Speech intelligibility in dual task with hearing aids and adaptive digital wireless microphone technology

  • Matthias Latzel Phonak AG, Stäfa, Switzerland
  • Kirsten C. Wagener Hörzentrum Oldenburg, Oldenburg, Germany
  • Matthias Vormann Hörzentrum Oldenburg, Oldenburg, Germany
  • Hanse Mülder Phonak Communications AG, Murten, Switzerland
Keywords: Dual Task, Speech Test, Remote Microphone, Ecological Validity, Near-field and far-field simultaneously, Dual Task Costs, Hearing Solution


Remote microphones (RMs) have been developed to support hearing aid users to understand distant talkers. A drawback of these systems is the deteriorated speech intelligibility in the near-field, as the hearing aids need to be in omnidirectional mode in combination with these RMs. This has changed with the introduction of a new hearing-aid technology developed specifically to support the user in the near-field when using a RM, by enabling directional microphones of the hearing aid. To verify the performance of this novel system, speech intelligibility tests were conducted using a dual-task paradigm. Primary task: Sentences of the female Oldenburg Matrix Test were presented continuously. The task of the subject was to mark the recognized name on a tablet. Secondary task: A speech recognition test with meaningful sentences (Göttinger Sentence Test, male voice) was carried out with the task to repeat the sentences. The primary-task stimuli were presented from a loudspeaker in the far-field and the secondary-task stimuli from a loudspeaker in the near-field (and vice versa), within a surrounding loudspeaker array playing restaurant noise. Results of 15 hearing-impaired subjects showed that the directional hearing-aid microphone delivered superior performance compared to the omni microphone. Benefits of the RM were confirmed for both primary and secondary tasks. For a higher ecological validity, the data were analyzed considering both tasks simultaneously. This analysis showed a positive effect of the directional hearing aid microphone.


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How to Cite
Latzel, M., Wagener, K., Vormann, M., & Mülder, H. (2018). Speech intelligibility in dual task with hearing aids and adaptive digital wireless microphone technology. Proceedings of the International Symposium on Auditory and Audiological Research, 6, 383-390. Retrieved from https://proceedings.isaar.eu/index.php/isaarproc/article/view/2017-47
2017/6. Advances in hearing-instrument features and related effects