Looking for a hearing-aid compatible cellphone headset
January 18, 2010 6:46 PM   Subscribe

I have a BTE (behind-the-ear) hearing aid with a T-coil. Can anyone recommend a headset for use with my cellphone and a reputable online vendor?
posted by desjardins to Technology (3 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I don't know about online vendors, but Jabra is a pretty well-regarded headset maker for call center-type situations, and they have a telecoil model.
posted by ignignokt at 7:46 PM on January 18, 2010

You don't mention your cell phone brand make and model but what you're looking for is an "induction neck loop" Motorola makes some very good ones but each manufacturer has different ones (or none at all). Additionally, some are bluetooth but most are wired sets.

Essentially, you place to loop around your neck like a necklace, when a call comes in, you switch your hearing aid to t-coil and the loop creates the soundfield (similar to when you use a standard landline phone) that is picked up by the t-coil.

The effect is amazing for someone who wears two hearing aids because you get the added benefit of the binaural effect and hearing the phone conversation from both ears.

If your hearing aid supports it, try the mixed t-coil and regular hearing setting because normally the t-coil only setting blocks out all local noise and this can be dangerous while driving or in other situations.
posted by emjay at 6:41 AM on January 19, 2010

Seconding emjay's suggestion of the neckloop. Assuming your hearing aid doesn't have direct Bluetooth compatibility (some do; I wear Oticon Epoqs that have this) then a neckloop is the best way to get your hearing aid to pick up sound directly from the cell phone.

An alternative is to get a Direct Audio Input (DAI) boot for your hearing aid. This is the extra addition often seen on hearing aids that connect to FM systems; some exist that will allow any standard headphone plug, so you could use a patch cord to connect a DAI boot (aka shoe) to your phone.
posted by etoile at 9:03 PM on January 23, 2010

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