Must Have: Etymotic HD-15 Electronic Earplugs Beth Snyder September 3, 2011 I am seriously considering selling a relatively unimportant body part in order to get a pair of these. Shoot, I might even consider a mid-range important body part. If you spend any amount of time wearing earplugs, you know how simultaneously wonderful and frustrating they are. Especially if you’re in an environment where there are sudden loud noises rather than a constant roar, because you have to decide whether hearing what people are saying between blasts is more important than protecting your ears when the noise happens. Regular earplugs block all noise regardless of what kind or if you really wanted to hear that part. The Etymotic HD-15 Earplugs contain tiny microphones that instantly cause the earplugs to kick in when incoming noise registers above a certain level. When the noise stops, they let you hear normally again. How incredibly cool is that? But wait, there’s more! Simply by flicking a switch, you can use them to amplify ambient sound by up to 15dB. Even if you’re using them in amplification mode, don’t worry…they’ll still block sudden loud noises. Their noise reduction rating is 25dB. In addition to this general-use pair, there are also versions available which are tailored to military applications as well as to those who spend a large amount of time around guns. All this goodness does not come cheap, however. Each pair will cost you $499.00 US, thus my comments earlier about the body parts. Maybe a kidney would be an even trade. Source: Gizmag Share This With The World!