Preference for and Performance With Damped and Undamped Hearing Aids by Listeners With Sensorineural Hearing Loss This study investigated the relationship between acoustic damping of hearing aid responses and listeners’ speech discrimination and judgments of preference and sound quality. Eighteen subjects with essentially equivalent hearing impairments participated. Subjects’ speech discrimination was evaluated for a male talker in quiet and in noise and for a female talker ... Research Article
Research Article  |   June 01, 1996
Preference for and Performance With Damped and Undamped Hearing Aids by Listeners With Sensorineural Hearing Loss
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Lynne A. Davis
    The Ohio State University, Columbus
  • Stephanie A. Davidson
    The Ohio State University, Columbus
  • Currently affiliated with Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, Boston
    Currently affiliated with Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, Boston×
  • Contact author: Stephanie A. Davidson, PhD, 1070 Carmack Road, Room 110, Columbus, OH 43210
    Contact author: Stephanie A. Davidson, PhD, 1070 Carmack Road, Room 110, Columbus, OH 43210×
Article Information
Hearing Aids, Cochlear Implants & Assistive Technology / Hearing / Research Articles
Research Article   |   June 01, 1996
Preference for and Performance With Damped and Undamped Hearing Aids by Listeners With Sensorineural Hearing Loss
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1996, Vol. 39, 483-493. doi:10.1044/jshr.3903.483
History: Received June 14, 1995 , Accepted January 12, 1996
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, June 1996, Vol. 39, 483-493. doi:10.1044/jshr.3903.483
History: Received June 14, 1995; Accepted January 12, 1996

This study investigated the relationship between acoustic damping of hearing aid responses and listeners’ speech discrimination and judgments of preference and sound quality. Eighteen subjects with essentially equivalent hearing impairments participated. Subjects’ speech discrimination was evaluated for a male talker in quiet and in noise and for a female talker in the same conditions with hearing aids with 0 dB, −5 dB, and −10 dB of damping. Subjects also compared the damping levels using eight bipolar adjective pairs and provided judgments of overall preference. Measurements of the hearing aid responses were made in a 2-cm3 coupler and in the subjects’ ears using probe microphone techniques. Smoothness of the responses was quantified using the Index of Response Irregularity (IRI) and the Frequency Response Smoothness Quantification Index (FReSQI). Subjects preferred the two damped hearing aid responses to the undamped. They also had better speech discrimination with damped hearing aid responses. The bipolar adjectives were of limited use in comparing hearing aids. A few questions about hearing aid sound quality and preference appear adequate for evaluating listeners’ choice of hearing aids. Smoothness of the hearing aid responses in the test box was higher for the damped hearing aids than for the undamped. However, for real ear responses measured using a probe microphone, smoothness did not change as a function of damping level.

Acknowledgments
This research was partially supported by a Graduate Student Alumni Research Award from The Ohio State University.
Order a Subscription
Pay Per View
Entire Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research content & archive
24-hour access
This Article
24-hour access