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Noise Isolation



Is "noise isolation" the same as "noise cancellation"?

A common alternative to noise cancelling headsets is “noise isolation” (also known as “passive noise-cancelling”), which refers to the isolation of certain ambient frequencies through earbud shape and physical positioning.

Headsets that rest fully within the ear canal (rather than just in the outer ear, like a 'classic' earbud) are considered “noise isolating.” Noise isolation devices can be as effective or more effective in drowning outside sound then their noise-cancelling counterparts, as these sets don’t actively attempt to counter sound through production of “anti noise,” but instead do so through physically blocking the ear canal. By eliminating ambient noise, noise isolating headphones can arguably intensify the quality of the desired audio.

Noise isolating headphones are also typically lighter than their active counterparts, in that they do not require a built-in power source. Due to the decreased interference from ambient sound, noise isolation headphones tend to run at a slightly higher price point than noise cancelling sets. However, some consumers find the feeling of having their ear canals blocked uncomfortable.

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