Low-Frequency Gain Compensation in Directional Hearing Aids Hearing aids currently available on the market with both omnidirectional and directional microphone modes often have reduced amplification in the low frequencies when in directional microphone mode due to better phase matching. The effects of this low-frequency gain reduction for individuals with hearing loss in the low frequencies was of ... Research Article
Research Article  |   June 01, 2002
Low-Frequency Gain Compensation in Directional Hearing Aids
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Todd Ricketts, PhD
    Dan Maddox Hearing Aid Research Laboratory, Vanderbilt Bill Wilkerson Center, 1114 19th Avenue South, Nashville, TN
    Director
  • Paula Henry
    Dan Maddox Hearing Aid Research Laboratory, Vanderbilt Bill Wilkerson Center, 1114 19th Avenue South, Nashville, TN
Article Information
Hearing & Speech Perception / Acoustics / Hearing Disorders / Hearing Aids, Cochlear Implants & Assistive Technology / Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 01, 2002
Low-Frequency Gain Compensation in Directional Hearing Aids
American Journal of Audiology, June 2002, Vol. 11, 29-41. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2002/006)
History: Received January 16, 2002 , Accepted June 5, 2002
 
American Journal of Audiology, June 2002, Vol. 11, 29-41. doi:10.1044/1059-0889(2002/006)
History: Received January 16, 2002; Accepted June 5, 2002

Hearing aids currently available on the market with both omnidirectional and directional microphone modes often have reduced amplification in the low frequencies when in directional microphone mode due to better phase matching. The effects of this low-frequency gain reduction for individuals with hearing loss in the low frequencies was of primary interest. Changes in sound quality for quiet listening environments following gain compensation in the low frequencies was of secondary interest. Thirty participants were fit with bilateral in-the-ear hearing aids, which were programmed in three ways while in directional microphone mode: no-gain compensation, adaptive-gain compensation, and full-gain compensation. All participants were tested with speech in noise tasks. Participants also made sound quality judgments based on monaural recordings made from the hearing aid. Results support a need for gain compensation for individuals with low-frequency hearing loss of greater than 40 dB HL.

Acknowledgments
This research was funded in part by a grant from Bernafon AG. The authors thank Melinda Anderson and Jessica Welch for their assistance with data collection.
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