Which Aviation Headset is For You?
Pilots and flight crew individuals across the globe utilize an aviation headset every day. These special devices are used for a multitude of reasons and it’s important to know which one is right for you and your in-flight needs.
Selecting Your Aviation Headset
Your long-term aviation goals are a key factor in choosing your headset. If your objective is a career as a commercial airline pilot, you’ll want to invest in a quality headset. Be sure to select a headset that will not only last but will be comfortable for long flights. As you weigh your options, consider that this could very well be the headset you’ll utilize not only as a student, but as an instructor and ultimately as a First Officer with the airlines. Initially buying a well-built headset might help ensure that you won’t have to purchase a second headset a year or two later.
Importance of the Aviation Headset
A headset is a necessity for both communication and hearing protection purposes – it’s a pilot’s best friend! In the cockpit, you’re continuously learning, conversing with those accompanying you in the aircraft and working with Air Traffic Control (ATC). An aviation headset is used to make communication possible and reduce any outside noise.
Communication in and outside the aircraft is extremely important in aviation. Student pilots will communicate within the cockpit and will also be in contact with ATC. Commercial pilots will use their aviation headset to talk with their copilot, passengers and ATC as well. Clear communication is critical in conducting safe flight.
A pilot’s headset is also used as a way to reduce noise levels in the plane as it can get loud in the aircraft. Without their headset, a pilot may experience hearing loss from cockpit commotion.
Aviation Headset Options and Features
There is an array of aviation headsets on the market with different features for a pilot to utilize. It’s critical to find a headset that best satisfies your preferences.
There are three types of noise reduction headsets to choose from: passive noise reduction (PNR), active noise reduction (ANR) and dynamic noise reduction (DNR).
These headsets utilize a type of foam in the cup of the ear to subdue noise. This foam acts as a seal from outside sounds.
Active noise reduction headsets, usually battery-powered, reduce noise using electronics within the headset, making them pricier than passive noise reduction headsets.
Dynamic noise reduction headsets are a level above ANR headsets. The DNR aviation headset uses digital electronics for noise cancellation. Though these can also be more on the expensive side, they can be great if you’re looking for a quality headset.
In-ear and On-ear
Pilots can utilize both in-ear and on-ear headsets. In-ear headsets have small speaker plugs to put inside the ear. On-ear headsets, on the other hand, are placed over the pilot’s ear. Both these types of headsets offer different comfortability and sizing.
The microphone is an essential feature on a pilot’s aviation headset. For proper communication, not only is it important for the pilot to be able to hear, but the pilot must also be able to be heard when speaking into the microphone. A foam muff or other outside noise reducing item over the microphone is helpful for increasing its communication abilities.
Certain headsets offer Bluetooth capabilities. You’ll see this option available, but it really serves no purpose other than to connect to devices to listen to music or make calls. This is distracting when flying and is not authorized during training or at the airlines. This is a more expensive function you can do without.
For the aircraft you’re flying, be sure your aviation headset offers the correct plugs. You’ll always want to be prepared with the right equipment. The planes we fly at AeroGuard provide a standard twin plug connection. Offered in the cockpit of SkyWest ERJs and CRJs is the same standard headset connection, allowing AeroGuard students to bring their headset with them upon making the transition to the airlines.
Though there are a variety of aviation headset choices – and some with advanced features – what’s most important to pay attention to is the components you’re looking for to fit your needs.
Your AeroGuard Headset
Prior to starting class in the Pilot Pathway Program, students are required to purchase an aviation headset that they’ll want to bring with them on their flight training journey. When choosing your headset, be sure you’re keeping in mind the different styles and features that accompany each, as you’ll want to pick a pair for your own comfortability and success. Are you ready to proudly wear your aviation headset and explore the skies? Get connected with an Enrollment Advisor today!