New Gear Review: Ultimate Ears Pro Sound Guard

•UE Pro Sound GuardSMALLUltimate Ears’ Pro Sound Guard is a small, battery-powered audio protection device made to go in-line with your set of balanced armature in-ear monitor earphones. It is a pre-set compressor/limiter module designed to control the absolute maximum sound level your ears could ever experience when using in-ear monitors. Sound Guard will suppress instantly the damaging sound spikes that occur from accidental microphone drops, audio feedback squeals and other unexpected sound hazards that may occur while performing or recording.
For on-the-body personal use, Sound Guard has a removable belt clip and runs on two, three-volt CR2450 lithium batteries (included). It also comes with a short TRS-to-TRS patch cable to connect it to your in-ear receiver.

I tried Sound Guard with a pair of UE 900s Noise Cancelling Earphones and my pair of molded custom UE In-Ear Reference, Capitol Records Edition. In both cases, it worked well at controlling the maximum level applied to these in-ear monitors. I found the overall in-ear sound to take on a more consistent level; I could hear more deeply into the mix as if I cranked the volume way up but without the worry of getting blasted.

The UE Pro Sound Guard sells for $199 MSRP.

Barry Rudolph is a recording engineer/mixer who has worked on over 30 gold and platinum records. He has recorded and/or mixed Lynyrd Skynyrd, Hall & Oates, Pat Benatar, Rod Stewart, the Corrs, and more. Barry has his own futuristic music mixing facility and loves teaching audio engineering at Musician’s Institute, Hollywood, CA. He is a lifetime Grammy-voting member of NARAS and a contributing editor for Mix Magazine.