AN audio company has raised nearly £500,000 investments for its new ear protection technology.

Flare Audio based in Lancing is using its expertise in sound technology to reduce exposure to sound rather than amplify it.

The manufacturer has already won awards and admiration from the likes of Jimmy Page and Jarvis Cocker for its speaker systems and headphones.

Its latest product, ISOLATE® has rasied £462,171 in investment raised via a Kickstarter online campaign - smashing its target of £25,000 by nearly 20-fold.

The ear protector is being released as a rival to traditional foam or flanged or plugs and is designed for home and commercial use.

Made from foam-covered aluminium or titanium, the micro protectors reflect noise rather than absorb it.

They are meant to cut out excess noise and bass while maintaining a clear unmuffled sound.

Flare's founder and inventor, Davies Roberts, said he could not understand why traditional ear plugs were so bad at doing their job.

He said: “Imagine wearing a helmet all the way over your head made of plastic or foam. What would you hear? The sound level would be reduced but the effect of the plastic resonating and foam muffling the sound would not be so nice to listen to.

“Both these materials do stop some sound but, frankly, are not that great at it, especially at lower frequencies.

“Now imagine putting your head all the way into an inch-thick, solid titanium helmet encased in foam.”

Solid metal is a good conductor and so has been discounted as unsuitable for use in ear protectors.

But Davies discovered that in order to conduct sound metals need a direct connection, and without a direct connection solid metals block sound perfectly.

"When you isolate a small piece of metal or dense material in soft foam inside your ear, sound waves can't penetrate from the flexible medium of air and it becomes the perfect isolator”, he added.

“Understanding this principle is what inspired us to develop the perfect ear plug. We want to revolutionise hearing protection!"

The ISOLATE® is being marked as suitable for planes and trains, around motors, live music, manufacturing and industrial plants and around agriculture.

Davies said the Kickstarter campaign allowed Flare to explain their technology prompting hundreds of questions which help refine the concept.

The campaign allows Flare to ramp up production with a second Isolate campaign now launching on Indiegogo.