Digital Hearing Aids

 *Digital hearing aids are programmable hearing instruments with digital circuits. 

*They can be precisely programmed to match the patient's individual hearing loss, sometimes at each specific frequency/pitch. 

*Digital circuits offer improved clarity of sound, less circuit noise, faster processing of sound, and improved listening in noise when compared to analog circuits. Digital hearing aids are easy to use because they adjust volume automatically.

Be aware that digital hearing aids allow for certain algorithm changes so knowing that a music algorithm change can be made is important as students try to hear within a classroom.

Dr. Carol Linsenmeier PhD. Kent State University comments: "The difficulty I see with online music instruction for students who are deaf/hh is the difficulty of hooking into the mp3 world - there are not many good ways to do it. Unfortunately, usually the assistive technology often lags so far behind the technological improvements as for example cell phones."

"I have taught violin to a student with a 90 dB hearing loss who used a cochlear implant.  He often surprised me with his ability to adjust the pitch of his playing and his ability to remember pitch, but he had a very difficult time understanding the concept of rests in the music.  Since not all frequencies may be activated in a cochlear implant, the timbre of sounds may be affected.  If a student has pre-hearing loss musical training, they may be able to hear music in their head."


*Protools,  iMac,  and Yamaha Digital Audio Workstations are utilized in developing and  testing advanced signal processing features to individualize digital  hearing aids.             *For optimum results and to see if the hearing algorithm is working a sound field is mixed and  developed that  presents as naturally as possible  competing sounds (maskers) from 'all around' the listener.  much as you would have in a real environment is needed.