No doubt you know how incredibly complex sound is and how truly remarkable it is that our hearing can extract individual elements from the sound as if it’s some advanced quantum spectral analyser. All those interacting sub-atomic vibrations – somehow our ears work out which vibrations belong together to bring order out of chaos.
And never is this more evident than in music. Different melodies, drifting in and out of unison and harmony. Different rhythms. Different emphasis. Different voices – human or instrumental, electronic or acoustic. Somehow we can put it altogether to appreciate the whole, or tune int to an individual voice within the whole. It’s a live demonstration of the phenomenal capabilities of our hearing: brain and ears working in perfect partnership.
But here’s the thing. This ability relies on the sensory cells within the cochlea (inner ear) operating at their optimum. And just as a speaker system distorts if you push it past its limits, so too do our auditory sensory cells.
Get the volume… but you risk losing the detail. It’s akin to smashing your fist on the keys of a piano, rather than the allowing the individual keys to interact with one another.
Of course loud is good if you want to feel the music coursing through your body. And you’ll find DJs and sound engineers who pride themselves on simply “loud”. But why can’t you have both? Why can’t we have the loudness AND the detail? Do they HAVE to cancel each other out?
The mistake is thinking it’s our hearing that wants the sound loud. It’s not. It’s the rest of the body – to feel there in the centre of it all. So the trick is to control the input to your ears. That way you give the body the feeling it craves, without compromising the hearing. Best of both, and less chance of ringing in the ears and sounds going permanently dull.
So how do we control the input to our ears? Musician’s hearing protection. And that’s why those familiar with it – musicians, gigsters and other music afficionados – cannot recommend it highly enough.