Each ear is unique, each ear hears differently. You don’t have to be an audiologist to see that ears come in all shapes and sizes. But what the layman might not realize is that the size and shape of your pinna actually impacts the way you perceive sound. As sound waves arrive at the pinna, the convulsions of the ear reflect the waves creating unique echoes. Since all ears are different, the reflections are different and so is the way we hear. When a hearing aid sits inside the ear, this impacts both essential functions of the pinna: direct sound and reflected sound. This individualized Pinna Effect phenomenon has never been fully considered by hearing aids…until now.
In the past, when you think of custom products, you think of the customized fit of the physical shell. Physical customization is important because all ears, regardless of their size and shape, need hearing aids that fit properly and discreetly inside their ear, while maximizing sound quality. Biometric Calibration is a breakthrough new technology that takes customization to the next level- hearing aids are now not only physically customized on the outside, but also acoustically customized on the inside. It starts with our proprietary software that identifies over 1600 data points from the client’s ear impression. These biometric data points are compared to an ear model that knows how the ear reflects sound. An algorithm determines the differences between the ear model and the individual’s anatomy. Then the unique calibration settings are calculated and the hearing aids are able to optimize the cardioid for the client’s individual ear.
How does this help?
Biometric Calibration improves directionality. The primary function of directionality is to improve hearing performance by reducing background noise and increasing the signal i.e. improving the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR). As one of the most common reports from clients is that they hear too much background noise, directionality is an HCP’s best friend. Biometric Calibration improves directionality by 2 dB compared to products without Biometric Calibration. Meaning that when you compare the intensity of the signal coming from the front to the intensity of the surrounding background noise, products with Biometric Calibration will provide a 2 dB better ratio. Customization is critical when it comes to hearing aids and with Biometric Calibration, the hearing aid is customized to how the individual’s ear reflects the incoming sounds and gives your client access to better hearing performance.1
1 Field Study News under development. Full details available at www.phonakpro.com/evidence.
For more information on products with Biometric Calibration, please visit PhonakPro.