The folks at TETRA are raising the bar for hearing protection in the shooting sports. Not only innovating with hi-tech earplugs, the company's online hearing test (available at tetrahearing.com) allows prospective buyers to get the exact hearing protection they need. In less time than it takes to make a cup of coffee, you can have a personal hearing profile.
So besides the free online hearing test, what sets TETRA apart? For starters, the company was founded by two hearing doctors with 50 years combined experience in the industry. Thus, it takes a unique approach to developing ear protection, using much of the same circuitry and programming found in a hearing aid. Instead of simply blocking sound, TETRA earplugs are capable of isolating and enhancing the exact frequencies necessary for the intended application. For example, hunters can have earplugs tailor-made for a specific environment. At the range, the frequencies can be optimized to allow in voice and range commands, while blocking the sound of gunshots. With this technology, the sky is the limit.
I took TETRA's online hearing test. All you need is a computer and a set of headphones (something that covers the entire ear works best). Left and right ears are assessed individually. After a quick volume level calibration, the test commences with a series of tones at different frequencies rising in loudness. After the test is complete, the data is displayed and you can send it to the company for your own set of specialized earplugs.
TETRA can customize the programming for any of its offerings, including the entry-level AlphaShield (starts at $699), which are universal-fit earplugs. They use a 12-channel digital signal processor (DSP) in conjunction with microphones and other circuitry to block out (or allow in) sound at different frequencies according to your test results. Additionally, there are custom-fit models available, as well as more advanced ones boasting DSPs with additional channels (more signal processing power) and multi-channel noise reduction.
Stay tuned for a more in-depth review of TETRA hearing protection in a future issue of the digital magazine.