cant find any posts talkin about which kind is best. We spend $1000+ on a rifle, then the glass, reloads, etc... and spend $4 on a set of foam plugs... is this right? if thats all it takes, which ones are the best ones to get?
For shooting at the range I bought a pair from Shawn Carlock. He's a sponsor here and I don't remember the brand but they are great. Very comfortable and you can hear conversations easily yet when a gun goes off it shuts the noise off.
For hunting I purchased a pair of ear plugs from Sure Fire. I find I may not have time to put them in when hunting in the field so I want a pair to wear all day comfortably. I don't like the ear muffs on all day if I'm hunting so I thought I would give them a try. There was a thread over on Snipers Hide that recommend these. They fit great but I haven't had them in all day yet nor have I been to the range with them.
I ordered the (EP3-MPR) EP-3 Sonic Defenders and the (EP4-MPR) EP-4 Sonic Defenders. For $36 bucks they were worth a try. The other route is formed ear pieces which can run a few hundred bucks.
At the range I just wear ear plugs because they work and don't get in my way like ear muffs do.
When Hunting I like the walker game ears because you can hear very well ans when you fire the weapon they clip the noise at 90 to 100 DB.
They really work well for bow hunting because you can turn up the amplification and hear a lot better than normal.
They are expensive but there are cheaper brands that work well.
If you hunt with a muzzle break they are a must because if you forget to protect your ears and fire a rifle with a break you will probably hear a ringing for days or even weeks and damage your ears permanently.
When at the range I always wear both plugs and muffs. While big game hunting I currently do not wear anything - when hunting ducks and geese I wear ear plugs - I have a rifle coming that has a break on it so i will be looking for something to wear. I'll have to check out the walker game ears as suggested by J.E.
I used a pair of EP-3 Sonic defenders on my antelope hunt this year and they worked great. I forget I have them in. They dampened the sound of my .308 very well. I haven't tried them with a muzzle brake yet but I plan to next year.