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Headphone Amp for severe hearing loss

Majnu

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Hi All,

I have severe hearing loss in my left ear and looking for an AMP with seperate L&R EQ to compensate for that.

My audio gram:
audiogram.png




Config needed for left:

250Hz 50 dB
500Hz 55 dB
1kHz 50 dB
2kHz 60 dB
4kHz 70dB
8kHz 50dB

Can this be achieved with Headphone AMP? Looking for both poratable and not portable options.
 

solderdude

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You would need an equalizer with a huge adjustment range and a balance control that can be set 40dB to one side.
 

solderdude

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I do not have any recommendations. Getting to play a headphone play 40dB louder on one side when listening to 80dB average (which is pretty loud) means the other side would need to reach 120dB.

Most engineers with some knowledge can easily increase the gain of a portable amp to +40dB on one channel.
When using a very sensitive earphone/headphone (> 120dB/V) it would be feasible to build something like that.
No idea how good blasting the already compromised ear is with deafening (for normal ears) levels is.
 
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fpitas

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solderdude

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What did the audiologist say about this ?

I mean when he made those measurements I am sure he already said what a hearing-aid could do and if that could restore the hearing to somewhat 'normal' hearing with 2 ears.
Of course a headphone with music is something entirely different but I guess the audiologist did discuss the results and how to go from there ?

Do you have a hearing aid that 'restores' hearing quite a bit ?
 

kemmler3D

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Yeah the gain requirement is pretty tricky. EQAPO can do what you want on Windows on the DSP end, but actually getting that gain out of the headphone itself is another question. You'll want a very powerful amp, but you will also need headphones that have very low distortion to accommodate the high gain on the left side without distorting like crazy. There are not many headphones that have low distortion over 110dB - The Audeze LCD XC cans will probably do it, but they're pricey.

In this case I would recommend listening to the corrected audio at the absolute lowest level you find enjoyable, since the left ear will be at a very high level.

There is also the very valid question of whether it's wise to hit your ears with SPL that high, hearing loss or no. Not a doctor or an audiologist so I'm going to go with the layman's "probably not".

Also, welcome to ASR! Sorry to see your hearing loss here, and I guess the good news is it's technically possible to correct music for this profile. The bad news is it might be expensive and dangerous...
 
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Majnu

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What did the audiologist say about this ?

I mean when he made those measurements I am sure he already said what a hearing-aid could do and if that could restore the hearing to somewhat 'normal' hearing with 2 ears.
Of course a headphone with music is something entirely different but I guess the audiologist did discuss the results and how to go from there ?

Do you have a hearing aid that 'restores' hearing quite a bit ?
Hi @solderdude I do use hearing aids and it restored/improved my hearing in the bad ear. I was looking for something for streaming movies/audio/zoom calls. I can wear headphones on top of my hearing aids but was thinking of using headphones alone as I just need streaming audio equlaized.
 
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Majnu

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Yeah the gain requirement is pretty tricky. EQAPO can do what you want on Windows on the DSP end, but actually getting that gain out of the headphone itself is another question. You'll want a very powerful amp, but you will also need headphones that have very low distortion to accommodate the high gain on the left side without distorting like crazy. There are not many headphones that have low distortion over 110dB - The Audeze LCD XC cans will probably do it, but they're pricey.

There is also the very valid question of whether it's wise to hit your ears with SPL that high, hearing loss or no. Not a doctor or an audiologist so I'm going to go with the layman's "probably not".
I have ordered Audeara-A02 which can be configured based on Audiogram, waiting for it. They claim it can adjust to my levels. Would love to achieve this using AMP.
 
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Majnu

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Currently my hearing aids are configured like that. I tried Airpods Audio gram feature but its not helping much .

"

Use your audiogram data from the Health app​

Tap Custom Audio Setup, then tap Use Audiogram to use your audiogram data from the Health app to customize audio settings.
If you have a nearly symmetric audiogram, Headphone Accommodations will take the average of the two ears and fit the left and right audio channels with that profile. If you have an asymmetric audiogram, it will fit the left and right audio channels for your better ear."
 

solderdude

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Did you give them the measurements you have ?
About 40dB gain at 3kHz is a rather tall order.
The bad ear would need about 60dB gain around 3kHz and 45dB at lower frequencies.

Let us know if this works in a satisfactory way.
I know someone in a similar situation as yours and he would love one if it works.
 
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Majnu

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Did you give them the measurements you have ?
About 40dB gain at 3kHz is a rather tall order.
The bad ear would need about 60dB gain around 3kHz and 45dB at lower frequencies.

Let us know if this works in a satisfactory way.
I know someone in a similar situation as yours and he would love one if it works.
Yes, Severe loss hearing aids are by prescription only and configured using audiogram only.

For Audeara, they advertise for severe hearing loss and I want to try it. Audeara also allows adjustment using audiogram but needs to be done by a doctor.
try googling " fitting range of Audeara", youll find this graph:
pasted image 0.png


I tried Avantree Aria ME but it didnt amplify much.
 

DearSX

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APO EQ (free computer app), or miniDSP (DSP preamp) and a powerful Headphone amp like the Topping A70Pro with some big efficient headphones may work, but I would be careful about more ear damage and not expect super great sound.
 

Yorkshire Mouth

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Firstly, I’d strongly urge you to talk to your audiologist about what they feel about this. Hearing aids tend to compensate for a reduction in some hearing frequencies, but can rarely bring them up to ‘flat’. Boosting the level of frequencies you describe, to the amount you require, may just damage your hearing in these frequencies further.

Secondly, if the audiologist says you’re good to go ahead (and only if), I’d definitely not try to compensate up to +/-0db. The untouched part of your hearing appears to be +/-10db, and I’d compensate to this, or even less.

I’d even go as far as to say you might try to just bring the dip in the left/red side up to -30db, then get the blue side to match the red.

Please be aware, in amongst all the people here talking about hearing differences of +/-1 or 2db, your brain will be doing a lot of compensating already, without you even realising.

As I say, first port of call is your audiologist.
 

Phorize

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Hi All,

I have severe hearing loss in my left ear and looking for an AMP with seperate L&R EQ to compensate for that.

My audio gram: View attachment 306569



Config needed for left:

250Hz 50 dB
500Hz 55 dB
1kHz 50 dB
2kHz 60 dB
4kHz 70dB
8kHz 50dB

Can this be achieved with Headphone AMP? Looking for both poratable and not portable options.
Bear in mind that what you are suggesting would result in linear amplification in your ear with the hearing loss. As hearing loss isn’t linear, modern hearing aids increase gain only where it is needed. This is very important for intelligibility of sounds like speech. Not offering a lecture, just asking ‘are you sure that what you are seeking would actually give you what you want?’.

Edit: read down and can see you’ve factored for this.
 
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enricoclaudio

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Honestly, not many options are available. You can get a miniDSP FLEX in the chain between the DAC and your headphone amp then you get PEQ and balance function with the GAIN (-72db / +12dB). More expensive option with native L & R balance function and no EQ would be the Benchmark HPA4. I had a head trauma back in Nov 2021 and got severe hearing lost very similar to yours but thanks God it was temporary and I was back to normal after 12 months. But it does suck having severe hearing lost.

IMG_0415.PNG


IMG_0417.PNG
 

Yorkshire Mouth

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I’m not sure how that second chart works. Presumable below 0 is hearing loss, whilst about is ‘minus hearing loss’.

The 0 line (here in the uk, at least) on these charts is ‘perfect heating’ as in a newborn baby - from immediately after you’re born and from the rest of your life, you’d hearing deteriorates. Everyone’s does.

My guess - is it age adjusted, with 0 being what they’d expect your hearing to be at your age?
 

enricoclaudio

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I’m not sure how that second chart works. Presumable below 0 is hearing loss, whilst about is ‘minus hearing loss’.

The 0 line (here in the uk, at least) on these charts is ‘perfect heating’ as in a newborn baby - from immediately after you’re born and from the rest of your life, you’d hearing deteriorates. Everyone’s does.

My guess - is it age adjusted, with 0 being what they’d expect your hearing to be at your age?
Here you go:

IMG_0421.PNG
 

quattro98

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For Zoom & similar use, I use a pair of Sony WH-1000XM5 over my hearing aids (Oticon Real). I use Apple products and I mostly use them with my laptop for Zoom and music at work. I also use the AirPods Pro with the Headphone Accommodations (a little tricky to setup) and I find it works well. I put in my audiogram manually and then I selected Audiogram in the "Tune Audio For" section.

I chose the Sony headphones instead of AirPods Max so I could use them without the Apple compensation and leave the aids in (so I don't have to take them in and out at work). I don't think I can setup the Headphone Accommodations on a per device basis, so I just chose a non-Apple device to complement the AirPods Pro.

I'm not comfortable rolling my own EQ as both the hearing aids and Apple Headphone Accommodations won't damage my hearing by limiting the boost to a safe amount. A DIY setup wouldn't have the same protection.

The Apple Headphone Accommodations really seems best for relatively symmetric hearing problems, so that might limit it's utility for your use case.
https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT211218
Use your audiogram data from the Health app
Tap Custom Audio Setup, then tap Use Audiogram to use your audiogram data from the Health app to customize audio settings.
If you have a nearly symmetric audiogram, Headphone Accommodations will take the average of the two ears and fit the left and right audio channels with that profile. If you have an asymmetric audiogram, it will fit the left and right audio channels for your better ear.
 
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Yorkshire Mouth

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Yeah, ‘normal’ hearing (the coloured part of the top band) stops at 0.

Your first graph shows a good deal as -10db. That’s 10db above ‘normal hearing - 10db above a newborn baby.

Unless it’s adjusted for age?

I’m guessing you’re young (compared to most of us. That’s an exceptional result.
 
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