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 Hearing aids redux
Author: Bsharp 
Date:   2024-02-26 02:53

This is my first post, though I have been reading this BBoard for years. The last post I could find about hearing aids is from 2018 and technology marches on.

So I wonder if any of you have recent experience and/or recommendations about hearing aids and playing clarinet. Just googling, there seems to be a number of different types of hearing aids.

A bit of context: At the age of 75 I am sure my audiologist will finally tell me it is time for hearing aids. I would say my hearing loss is moderate, not severe. I still play in tune (pretty much!). Though not a professional player, I do play with chamber ensembles who give public recitals. I hear pretty music pretty well - it is mostly conversation that is getting harder to hear.

Thanks for any advice.

Steve

Stephen Schiffman

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 Re: Hearing aids redux
Author: Hank Lehrer 
Date:   2024-02-26 05:29

Bsharp,

I hear ya' loud and clear. I also have moderate hearing loss and am starting to gather info.

One thing I found out was that you do not have to spend $3-4K for what you need. A couple of old friends said they have had very good luck with Costco. I see that Bluetooth to listen to the TV is becoming available.

Hank

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 Re: Hearing aids redux
Author: dorjepismo 2017
Date:   2024-02-27 03:47

The only ones I've been able to play with are Widex, and they work very well for me. The last set I got was about three years ago. I'd suggest getting the best model you can afford, and also getting in-the-ear ones. I tried playing on a behind-the-ear loaner set once and it lacked the immediacy that you want when playing with people. They need to have a music setting that doesn't try to adjust the volume. After awhile your ears seem to get bigger and you start getting feedback, which I fix by wrapping thin strips of the foam stuff women put under and above their eyes when they mess with their eyelashes. And when they go out of support by the manufacturer, start looking to get new ones, because the aftermarket support by third parties can leave you with unsatisfactory sound.

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 Re: Hearing aids redux
Author: kurth83 
Date:   2024-02-29 00:59

If you are losing voice, then your frequency range is dropping, likely to well below 10khz.

I have hearing loss, and find that a musician's ear can compensate for a lot. I hear things others don't, but not because my ears are better but because my brain is trained to differentiate sounds others ignore.

My freq ranges tops out at 10-11khz, which isn't great, but isn't disabling yet. Triangles don't sound like they used to for example, but voice is ok, except in a loud restaurant I lose voices before others do.

I have hearing aids, but don't use them except when going out to said loud restaurants. They help there, but generally make music less fun as they are not hi-fi devices. It is much more money to get decent hi-fi devices I hear, but I have not done it.

My mother is nearly deaf, and prefers to play piano in small groups without hearing aids (and does fine), but cannot have a conversation without them.

For TV, I use bose (or sony) hi-fi bluetooth noise cancelling headphones ($300). On my computer (where I watch netflix) I can tweak the response curve (30 band EQ), and the fidelity is amazing. :-) I also keep the volume low to try to avoid further hearing loss (never mind the loud concert band I play in, I need ear plugs, not hearing aids for that one).

Aging classical trumpet player beginning to learn clarinet as a second.

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 Re: Hearing aids redux
Author: Bsharp 
Date:   2024-02-29 02:40

I just had my audiology appointment - they found (moderate) attenuation of higher frequencies. I tried a few hearing aids (receiver-in-ear type). What most concerned me was the artificial sound of my own voice. Though the audiologist says I will ‘get used to that’, it doesn’t bode well for playing the clarinet with hearing aids turned on. Dorjepismo suggested in-the-ear types, but they didn’t have them to try.

Stephen Schiffman

Post Edited (2024-02-29 02:41)

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 Re: Hearing aids redux
Author: dorjepismo 2017
Date:   2024-03-01 06:39

Stephen, they won't have in-the-ear to try; they make a mold of the insides of your ears and the hearing aid bodies are fabricated from that. It has to be a leap of faith.

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