When it comes to having a long career in music, nothing is more important than protecting your ears. Ear plugs are a great for drummers when practicing rudiments or just jamming, but what do you do when you need to listen to music while drumming? If you’re recording or playing along with pre-recorded music, isolation headphones are the best way to jam along with music while protecting your hearing!
Vic Firth is one of the leaders in drumming accessories, and their drum sticks are some of the best in the business. Founded in 1963, Vic Firth sells over 10 million drum sticks a year. Branching out into even more accessories for drummers, they introduced their isolating headphones in 2004.
Vic Firth’s Isolation Headphones offer hearing protection for drummers while also supplying high quality sound! Let’s break down what makes these the best headphones for drummers looking to protect their ears!
Who are the Vic Firth Isolation Headphones for?
First and foremost, the Vic Firth Isolation Headphones are great for drummers. However, they’re an awesome purchase for producers and engineers who record drummers often.
They also are handy for live sound mixers who want to have a pair of headphones handy for monitoring with a little less volume. Mixing long shows with no hearing protection is less than ideal, so it’s not a bad idea to throw on a pair of isolating headphones like these once your mix is sounding good to avoid damaging your hearing during long show days. They’re also a good option for anyone who wants extremely isolating headphones for a loud work place, such as shop workers.
Really, the Vic Firth Isolating headphones are a great choice for anyone who wants to cut out background noise while listening to music!
What makes the Vic First Isolation Headphones different?
Isolating headphones are constructed in a similar way to protective earmuffs. They have a snug fit, a hard exterior, and internal padding to help cut out background noise. The Vic Firth Stereo Isolation Headphones offer 20dB of noise reduction, which is similar to most earmuffs and ear plugs. This is enough to protect your hearing and avoid ear fatigue.
For drummers, this has a two-fold effect on your hearing. Firstly, your drums will be quieter in your ears, protecting you from blasting your ear drums with an extremely loud instrument. Secondarily, because the music you’re listening to won’t have to compete with background noise, you’ll actually need less volume from the headphones.
With normal headphones, you have to turn up the volume to compete with the background noise of the drums, and even at full volume, it can be hard to hear what you’re listening to while playing drums. With the Vic First Isolation Headphones, you can actually hear the details in the music you’re playing along with.
Switching to isolation headphones means you’ll have less strain on your ears during rehearsals and practice sessions!
For recording, they are a great option because they trap the sound in. That means you’ll never have to worry about sound bleeding out of the headphones and into your microphones. Recording without worrying about click bleed is super nice.
Due to the noise isolating nature of these headphones, they do have quite a tight fit. It may take some getting used to if you’ve got a bigger head or are used to looser headphones, but it’s not a dealbreaker.
How do the Vic Firth Isolating Headphones sound?
The Vic First Isolation Headphones are the best sounding isolating headphones for drummers. The 50mm drivers require 32 ohms of power, meaning they can be used easily with a phone or laptop output (not requiring an external headphone amp) and deliver a great sound. They have a punchy midrange and a solid bass response, meaning you can really hear the kick drum and bass guitar.
Considering the price point, and the fact that they’re mainly designed for hearing protection, it wouldn’t be fair to compare these to higher fidelity, audiophile headphones. However, while these headphones are very utilitarian, they offer a pleasing sound profile that’s nice to listen to!
Final Thoughts on Vic Firth Sound Isolating Headphones
The Vic Firth Isolation Headphones truly are the best headphones for drummers. The combination of sound quality and noise reduction makes them truly unmatched. If you’re someone who enjoys playing drums, I’d consider these a must-buy! If you’re a recording engineer or studio owner who records bands often, they’re great to have as an option for recording drummers.
Overall, the Vic Firth Stereo Isolation Headphones are a high quality product that offers 20dB of hearing protection, making them the #1 choice for drumming headphones!
If you enjoyed this review, check out our other music gear reviews here!