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earphone

[eer-fohn] /ˈɪərˌfoʊn/
noun
1.
a sound receiver that fits in or over the ear, as of a radio or telephone.
2.
Usually, earphones. a headset; headphone.
Origin
1920-1925
1920-25; ear1 + phone1
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for ear phone

earphone

/ˈɪəˌfəʊn/
noun
1.
a device for converting electric currents into sound waves, held close to or inserted into the ear
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Encyclopedia Article for ear phone

earphone

small loudspeaker held or worn close to the listener's ear or within the outer ear. Common forms include the hand-held telephone receiver; the headphone, in which one or two earphones are held in place by a band worn over the head; and the plug earphone, which is inserted in the outer opening of the ear. The conversion of electrical to acoustical signals is effected by any of the devices used in larger loudspeakers; the highest fidelity is provided by the so-called dynamic earphone, which ordinarily is made part of a headphone and equipped with a cushion to isolate the ears from other sound sources

Learn more about earphone with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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