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TV Never Sounded So Good: Wireless Connectivity Hooks Your Hearing Aid Up

Well, the networks are rolling out their new offerings for the fall viewing season and the question is: are you ready for some football? Or, more specifically, are your hearing aids ready as in, can you hear the TV without driving the rest of the world crazy it's so loud!!!!!

What a drag. You wear hearing aids and you still have to turn your TV up. Everybody else gets to catch a little scandal on Desperate Housewives but for you it may be all mumble jumbles. Hey, instead of getting half of what Ryan Seacrest says on Idol, hear the whole thing with wireless, hearing aid technology.

A good thing? Yes, a very good thing for all couch potatoes. Hearing aid manufacturers are just as tuned into the wants and needs of their consumers and they know that TV listening, despite advances in digital technology, can still pose problems for some hearing aid wearers. Watching the TV is often not an ideal listening situation for persons with hearing loss or who wear hearing aids. Why? Well there are many reasons. First issue is reduced facial cues. The actor speaking a line may be facing away from the camera. Persons with hearing aids often still rely on this information to assist in distinguishing certain words or sounds. Second the TV speakers may be pointed away from the listener, or at a wall delivering a rebound effect. Very distracting more distracting than one of Simon Cowell's rants. The speech fades in and out and one struggles to distinguish. And how about the background music playing to increase the drama and emotions in a certain scene? Now you have something competing with the speech you want to hear.

Screen size, positioning of the listener, distance from the TV there are lots and lots of reasons that listening to TV continues to be an issue for hearing aid users, even when they express satisfaction in all other areas of listening.

The Oticon Epoq Series
If you are one who finds yourself struggling, take a look at wireless technology that has now become the vanguard within hearing aids. One example is Oticon's Epoq series. Finally, theres a device that enables you to hear the TV directly through your hearing aids in stereo no less. It is quite simple. With a simple little button push, the audio from the TV is directly streamed to your Epoq hearing aids allowing you to hear the TV crisp and clear, and still carry on conversations with your friends and family. The best part is you can be anywhere within the room and still pick up the audio signal.

But wait, there's more, as they say on the tube.

The top-end Epoq XW and the mid-priced Epoq W actually talk to each other. The two hearing aids deliver sound information wirelessly so each ear is able to hear the same sounds at the same time. The XW model provides binaural processing to provide the most realistic sound processing possible and the W provides binaural synchronization which ensures both hearing aids are synced in regards to advanced features and settings such as the directional microphones.

That's a whole lot of data flying back and forth but it provides a more balanced sound picture for the wearer. Translation? You hear with both ears (hearing aids) working together, the way nature intended.

The benefit? The wearers ability to pinpoint specific sounds in loud environments or to tune in to the individual speaking from across the table is improved. And it happens automatically through the use of pre-set preferences your choice of sound volume and directionality.

Many Epoq users point to the more natural sound quality they experience with Epoq and especially their improved capability to localize sounds, noted Oticon's President, Peer Lauritsen. Some users even describe their experience as an ability to better see where sounds are coming from. Great concept. Seeing what you hear. You've been doing it naturally all of your life. Now, Oticon's Epoq series makes it easy to hear the way nature intended without echo.

Introducing the Epoq V Series
Wireless connectivity, at least initially, was pricey but, as with all things digital, the price drops quickly. The technology already exists; engineers don't have to invent the technology from scratch. Wasn't too long ago that all laptop computers cost at least $1,000. Today, you can buy that $1,000 computer for $500. Its the nature of the wireless technology price war.

That's why Oticon developed the Epoq V. This attractively priced product delivers the same wireless connectivity as its big brothers the Epoq XW and Epoq W - without a big price tag. But that doesn't mean the Epoq V is short on features. In fact, Oticon has packed the Epoq series with loads of features to improve hearing and wearing comfort and automated convenience. The Epoq V provides binaural coordination by coordinating volume control and program changes between the hearing aids. Wireless connectivity at a more affordable price.

And Now, Back to Our Show
Wireless connectivity between two hearing aids provides a more natural hearing experience, but what about the rest of the wireless world? How does the Epoq V hold up there?

Streaming Audio From Oticon
The Epoq V, like the other two units in the series, is Blue Tooth enabled. Blue Tooth is the premier name in wireless technology. Using Blue Tooth devices on two different computers connects the two systems through wireless transmitters and receivers. No hard wiring required.

Same with the Blue Tooth technology built into every Oticon Epoq, including the latest edition to the product line the Epoq V.

So, this means that Epoq hearing devices are actually wireless receivers, acting in place of other wireless devices. For example, ever try to talk on a cell phone while wearing a hearing aid? You can get yourself some Hendrix-style feedback right in the middle of a business call.

But the Epoq series contains a wireless receiver and transmitter that actually subs for the wireless circuitry in everything from cell phones to TVs. This wireless, streaming device is at the core of the latest from Oticon, delivering wireless sound without blips, bleeps, pops or stops. This means that digital signals like the ones sent out from the TV - are actually picked up by your Oticon Epoq hearing aid.

So, put in the microwave popcorn and settle into the old comfy chair. With Oticon's wireless technology, you're going to like the way TV sounds again and you'll get to catch all the fun primetime has to offer you.

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