U.S.A. –-(AmmoLand.com)- I met the Axil group in Talladega, Alabama at the Shooting Sports Classic event back in March. I was impressed with their hearing protection gear and was soon testing a couple of their products. The first Axil ear protection item I tested and wrote about was the Axil TrackR Electronic ear muffs and so I submitted that Product Review first. The second Axil item I tested was the Axil X-Pro Passive Ear Protection. That’s what we will cover today.
As discussed in the Axil TrackR Electronic ear muff Product Review, I love shooting with electronic ear muffs and for a lot of reasons. There are many instances where they are the ultimate. Your ears are protected and yet you can carry on a conversation without yelling and they enhance your hearing while hunting. But there are a few circumstances in which they don’t work well and you may want to consider other options. Here are a few reasons that I can think of right fast off the top of my head.
- Many trap shooters do not like to wear earmuffs because when they throw up their shotgun for a shot it bumps against the hard ear muff and screws up their shot.
- On some high-speed shotgun hunts, for instance, dove hunting you’ll shoot a lot of shells in an afternoon and end up with a pounding headache. But, as described in #1 ear muffs aren’t the best choice for ear protection because they impede your shooting.
- In hot weather ear muffs are uncomfortable.
- Walking in the mountains they hang on brush and limbs and get pulled ajar or off.
In case any of the above four items are bothersome to you then you ought to check out the Axil X-Pro Passive Ear Protection SportEar. They remind me somewhat of the old hearing aids that fitted inside the cup of the ear (I think the scientific name is Pinna or Auricle). The body of the device fits into the Pinna and then the actual ear plug part, which looks like a regular banded ear plug is pushed down into the canal of your ear.
I think that they are the most comfortable hearing protection that I have ever worn. You’ll almost forget that you even have them in your ears. So from now on when bird hunting, I’m going to be wearing my Axil XPro Passive Ear Protection plugs.
They come with a small carrying case. I’d recommend that you carry them in the case to keep them clean. You don’t want to be pushing dirt and lint into your ear canal so the case will help keep them clean.
Above I said that they come with banded (silicon) ear plugs, they also come with a foam option. The Axil XPro Passive Ear Protection plugs have a unique feature. You don’t have to pull them out of your ear to hear. Push the small red button on the tip and it will open up the valve so you can hear. Push it again to shoot and it will close the valve. The foam tips give you a 30dB noise reduction and with the silicon tips a 24dB noise reduction.
If you really want to get maximum hearing protection wear these in conjunction with the Axil TrackR Protection Electronic ear muffs. But don’t think that since each one has a 30dB noise reduction rate that you will have a 60dB noise reduction rate now. To my understanding on hearing protection, you don’t get a sum reduction. It will help but overall you may only get a 40dB noise reduction level if you wear both. Don’t quote me on the 40dB figure but I bet it is close.
The only small kink, at first I found it a little awkward to push the red button while they were in my ears. I was afraid I was going to cram it down into my ear. As I used them more though it wasn’t an issue. And if it whacks you out, when you push the button slightly push it sideways and you won’t get the feeling that it is cramming them down your ear canal.
The MSRP for the Axil X-Pro Passive Ear Protection earplugs is $35.00 and as is usual, we will close with the company specs:
After the X-Pro is comfortably settled in your ear, you can activate the hearing protection with the push of a button. The closed valve will now protect your hearing by giving you 30dB of noise reduction with the foam tips (24 dB noise reduction with silicon tips).
When you need to hear again, instead of completely removing the earplugs, simply press the button again to open the acoustic valve, allowing sound to pass through naturally.
About Tom Claycomb
Tom Claycomb has been an avid hunter/fisherman throughout his life as well as an outdoor writer with outdoor columns in the magazine Hunt Alaska, Bass Pro Shops, Bowhunter.net, and freelances for numerous magazines and newspapers. “To properly skin your animal, you will need a sharp knife. I have an e-article on Amazon Kindle titled Knife Sharpening #ad for $.99 if you’re having trouble.”