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Signia introduces world’s first Own Voice Processing

As hearing care professionals, we strive to provide hearing aid users with sound quality that replicates what nature intended. Yet many hearing aid wearers do not like the sound of their own voice. This negative perception heavily affects acceptance and often leads to the rejection of hearing aids, especially among first time users and wearers with a mild or moderate hearing loss. To mitigate users’ dissatisfaction with this perceived occlusion effect, hearing care professionals can reduce gain, which negatively affects overall audibility, and open the venting, which reduces speech understanding in noise. Whatever they do, this own voice problem results in a compromise between sound quality and hearing performance.

Sound inspired by nature

In our continuous search for best hearing aid performance, we placed tackling the own voice problem at the heart of our research and development. With Signia Nx, the world’s most advanced hearing aid platform, we are the first in the industry to solve this problem.  We have created the most sophisticated chip technology which allows us to separate Own Voice Processing (OVP) from the processing of all other sounds – a world’s first.

This dual processing solution replicates the natural way we hear our own voice. OVP dynamically scans and processes the wearer’s own voice completely independently from the remaining soundscape. Our revolutionary technology enables the highest sound quality with the best hearing performance, even in loud environments, without compromise.

The unprecedented natural sound experience we create is only possible with our next generation Signia Nx chip with ultra-small 40nm DSP technology delivering super-fast 500 MIPS (million instructions per second) processing power.

Signia Nx features the only true binaural audio link – Ultra HD e2e – allowing the classifier to scan and locate sound sources with the greatest spatial accuracy. It dynamically detects the unique sound path of the wearer’s voice from the mouth to the hearing aids. State-of-the-art silicone microphones with ultra-exact 0.3dB matching enable premium precision. This breakthrough means we are the first to filter the sound of the own voice from the remaining soundscape.

The best soundscape processing

The dual processing power of Signia Nx also delivers the most natural perception of the surrounding environment beyond the natural experience of the wearer’s own voice. New algorithms enable best-in-class spatial awareness by providing natural localization in all listening situations, even the loudest. Hearing aid wearers can now get an uncompromised spatially open experience with all the benefits of our industry-leading directionality.

For crystal clear sound, our extended dynamic range with an incredible 113dB maximum input is now available universally across all programs. This means that even in loud situations the full analog soundwaves are converted into digital signals without any clipping. And the powerful new feedback canceller provides the highest stable gain to protect signal quality – artifact-free. The whole system is steered by Signia’s unique classifier which ensures OVP and soundscape processing work in perfect harmony to replicate natural hearing.

True binaural hearing plus Bluetooth – a unique combination in the industry

In addition to the world’s first OVP, Signia Nx offers the industry’s only wireless system combining Ultra HD e2e and Bluetooth for uncompromised audiology and direct streaming in one device. Only Ultra HD e2e allows us to deliver our patented OVP and “better than normal hearing”* while 2.4 GHz Bluetooth technology delivers the highest quality direct audio streaming from iPhone and TV.

Signia TeleCare – revolutionary remote hearing care

A further big advantage of Signia Nx is TeleCare – now with full live remote tuning so hearing care professionals can fine-tune patients’ hearing aids in the real-life situations for which they are intended. Much like a virtual home visit, this enables hearing care professionals to deliver revolutionary customer care by solving issues remotely to keep the trial on track. Look out for more information about TeleCare on this blog.

* Two clinical studies have shown that binax provides better than normal hearing in certain demanding environments (University of Northern Colorado, 2014; Oldenburg Hörzentrum, 2013): Speech Reception Thresholds (SRT) in cocktail-party situations improved up to 2.9 dB for wearers with mild to moderate hearing loss using Carat binax or Pure binax hearing aids with narrow directionality, compared to people with normal hearing.