Snugs journey began in 2013. Back then, custom fit was available in the form of In-Ear Monitors (IEM’s), used by professionals such as musicians and broadcasters. And the cost was (and still is) pretty eye-watering. You weren’t likely to see someone walking down the street with custom fit earphones.
Cue Paul Jobin, founder and CEO of Snugs; he wanted to create a custom fit tip for his everyday Etymotic earphones (not an IEM). Which he successfully did…as soon as he realised this was possible, a whole world of potential opened up. Snugs could offer a solution to a very common problem – earphones do not fit everyone’s ears, so will fall out, and are uncomfortable. And with many different earphones in the market, Snugs could be made for a multitude of different brands/models.
Additionally, the whole listening experience was turned upside down; Snugs create the perfect seal, so provide noise isolation, and music is directed into your ears in a different way than what generic earphone tips offer (and actually a more safer way, being closer to the ear drum, but that is another blog post). With Snugs, you transform an everyday earphone; you hear things that you had never heard before! You have to hear it to believe it…
So, how do we do it?
The ‘original’ method, and one we use today for our Pro range and Specialist products, is through using your physical ear impressions. This works as follows:
- You visit an Audiologist to get your ear impressions
- They will pour a silicone mould into your ears, which will go as far as the second bend in your ear – this provides a good, deep impression
- 8 – 10 minutes later, once the moulds have set, they are removed and you send them to us
- We scan your impressions to create a 3D ear file
- This is then ‘modelled’ in our lab, on to your earphone of choice, and through 3D printing, a Snug is born!
The Snug is moulded to your ear only, fits your earphone perfectly and as it is made from a deep impression, provides the maximum noise isolation. Suddenly you fit like a Pro. Look like a Pro. And listen like a Pro.
You can view the full list of earphone choices here that we are able to make SnugsPro for here
Having successfully mastered our Pro range, offering Snugs for over 200 different earphones, including True Wireless products (even more likely to fall out in our opinion!), we wanted to create a choice in the way you are fitted for Snugs. We understand that for many a trip to the Audiologist is not possible in their schedule, or perhaps perceived as intrusive (our ears, like our feet, are not the most attractive thing to think about or look at!). So how to make Snugs available to the many? The solution – by being able to get custom fit from your smartphone, by snapping your ear pictures!
Which sounds simple enough, however there is a lot of tech involved which we have been developing over the last couple of years. And after extensive testing, we launched SnugsGo at the end of 2019. Here is how it works:
- You order for your earphones and colours through the web based app, available at snugsfit.com
- We send you a fitting card, which you use to take your ear pictures
- You take your ear pictures and submit these through the custom fit section of the App
- We take your ear pictures and measure your ears (lots of clever algorithms involved here!), match them to our ear database, and generate 3D ear files based on these matches
- As with SnugsPro, these are then modelled and 3D printed to create your Snugs!
As your SnugsGo 3D files are generated from matches to our database, they are made for your ear shape, so the benefits of Snugs are availed – they fit and do not fall out. They do not however go as deep into your ear canal as our Pro range – this means that if you are looking for the maximum in noise isolation, our Pro range is the choice for you.
So as it stands today, Snugs offer two methods of fitting – Pro, from physical ear impressions, and Go, from your ear pictures. An overview of the difference between the two can be seen here.
The Snugs journey to this point has been interesting and we’ve learnt so much about ears along the way. As technology continues to evolve, so does our business…back in 2013 Paul certainly didn’t think he would be offering a custom fit solution via a quick snap of your ear, which we are very proud to have achieved! And as our journey continues, please join us for the ride…we can assure you that with Snugs, it will be a comfortable ride and the sound quality is great!