A walkie talkie earpiece is a listening device that amplifies the incoming signal on a walkie talkie. An earpiece comes in three styles: walkie talkie earbuds, surveillance and radio headsets. Many earpieces also allow the user to speak by including a microphone in the design. All earpieces help make using a walkie talkie easier by clarifying sounds and providing opportunities for hands-free operation.
Earbud earpieces are embraced by walkie talkie users needing something small and convenient. This style of walkie talkie earpiece resembles listening devices that frequently accompany mobile phones. The amplification portion features a small plastic clip that snugly wraps around the base of the ear and holds the tiny speaker in place near the ear. This style of earpiece has a thin cord that is plugged into the body of the walkie talkie, disabling the internal speaker of the walkie talkie and sending all incoming signals into the earpiece. Many styles of earbuds also have a small plastic box embedded within the cord that allows the volume to be adjusted.
A surveillance-style walkie talkie earpiece is similar to the earbud style, except it is more discreet. These types of listening devices do not offer ear clips for stability and are actually inserted into the opening of an ear. This helps conceal the use of this listening device. Frequently, these earpieces are clear or flesh-colored to aid in concealment.
Radio headset styles are also popular for users of walkie talkies. This type of walkie talkie earpiece provides a small amplifier for each ear and is connected by a band that goes over the head to secure the listening device in place. This style also features a cord that runs to the main body of the walkie talkie. Headsets are excellent at drowning out loud outside noises because both ears are muffled to the elements, making it easier for the user to focus on the incoming signal.
Many earpieces are strictly for listening only. Others, however, are constructed with a microphone to allow for two-way radio communication. In these styles, a microphone is attached to a walkie talkie earpiece by adding a boom microphone that features a small plastic arm with a mic at the end, so it can be situated in front of a user's mouth. Another type, found with earbud-styles, mimics mobile phones by embedding a directional microphone in the cord, similar to the volume control box. Both styles of microphone allow the users to communicate back and forth with other walkie talkie users with a minimum of hand usage.