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An evaluation of the performance of two binaural beamformers in complex and dynamic multitalker environments.
Int J Audiol. 2015; 54(10):727-35.IJ

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

Binaural beamformers are super-directional hearing aids created by combining microphone outputs from each side of the head. While they offer substantial improvements in SNR over conventional directional hearing aids, the benefits (and possible limitations) of these devices in realistic, complex listening situations have not yet been fully explored. In this study we evaluated the performance of two experimental binaural beamformers.

DESIGN

Testing was carried out using a horizontal loudspeaker array. Background noise was created using recorded conversations. Performance measures included speech intelligibility, localization in noise, acceptable noise level, subjective ratings, and a novel dynamic speech intelligibility measure.

STUDY SAMPLE

Participants were 27 listeners with bilateral hearing loss, fitted with BTE prototypes that could be switched between conventional directional or binaural beamformer microphone modes.

RESULTS

Relative to the conventional directional microphones, both binaural beamformer modes were generally superior for tasks involving fixed frontal targets, but not always for situations involving dynamic target locations.

CONCLUSIONS

Binaural beamformers show promise for enhancing listening in complex situations when the location of the source of interest is predictable.

Authors+Show Affiliations

a * National Acoustic Laboratories, Australian Hearing Hub, Macquarie University , Australia. b Department of Speech , Language and Hearing Sciences, Boston University , Boston , USA.a * National Acoustic Laboratories, Australian Hearing Hub, Macquarie University , Australia. c The HEARing Cooperative Research Centre , Carlton , Australia.a * National Acoustic Laboratories, Australian Hearing Hub, Macquarie University , Australia.c The HEARing Cooperative Research Centre , Carlton , Australia. d The University of Melbourne , Parkville , Australia.a * National Acoustic Laboratories, Australian Hearing Hub, Macquarie University , Australia. c The HEARing Cooperative Research Centre , Carlton , Australia.

Pub Type(s)

Evaluation Study
Journal Article
Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

Language

eng

PubMed ID

26140298

Citation

Best, Virginia, et al. "An Evaluation of the Performance of Two Binaural Beamformers in Complex and Dynamic Multitalker Environments." International Journal of Audiology, vol. 54, no. 10, 2015, pp. 727-35.
Best V, Mejia J, Freeston K, et al. An evaluation of the performance of two binaural beamformers in complex and dynamic multitalker environments. Int J Audiol. 2015;54(10):727-35.
Best, V., Mejia, J., Freeston, K., van Hoesel, R. J., & Dillon, H. (2015). An evaluation of the performance of two binaural beamformers in complex and dynamic multitalker environments. International Journal of Audiology, 54(10), 727-35. https://doi.org/10.3109/14992027.2015.1059502
Best V, et al. An Evaluation of the Performance of Two Binaural Beamformers in Complex and Dynamic Multitalker Environments. Int J Audiol. 2015;54(10):727-35. PubMed PMID: 26140298.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - An evaluation of the performance of two binaural beamformers in complex and dynamic multitalker environments. AU - Best,Virginia, AU - Mejia,Jorge, AU - Freeston,Katrina, AU - van Hoesel,Richard J, AU - Dillon,Harvey, Y1 - 2015/07/03/ PY - 2015/7/4/entrez PY - 2015/7/4/pubmed PY - 2016/6/30/medline KW - Binaural beamformers KW - directional hearing aids KW - dynamic environments SP - 727 EP - 35 JF - International journal of audiology JO - Int J Audiol VL - 54 IS - 10 N2 - OBJECTIVE: Binaural beamformers are super-directional hearing aids created by combining microphone outputs from each side of the head. While they offer substantial improvements in SNR over conventional directional hearing aids, the benefits (and possible limitations) of these devices in realistic, complex listening situations have not yet been fully explored. In this study we evaluated the performance of two experimental binaural beamformers. DESIGN: Testing was carried out using a horizontal loudspeaker array. Background noise was created using recorded conversations. Performance measures included speech intelligibility, localization in noise, acceptable noise level, subjective ratings, and a novel dynamic speech intelligibility measure. STUDY SAMPLE: Participants were 27 listeners with bilateral hearing loss, fitted with BTE prototypes that could be switched between conventional directional or binaural beamformer microphone modes. RESULTS: Relative to the conventional directional microphones, both binaural beamformer modes were generally superior for tasks involving fixed frontal targets, but not always for situations involving dynamic target locations. CONCLUSIONS: Binaural beamformers show promise for enhancing listening in complex situations when the location of the source of interest is predictable. SN - 1708-8186 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/26140298/An_evaluation_of_the_performance_of_two_binaural_beamformers_in_complex_and_dynamic_multitalker_environments_ L2 - https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.3109/14992027.2015.1059502 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -