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May 17, 2021

Professional Tool Reviews for Pros


ISOtunes Link Bluetooth Earmuffs Review

ISOtunes Link Bluetooth Earmuffs
PTR Review
  • Pro Rating 8.0

These might be the easiest ISOtunes headphones you can don for quick Bluetooth connectivity and noise-isolation. Sound quality from the ISOtunes Xtra Bluetooth earphones approximates what we heard from the ISOtunes Pro headphones. They do well as a pair of Bluetooth headphones. Couple this with their primary duty—hearing protection—and they absolutely excel.

Overall Score 8.0 (out of 10)

We’ve covered quite a few ISOtunes earphones throughout the years. They include many corded and cordless in-ear headphones that specialize in reducing ambient noise for those working in landscaping and/or construction. More recently, the company introduced several Bluetooth earphones that let you stream audio wirelessly while working safely. Most of their models also follow OSHA hearing protection standards. When we saw the ISOtunes Link Bluetooth earmuffs, we immediately wanted to try out the company’s first over-ear noise-isolating headphones solution.


Recommendation


These might be the easiest ISOtunes headphones you can don for quick Bluetooth connectivity and noise-isolation. Sound quality from the ISOtunes Link earmuffs approximates what we heard from the ISOtunes Pro headphones. They work great on the job site and double-up as a regular pair of Bluetooth headphones. At their primary duty—hearing protection—they absolutely excel.

ISOtunes designed the Link headphones for professional landscapers, lawn care professionals, and contractors. The new earmuffs provide a noise-canceling Bluetooth solution for those wanting an over-the-ear solution that keeps them within OSHA hearing-protection safety levels.

adjustable headband arms'

ANSI-Certified Noise-Reduction

The noise-cancellation works passively—the headphones themselves deliver an ANSI-certified 24dB SPL of noise reduction. It also features a microphone that allows for calls while isolating noise.

ISOtunes also adds in their SafeMax technology, which limits the listening volume to 85 dB or below. After all, if you could simply increase the volume to your ears, you’d no longer fall underneath the OSHA permissible limits. Because of this, ISOtunes Link Bluetooth headphones conform to OSHA safety standards for hearing protection.


Given our own experience with earphones falling out on the jobsite, an over-ear noise-canceling solution sounds like a great option to have.

Bluetooth 4.2 Connectivity

Regarding Bluetooth, ISOtunes opted for version 4.2 wireless connectivity. All navigational controls live on the right-side earcup. That means you can leave your phone in your pocket and still take calls, skip tracks, and adjust the volume.

ISOtunes IT-30 controls

The ISOtunes IT-30 earmuffs work with both Siri and Google Voice. That noise-canceling microphone I mentioned earlier also lets you make intelligible phone calls in noisy environments. I tried it while mowing the grass on a Cub Cadet Pro Z 560 mower.

ISOtunes Link Bluetooth headphones

Comfort and Fit

Don the ISOtunes Link Headphones and you immediately feel the soft memory foam ear cushions. Many people debate in-ear vs over-ear headphones and it really comes down to preference.

They deliver a reasonably comfortable listening experience but do press a bit against your head. I suppose that tight seal might have to do with the noise reduction rating. In any case, after several hours, I was ready to give my ears a break.

underside of ISOtunes Link headband

The headphones also carry an IPX4 rating, making them water and sweat-resistant. I like that and feel it gives these a fighting chance of standing up to the rigors of aggressive jobsite use. Just be sure to give your ears a break from time to time.

The ISOtunes Link Headphones run off either batteries or an included rechargeable Lithium-ion battery. The latter delivers as much as 14 hours of music playback per charge. To get the most continuous runtime, pull out the rechargeable battery and go with three AAA batteries. That should net you around 28 hours of playback time.

lithium-ion battery or AAA

Using these headphones outdoors certainly allowed me to hear content like podcasts, talk radio, and similar content. We also found phone calls to allow excellent reception and intelligibility.

In our firsts sample, music simply sounded flat and muddy. After contacting ISOtunes, it was quickly determined that we had a defective set of earmuffs. The replacement model shipped out immediately and proved that to be the case. Lows now had lots of punchy bass—even representing frequencies that I know for a fact are below 30Hz.

Vocals had a nice clarity without being overly crisp or accentuated. Honestly, these sound pretty good as just a pair of Bluetooth headphones. You do get a bit of extra low-end accentuation—but that’s par for the course with Bluetooth headphones. Pull out that extra bass and most reviewers would describe headphones as “being thin” and “lacking in low-frequency response”.

In truth, these earmuffs sound great with classic rock, pop, rap (I queued up some Shai Linne, who I consider a lyrical genius)—even classical music.

Using Them Off the Jobsite

What does it all mean? The ISOtunes Link earmuffs excel at noise isolation and ear protection—as they should. However, you could also presumably take them off the jobsite and onto your next flight or listen to them at home while relaxing in your hammock. What? You don’t have a hammock? (Seriously, go get a hammock!)

If music quality tops your list of priorities, you can pay more and get even better sound quality for sure. You just won’t have the same level of OSHA-level safety and volume protection ISOtunes offers. These also don’t provide noise cancellation—just noise isolation. But they do it very well. For landscapers, these sound better than any other pair of Bluetooth jobsite earmuffs I’ve yet heard.

Pricing and Availability

The ISOtunes Link Bluetooth headphones cost around $79.99 and include a rechargeable lithium-ion battery and micro-USB charging cord. ISOtunes includes a 30-day money-back guarantee, as well as a 1-year warranty.

  • Model: ISOtunes IT-30
  • ANSI certified 24 dB noise-reduction rating (NRR)  
  • Run time: 14+ hours (included Li-ion battery), 28+ (3 x AAA batteries)
  • SafeMax Technology limits volume to 85 dB
  • OSHA compliant hearing protection
  • Noise-isolating microphone for clear calls in loud environments
  • Bluetooth 4.2
  • IPX4-rated
  • Memory foam ear cushions
  • Siri/Google Voice compatible 
  • Warranty: 1 year
  • Price: $79.99

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Walter Snyder

Everyone needs to look up what the ANSI NRR rating means. A 24 dB nRR rating means that the device (ear muffs) reduce the sound level only 8.5 dB. The formula is: ((rating in dB) – 7)) / 2 – or – (dB rating) minus 7, then divided by 2 = actual sound reduction in dB’s.

Gregory Mills

I run sound for my church so I have to really protect my hearing. I wont use anything less than 28db of noise reduction (preferably 30db), yet I cant find anyone that makes Bluetooth earmuffs with that level of protection. You would think manufactures would do it because it would make the music sound cleaner the more outside noise you remove. Instead I just stick to 3M’s 105 Earmuffs raited for 31db and save the podcasts for after I finish the job.

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