After a marathon rehearsal recently and not having suffered the usual high squeal all the other members of the band describe on their respective journeys home.
I have experimented over the years with various headphone and IEM systems and have never settled for more than a six month period, I recall the early days of recording.....the producer at the time announced to us I was to play to a click...I was 15....(a long 20 yrs ago) .so I naively strapped on the massive DT100's and attempted to track to this ridiculously loud....I mean LOUD....every click made me blink...this was mainly due to the incompetence of the engineer to monitor the mix prior to sending to me and the bass player... I knew within a short space of time that this was not going to work and the fact that we had trickles of blood from our ears.....(it was close....)
From that point I had a goal
Learn to play to a click....or latterly loops which came very quickly thankfully, but also to carry a small mixer and administer my own click as required for sessions.
Logistically this did on occasion prove problematic as the neanderthals with many sliders could not comprehend I would send them the click to track....
As time went on I purchased various headphones, for sometime using the trusty beyers....but....I was still concerned with the level of noise/click I had to have to get a really good mix to play to.
I was lucky enough to end up in a basement studio in LA, the engineer was a an absolute master of his craft....he introduced me to the world or IEM (in Ear Monitors). WOW! back in the day these little foam wrapped ear buds where pretty expensive, $350/$400, but I stretched my own or Mr V.isa to allow purchase.....they I have to say are still working (tired...15 yrs on) although they are last resort spares, I use dual driver custom moulds but based on the same principal as the original IEM's.
My volume levels are so low in comparision to 'Headphone' mixes, the isolation even at the £30 mark for rubber moulded over the counter bud style headphones is fabulous.... do yourself a favour and look after your hearing, I still have my mixes loud for both live and recording, dual driver technology in modern IEMs allow outstanding bass response.
The only down side is set up time in the early stages is increased, I mike my entire kit, where possible get a mix of the band, either from Monitor desk, FOH or ambient room mikes. The results are staggering from even the most basic of configurations, from a stereo minidisk mic to a full blown meyer mike rig on your kit....
I have toured on all levels and on both sides as a player and a tech... keep you love of playing alive....and hear clearly for the 1st time!