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Old 11th May 2010
Originally Posted by Ringwraith View Post
Is there a physical sensation when you get ear fatigue or is it that things don't sound right? How long does it last for usually?

There's a physical sensation if it's really bad or there's damage. You may not notice outright that things don't sound 'right' -- but you'll be more likely to make mistakes, think you hear things you don't, and so on.

Ear fatigue is often associated with high volume -- it is far more fatiguing and when the internal muscles that help the ear control and regulate its operation do become fatigued, they are much less able to protect the delicate ear mechanism from physical damage, which may have effects which last for varying amounts of time or may be permanent.

But even in a controlled environment, say mixing at a carefully controlled level (as with the K-System), ears become fatigued. Sometimes -- often, I should say from my own experience -- the brain and the ear become fatigued at the same time in different ways and you can find yourself doing dumb things like adjusting something back and forth, too much, too little, is that just right? I can't tell any more... and then you realize what you were adjusting isn't hooked up to anything...

As you gain more experience, you'll begin to recognize the signs of various types of listening and work fatigue.

But, crucially, start taking care of your ears now... don't expose them to loud sounds unnecessarily. Carry professionally fitted ear protection with you. (Or at least really good over the counter.) But remember, even the ****ty ones the sell in bulk at the hardware store area better than completely trashing your hearing.