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GADGETS NOISE CANCELLING HEADPHONES ARE SIMPLY MAGICAL FOR MUSIC.

Byline: KEVIN LYNCH

If you are like me and have a journey into work that involves a noisy train ride, you're probably prone to cranking up your iPod too loud.

Rather than doing lasting damage your hearing, why not invest in a pair of headphones that let you listen to your music at a lower volume by blocking out the racket around you?

Noise cancelling headphones run off a battery and use clever microphones built into the cans themselves or a little box incorporated into the cord.

When they detect noise they emit an antiphase signal to cancel it out before it reaches your ears. BOSE QUIET COMFORT 3 (pounds 350) **** Widely regarded as the daddy of noise cancelling headphones, but they come at a premium price. They're fairly heavy and lack a little bit of treble, but are a cosy fit and are the most effective at noise blocking.

Those working on a smaller budget will find the CREATIVE HN700 (pounds 39.99) **** hard to beat. They may lack bass, but they do a good job of blocking out background din, are comfy and also fold up. You can also use them in non-cancelling mode if the battery power runs out.

If you are looking for something less bulky, noise isolating ear bud-style 'phones block out background noise by fitting snugly in the ear canal. They tend to be cheaper than noise cancellers and don't need to be powered, but some people find them uncomfortable.

SHURE'S SE 210 (pounds 99) **** are easy to fit in the ear and have an excellent bassy sound, while the Beyerdynamic DTX 50s are decent budget choice at pounds 40, but lack a bit of mid-range.

For a really effective seal, www.customearphones.co.uk take a mould of your ear canal to create an individually tailored pair of ETYMOTIC ER-6i CUSTOM (pounds 149.99) ***** earphones, similar to those used by rock stars for onstage monitoring. They are, naturally, very comfortable and provide fantastic clarity.

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SILENT MIGHT: (From left) Bose Quiet Comfort 3, Creative HN700, Shure SE 210 and Etymotic ER-6i
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Mar 7, 2008
Words:356
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