Has anyone found a way of eliminating feedback/distortions/unwanted harmonics on the A and E strings while playing and wearing hearing aides? Do any brands of hearing aides specifically address this problem other than providing a general listening to music setting?
I have to take mine out when I play. Get too much feed back.
Thanks, Cowboy. I'm still hoping for a miracle adjustment someone knows about. Anyone have an idea?
I wear hear aids and I had my provider create a fiddle channel that surprises the feedback and harmonics... not perfect but a lit better... some hearing aid manufacturers have the channel already and it just has to be installed. Still it is nothing like the real ear.
Thanks, Swing. Still hoping for "perfect", but will see what can be done. :)
Beltone has “music” setting. Then I can adjust it further on my phone (blue tooth) and create as many tweaky adjustments as I want. It sounds great, no feedback, and the music sounds, as far as I’m concerned, like it should. This is the “Amaze” model. Pricey, but considering what I can spend on music equipment, I figured this is the equipment I should really be investing in. Just for reference, I only have one aid, not two. I’ve had it for almost a year.
I'm wearing Resound Versa's now and before that," America Hears" CIC (completely in the canal) aids. Both work pretty well for me. I had the both aids set up for a music program.
The America Hears aid are programmable with an interface and program that they supply that allows you to make adjustments from your computer. They changed the interface and I didn't buy a new one as I'm mainly using the Resounds. But, I can send an audiogram and the aids to the company and they will reprogram them.
America Hears now only offer the behind the ear aids. The advantage to these (and to the Resounds) is that you can change the volume level. Not possible with the CIC's. I like being able to change volume.
I've found that, with the music program's, that they reduce the high frequencies which makes it harder to hear folks in a jam. With the "open fit" behind the ear aids, it's easy to toggle between the "voice" and "music" programs when needed.
Here's a link to a forum that is pretty informative.
There's lots of info on the net. You just have to sort through stuff and it's pretty time consuming. But, hearing aids are expensive so I figure it's worth the effort.
My Resounds are around six years old so I'm fixin' to go through the research process again.
As an aside, it appears that Costco has a pretty good reputation and their aids are considerably lower in cost. You don't get the "latest and greatest" technology as the aids lag behind the latest by a few months. But, I think anything they offer is probably better than what I have. Alas, my nearest Costco is 2 1/2 hours away so that's not a very good thing for me. If I lived near a Costco, I'd check them out.
Thanks, WyoBob. I will check out Costco.
Thanks, Earworm. I think the feedback issue I am having on the high frequencies can probably be tweaked on the correct program of a high tech hearing aide. I'm working on it.
I don't think this issues is addressed by the brands of hearing aides thoroughly. I wish they paid some attention to this and get this fixed.
I wear aids from Costco and found that turning the volume down almost to zero on the remote works to dampen the feedback especially on the A and E. Between tunes with the chit chat going on I can increase the volume. It's not the best but I'm gonna keep playing not matter what!
Thanks, PIK. I also had them compress/make more linear a second channel on my aids for playing music. That channel, also turned down, actually gets rid of the feedback/unwanted harmonics harmonics/distortion but at the expense of making the sound less crisp, more as if I hear it under water! But it is much better for the A and E string problem.
When I was 10 years old, I lost most hearing in my right ear. When playing the fiddle, I couldn’t hear the other instruments very well because my good ear was right next to the f holes. Over the past few years, my wife started mumbling more and more. Last summer, I found out that I developed a high freq hearing loss in my left (good) ear and I finally broke down and bought a pair of hearing aids (Widex Evoke Fusion 2 Model 330).
I thought that I would need to take out or turn off the left hearing aid when playing the fiddle, but I don’t. It took a few weeks/months to get my brain accustomed to the crispy, rattling layerS of sound, but everything is so much clearer and richer now. Playing, jamming, listening to music sounds so much better. My hearing aids have different program settings, but they somehow detect what’s going on and adjust automatically. Coincidentally, my wife stopped mumbling. I think she’s just been messing with me.
Thanks, Jonno. Interesting. Maybe I'll try mine for a while on the conversation program setting which is much clearer than the more compressed, lineal music setting. The music setting mutes the "rattling layers of sound", but it sounds a bit like under water. I'd be curious to see if my brain adjusts to the crisper voice program for fiddle playing. Worth a try (if it doesn't drive me nuts before I give myself time to adjust!)
I do think it's those layers of sound that your brain has to get used to. Funny ... how much of hearing is not in the ear, but the brain, isn't it? Adaptation time varies though. Patience, friend. It's too bad your music setting isn't more useful to you.
Thanks, Earworm :) My music setting is for listening to music, not really playing up next to my ear. But it is adjusted to an acceptable bunch of frequencies to make it ok, just not as crisp as I would like. But I'll see if my brain can adapt to the crisper conversation program for playing. If not, I have the music program to fall back upon.
I sound better when I take my hearing aids off.
Others sound better when I wear them.
Coincidence? I don't think so.
Have been wearing hearing aids since 1986. Have learned that the audiologist chosen is very important.
The best are those good enough to work independently and have returning clients. Not the rotating techs at places like Costco.
I wasted too much time and money at Costco. Had a very bad experience. Would not go back at half the price of the others.
I had posted earlier about having a fiddle channel on your hearing aids.... but recently I also added one more thing....rosin.... yep, it will make a difference... there is a new, albeit expensive, rosin that reduces the grating rasping sounds yet provides very good grab... it is used by a lot of pro players (what do they know anyway?) and it is made by a fiddler. The product is called LonesomePine Violin Rosin, it is sold on eBay... I tried it and it seems good to me...but I strongly suggest cleaning your strings after each session....
I wear Oticon hearing aids. When I fiddle, I turn down the volume on my left device. Without hearing aids, to me, I sound better and that is because I can't hear all of the scratchy sounds that I make.. To others, the scratchy sound is irritating...I've learned to tweak the volume so I can hear better what I'm playing and Not be as scratchy..Oticon devices never seem to have feedback problems........
Thanks for posting. I have since my asking purchased ReSounds and have no problems at all. Must have been the previous brand tried. Thanks again for offering info from your experience.
I just bought my 4th pair of hearing aids in 16 years.
First pair, Starkey, a disaster. They broke down several times and I said enough is enough. I bought CIC America Hears HA's next and they provided a computer interface and program so that I could adjust my HA's. That worked out well and playing music with them worked well. But, they changed the interface computer hookup and wanted me to buy another one and the company changed hands so -- onto the next solution.
My third set was purchased from our local hospital. $2,800 for Resound Versa's with a 3 year warranty and unlimited audi visits. The prescribing audi was great but moved to Oregon a few months after I bought my aids. The replacement audi was a nightmare. She didn't want to service previously sold aids and just wanted to sell new ones and I finally had to pay another audi to program my aids and that was hit and miss for the next several years.
I've researched HA's for the last two years and finally decided to give Costco a try. The nearest Costco is 2 1/2 hours away which isn't very convenient but I'm glad I made the trip. I joined Costco ($60.00) and my new Costco Signature 10 hearing aids ($1,400 for the pair) are light years better than anything I've tried before. The Kirkland aids are a Sonova (Phonak) product which is in the top tier of hearing aid companies based on my research. The audiologist performed a thorough hearing test and I walked out with hearing aids that performed much better than my expectations. The trial period is quite long, much longer than any individual audiologist provides and, if you don't like them, you can get a full refund.
The remote adjustment's offered by Costco was of great interest to me as I won't have to travel to Billings to get adjustments. I played yesterday with my old time group with the new aids. I played my banjo (my fiddle playing isn't up to speed to play with these folks, yet) and was blown away. All of the instruments sounded way better than I'm used to and, between tunes, I could hear what everyone was saying. That's never happened before and I really missed the conversations among members of the group. I can hear everything now! I'm telling you, I got a tear in my eye, I was so pleased.
With the Kirkland Signature 10 aids, you can modify any of the programs that come with the hearing aids and give the program a name and save it for later use so I've been experimenting with that. I've not come up with an ideal program just for me playing in the basement along with recordings (fiddle or banjo), yet, but will visit with the audiologist and see if he can help me in that endeavor.
I've seen the problems that other hearing aid users have faced over the last few years. My father-in-law had three sets of very expensive aids that all ended up in a drawer, sold to him by, in my opinion, less than honest HA dealer's. And, many of his fellow resident's in the assisted living facility in Valentine, NE had similar stories. Take a hearing test from a "hearing aid specialist", not an audiologist (maybe not even a high school graduate), sold hearing aids and, when they didn't work out, were told, we just can't help you, you need to buy new aids. I consider this "elder abuse" and dishonest as h**l. I find that Costco to be much more honest in their dealings with hearing impaired people.
As was pointed out earlier, it all depends on who you deal with. I'm sure that some Costco's might not have employees' that are "up to speed". If you live in a major metropolitan area with several Costco's like Denver, you have many choices. If one audi doesn't work, hopefully, you can find one that will work. If the audi in Billings lets me down, I'm sure that I can find another Costco that will suit. With remote programming, distance and finding someone who can do the job shouldn't be a problem.
I purchased at Costco also. I bought my ReSounds there, again, after 15 years. Great service. They sell a few different brands as well as their own, and let you switch brands if you are not happy with the performance for your needs. This was, after trying other brands, without success. These are my 2nd pair of ReSounds, and, once again, no A/E string feedback! Happy fiddler :)
This is good information, guys. I’m taking notes for the future….
My father lost a majority of his hearing in his late teens as a hunting guide. He lost all but a remaining 5% in his late 20’s due to disease.
In an interesting turn, my mother elected to make a career change and studied to become an audiologist, eventually getting her AUD (Doctor of Audiology). She spent part of her career at the top ear clinic in the nation, and part running her own clinic.
Because of Mom’s relationships with several hearing aid mfgs, Dad was fitted for and tested some of the newest and best hearing aids before they hit the market. I even learned to fit ear molds/impressions.
I know her suggestion is/would be to find an audiologist you trust (their job is your hearing health), not a hearing aid salesperson (their job is to sell you a hearing aid). Make sure to buy an aid that suits you purposes, and make that happen by helping the audiologist understand the situations in which you need help hearing. Work with them to get the aid initially tuned to suit you- that base tuning is extremely important. Do everything you can to then learn how to tune the aid yourself for those models that have that feature.
Get the best help and aid you can, I’m always amazed at how the tech has improved since my father got his first aid back in the early 80’s.
I thought I'd post an update about my experiences with the Costco Signature 10 hearing aids that I bought last May.
I'm really tickled with these HA's. The hearing test was the most comprehensive I've had in the 15 years or so that I've worn aids and the audiologist programed them perfectly. I've used the remote support option once and the audi set up my aids so I could stream music and play my fiddle along with the tune. Before the adjustment, I could stream music just fine but the fiddle was quite loud and brash when I played it. I can now play along with the recordings I made of our O.T. group and everything sounds great. I do lower the volume on the left aid when I'm fiddling along, though. I'm listening through my aids to the the "Georgia Jays" (Turknett's group) from my computer as I type this and it sounds great. When I'm playing downstairs, I listen to the music on my android phone and play along. Slowing down and looping sections of a tune work much better when hearing the tune through my HA's as opposed to listening through my desktop speakers.
The automatic program works quite well for most all conditions except playing the fiddle with a group or while listening through my phone. I then change to the fiddle program I made and saved to my phone and then stream music from the phone and that works great. The automatic program works quite well when I play my banjo with our O.T. group. I haven't played the fiddle with the group to test how that works as I have a ways to go before I'd even think about playing in front of the really good (all) fiddle players in our group.
I had feedback problems with my 8 year old Resounds and that problem was solved by having custom ear molds made. I'm using the ear buds that came with the Signature 10's and have zero feedback problems and the buds are comfortable and I've avoided the hassle and expense of having custom molds made so I'm happy about that.
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