Teens don’t give a damn about losing their hearing as a result of listening to their portable media player too loudly. That’s the conclusion of a Dutch study published in the March Journal of Pediatrics, which says that kids willingly crank their PMPs to the loudest volume level despite knowing how harmful it can be.
The researchers suggest users make their players no louder than 60 percent of maximum.
Who’s to blame? Do you fault parents for not teaching their kids that listening to loud music destroys their hearing? Should Apple and others place giant neon stickers on retail packaging warning users of the dangers of loud music?
You know what I blame? Those cheap, awful sounding earbuds included in most PMPs, including the iPod. I used two sets of headphones with my iPod nano (before I lost it): the standard earbuds included with the player and my Ultimate Ears in-ear headphones. I noticed that I needed to pump the volume all the way up to 95-100 percent simply to hear my music over the sounds of the subway. Not safe. With the Ultimate Ears, I could leave the volume at 50-60 percent and hear the music just fine. Awful headphones required me to set the volume to dangerous levels.
Basically, chill out with your volume levels. Y’all don’t want to be hard of hearing any earlier than you need to be.