Hearings aids work by amplifying speech and sound, helping the wearer distinguish these important sounds from background noise. But have you ever thought about what is inside these powerful devices? Continue reading to learn more about what the microchips inside your hearing aids actually do.
How Hearing Aids Work
In order for a hearing aid to provide you with any benefit, you first need to visit your local audiologist to have your hearing tested. The results of this series of tests tells your audiologist how to program your hearing aid based on your specific degree and pattern of hearing loss.
Hearing aids have three components: a microphone, amplifier and speaker. Sounds from your environment enter through the microphone, and your hearing aid converts the soundwaves into electrical signals. These signals are then sent to the amplifier, which is responsible for increasing the power of the signals according to your test results. These freshly amplified sounds are then passed to your ear through the speaker.
Digital Signal Processor
A DSP is a type of microchip inside a hearing aid. There are two new types of chips coming on the market that should help increase the processing power of hearing aids as well as lower the manufacturing cost.
The R3920 microchip is used in high-end hearing aids. The chip features 16 channels of wide dynamic range compression (WDRC). WDRC gives your audiologist the ability to further fine-tune your hearing aid during the fitting process.
This microchip helps hearing aids better detect sounds in your environment and automatically detects those it deems the most important. The R3920 also contains impulse noise reduction, which monitors impulse noises that can be uncomfortable for hearing aid users, such as the banging of pots and pans in the kitchen at Taft Diaz.
The R3110 microchip is used in lower-cost hearing aids. Rather than the R3920 microchip that gives users multiple custom options, the R3110 offers pre-programmed hearing loss solutions. While still offering users important features such as noise reduction, dual microphones and feedback cancelation, this microchip is not particularly programmable.
To learn more about the advanced hearing aid options or to schedule an appointment with a hearing aid expert, contact Tinnitus & Hearing Experts today.