Originally Posted by Alsof1
Given all are talking SSP800 EQ ,here is one for comment :
Being in the:"twilight years" treble in my system at everyday listening levels are not great and could use a bit more sparkle in my system ( and my life for that matter, but this ain't going to come from the Classe!) ?
Another "sparkle" option for us audiophile twilighters is hearing aids. Of course, this is blasphemy!
However, as one who has had hearing aids for about three years, I have some insights on these devices. I’m now on my second pair of hearing helpers. I learned the hard way one needs to be careful when removing a face mask or risk flinging a hearing aid unnoticed into a parking lot.
Costco Wholesale is the largest seller of and arguably the best place to buy hearing aids in the US. The only larger purveyor of hearing aids is the VA.
My first pair of hearing aids were Costco Kirkland Signature brand, manufactured by Rexton. While I was impressed with how natural and non-electronically amplified sounding the Rexton’s were, even with the volume turned up quite high, they really didn’t impress me with their ability to help me hear conversations, TV dialog or “sparkle”. Perhaps my audiologist just didn’t do a good job of tuning the aids to my ears.
Of course, three years later, Costco no longer sells the Rexton brand which meant a new pair of the current Kirkland hearing aids. Now the manufacturer is Phonak. Whether it’s the device itself or the skill of the audiologist or both, the difference between Rexton and Phonak is huge, a day and night difference.
My new Phonak aids set to their default setting, (which I assume boosts my deficient frequencies as determined by a thorough Costco performed hearing test) I believe restores my hearing to a normal volume level throughout a flat frequency spectrum.
So how do the new aids sound? Wow! Life is loud, too loud! I can hear the old Seth Thomas Mantle clock ticking at 30 feet with the volume turned way down. Without hearing aids, I need to have my ear within about a foot to hear faint ticking.
It’s almost like I have X-Ray ears, if I want them. The technician at Costco said there have been a lot of advancements in hearing aids in the past few years.
Of course, modern hearing aids are controlled by a blue tooth phone app. The Phonak app includes a volume control, comfort and clarity settings as well as a three-band graphic equalizer with custom presets for different curves. These Phonak aids really have some headroom, volume seems unlimited. I cannot use the default normal setting as it is just too loud with too much extraneous tizz. In a way it reminds me of what hearing was like when I was a child.
The good news is altering settings to suit is easy. There is a preset for TV and Music listening. Hearing dialog on TV has never been better. I no longer use the "F" button programmed to increase center channel trim in the SSP by 5 dB. With the Phonak hearing instruments, I can hear every word of dialog at an overall lower volume with no center channel boost.
I can’t help but think knowledge and knowhow used in modern hearing aids is similar to technology used in Mini DSP and other room EQ software like Audyssey and Dirac.
I haven’t quite decided if the new devices are as natural sounding as the old ones, but I sure do have my sparkle back!