Peltor Optime I Headband Ear Defenders Review

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The Peltor Optime I Headband Ear Defenders are made by 3M, a respected manufacturer of work safety products. These ear defenders have an SNR rating of 27 dB, which is the lowest amount offered in the Optime range (the Optime II and Optime III offer higher levels of protection).

These ear defenders meet the EN352-1:2002 standards for hearing protection, and are designed for moderate levels of industrial noise, from 86 dB to 98 dB. They’re designed to deal well with high-frequency noises, and are also suitable for activities such as mowing the lawn and woodworking.


SNR rating: 27 dB

Performance and comfort

Despite having a relatively low SNR rating of 27 dB, these ear defenders do a great job at reducing sounds. They won’t block out everything, but they will protect your hearing from loud sounds and reduce the volume of distracting background noise. You can combine these ear defenders with ear plugs to achieve quite an impressive reduction in sound.

Here are some of the activities and environments the Peltor Optime I ear defenders are suitable for:

  • Workshops
  • Printing works
  • Mowing the lawn
  • Drilling
  • Vacuuming
  • Construction
  • Noisy offices
  • Using a pressure washer

Most people find the Peltor Optime I Headband Ear Defenders to be comfortable, though others find them a bit too tight. They have a padded head band which can be adjusted to fit the size of your head.

The yellow design helps make you more visible, which is an added safety bonus especially if you’re working on a construction site or in another high-risk environment. It also means you’re unlikely to lose them as they’re easy to spot.

These ear defenders feel tough and well made, and should last years of use.

  • Very comfortable for most people
  • Nice and light
  • Good noise reduction
  • Tough and well made
  • Too tight for some people
  • Relatively low SNR rating (27 dB)


These ear defenders are more expensive than some of those offered by less well known brands, but you get what you pay for. 3M are experts in the field, and these ear defenders feel really well made and are clearly built to last. They’re good for protecting your hearing from moderately loud noises or just blocking out irritating background noise.

If you’re exposed to extremely loud noises you will want something with a higher SNR rating. These ear defenders also aren’t ideal for people with very large heads, as they can be too tight.

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The other ear defenders in 3M’s Peltor range have higher SNR ratings than the Peltor Is, and therefore offer better protection from very loud noises. The Peltor II and III ear defenders have SNR ratings of 31 and 35 dB respectively.

You might also be interested in this roundup of the best industrial ear defenders or these recommended ear defenders for construction.

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