If you've flown on a commercial airline since 2000, you've probably seen people wearing Bose QuietComfort headphones. They're expensive and large, and I don't like them.
Their noise-cancellation circuitry actually generates noise of its own, and my ears are good enough to hear it as long as I'm not seated too near the engines.
I started wearing earplugs on airplanes in the 1980s when I discovered the squishy memory-foam type. They block noise better than headphones ever could, and they don't make any noise themselves.
But when I bought my first iPod, that strategy didn't seem quite so perfect anymore. The ear-bud headphones that came with the iPod never fit me at all; they just fell out. After some experimentation with small folding travel headphones, I decided I was happiest with in-ear headphones. They gave me most of the noise reduction of the foam earplugs along with the ability to listen to music.
The problem with in-ear headphones is finding a model that fits me. I gather that this is a common problem with this type of product. I went through several low- and mid-priced models before settling on the old Apple In-Ear headphones--they just worked the best for me. (Interestingly, I had the same experience as CNET's Steve Guttenberg when he reviewed them: they only fit well when inserted upside-down.)… Read more