Hearing Loss and Loud TV: Explorer Report

By: pete. Updated: August 16, 2021.

Problem: My wife has lost some of her hearing and she turns up the TV volume loud to hear.

Solution: We bought a BeHear Proxy Neck Speaker and a HearLink Plus in a bundle.

Here is my report of our experience with this product thus far. 

 

 

Research:

My research suggested we first try the Avantee Opera Wireless Headphone - $150 on Amazon. They were hooked up to the digital audio port on our smart TV and worked fine. The sound was clear, good battery life, no noticeable lag in the sound from the TV, easy to charge and operate. The problem was the headphones were too heavy resting on the top of my wife’s head and the headphones were okay for a couple of hours, but she tired of them. We bent the head strap and it helped some, but they were never comfortable resting on the top of her head so we returned them. I have a bigger head and found them okay to wear, but I do not enjoy any headphones.

 

 

Solution:

We then ordered the bundle of a BeHear Proxy Neck Speaker (wireless) along with a HearLink Plus to plug into the TV and send the bluetooth signal to the neck speakers - $239 on Amazon.

  • View the BeHear Proxy in the Tech-enhanced Life database (including links to learn more or buy it, if you want).

 

BeHear Proxy Hearing Amplifier

Caption: BeHear Proxy with earbuds extended.

 

I found them a bit more complicated to hook up and needed some help from the responsive manufacturer.

 

BeHear HearLink

Caption: HearLink which connects to the TV and sends the signal to the BeHear Proxy neck unit.

 

Phone App: Hearing Loss Adjustments

We are not using the BeHear phone app at all for now so we have no experience with adjusting tones, connecting to a cell phone, etc.

I did peek at the app and it looked like I could enter the same data as in an audiogram. We do not use it for cell phone at all. All my wife does is use it to hear the TV while the volume of the actual TV is usually muted as the TV volume operates independent of the neck speaker (or ear buds) volume.

 

Comfort and Battery

She finds the neck speakers much more comfortable to wear than headphones.

She does not use the neck speakers as they make sound close to the volume of the TV. She pulls the two ear buds out of the ends of the neck speakers and finds them to be comfortable to wear for extended periods of time. She can move around our apartment and hear the TV fine. The neck speaker unit battery lasts about three nights of listening for her. It is easy to check the battery life by a quick push of the on/off button. When she is finished listening, a simple push of two buttons on the neck speakers retracts the ear buds into the unit.

 

No Noticeable Sound Lag

There is not any noticeable lag in the sound from the TV to the neck speakers or the ear buds. The neck speaker (the Proxy) is paired to the unit with two small antennas (the Plus) that is plugged into the smart TV and it has a power connection to a USB port.

 

Charging

At night, she retracts the airbuds and turns off the Proxy. The next afternoon I turn on the Proxy and do a restart on the Plus which pairs the two items as the letter “A” lights up on the Plus.

BeHear amplifier

Caption: BeHear Proxy with earbuds retracted.

 

Summary

Now she can use the earbuds on the neck speakers to hear the TV at volumes that satisfy her while the TV is muted and our apartment is quiet. If I want to watch TV with her, I can set the TV volume at any level I choose. Now we both enjoy whatever TV volume we desire.

 

Pete K. 06/25/2021


 

Comments

 

from faengelm (member) at April 08, 2022

Thanks for the great review on this neck speaker.

I understand that your wife was able to hear the TV fine, but I believe you said that the TV was muted... meaning that you were not able to hear TV at all.

I'm looking for a way that one person can hear the TV at normal levels and the other hears it louder through a neck speaker.

Some TV sound transmitters can drive two neck speakers, but in my case, only one member of the couple is willing to wear a neck speaker

 

 

from Pete K. (unverified) at April 09, 2022

It does what you need. She can listen to the TV at any volume she chooses over the device. I have no device but the TV remote control and I can set any level of volume on the TV and I can also mute it and my actions do not affect her volume settings at all. They are two independent volume control systems. Pete K.

 

from kathimestayer (member) at May 11, 2022

I have a significant hearing loss, and watch the tv and movies with captions on at all times.  IFF the  captions are of decent quality and timing, they make a huge difference in my ability to follow what is going on.  That's pretty much the case only if the content is pre-recorded and pre-captioned.  Real-time captioning of content like news programs can be pretty low quality, with delays in the appearance of the captions.

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