Tag: Francis Kuk

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Using the Mismatch Negativity (MMN) to Evaluate Split Processing in Hearing Aids

Mismatch negativity (MMN) is a well-documented brain signal that appears in the electroencephalogram (EEG) when the auditory system detects an unexpected sound. More recently, the MMN (which doesn’t require the listener’s active participation) has been used to determine if different hearing aid features support or augment a listener’s tracking of changing speech sounds from a single voice out of many. This study shows that the Signia Augmented Xperience (AX) platform and its Augmented Focus (AF) system—which splits the incoming sound into two separate signal streams—increases the contrast between sounds in a “cocktail party”-type setting and enhances listeners’ tracking of changing phonemes. Further, the results suggest the behavioral advantages are probably bottom-up in nature, meaning that AF also likely reduces the effort/fatigue experienced by the wearer when trying to communicate in noisy environments.

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Preserving the Temporal Envelope in Hearing Aid Processed Sounds

Temporal envelope and temporal fine structure cues are complementary in nature, and both are used by listeners in their communications. Hearing loss, as well as the etiology and configuration of the hearing loss, could affect the relative importance of each cue for the listeners in their appreciation and understanding of daily sounds. This article reviews the importance of cues related to the temporal envelope and presents results of a study that compares the Widex EVOKE system, which is designed in part to preserve and enhance the temporal envelope, with another premium hearing aid.

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