Telex Communications, Inc., Burnsville, MN, announces the availability of its Sontiva™ digital CICs. Sontiva’s digital signal processor is designed to simulate cochlear processing in critical bands. Available in two models, Sontiva DL is a WDRC two-channel compressor, and Sontiva DLX is the company’s digital instrument featuring VoiceSync™ which analyzes incoming sounds and reduces gain for segments determined to be noise. The segments containing speech are emphasized and the segments with noise are minimized, allowing the user to determine the settings that provide the clearest overall speech in noise perception across real-world listening environments. Combined with expansion technology, users reportedly experience an extremely low-noise, digital CIC. SontivaTM digital CICs join Telex’s current CIC models that include Adaptive Compression, AcuSoundTM, and the analog programmable Ultra/DLSTM Ex-P hearing instruments.
| Digital , Trimmer Adjusted BTE
Rexton, Plymouth, MN, introduces Piccolo gran-D BTE which features a combination of 100% digital signal processing in two channels and manual programming ease. The device offers four adjustable digital trimmer functions for easy and accurate fitting and a two-channel compression system intended to help restore loudness impression and reduce distortion at high input levels. Other features include microphone noise reduction and active signal processing.
The Piccolo gran-D can be programmed via a screwdriver, eliminating the need for computer programming equipment.
Wireless Doorbell Signalers
Sonic Alert, Inc., Troy, MI, introduces two new wireless signalers for people with hearing impairment: The DB100 Wireless Doorbell Signaler and DB200 Doorbell/Telephone Signaler.
Both products are designed for easy installation and are not triggered by sound. They feature selectable flashes, different flash codes for the front door, rear door or intercom (requires additional sensor), a built-in chime for hearing members of the family and a built-in outlet to flash an attached lamp that sends signals to all Sonic Alert remote receivers.
The DB200 can be a telephone signaler by plugging the phone cord into a modular telephone jack. The device reportedly has a ringer equivalence number of 0.0B, the lowest ring equivalence number in the industry, according to the company.
Electone, Longwood, FL, offers CIC models Class A and Class D linear, Class D AGC-O, K-AMP, DynamEQ®-II compression, SDMTM and The PointeTM programmable instruments. All circuits are designed for mild-to-moderate hearing losses, but Class D and Class D AGC-O circuits can be used for severe hearing losses.
Ablenet, Minneapolis, MN, introduces the TalkTracTM Wearable Communicator, reportedly the first watch-size voice output communications aid that can be worn on one’s arm. The device features voice output of up to four messages in a preset volume that can be heard in most settings.
The device is designed for easy programming and message recording. Each of the four segments of the key activation area on the TalkTrac’s face can accommodate a symbol that is 3/4” wide and 9/16” high. Three of the four segments hold 18 seconds of messages and one holds a message of up to 27 seconds. Two ready-made switch overlays for storytime and morning circle are included, and the device is appropriate for individuals who can activate a 1/2” target.
The device’s adjustable wristband can be interchanged with 16 to 20 mm watchbands. TalkTrac offers eight hours of continuous playing time per charge.
Cochlear Corp., Denver, CO., announces the release of Nucleus® 24 ContourTM, reportedly the first pre-curved electrode designed to be safely placed next to the inner wall of the cochlea without the use of invasive bands or positioners. The curved shape allows the Nucleus 24 Contour to curl close to the inner wall and conform to the natural shape of the cochlea. The device is designed for better sound quality, speech understanding and power efficiency. Its pre-curved electrode array curls against the inner wall near the hearing nerve fibers. To keep the Nucleus 24 Contour electrode array straight for easy insertion, the stylet, a thin flexible metal wire that straightens the electrode array, is used. Once the electrode is in place, the stylet is removed. The Nucleus 24 Contour then assumes its natural curved shape that mirrors that of the cochlea.
Phonak, Inc., Warrenville, IL, introduces PicoForte® 3, the latest generation of Phonak’s mini-BTE. This instrument features a new modern housing, an earhook with microphone protection and an integrated child protection device. Each instrument has AudioProgrammer potentiometer with calibrated values for frequency response and maximum power output. The directional model features a switchable directional microphone. PicoForte 3 has standard direct audio input and is Microlink compatible.
Emergency Response Phone
Ameriphone, Inc., Garden Grove, CA, announces the release of the Dialogue ER-Emergency Response phone, a telephone that automatically dials for help with the touch of a button on the phone or in the included remote and won’t stop dialing until help is reached. The phone will dial up to six pre-programmed numbers a maximum of eight times or until a “live” person is contacted. When a connection is made, a pre-recorded emergency message alerts the person who answers to the situation. The device features an amplifier that increases sound up to 30 times (30 dB) louder, tone control, a large button, a super-loud ringer, a bright flasher that alerts the user of incoming calls, six photo-display programmable speed dial button, a security feature that can contact the emergency numbers and a remote that can activate the phone from up to 80 feet away, even from the shower. The phone is designed for easy installations.
| Sound Processor
Dynatech Sound Systems, Gardena, CA, introduces a high definition sound processor that delivers movie sound to TV and satellite, VCR or DVD systems. While surround sound systems require multiple speakers to give the illusion of surround sound, the AV-150 utilizes the existing speaker system to provide true Cinema style sound, according to the company. The AV-150 generates vibrant sound that can be heard throughout a room.
Directional Microphone System
Siemens Hearing Instruments, Inc., announces the patent-pending VoiceMicTM directional microphone system now available as an option in half-shell models of MUSIC® and INFINITITM 3, and will soon be available in PRISMATM half shell models as well.
Previously available in the ITE models of MUSIC® and INFINITITM 3, the design allows closer spacing of microphone ports to fit half-shell models with no loss of performance. The wearer can select between directional and omnidirectional mode with a switch on the faceplate. A manual volume control is included but users can order VoiceMic without it. The device, through clinical trials, have been shown to have a high directivity index, low noise and high sensitivity, according to the company.