What is the frequency response of HyperSound?
Dr. Brian Taylor: The frequency response with usable gain goes from about 1000 Hz to above 14,000 Hz. In the mid range, the gain is between 5 and 15 dB. From 4000 to above 8,000 Hz, the gain maximum is about 30 dB. These gain values are added to the intensity level of television audio, which is around 65 to 70 dB SPL. Setting gain values for Hypersound relies on the NAL-R targets as a starting point, and you can use the sliders in your HyperFit software to adjust the gain. Also, there are two different memories, which means can store two different listeningprograms in HyperSound and use the remote to change them. There is a manual wheel on the Hypersound amplifier (the black box connecting to the TV). The remote control allows you to have access to the memories, and to also manually adjust the overall volume of Hypersound.
How is the sound to other listeners in the room?
Other listeners in the room would hear the regular audio from the television. If you have regular conventional audio on your TV, they would hear that. They would hear a little bit of HyperSound if it reflects off the back wall. However, that is usually not a big effect. If you have a surround sound in your house with the television, they would hear the surround sound audio, if you are not in the Hypersound sound beam. There is no delay associated between the two– Hypersound and regular audio from TV. The patient is in the HyperSound beam; other members of the family are hearing the audio. I think that is what makes it a really interesting product relative to ALDs. No other devices need to be worn by the patient, simply sit in the beam.
Can two individuals use one Hypersound unit?
You can do that with one person per emitter, but you lose the binaural effect of Hypersound. It is really designed for two emitters, one per ear, for one individual. If the two people wanted to sit right next to each other, they could benefit from the two emitters. In theory, one system is designed for one individual. Because Hypersound is programmable using the patient’s audiogram, you could store settings for two individuals. In this scenario the two patients would been using Hypersound while watching a favorite program alone.
What about the directionality of the device?
It is a very tight beam that comes off of the emitter. The person has to sit in a space about two feet wide, which gives you some leeway. You can move your head a little bit within the beam. You do not have to be absolutely still. You do have to keep your head within a two foot beam in order to get the full directional effect. Think of it as a beam of light off of a lighthouse - it is very directed into a certain area.
These Ask the Expert were taken from the HyperSound article/text course, Promoting High Value, Patient-Centric Care with Alternative and Complementary Devices.