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ReSound

Contributed by , President of Healthy Hearing

ReSound is one of the world's largest hearing aid manufacturers, and it has a long history of helping people regain their hearing. It is part of the GN ReSound Group, which also includes the brands Beltone and Interton. The company is headquartered in Ballerup, Denmark and has a strong presence around the world, with offices in more than 25 countries, distributors in 80 countries and more than 3,000 employees around the world.

ReSound has been responsible for some of the biggest advancements in hearing aid technology, and it strives to continue to be a reliable global brand and the natural choice for hearing health care professionals in order to continue improving lives.

History

ReSound was initially founded as Danavox in 1943 by Gerd Rosenstand. Just four years later, the company introduced its first hearing aid. The company performed well in Denmark and was acquired in 1977 by GN Store Nord, renaming it GN Danavox. In 1989, the company introduced a new innovation in sound processing, called Wide Dynamic Range Compression (WDRC), further growing in the market space. By 1992, GN Danavox introduced the first hearing aid to use digital sound processing that was commercially available, and in 1993, it launched the first Digital Feedback Suppression system (DFS) in the world, which was a way to manage the annoying and disruptive whistling noises that make hearing difficult while using a hearing aid.

ReSound manufactures hearing aidsIn 1996, GN Danavox marked a new milestone by forming a strategic alliance with ReSound, which was a growing company with the world's first digital hearing aids based on software. ReSound was founded in 1984 by Rodney Perkins, and it acquired Austrian-based company Viennatone in 1994.

In 1996, with the dawn of their strategic alliance, the company became known as GN ReSound, and it acquired Danplex in 1999. Later that year, GN Store Nord, the parent company of GN Danavox, bought out all outstanding shares of ReSound to make it part of the GN ReSound Group. In 2000, GN Store Nord acquired Beltone Electronics, which became part of the GN Resound Group.

Innovative Years

The turn of the new century marked a period of innovation for the newly merged company. In 2003, GN ReSound introduced ReSound Air - a hearing aid that provided top sound quality while avoiding blocking the ear canal. In 2008, it introduced the world's smallest hearing aid of the time, which also performed extremely well - the dot by ReSound.

In 2009, Surround Sound by ReSound was born. It revolutionized directionality by allowing both sound quality maximum audibility, and with it came several new lines of products: dot², Alera, Alera TS, ReSound Live and Resound Vea.

Technology

ReSound has various forms of cutting edge, proven technology that make its hearing instruments superior.

ReSound's sound processing strategy is comprehensive and gives more vibrant sound and exceptional speech understanding by emulating the natural ear's performance. The company was able to do this through much research that allowed them to model, balance, clean and stabilize digitized sound so it reflects the ear's natural performance. Some important components of Surround Sound by ReSound include:

  • Warp, which is at the core of Surround sound and models the way that the ear breaks sounds into distinct pitches. This system allows sounds of different intensities and pitches to reach the brain in the correct amount of time, and these cues help the brain analyze sound.
  • DFS Ultra II, a feedback suppression technology that works in every situation and has no tradeoffs: sound quality is not compromised, nor are other sound artifacts part of the equation. The DFS Ultra II also has a Music Mode setting that helps users hear music more clearly and naturally, which is traditionally a challenge for most hearing aids.
  • WindGuard, which is a dual-microphone that recognizes air pressure variations and can correctly differentiate between wind and speech noises.
  • Environmental Optimizer II, which balances and adjusts the volume level in each environment based on an individual's needs and personal hearing profile. This smart technology automatically adjusts to new environments so the user does not need to adjust the volume or the program each time her or she enters a new hearing environment, such as walking down a quiet street and then stepping into a noisy restaurant. Environmental Optimizer II provides amplification, comfort for loud sounds and the best speech understanding possible.
  • Expansion technology that makes the hearing signal more clean and provides relaxed listening in quiet environments, rather than bombarding the hearing aid wearer with sounds that don't need to be amplified. During production and development, ReSound measures the noise floor of each model of hearing aid it produces to determine "kneepoints" and apply less amplification at sound levels below these kneepoints to keep users comfortable in quiet locations.

Remote Microphone Design

In this unique design, the microphone is at the end of a flexible tube that makes the hearing aids more invisible, provides natural directionality, wind protection and sound localization due to its unique design.

2.4 GHz wireless technology

In this groundbreaking design, the hearing aids themselves are the center of the wireless device and thus intermediate devices are not necessary. Users like 2.4 GHz wireless because the connection process is simple, the system is robust and there's no need to carry around a noticeable wireless device.

iSolate nanotech

This water-repellant, nanotech coating increases hearing aid durability by providing moisture protection to every inch of the hearing aids. The polymer coating that makes up iSolate is 1,000 times thinner than a human hair and protects against moisture, which beads and rolls off upon contact.

Tinnitus treatment technology

The ReSound Verso TS hearing aid line is specifically for people who suffer from tinnitus, and it's programmed using algorithms from advanced audiological knowledge on how to treat tinnitus. It is a comprehensive program with several components, including:

  • Tinnitus Sound Generator, which supports any type of sound therapy that people use to treat their tinnitus.
  • Streaming sound signals that provide flexibility.
  • Synchronized Amplitude Modulation, which gives a soothing quality to the Tinnitus Sound Generator.
  • Frequency Shaper, which allows the audiologist to adjust filters to change the frequency of white noise to a range that is most appealing for each client.
  • Synchronized Volume Control for adjusting the level of white noise for each client.
  • Synchronized Environmental Steering, which changes the sound level depending on seven different sound environments.

This content was last reviewed on: July 7th, 2014

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