Today’s guest blog comes from our Engagement Officer, Andrew Barnes, who has reviewed some loop systems that are available now for people with hearing loss to use:
Action on hearing loss:
Name: DAC Megaloop £129.49 (VAT inc) £107.91 (excluding VAT) Middle range price bracket
I have worked with this one and according to the action on hearing loss website this is the best seller. It is very good. This is a Room loop device, this means that the loop wire or T wire runs around the edge of the room on top of the skirting board or under the carpet. The box demonstrated in the picture will sit next to the TV. This plugs directly into the TV and allows the listener to be able to listen to the TV directly through the loop. As far as I can remember this is a digital optical connection so for the newer TVs. You need to look for a port on the TV that says optical output or something similar. If the TV is new then this should be on there if not you can buy a converter so that you can use the optical output. If someone has a pacemaker this is the better one to use. The advantage to this as well is that if the person has limited mobility and would struggle to place a loop around their neck this is a more suitable alternative. As it is fixed in the room, they only have to switch there hearing aid T setting on. This can also be use by more that one person. This one also comes with a microphone attachment as well so the microphone can pick up other sounds in the room. However this isn’t always used as it can be quite distracting having more than one input. However it does allow people to hear the phone ringing or the doorbell going off. When the TV is switched off the microphone still continues working as a room loop and picks up the sound in the room.
The Megaloop DAC includes all the benefits of other amplified personal hearing loop systems and has ultra high-quality digital audio compatibility, giving you crystal clear sound for the first time.
Lay the induction loop cable around the room and you can listen to the TV anywhere in the room using your hearing aids on the “T” setting.
- Personal hearing loop system for TV amplification, for use with hearing aids on the “T” / loop setting
- Built-in high-quality digital audio compatibility
- Volume and tone control set using dials on the front of the loop
- Automatic gain control (AGC) prevents loud and sudden noise increases coming through the loop
- Has two microphone inputs. One can be used for TV connection and another to pick up conversation or ambient sounds
- One microphone supplied, another available as an accessory
- 38m loop cable and clips supplied
I have included the overview from action on hearing loss as well.
Action on hearing loss:
Name: Digital Swing Loop (infra-red) £159.59 (inc VAT) £132.99 (exc VAT)
I have used this one as well. It is a good device but I personally don’t think it is the best but I have had positive feedback about this one from people. This one works on infra-red so does require line of sight in order to work. If I remember rightly this one can work on both the Analogue connection and the digital connection to the TV. So is quite versatile in that sense. This one also has a microphone cable that comes out of the docking station and can pick up sound in the room, I don’t remember ever having to put one on but the option is there. Comes with 2 rechargeable batteries and one can be charged in the docking station whilst the other is in use so limitless time listening to the TV basically.
A long range wireless TV listener compatible with high-definition digital audio. Controls help you boost the volume and set the sound’s tone and balance to suit your hearing loss.
Wear the neckloop to have sound played through your hearing aids on the “T” setting.
- Long range cordless radio frequency transmission that can work through walls
- Digital audio input for brilliant stereo sound quality
- Volume control dial and tone settings on the headset
- Balance control for left and right ear volume settings available if you connect headphones
- Headphone socket on headset to connect alternative hearing methods
- Balance control available with headphones
- Mono sound option to send all sound through your “good” ear
- Up to 45m range
This last system is the replacement for the introson 2.4 which was my favourite system.
It is actually slightly similar to the Introson and works on the same principle. The round base in the picture would be attached to the TV. This is the transmitter as well as the charging port for the neck loop. The square shaped box is then attached to the neckloop (which is the cable). This is place around the next of the person in question and the T setting is applied on the hearing aids. They are now then listening to the TV directly through their hearing aids. This is a great device. The great button in the centre of the square box is the microphone so this device can switch between listening to the TV to being a microphone quite easily. I like this feature because if there is a couple where one is deaf and the other is not they can listen to the TV at there respective volumes but still be able to communicate with one another because they can press the button and switch between the two settings. The limitation with this device is that the member cannot use this if they have a pacemakers as it may affect the pacemaker. This is where the room loop is the better device. The other limitation which I have come across is the persons mobility. i.e. if the person able to physically get the cable over their head and round their neck. This also needs to be taken into consideration when looking at a loop system.
- Operating time per battery charge: approx. 6 – 8 hours
- Battery type:Rechargeable Li-Polymer 3,7V 350 mAh
- Included batteries:2
- Recharge time:approx. 5 h (2.5h for 90% recharge)
- Maximum volume:approx 120 dB (A)
- Weight:66 g
- Technical Information
- Transmission method:digital FM (Stereo)
- Carrier frequency:2.4 GHz
- Frequency response:30 – 20000 Hz
- Harmonic distorsion:< 0,5 %
- Signal-to-noise ratio:> 75 dB
- Working range:0° C – 55°