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High-Fidelity Ear Plugs: Cool Enough for Clint

What do Billy Joel, Kendrick Lamar, Bassnectar and Clint Eastwood have in common? Right, not much. But the first three will be playing at Bonnaroo this June, meaning they’ll have, in a roundabout way, sponsorship from the maker of a high-fidelity earplug called DUBS Acoustic Filters. And the fourth guy was driving around Coachella last month looking for a pair of DUBS to call his own, according to YourEDM.com.

Ear plugs are getting cool. Possibly in response to German DJ and producer Zedd’s sudden hearing loss last August (he recovered), possibly because 50 million of their American elders suffer from tinnitus, possibly because the World Health Organization predicts that 1.1 billion teens and young adults worldwide are at risk of hearing loss due to damage from earbuds and loud concerts “or maybe because they have more common sense than the generations that preceded them” 20- and 30-somethings are taking precautions with their hearing even at the most carefree events imaginable: the huge music festivals that proliferate across the country in warm weather.

This year South by Southwest handed out high-fidelity earplugs in schwag bags, and Coachella gave the VIP treatment to Doppler Labs, creator of the DUBS Acoustic Filters earplugs, which are designed to dampen volume without sacrificing audio fidelity.

Now New York-based Doppler is joining forces with Bonnaroo (June 11-14 in Manchester, Tennessee), the largest music festival in America, and Outside Lands (Aug. 7-9), San Francisco’s contribution to cool. DUBS will be the official earplug of both festivals for 2015 and 2016.

Write the authorities at electronic dance music blog YourEDM.com: “We are going harder, louder, and longer than any audiences before us, and if we want to be able to party this hard when we’re 30 we’re going to need to protect our hearing.”

High-fidelity earplugs are getting to be a thing: other brands include one called the Earpeace and three hi-fi earplugs reviewed in April 2014 by the Wall Street Journal: the V-Moda Faders VIP, Etymotic ETY Plugs ER20 and Earasers.

Sounds good to us.

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