Howard Leight vs. 3M Peltor – Which brand carries better earmuffs?

MSA Sordin Supreme Pro vs. Peltor

If you know your PPE, safety wear and all that fun stuff then you know both Howard Leight and 3M Peltor. However, which of these is better? We are going to compare these brands of personal protection equipment carefully examining what each brand has to offer, especially with respect to ear muffs. Take a look at Howard Leight vs. 3M Peltor for further insight.

Working in manufacture and supply, construction or any other work environment where loud noises are regularly and inevitably produced teaches you many things. This is especially with respect to personal protection and safety. Therefore it is only fair that workers, whose activities must be conducted in noisy environments, be protected from said noise. You can achieve quality protection by relying on quality protective wear. That being said, Howard leight by Honeywell and 3M Peltor are two major names when it comes to PPE: specifically for ear protection.

We are going to delve into the world of ear protection, specifically earmuffs, critically looking at what each brand has to offer. Moreover, we will review some of the popular models in addition to discussing the various ear protection items each manufacturer carries. Our end goal is not only review Howard Leight or 3M Peltor, but also compare. Pitting them against each other will help us answer many questions, one of which is which brand offers better ear protection wear? Let’s find out. Take a look at Howard Leight vs. 3M Peltor for more on this comparison review.

What are the differences between Howard Leight vs. 3M Peltor?

Howard leight
3M Peltor
Product Variety
Special series
Comfortable wear
Recommended Industry use and application

Howard Leight vs. 3M Peltor- How these two compare

Both Howard Leight and Peltor are major hearing protection series within their respective organizations. As such they have a wide collection of hearing protection within their respective arsenals. Here are some of the differences between these major hearing PPE series.


There are obviously going to be various design differences between the HL and Peltor collections. However, you may notice that Howard Leighting does a better job in introducing various colors and exciting fabric designs for different applications.

Similarly, there are many design elements within the 3M Peltor collection that HL lacks. For instance, the double cup design for effective attenuation is unique to the Clarity sound management series of earmuffs on the Peltor collection.


Both manufacturers do a good job in ensuring either collection is packed with different lines of hearing protection solutions; all of which utilize the respective maker’s unique features and capabilities. As a result these collections are quite different. They highlight the various technologies Howard Leight and 3M Peltor put into making their instruments unique.

For instance, 3M Peltor does a better job at developing high visibility ear muffs or even different designs that allow different wear methods. Many of the series allow for over the head, behind the head or even hat attachment ear muffs. Moreover, Peltor provides a better selection of earmuffs in reflective or high visibility colors compared to HL color selection. While Howard Leight has earmuffs with these features, they are neither as many or as elaborately developed as Those from 3M Peltor.

Comfort and convenience

Apart from functionality, a good earmuff should sit comfortably while in use. Convenience and comfort features are important in making the wear time bearable. Howard Leight doesn’t include any consistent convenience features, but makes comfortable contact surfaces for easy wear. Peltor earmuffs similarly have various convenience features with over the head style device made with a sturdy non warping headband.

Howard Leight vs. 3M Peltor -A comparison review

Howard Leight

Howard Leight by Honeywell Impact Sport Sound Amplification Electronic Shooting Earmuff, Classic Green (R-01526)
  • Built-in directional microphones amplify range commands and other ambient sounds to a safe 82 dB,...
  • Actively listens and automatically shuts off amplification when ambient sound reaches 82 dB; Noise...
  • Features low profile earcups for firearm stock clearance; adjustable headband for secure fit; compact...
  • Includes AUX input and 3.5 mm connection cord for MP3 players and scanners. Integrated power/volume knob

The Howard Leight brand by Honeywell is well known for their ear protection solutions. In fact, Howard leight prides themselves in providing technical innovations and investing in resources all geared towards hearing conservation. If you are confused about what relationship Howard Leight has with Honeywell: the brand was acquired by the latter in 2010. All the hearing protection technologies developed by Howard Leight brand are innovative and well functional items well capable of protecting the user form loud environmental noise. Take a look at some of the more popular Howard Leight hearing protection solutions from all the different collections.

Howard Leight has a rich history in provision of innovating hearing preservation solutions, and the prevention of this important sense. Honeywell Internationals acquired Howard leight in 2010, as such you will come across some hearing protection devices tagged by this These hearing solutions are a collection are a combination of various technologies to deliver top industry performance. Designed with the users in mind, Howard light carries a wide variety of hearing protection devices. Here are some of their biggest hits.

The Howard Leight list of products is quite expansive. The collection ranges from ear muffs, ear plugs you name it. Luckily, the models are cataloged into different families.

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Impact Sport Electronic Earmuffs

Howard Leight by Honeywell Impact Sport Sound Amplification Electronic Shooting Earmuff, Classic Green (R-01526)
  • Built-in directional microphones amplify range commands and other ambient sounds to a safe 82 dB,...
  • Actively listens and automatically shuts off amplification when ambient sound reaches 82 dB; Noise...
  • Features low profile earcups for firearm stock clearance; adjustable headband for secure fit; compact...
  • Includes AUX input and 3.5 mm connection cord for MP3 players and scanners. Integrated power/volume knob

The Howard Leight Impact is no doubt one of the more widely known series within the HL collection. These amplify sound electronically to ensure communication between wearers is maintained. Powered by 2 AAA batteries and available in a variety of colors and fabric designs, this is truly a diverse range of earmuffs. Impact sport electronic earmuff as are available in blaze green, camouflage and tactical black designs.

With its features, wearers can remain alert in case of an alarm, warning r signal from a coworker or the surroundings. This design includes directionally placed microphones which allow full situational awareness. Other technologies on these earmuffs include the Air Flow Control that ensures optimum attenuation.

Howard Leight goes the extra mile to ensure these are not only functional but also comfortable to wearer. For instance, the non deforming head band in addition to the snap in cushion design incorporated add durability and easy cushion replacement: respectively. Using these earmuffs, ambient sound is amplified to 82dB, past this level the integrated response tech reverts the wearer back to passive protection. Using the AUX connection, users may connect to external devices as needed.

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Leighting Series Earmuffs

Howard Leight by Honeywell Leightning L3 Shooting Earmuff (R-03318)
  • Lightweight design combines maximum protection and contemporary style
  • Super-soft ear cushion eliminates "squeezing" sensation on head; snap-in feature allows for quick and...
  • Headband features telescopic adjustment for custom fit, steel wire construction to withstand demanding...
  • Earcup features patented Air Flow Control technology to reduce sound across all frequencies without...

The Leighting Family is one of many in the Passive line of ear muffs form Howard Leight hearing protection solutions. Hearing protection solutions within this range are designed for comfort and effective protection against damaging noise. With a Noise Reduction Rating of 30, these earmuffs are dependable in a variety of work situations and even activities.

There are many design elements incorporated into the Leighting including a robust steel wire construction that can accommodate all manner of use and rough handling. The headband is uniquely padded with foam for maximum comfort without affecting proper function. This is all with minimum pressure on the head.

Taking a closer look at the Howard Leight L3 Leighting earmuffs are well designed with the classic headband design among other parented technologies which allow the ultimate protection experience. For instance, the design includes a baseplate chamber with a non-woven layer which prevents air from entering the earmuff, and thus the ear. This results in better noise control.

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Clarity Sound Management Series

Howard Leight by Honeywell Clarity Series C3 Sound Management Safety Earmuff (1011146)
  • Sound management technology enhances ambient noises such as conversation and alarms while protecting from...
  • Dielectric construction inhibits conduction of electric currents; ideal for electrical environments but...
  • Non-deforming outer headband withstands rough treatment; inner headband is ventilated to breathe better...
  • Quick-Click height adjustment remains fixed during wear; Snap-in ear cushions are quick and easy to...

This is an advanced series of sound management devices with enhanced technologies to allow communication. The headband and cup design is made to ensure uniform pressure with comfortable and extended wear times. Because there are many variations within this series, there are different additions and accommodations made, many of which users appreciate.

Apart from stellar sound management, there are many convenience features included within this range. For instance, there are foldable models which enable easy storage. Other models are made with a multi position head band that allows users to use the PPE whichever position feels most comfortable.

Ideally, Howard Leight Clarity sound management ear muffs are meant for a wide range of industries and use. Using patented technologies, these earmuffs can uniformly attenuate noise, allowing effective protection against harmful noise while allowing coworker-coworker communications. With dielectric construction, you can utilize these earmuffs in all workplaces even electrical environments.

Taking a closer look at one of the Clarity models, the Clarity C3 earmuffs are made with a unique headband design, that is non deforming and can take all manner of rough treatment. With this headband, pressure is reduced on the head, for more comfortable wear experience. The contact surfaces are quite soft and breathable, ensuring users in humid or hot environments can wear said earmuffs comfortably. Speech frequencies like we said are made accessible thanks to the uniform attenuation power.

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3M Peltor

The goal for every 3M hearing protection solution is just that: to provide solution to difficult hearing protection problems. With this ideology, they have managed to produce a vast array f well equipped hearing protection equipment. These come in different types, varying families and separate capabilities.

3M Peltor together with the 3M E.A.R are the two significant lines under which various hearing protection devices, and solutions are developed. This review mainly focuses on the Peltor line of devices which includes earmuffs and a variety of ear plugs.

TIP: Within these reviews, we will state whether or not reviewed items are EAR-Fit compatible or not. This is one of 3M’s technologies used to determine unique ear protection requirements. With this, users may quantitatively gauge their hearing protection requirements and adequacy of the hearing protection solution chosen.

3M describes Peltor earmuffs as a blend of many great features and characteristics. Specifically, these earmuffs are a combination of their extensive knowledge: gathered over decades of working in hearing protection. Integrated technologies, comfortable designs and durability are some of the main selling points for Peltor earmuffs.

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This series consists of members tagged with an X-N to show which. Ranging from X1 to X5, this range of hearing protection devices is great for a variety of environments. These include moderate to high industrial noises. 3mdescribes these ear muffs as specially formulated devices that are mane with innovative technologies for improved protection. 3M ‘s PELTOR X5 Earmuffs X5B, or the X5 if you like, is a well constructed piece of equipment great for users across a wide range of professions. With a 31dB noise reduction rating, the X5 will come is a high attenuation ear protection solution. It is great for high noise application and relies on a series of advanced technologies to deliver said high performance. Apart from great performance, these earmuffs are made with different technologies to ensure ultra comfortable use.

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Optime series

3M H10A Peltor Optime 105 Over the Head Earmuff, Ear Protectors, Hearing Protection, NRR 30 dB,Black, Red
  • Noise Reduction Rating of 30dB
  • Superior comfort, fit, and hearing protection
  • Patented twin-cup design
  • Recommended for extremely loud conditions

This series hosts a range of earmuffs with four main models. It is designed for next level hearing protection. The instruments here in have noise reduction ratings ranging from a minimum 21dB on the Optime 95 to 30dB on the Optime 105. The instruments on this line are tagged with a number to indicate the level to which the models can effectively protect the ears. For instance, the 105 offers protection of noise exposure reaching 105dBA. Getting into more specifics: the model 3M Peltor 105 Optime H10A is available in many different variations: the standard over the head design, behind the head design, hard hat attached ear muffs and a fluorescent over the head version for high visibility. With a NRR of 30dB this product is great for extremely loud noise environments.

A patented cup design is used particularly on the over the head model to ensure noise is effectively reduced over a wide range of frequencies. This double shell design connects two cups with a foam liner. Overall, the variations in this group have the cups filled with soft liquid foam that ensures the instrument feels comfortable on the ears. Acting as a sealant, this foam helps effectively seal away any noise from the outside. The over the head design is made with a stainless steel band that is warp and bending resistant. They allow for even weight distribution and do not exert too much pressure when worn.

Specialty series

As the name suggests, this is collection of specialized protection equipment all of which are designed for specific industry needs. In fact, depending on which model you choose, these earmuffs promise to do their jobs while relying on the specialized tech used in their development. This is addition to the support and advice from 3M Peltor ensures their optimum function.

There are only 3 members in this collection: the H505B welding earmuffs, the H31 Hi Viz earmuffs and the push to listen earmuffs. The First on this series, the H505B are a lightweight set of helmet earmuffs which fit great under welding helmets. The soft surface surrounding the cup effectively reduces scratch sound transmission. These deliver comfort and effective noise protection for different welding environments. The H505B have a noise reduction rating of 17dB.

Moving on to the bright orange and extremely visible earmuffs: the Hi-Viz model is an ultra light hearing protection solution available in two different formats. One version is hard hat attached while the other is an over the head design. Both these designs are a CSA class A earmuffs with a noise rating of 23dB. Additionally, each of the ear cups on ether variations is pivoted to allow tilting in different directions. With this, users can achieve optimum comfort.

Last on this collection is the Push to listen model that is available in a over the head and hard hat attached versions. Respectively, these push to listen variations have a NRR of 26db and 23dB. They are designed particularly for environments where face to face communication is need. Like the name suggests, users may listen to conversations and speak to co workers even while ina noisy background.

Now let’s compare Honeywell’s Howard Leight Impact Sport to 3M Peltor X5 ear muffs

Howard Leight Impact Sport
3M Peltor X5
Passive earmuffs
Noise Attenuating Headsets
Yes AUX input
Power source and battery life
2AAA batteries, 350hours


Because both Peltor and HL are well endowed collections with a variety of hearing protection solutions, it is difficult for many users to choose between them. This comparison review focuses mainly on earmuffs, from either brands that also carries other varieties including earplugs. From the items reviews ad topics discussed, you can tell that both Howard Leight and Peltor are both respectable collections with great solutions for anyone with a hearing protection problem.


  1. Why don’t you compare Howard Leight Thunder T3 with Peltor products? Howard Leight Thunder T3 has the biggest SNR-36 dB rating from all Howard Leight earmuffs. I have been thinking about differences between Thunder T3 SNR 36 dB and 3M Peltor X5A SNR rating 37 dB? Did you use both of them? I believe there is only a small margin between these two products, when it comes of the level of noise protection.


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