Manager - N2MG
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Survey Question


Do you use headphones in the shack at home? Comments please.

Results (927 answers)

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Survey Comments

Life savers = Headphones

without headphones all I hear my wife keep saying " can you
turn it down pleeeeease?"
Once I put them on, Oh thank you dear God, it's nice to hear
the white noise and have an excuse not to respond to those
numerous never ending "hon, can you help me for a second"
Posted by AJ6MA on 2019-09-22


Without the headphones I would not be able to
hear the weak ones!
Posted by NN2X on 2019-09-15


I use them so i don't disturb anyone else in
the house if I am on late at night.
Posted by N5VAF on 2019-09-10

Headphone use

Depends on the radio. I always use them
working the ICOM but not the Yaesu.
Posted by AF7OA on 2019-09-08


As a 99.99% cw op use headphones all the
time. The best set that I have a a pair of
ex GPO headphones that i used at GKA, they
seem to have a built in peak at around
Posted by ZL1BBW on 2019-09-07


One of the best set of cans in the shack
is a purloined (ahem) set of David Clark
66's, which are NATO helicopter service,
noise-cancelling Tx and Rx, and are
euphemistically called "skull-crushers."
When there are other loud sources of
noise, the DC's just come on through. It
took building a small interface to provide
9VDC and a small preamp into a diecast box
with the two different sized phone plugs
(of course with toilet seats), but the
best is that speech gets conveyed to and
from. Other stations may not like how my
voice sounds after going through the 150
ohm mike, but I'm not a broadcaster. Other
cans include Sony and Koss, but they're
Posted by W4HBM on 2019-09-06


Up until 10 years ago I always wore headphones, not sure how one would work weak cw without them. When I developed significant tinnitus
the hearing doctor asked if I used headphones for music, when I told him music and copying code he seemed to perk right up. Quitting headphones for 5 years relieved the problem but as a result I don't work so much CW. Obviously they go back on for the few elusive DX.
Posted by K1FT on 2019-09-06

CW only

The only time I must used headphones is for cw operation.
Posted by N2FWR on 2019-09-02


I always use headphones being a 100% CW operater.Never use SSB !!! Have been a radio officer in the merchant navy in my twenties. Now my age 78 and still operating only CW!!!
Posted by PA3ALX on 2019-09-01

It just depends on
cndx. If there's alot
of qrn and I'm trying
to pull a cw signal
out of the mud,I'll
definitely use
headphones. Or if
it's late at night
and I'm trying not to
bother anybody who
might be sleeping,
its headphones for
Posted by W8TBZ on 2019-08-25


"Usually" would have been good as a selection
for this poll...

I usually wear headphones:

I would say that the TWO things that you
don't want to skimp on in Amateur Radio are
Antennas and Headphones.

And you have to make sure that they are
comfortable, just like when you get a pair of

All that being said, I think that I was very
lucky that I wasn't wearing headphones when I
got hit with lightning.

Posted by W8LV on 2019-08-12

Head Phones

Always when working CW.
Posted by AE4TA on 2019-08-11

Times Change

Most of my ham career, now over 60 years, I used headphones
or headphones with an attached boom mike. I was an avid CW
operator and occasional phone one. Now, I mostly operate
digital-modes and, of course, I need not hear the signals. So,
now I rarely use headphones except on my portable CW rig.
Posted by VE1YY on 2019-08-10


Got a $20.00 wireless with FM radio
also;works great with Ysesu FT891 for
monitoring away from radioroom 73's all
kb3wge Jimi📻🎸
Posted by KB3WGE on 2019-08-08

depends ???

in my house, the sounds can be heard, so at times I use my headphones for all modes
Posted by KC8Y on 2019-08-07


I work only CW and use headphones all the time. My
Radiosport RS20S set is good for several hours at a time with
no headache or fatigue.
Posted by K0RO on 2019-08-05


Hate to criticize, but this sorta topic presented in the form of a
survey question is about as relevant as asking whether you
favour your operating position to face north-south, or east-
west position, or some other such Feng Shui exercise...!
Posted by VE3CUI on 2019-08-05


I have a Heil Headset with boom mike. It is great for SSB. Comfortable to wear for hours.

Mark KC3JV
Posted by KC3JV on 2019-08-02


*********Hams are cheap but they want the
best. Here is one piece of equipment that
takes the place of 2 items so the cost of
one piece will be well justified. I bought
a set of Heil Pro 7. That is all I use. I
do not like desk mics and they are
overpriced. Now the Pro 7 is about $250.00
and well worth it. This is the way it is
used, pay close attention.
I use a hand key for my PTT. The Pro 7 can
be used in 3 positions.
1. Set the headset lying sideways on
the desk and the adjustable mic is sticking
straight up. In this position it is your
desk mic, works very well. The wind proof
foam mic covering the microphone is the
best way to talk into. Take into
consecration the mike needs to be ½”to 1-
1/2” from your mouth. Picking up every
sound around you is what a regular desk mic
will do and also the on and off clicking.
The close steady talking distance is the
secret way of keeping good solid contact
when talking. So the mic is designed for
that purpose. In the “desk mic position”
you will need to lean over and talk like a
regular desk mic. No need to buy a regular
desk mic just the Pro 7 is all you need.
2. Wear the head set around your neck
and adjust the mike so you can hear from
the sneaker from the radio or earphones. In
this position you can have the mouth piece
positioned in the right place no matter
what you are doing. A regular desk mic
would need you to have a hand pressing it,
bending over and speaking at the right
distance. The best thing of this headset is
the sound. The pro 7 has excellent sound.
Wearing it around your neck the sound is
just right coming from the headset. Tell
the truth, large speakers turned up like a
teenager with its rock and roll (or
whatever you call their mess today) is done
by many hams. With the ham radio set on
“rock and roll setting”, your neighbors or
having a wife near would not make you very
popular. I let the sound come from the Pro
7 and it is not disturbing anybody.
Remember in the “desk mic” position, even
with it turned up all of the way it is
pleasant and understandable. It can disturb
others in the high position even coming
from the headphones. It is a very powerful
headset and will be the best piece of ham
equipment you will ever own.
3. And of course wearing the
headphones as they were intended for and is
the most comfortable head phones you will
ever wear. They are soft and cover your
whole ears. It has one ear that can be
adjusted to on or off or anywhere in-
between. With that mode you can hear other
things that might be going around you and
not be totally blocked away from the
universe (like being called for dinner is
something you do not want to miss).
4. If you are still using a hand mike
on your main radio through that away and go
Pro 7. Getting one you will not regret it.
You will be so happy you can send ME MONEY
for helping your life, budget, and added
comfort to your ham experience. YOU CAN

Posted by KG5VGW on 2019-08-01


Always use headphones. I use Telex Twinsets like the ones I used in the mid 60s flying Navy C-118 transports. The freq response is 300-3000 Hz making them good for CW and SSB. Also, they only weigh a couple of ounces so you don't even know you have them on. You can't get them new anymore, so I have collected 8 sets of them over the years.
Posted by K4HPP on 2019-08-01


Since I use my radio mostly in the early mornings while
the xyl is sleeping and work only CW the earphones are
a necessity to keep the noise level to a null and allows
me to hear CW signals clearly
Posted by K2MMO on 2019-07-31


I use them for all HF work, primarily CW. While my XYL is a HAM, I use cans to both keep peace AND to listen to two frequencies at once. Of course at 70, my hearing isn't stellar so the volume is advanced a wee bit. Enjoy the hobby.

Semper Fi,

Tommy - K6YE
Posted by K6YE on 2019-07-30


Tried most of them over the years. Finally
settled on a High end gamers headset with
stereo 1/4 plugs. (Seinheisser(sp?) ONE.
Super comfortable, great audio, push up
boom to mute, full ear cushions, inline
receive volume control and mute plus it
really blocks more external sounds. Can
wear it 40+ hours in contests with no 'ear
ache'. What more could you ask of one? Has
nice semi-rigid case and 4-section 1/4"
stereo plug for some laptops. Get won't regret it!
Posted by KS4AA on 2019-07-29


I have several Heil boom mic sets that I always use. I got my start on headphones with a Telex Twin set in 1959. I only use a speaker if I an walking arouns the shack.

Dave K4JRB
Posted by K4JRB on 2019-07-29


Kind of an off the wall question but I guess
"Enquiringly minds" want to know.
Posted by K0CBA on 2019-07-29


I use headphones for CW. They are a set I bought years ago and have lousy upper freq response, but great for 600Hz CW. For SSB I use a speaker. Recently got a "broke" computer game headphone set from my grandson (only needed to rewire the jack the mic was busted) and it has excellent response for phone.

Posted by K4JPN on 2019-07-28


Nearly always for CW. Always for SSB (mic is
on the headphones), and never for FT8.. :)
Posted by K0UA on 2019-07-27


Only for FT8 - I've finally learned to copy it by ear.
Posted by AE5X on 2019-07-27


Only for FT8 - I've finally learned to copy it by ear.
Posted by AE5X on 2019-07-27


As I live alone I rarely use headphones at
home as my hearing is still good and I have
no local QRM. Aboard Battleship IOWA, NI6BB,
I use headphones 95% of the time due to local
chatter / QRM in the comm center!
Posted by W6HB on 2019-07-26


Always use earphones because the XYL doesn't like the noise.
Also, it helps to hear weak signals.
Exception is FT8 operation when earphones are not needed.
Posted by KD4S on 2019-07-26


Hey - I'm 78 with hearing getting somewhat
compromised so - YES - headphones are best -
especially on weak CW stations.
Posted by W2FKN on 2019-07-26


My hearing is still good and I work mostly digital
modes so headphones are not needed. I have
Bose noise cancelling headphones which helped a
few times when QRM was a problem.
Posted by K4EZD on 2019-07-26


as a 100 percent cw operator, i use headphones
100 percent of the time. favorite set is a
western electric from mid 1920's.
Posted by F8WBD on 2019-07-26


I was a sonar tech in the
Navy. We were selected on
the basis of having
excellent hearing (and
electronic aptitude). I use
headphones about 99% of the
time as I want to hear the
weakest signals in the
noise. I operate nearly
exclusively cw.
Posted by WA4DOU on 2019-07-26


I am a brass pounder so I use a headset 100% of the time.
BUT, for me the issue is what kind do I use. If I spend a long
time operating I have found that ANY headset that sits on top
of my ears will soon cause me great pain. The only ones that
work are the muff type that totally enclose my ears within the
headset cups. Puffy cup padding is also a must. No use
investing significant money in equipment and then trying to
limp painfully along wearing a low quality headset. My remarks
here are the same for Field Day when I operate hf ssb.
Posted by K7NSW on 2019-07-26


Always for CW and sometimes for SSB
Posted by KI4JEK on 2019-07-25


I will sometimes use headphones, if I find
that the station is really down on the noise
floor. I sometimes need the extra volume and
to cut off all the external/ambient noises.
Posted by WF2D on 2019-07-25

It depends

When I was working a lot of DX CW I used headphones most of the time. On voice modes I don't need them because the shack is sound-proofed from the rest of the house. In recent years I spend most of my time on digital modes and don't listen to any audio at all.

Posted by AA4PB on 2019-07-25