Speaker solution for hearing impaired tv viewer? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 12-24-2013, 12:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Hello,

 

I'm kind of a newbie here, hope I'm posting in the right forum. I am currently renting a furnished apartment, and am pretty much stuck with the equipment and setup that is here, though I can add to it (if it's not too expensive). The tv has a crappy little speaker, it is set up pretty far away from the seating, and I have a partial hearing impairment. So depending on what I'm watching, sometimes I have to crank the sound up so loud that a) I get distortion, and b) my dog gets disgusted and leaves the room :(

 

I had originally thought to get an inexpensive sound bar, but I realize I would still be cranking the sound up to hear it, just hopefully the sound would be clearer, so I won't have to crank it up quite so loud. Then I thought maybe some decent wireless speakers that I could place nearer to my watching chair would fit the bill, but I know they aren't always the clearest sound.

 

I'm looking for something that will amplify sound for me, especially dialog, and won't have much distortion. I'd just like to be able to have friends over for movie nights without driving them out with the dog. Sadly, the nature of my hearing impairment is such that fine quality stereo or surround sound is pretty much lost on me any more.

 

Does anyone have any thoughts about the benefits/downsides to wireless speakers vs. a soundbar in this situation? Any specific suggestions for either type of equipment? Or is there another alternative?

 

Thanks so much!

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post #2 of 10 Old 12-25-2013, 10:12 AM
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You'll almost certainly get more bang-for-the-buck with a soundbar. You ought to look for a model that had a dialog enhancement mode and gets good reviews. AVS has a soundbar buying guide, and there are a number of new user reviews on the site as well, thanks to the ongoing contest.

Find out more about Mark Henninger at www.imagicdigital.com
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post #3 of 10 Old 12-25-2013, 01:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DesertHound View Post

The tv has a crappy little speaker, it is set up pretty far away from the seating, and I have a partial hearing impairment.

I bought a ZVOX box for my father (RIP) when he was in his 90s. His hearing loss was boarding on profound in one ear; other ear was about 40%. He seemed to like the ZVOX I bought for him (I don't remember which one it was). It does a fairly good job of selecting out the center channel and boosting that (amount is user controllable). Fits right under the TV -- we set his TV directly on the ZVOX box. Worked a treat -- he could hear/understand the TV and it didn't drive the rest of us out of the room.

Just because it worked for him doesn't mean it'll work for you. But it is perhaps something to consider.
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post #4 of 10 Old 12-25-2013, 04:11 PM
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How about this-

Get a headphone splitter with volume controls for each set and just use one from each pair for each ear.

It is inexpensive and it won't bother your dog.
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post #5 of 10 Old 12-26-2013, 04:37 AM
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post #6 of 10 Old 12-28-2013, 12:23 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks everyone, that was really helpful. I'm reading the soundbar reviews now.

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post #7 of 10 Old 12-28-2013, 01:28 AM
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1+ for the ZVOX. The splitter is another very good option.

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post #8 of 10 Old 12-28-2013, 03:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DesertHound View Post

Hello,

I'm kind of a newbie here, hope I'm posting in the right forum. I am currently renting a furnished apartment, and am pretty much stuck with the equipment and setup that is here, though I can add to it (if it's not too expensive). The tv has a crappy little speaker, it is set up pretty far away from the seating, and I have a partial hearing impairment. So depending on what I'm watching, sometimes I have to crank the sound up so loud that a) I get distortion, and b) my dog gets disgusted and leaves the room frown.gif

I had originally thought to get an inexpensive sound bar, but I realize I would still be cranking the sound up to hear it, just hopefully the sound would be clearer, so I won't have to crank it up quite so loud. Then I thought maybe some decent wireless speakers that I could place nearer to my watching chair would fit the bill, but I know they aren't always the clearest sound.

I'm looking for something that will amplify sound for me, especially dialog, and won't have much distortion. I'd just like to be able to have friends over for movie nights without driving them out with the dog. Sadly, the nature of my hearing impairment is such that fine quality stereo or surround sound is pretty much lost on me any more.

Does anyone have any thoughts about the benefits/downsides to wireless speakers vs. a soundbar in this situation? Any specific suggestions for either type of equipment? Or is there another alternative?

I think you should consider wireless headphones. Sennheiser digitals are the bomb!
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post #9 of 10 Old 12-29-2013, 07:32 PM
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Another vote for the ZVOX soundbar.

I have the ZVOX 555 for the bedroom and a much more expensive 5.1 system with nice large drivers for the living room. And the ZVOX will have better clarity for dialogue when watching movies when I have dialogue enhancement on. Of course, the sound of the ZVOX for everything else (music, sound effects in movies, etc.) doesn't come close to the 5.1 system, but the ZVOX still sounds decent in those regards.

Even without dialogue enhancement on, the ZVOX has excellent dialogue clarity. They claim their dialogue enhancement uses hearing aid technology, and I can personally attest that it works well. If you read (and trust...) Amazon reviews, you'll see that a lot of hearing impaired people like the ZVOX for dialogue clarity.
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post #10 of 10 Old 01-04-2014, 08:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the input everyone. I have just ordered a ZVOX, so I'll let you know how it works for my situation after I try it out. Can't wait!

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