Heefty & Evshrug,
First off, thanks for the info about all of this. I've been recording audio with HQ equipment (microphones, cables, Preamps, ADC, and audio recorders) for over 20+ years now, and for the majority of the thousands of shows & sets I've recorded over the years, I was dead center in the crowd in the best possible Recording location. And I know what loud concerts can do to your hearing and how badly it can damage your ears. Occasionally it's so frickin loud that I have to wear earplugs, but for 99% of the music I've recorded, I didn't have any ear protection!
I've just been lucky I guess because I still have pristine hearing, and can even still hear the subtle nuances in different IEM MMCX cables, but after reading everything you two have posted, I'll definitely be wearing earplugs more often.
FWIW, I have the Comply "Sonic Filter" earplugs, and they work great at attenuating the majority of the LOUD shows I'm at Recording. Since they aren't just a cheap yellow earplug, they only attenuate like 15-20db, which still allows you to enjoy the show you're at, while also protecting your ears at the same time! I'll definitely be wearing them at every show I'm recording from now on. So thanks again for the info and for the wake up call, because I'm 38 years old, and I plan on Recording shows for MANY more years to come!!!😎👍😇🎙️🎧