Skip to comments.Advice Needed on TV Audio Solutions for a Hearing Impaired Person
Posted on 02/09/2013 5:29:01 PM PST by randita
A relative of ours is hard of hearing. He's tried several types of hearing aids but they have not met his satisfaction.
When he visits us and we're watching TV, he can't hear it unless the volume is so loud it drives the rest of us out of the room. We have a small house and an open floor plan, so moving to another room is not an option. We can hear a loud TV throughout the entire house.
A possible solution would be a headset for him on which he can adjust to volume to his liking while the rest of us can keep the TV volume at a reasonable level. But I haven't seen anything like that available according to the research I've done.
What I have seen are heat sets which take over the TV volume entirely (so that people without head sets have no audio) OR personal amplifiers which are placed near the person who is hard of hearing. I'm not sure how these amplifiers work, but I wonder if they would be annoying to others in the room.
There may even be a way to replicate what's seen and heard on the TV onto a computer with a head set running out of the computer. But we don't have an extra computer to devote to that.
FYI, the TV set is a Panasonic Viera plasma, two years old. There are a couple of HDMI outputs that we're not using.
We currently don't have a sound system connected, but will soon. We moved recently and are still unpacking items like that.
Please don't bother with suggestions for hearing aids. This person is stubborn and absolutely will not listen to any suggestions.
I hope I've explained the situation satisfactorily, but if not, please feel free to ask for more information.
Any ideas are welcome and GREATLY appreciated.
USE ALL CAPS WHEN SPEAKING!
Bose makes great earphones, but they are fairly pricey.
My dad is hearing impaired. He has a pair of Bose headphones that he wears, and can control the volume separately from the TV volume. Makes for happy family football!
Wireless tv headphones.
I do have hearing aids but just do not care to fiddle with them at home. If I was to watch TV without any aid, the volume would be excessive for my wife.
What works acceptably for us is "TV Ears" from Costco. The headset is wireless and has it's own volume control and a tone control that does not seem to do anything. I would like it better if it had a balance adjustment and better fidelity. An audio jack plugs into the external speaker jack on the TV (also a Panasonic Viera) that is unused. DC wall wart for power and the headset docks for battery charging when not in use.
The audio jack usedoes negate being able to link it into a sound system, but we do not care. The MUTE button does not mute this audio port, so I just crank down the headset if I need to shut out something.
It allows both of us to have a comfortable volume level. I often listen to sports without any external speaker volume at all.
Depends on if the hearing loss is in narrow bands or completely across the audio spectrum. I have a hard time hearing the tv, wife always telling me to turn it down.
Got a set of good stereo speakers and an amplifier at the thrift store. The kind with real speakers, a 10 wolfer, 4 inch midrange and a tweeter. Now I can hear the TV just fine, and half the time she says turn it up.
The surround sound speakers dont work, the low end is poor. What has happened is the full audio spectrum is present clearly and I can get enough clues to hear the conversations fine. With the tiny surround speakers, they primarily produce sound in the spectrum that I cannot hear well. (audio speaking range.)
Here is a general test, do you have to yell to speak to him, or can he seem to hear normally in conversations. If he can speak and hear normally when talking in a room with you, you might just get away with a good speaker system.
Focus on stereo amplifier, not 5.1 or 7.1. And get one with headphone out with volume control.
He can’t hear the TV? Tell ‘im I said he’s a lucky feller!
What my dad has - wireless and rechargable, volume control seperate from TV.
Oh, and the sound is awsome, sounds like a theater. I had 5.1’s setup and they compare poorly. Nice gimmic, bad sound.
At least to my funky ears.
OK, so to Amazon and look at this product:
BUT FIRST READ MY REVIEW OF THE PRODUCT:
This review is from: TV Ears 10341 2.3 System Wireless Headset System (Blue), with 10 Ear Tips (Electronics)
OK, so I own the basic unit. But my criticisms pretty much apply to all, I believe.
Great idea, but done very poorly. I can’t understand why they made it so uncomfortable. Nice not to have over the ear headphones, but the unit has cheap and uncomfortable ear bud cushions. The design and weight pulls a lot on your ears and hurts after a short period of time.
Pros: My wife gets to watch TV with me and not get blasted away.
- Very uncomfortable, cheap ear cushions that wear too quickly; replacements are overpriced
- Unit’s weight is excessive hanging from your ears with the cheap pads
- Line of sight use is annoying and limits the practical use of the unit
- Base unit for charging is cheap and head piece won’t sit properly. Have to play with it to get the charging indicator light to come on
My Fix made it a 5 star unit (***READ THIS***):
I altered my unit to make it the way it should have been in the first place. Now I love it, works 10 times better (including sound quality) and is so comfortable I hardly notice it. If you know anyone that can solder electronics this is easy. I wish I could attach a picture of mine. Open the unit. Cut off the ear units down to where they emerge from the central unit. Take a 1/16” stereo female headphone jack with at least 5” of wire. Un-solder the L & R ear bud connections that came with the unit and re-solder the headphone wires there. Cut, carve or fashion a hole in the housing for the wire so you can put it back together. Then you can use any ear bud set you like. I have a $100 Bose in ear set that is wonderfully clear. Worth the price. The unit sits on my lap or the arm of the sofa and isn’t a nuisance any more. Be nice to have a clip on it so I could attach it to my shirt. HINT! Make sure the new cord doesn’t interfere with the unit sitting in the charging stand.
I assume they don’t make them so you can use your own ear buds because they want to sell you their overpriced junk ones. Shame on them. I gave up using mine unit, figured I just wasted my money, until I made this fix. Now I use them every day.
Note that I bought mine from Radio Shack locally so I could return them if they didn’t work.
I don’t know know if any mfg has finally gotten sense and made one with a jack for your own head phones or ear buds. Although annoying to do, my fix has been a wonderful solution.
He can hear okay on the telephone and he can hear okay if you’re talking normally and you’re only a few feet away from him (as long as there’s no ambient noise). Across the room, no.
But he’ll have the TV volume at maybe a 20+ level when most people could hear it just fine at around 10.
2. 2 sets amplified speakers (like the older, amplified 'computer' speakers) with Headphone jack.
Plug Y-cable into jack on equipment, then each of the speaker sets into the cable jacks. Plug headphones into one of the speaker sets. Adjust one set of speakers for comfortable volume level, the other for acceptable headphones level. Older-style "cup" headphones have worked well on this end in the past, for Rockers that just HAD to have it blasting at full volume all the time for it to be "any good!".
Audio extension cables are optional / handy.
I produce a TV series for NBC Sports and, as the owner of the series, must pay for Closed Captions. They are NOT for just deaf people! They take a bit of “getting used to”, yet I think it’s a great service. USE IT...THE FEDS MADE ME PAY FOR IT! :)
I use a Sony Bluetooth transmitter on top of the TV, and Sony stereo headphones, comfortable and excellent, wireless up to 35 feet. About $200 for both.