Phonak offers a comprehensive range of wireless microphone systems to meet the individual needs of clients. From my experience as a clinical audiologist, a commonly asked question is, “What are the differences between these Roger microphones and how do you know which one to recommend?” Let’s review the portfolio and several use cases to determine which microphone system may fit your client’s lifestyle most appropriately.
The Roger portfolio for adults includes Roger Select, Roger Pen, and Roger Table Mic II. Each microphone system provides unique benefits based on the client’s every day communication needs and environment. Additionally, each wireless microphone has automatic features to allow for easy management and use of the Roger system.
When should you recommend Roger Select?
The Roger Select is a versatile microphone ideal for stationary situations where background noise is present. It is ideal for individuals who prefer the automatic features of the Select, but with the option of manual selection when there are multiple conversations taking place. When placed on a table, it automatically selects the person who is talking and seamlessly switches from one talker to another.
As an individual with significant hearing loss bilaterally, I use Roger Select when meeting colleagues for lunch. Lunchtime is when we all take a short break from work and eat together. The cafeteria quickly becomes noisy with other colleagues congregating in for their lunch break. As my colleagues are the ones I spend most of my time with, lunchtime is an opportunity to hear how their families are doing, how their most recent vacation was, or about a new restaurant they discovered. Typically at the lunch table, multiple conversations take place. When this occurs I manually select whom to listen to reduce the amount of distraction from competing conversations.
Additionally, the Select can be worn by a communication partner on the chest using the clip or lanyard, known as lapel mode. It knows its orientation and automatically ensures the beam points upward to pick up the voice of the speaker. The lapel mode is good for a presenter at a meeting, a fitness class, and a passenger or driver in a car. Furthermore, the Select can transmit sound of multimedia devices, such as music streaming from a laptop. The Select can also transmit cellphone calls from Bluetooth enabled devices.
What about Roger Table Mic II?
The Roger Table Mic II is a microphone dedicated for working adults who participate in various meetings. It chooses the person who is talking and switches automatically. Working as an audiologist in a corporate environment involves attending meetings on a regular basis. The size of the meetings varies by the amount of people attending, as well as the configuration of the room. I bring one or two Table Mic IIs with me, as it is possible to connect multiple Table Mics II to create a MultiTalker Network, ideal for large meeting configurations and overcoming the distance. Many of my meetings tend to include both a presenter and group discussions; thus, I bring a Roger Select, as well.
The MultiTalker Network can include the Roger Select worn in lapel mode by a presenter. This set-up allows for me to actively participate in meetings and understand the next steps in my responsibilities. Additionally, as many meetings are conducted virtually, the Table Mic II can also be connected to multimedia for streaming sound directly to my hearing aid and cochlear implant.
And the Roger Pen?
The Roger Pen is recommended for individuals in mobile, challenging listening situations. The Roger Pen functions as a handheld device and uses a built-in accelerometer to determine whether it is lying on a table, held in hand or hanging around the neck. The behavior of the microphone changes based on the position it is placed in by applying adaptive beamforming technology. When the Pen is lying on a table or on a flat surface the microphone setting is omnidirectional, picking up environmental sounds from all around. If the level of background noise increases, the Pen can be picked up and pointed towards the speaker of interest to improve directionality of the signal, such as in interview mode.
Interview mode is beneficial when driving in a car with multiple passengers. I enjoy taking long road trips and easily miss hearing conversations in the car, especially as the driver of the vehicle. My attention and resources are focused on maneuvering the vehicle, making it difficult to actively listen to conversations occurring by the passengers. With the Pen, the passengers can pass it around as they talk, allowing for me to be included in conversations, while keeping my attention on the road in front of me. Moreover, the Pen can be held by the speakers themselves or worn in lanyard mode. When the Pen is in a vertical plane it uses a fixed directional, narrow beamformer pattern. Similarly to the Select, the Pen can transmit the sound of multimedia devices and cellphone calls, allowing for me to make hands free phone calls and hear the phone call in both ears.
Utilizing a wireless microphone in addition to wearing a hearing aid and a cochlear implant allow me to follow and participate in conversations regardless of the environment I am in. Using a Roger microphone allows me to remain engaged in social interactions.
Need more guidance?
Each Roger microphone system has its own advantages, offering unique features and benefits depending on the environment your clients experience. For a further interactive resource in ensuring the best recommendation for your client, the Roger Easy Guide is available on PhonakPro.com. I hope this article helps you to make a more informed decision on a Roger solution that best fits your client’s listening needs.