EP2247119A1 - Device for acoustic analysis of a hearing aid and analysis method - Google Patents

Device for acoustic analysis of a hearing aid and analysis method Download PDF

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Publication number
EP2247119A1
EP2247119A1 EP10160033A EP10160033A EP2247119A1 EP 2247119 A1 EP2247119 A1 EP 2247119A1 EP 10160033 A EP10160033 A EP 10160033A EP 10160033 A EP10160033 A EP 10160033A EP 2247119 A1 EP2247119 A1 EP 2247119A1
Authority
EP
European Patent Office
Prior art keywords
hearing
device
hearing device
sound
analysis
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Withdrawn
Application number
EP10160033A
Other languages
German (de)
French (fr)
Inventor
Li Nah Chua
Tze Peng Chua
Harald Klemenz
Eng Cheong Lim
Pei Chyi Kristy Lim
Nisha Shakila Ma
Boon Lan Ng
Yong Kiat Ng
Diana Schmidt
Yen Ling Elaine Tham
Current Assignee (The listed assignees may be inaccurate. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy of the list.)
Sivantos Pte Ltd
Original Assignee
Sivantos Pte Ltd
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date
Priority to DE102009018994 priority Critical
Application filed by Sivantos Pte Ltd filed Critical Sivantos Pte Ltd
Publication of EP2247119A1 publication Critical patent/EP2247119A1/en
Application status is Withdrawn legal-status Critical

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Classifications

    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04RLOUDSPEAKERS, MICROPHONES, GRAMOPHONE PICK-UPS OR LIKE ACOUSTIC ELECTROMECHANICAL TRANSDUCERS; DEAF-AID SETS; PUBLIC ADDRESS SYSTEMS
    • H04R1/00Details of transducers, loudspeakers or microphones
    • H04R1/10Earpieces; Attachments therefor ; Earphones; Monophonic headphones
    • H04R1/1058Manufacture or assembly
    • H04R1/1066Constructional aspects of the interconnection between earpiece and earpiece support
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04RLOUDSPEAKERS, MICROPHONES, GRAMOPHONE PICK-UPS OR LIKE ACOUSTIC ELECTROMECHANICAL TRANSDUCERS; DEAF-AID SETS; PUBLIC ADDRESS SYSTEMS
    • H04R1/00Details of transducers, loudspeakers or microphones
    • H04R1/10Earpieces; Attachments therefor ; Earphones; Monophonic headphones
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04RLOUDSPEAKERS, MICROPHONES, GRAMOPHONE PICK-UPS OR LIKE ACOUSTIC ELECTROMECHANICAL TRANSDUCERS; DEAF-AID SETS; PUBLIC ADDRESS SYSTEMS
    • H04R25/00Deaf-aid sets, i.e. electro-acoustic or electro-mechanical hearing aids; Electric tinnitus maskers providing an auditory perception
    • H04R25/30Monitoring or testing of hearing aids, e.g. functioning, settings, battery power
    • H04R25/305Self-monitoring or self-testing
    • HELECTRICITY
    • H04ELECTRIC COMMUNICATION TECHNIQUE
    • H04RLOUDSPEAKERS, MICROPHONES, GRAMOPHONE PICK-UPS OR LIKE ACOUSTIC ELECTROMECHANICAL TRANSDUCERS; DEAF-AID SETS; PUBLIC ADDRESS SYSTEMS
    • H04R25/00Deaf-aid sets, i.e. electro-acoustic or electro-mechanical hearing aids; Electric tinnitus maskers providing an auditory perception
    • H04R25/55Deaf-aid sets, i.e. electro-acoustic or electro-mechanical hearing aids; Electric tinnitus maskers providing an auditory perception using an external connection, either wireless or wired
    • H04R25/552Binaural

Abstract

Hearing devices and in particular hearing aids should be easily checked by a user. For this purpose, an acoustic analysis device is provided which comprises a first hearing device (10) which has a first sound input (11) and a first sound output (12) and a second sound device (20) which has a second sound input (21) and a second sound input second sound output (22) has. The first hearing device (10) is acoustically in communication with the second hearing device (20). With the first hearing device (10), the acoustic connection can be analyzed and a corresponding result can be output. Thus, for example, two hearing aids can test each other without the hearing aid wearer having to go to the A-kiker for the test.

Description

    description
  • Device for acoustically analyzing a hearing device and analysis method
  • The present invention relates to a device for acoustically analyzing a hearing device. Moreover, the present invention relates to a corresponding method for analyzing a hearing device.
  • The term "hearing device" is understood here to mean any sound-emitting device which can be worn on or in the ear or on the head, in particular a hearing device, a headset, headphones and the like.
  • Hearing aids are portable hearing aids that are used to care for the hearing impaired. In order to meet the numerous individual needs, different types of hearing aids such as behind-the-ear hearing aids (BTE), hearing aid with external receiver (RIC: receiver in the canal) and in-the-ear hearing aids (IDO), e.g. Concha hearing aids or canal hearing aids (ITE, CIC). The hearing aids listed by way of example are worn on the outer ear or in the ear canal. In addition, bone conduction hearing aids, implantable or vibrotactile hearing aids are also available on the market. The stimulation of the damaged hearing takes place either mechanically or electrically.
  • Hearing aids have in principle as essential components an input transducer, an amplifier and an output transducer. The input transducer is usually a sound receiver, z. As a microphone, and / or an electromagnetic receiver, for. B. an induction coil. The output transducer is usually used as an electroacoustic transducer, z. As miniature speaker, or as an electromechanical transducer, z. B. bone conduction, realized. The amplifier is usually integrated in a signal processing unit. This basic structure is in FIG. 1 using the example of a behind-the-ear hearing aid shown. In a hearing aid housing 1 for carrying behind the ear, one or more microphones 2 for receiving the sound from the environment are installed. A signal processing unit 3, which is also integrated in the hearing aid housing 1, processes the microphone signals and amplifies them. The output signal of the signal processing unit 3 is transmitted to a loudspeaker or earpiece 4, which outputs an acoustic signal. The sound is optionally transmitted via a sound tube, which is fixed with an earmold in the ear canal, to the eardrum of the device carrier. The power supply of the hearing device and in particular the signal processing unit 3 is effected by a likewise integrated into the hearing aid housing 1 battery. 5
  • Hearing aids are to be routinely examined from time to time for any defects in the event of a fault. Examinations can be performed either by the user or by an acoustician. However, in many cases matching equipment is not available, in particular for hearing aids in pediatric care. Also fast self-tests are not possible or not accurate.
  • Currently, the user is responsible for certain analyzes, such. B. the functionality of microphones or listeners regarding, no measurement options available. The user therefore has to visit an acoustician in case of suspected fault to check the hearing aid.
  • The object of the present invention is therefore to provide the user of a hearing device with an analysis option for detecting errors.
  • According to the invention, this object is achieved by a device for acoustically analyzing a hearing device comprising a first hearing device having a first sound input and a first sound output, and a second hearing device having a second sound input and a second sound output, wherein the first hearing device is acoustically in communication with the second hearing and with the first hearing the acoustic connection can be analyzed and a corresponding result can be output.
  • Furthermore, the invention provides a method for acoustically analyzing a hearing device by acoustically co-operating a first hearing device with a second hearing device, analyzing the interaction with the first hearing device or with a separate analysis device and outputting an analysis result from the first hearing device.
  • Advantageously, it is possible with the device according to the invention or the method according to the invention that a hearing device is checked acoustically from another hearing device. In particular, for example, the two hearing aids for a binaural care can test themselves. Specifically, such a hearing aid wearer can check for himself whether the microphones and earphones of his hearing aids are fully functional.
  • According to a first embodiment, the two hearing devices can communicate acoustically with one another by means of a tube system, wherein each of the first sound input, the second sound input, the first sound output and the second sound output is respectively arranged at one end of a separate tube of the pipe system. Here, a "separate tube" is to be understood as part of the tube system. Ie. separate tubes can also be interconnected. Through this tube system necessary for the analysis test sounds are selectively transported from the sound outputs to the sound inputs of the hearing. An external influence can thus largely be prevented.
  • According to a development, the other ends of the separate tubes, as already indicated, are connected to one another. In particular, the separate tubes can converge in a star shape in one point. This can also be interference the sound signals of both sound outputs are generated and measured.
  • In addition, at the other ends of the separate tubes, a multi-way switch may be arranged, via which the tubes can be selectively connected to each other in pairs, three or four. This may allow for more specific testing.
  • According to an alternative embodiment, the analysis device has a closed container in which the first and the second hearing device are inserted, so that the two hearing devices acoustically communicate with each other by direct mutual sounding and / or by reflections on the walls of the container. This also allows test sounds to be sent back and forth largely unaffected by the external environment between the hearing devices, or interferences can be observed.
  • According to a further embodiment, the two hearing devices may be in electromagnetic communication with each other for the purpose of analysis. As a result, for example, the analysis can be automatically initiated and synchronized by the two hearing devices.
  • Furthermore, the first hearing device may be able to analyze an acoustic signal with regard to levels, oscillations, beats and / or interferences. This can be relatively secure information about the functioning of microphones and listeners of the hearing to win.
  • Furthermore, the first hearing device can have a signal generator for generating a test sound. This can be advantageously integrated into a hybrid circuit of a hearing device or a hearing aid. In addition, the (to be analyzed) second hearing device may be able to output a recorded test sound with unchanged frequency amplified. Output signals with frequency changes then indicate corresponding processing errors.
  • In a further preferred embodiment, the result of the analysis from the first hearing device to a remote control can be transmitted and reproduced with the remote control. As a result, for example, a hearing aid wearer can comfortably determine whether one of his hearing aids is defective.
  • In a special embodiment, the first hearing device may be identical to the second hearing device. Then, this provides a hearing device, for example via a tube or in a container by reflection from its sound output a test sound to its sound input. Thus, the hearing device or the hearing aid itself can test acoustically.
  • According to a further embodiment, a chip can be connected to the first hearing device, which causes the first hearing device to analyze the second hearing device according to test data stored on the chip. The chip can also initiate the analysis itself. This makes it possible that complicated analyzes can be carried out, for example, with hearing aids, without corresponding comprehensive data having to be stored on the hearing aid-internal chips or signal processing units.
  • According to an alternative embodiment, the device according to the invention has an analysis device separate from the first and the second hearing device, with which the analysis of the acoustic connection can be carried out instead of the first hearing device. This analysis device can be integrated in a case or a remote control. It may also be advantageous that the analysis device analyzes an interference of the output sound of both hearing devices. This makes it easy to detect minimal differences between the two hearing aids.
  • The present invention will be further explained with reference to the accompanying drawings, in which:
  • FIG. 1
    the basic structure of a hearing aid according to the prior art;
    FIG. 2
    an analysis system with two hearing aids according to a first embodiment and
    FIG. 3
    an analysis system with two hearing aids according to a second embodiment.
  • The embodiments described in more detail below represent preferred embodiments of the present invention.
  • The following examples show the analysis of hearing devices based on hearing aids, in particular of two hearing aids for binaural care (left hearing aid and right hearing aid). The analysis is performed either by a hearing aid, both hearing aids or by a simple separate analyzer. In this case, the output sound of a hearing aid, the input signal of a hearing aid or the interaction of the output sound of two hearing aids (interference) can be examined with a variety of methods. In particular, the signals can be examined with regard to levels, oscillations, beats, interferences, sound pressures, settling times, decay times and the like.
  • In the following example, the interferences of the output sound of two hearing aids are examined. For this purpose, a test setup according to FIG. 2 , A first hearing device 10 is used for analyzing or measuring a second hearing device 20. The first hearing device 10 has two microphones 11 and a receiver 12 here. The second hearing device 20 likewise has two microphones 21 and a receiver 22. The sound inputs and the sound outputs of both hearing aids 10, 20 are connected to each other via a tube system 30. The tube system 30 has in this case four individual tubes L 11, L 12, L 21 and L 22nd All tubes are connected here at a common crossing point 31 with each other. This intersection point 31 is in FIG. 2 enlarged in a detailed view. The respective free ends of the tubes are connected to a sound input or a sound output of one of the two hearing aids. Thus, the free end of the tube L 11 is preferably acoustically tightly connected to the microphones 11 of the first hearing device 10. The tube L 12 is connected to the sound outlet on the support hook of the hearing aid 10. In the same way, the tube L 21 is connected to the microphones 21 of the second hearing device 20 and the tube L 22 is connected to the sound outlet on the carrying hook of the second hearing device 20.
  • Each of the two hearing aids 10, 20 also has a computer interface 13 or 23, via the test signals or test programs can be entered into the respective hearing aid. In addition, here each of the two hearing aids 10, 20 has a chip 14 or 24 to store or generate test signals. If appropriate, such a chip in the manner of a dongle can also be connected to one or both hearing aids 10, 20 in order to carry out or initiate the test.
  • As the double arrow 40 indicates, both hearing aids 10, 20 are wirelessly in communication connection. Furthermore, an additional analysis device 50 may be provided if the hearing aids 10, 20 do not perform the tests alone or not. In the present case, the analysis device 50 picks up signals at the intersection point 31 with a sensor. Not only can sound levels or sound pressures be measured at the point of intersection 31 of the tube system, but also interferences and the like can be detected.
  • In the following concrete example, interferences are measured. One of the two hearing aids, z. B. first hearing aid 10, serves as a reference and should check the status of the components of the second hearing aid 20. The chip 14 serves as a signal source for the test sound. So that the second hearing device 20 emits a corresponding test sound, a corresponding signal is transmitted from the first hearing device 10 to the second hearing device 20 via the wireless connection 40. The chip 14 can also perform an entire test program and control the first hearing aid 10 and the second hearing aid 20 via the wireless connection 40 accordingly. The first hearing aid 10 thus serves as a master hearing aid for the analysis. The analysis results are presented to the user, for example via the analysis device 50 or another display device. For this purpose, for example, a case of the hearing aids can be used with a corresponding display unit or a remote control of the hearing aids. Depending on whether one of the hearing aids 10, 20 or the further analysis unit 50 has collected analysis results, the respective unit transmits these analysis results for further processing or output to one of the said playback devices, if necessary.
  • Specifically, the second hearing aid 20 can be tested by the first hearing aid 10 with a sound signal of a predetermined programmed frequency. This sound signal is output by the handset 12 of the first hearing device 10 and passed via the tubes L 12 and L 21 to the microphones 21 of the second hearing device 20. The second hearing aid 20 picks up the test sound of the specific frequency through its microphones and sends back a sound signal having the same frequency. This is done with his handset 22 via the tubes L 22 and L 11 to the microphones 11 of the first hearing aid 10. This loop can ensure that the second hearing aid 20 is working correctly. If a difference of the output sound of both hearing aids 10, 20 occurs, this is a sign that with high probability the second hearing aid 20 is defective.
  • According to a further embodiment, other sound quantities can also be analyzed for the analysis. For the hearing aids as in the example of FIG. 2 be connected to each other via the tube system 30. Alternatively, the two hearing aids but also in a closed container, for. As the container of a charger to be examined. Such a container 60 is in FIG. 3 shown schematically. The two hearing aids 10 and 20 are located in the container 60. The sound signals 61 emitted by the hearing aid 10 are reflected on the walls of the container 60. This produces reflected signals 62. These emitted signals 61 and reflected signals 62 are used for the analysis. In principle, a single hearing aid can thus test itself in the container 60.
  • A concrete analysis can then be carried out such that initially the first hearing device 10 emits a test signal at its sound output, which is recorded by the second hearing device 20 with the aid of its microphones 21. The second hearing aid 20 can check its two microphones 21 separately. If both microphones of the second hearing device 20 do not generate a signal, the first hearing device 10 can test the signal using its own microphones 11. In the event that no signal is received then, the probability is high that the listener of the first hearing aid 10 is defective. The result can be wirelessly transmitted, for example, to a remote control 70, for example, to graph it.
  • For the other case that a signal is measured, but this signal deviates from a conventional signal, a statement about the measuring device in which the hearing aids are integrated can also be made. For example, the container 60 is then not completely closed or it is a microphone or the handset clogged. If only high signal components reach the microphones, but the low signal components are lost, the probability that the test container 60 or the tubes of the tube system 30 is high have a small hole or are not completely closed. In the other case, that low-frequency signal components reach the microphones and higher frequencies are lost, the likelihood is high that the handset or the microphones are defective or clogged.
  • According to a further embodiment, the following measurement procedure can be carried out to determine a defective microphone (Mic) or a defective receiver, wherein sound levels are measured:
  1. 1. The output signal of the first hearing device 10 is measured with Mic1 of the second hearing device 20. Should the measurement be erroneous, the handset of the first hearing aid 10 or the Mic1 of the second hearing aid 20 may be defective.
  2. 2. The output signal of the first hearing device 10 is measured with Mic2 of the second hearing device 20. Should the measurement be erroneous, the probability that the listener of the first hearing device 10 is defective is greater.
  3. 3. The output signal of the first hearing device 10 is measured with Mic1 of the first hearing device 10. If the measurement is faulty, the handset (depending on the previous measurements and the distribution of the defect probabilities of the individual components) is defective, for example with a probability of 25%.
  4. 4. The output signal of the first hearing device 10 is measured with Mic2 of the first hearing device 10. If the measurement is faulty, for example, the handset is defective with a probability of 20%.
  5. 5. The output signal of the second hearing device 20 is measured with Mic1 of the second hearing device 20. If the measurement is erroneous, the handset of the second hearing device 20 or the Mic1 of the second hearing aid 20 may be defective.
  6. 6. Usw
  • If all measurements are compared with expected values using cross calculations and probability measurements, a defective component or a malfunction can be determined after a series of measurements with a high probability.
  • The individual tests can also be varied by the fact that the hearing aids are acoustically different to the one used in the analysis FIG. 2 be coupled. For example, a multipath switch could be installed in the node 31, connecting in any way the tubes L 11 , L 12 , L 21 and L 22 together. For example, the tubes may optionally be interconnected in groups of two, three or four tubes.
  • Claims (16)

    1. Device for acoustically analyzing a hearing device,
      marked by
      - A first hearing device (10) having a first sound input (11) and a first sound output (12), and
      - A second hearing device (20) having a second sound input (21) and a second sound output (22), wherein
      - The first hearing device (10) with the second hearing device (20) acoustically in communication and
      - With the first hearing device (10), the acoustic connection can be analyzed and a corresponding result can be output.
    2. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein the two hearing devices (10, 20) communicate with each other through a tube system (30), each of the first sound input (11), the second sound input (21), the first sound output (12) and the second sound Sound outlet (22) respectively at one end of a separate tube (L 11 , L 12 , L 21 , L 22 ) of the tube system (30) is arranged.
    3. An apparatus according to claim 2, wherein the other ends of said separate tubes (L 11 , L 12 , L 21 , L 22 ) communicate with each other.
    4. Apparatus according to claim 2, wherein at the other ends of the separate tubes (L 11 , L 12 , L 21 , L 22 ) a multi-way switch is arranged, over which they can be selectively connected in pairs, three or four with each other.
    5. Device according to claim 1, comprising a closed container (60) in which the first and the second hearing devices (10, 20) are inserted, so that the two hearing devices by direct mutual sounding (61) and / or acoustically communicate with each other via reflections (62) on the walls of the container (60).
    6. Device according to one of the preceding claims, wherein to the first hearing device (10) a chip (14) is plugged in, which causes the first hearing device (10) to analyze the second hearing device (20) according to stored on the chip test data.
    7. Device according to one of the preceding claims, wherein the first hearing device (10) is able to analyze an acoustic signal with regard to levels, oscillations, beats and / or interference.
    8. Device according to one of the preceding claims, comprising an analysis device (50) separate from the first and second hearing devices (10, 20), with which the analysis of the acoustic connection can be carried out instead of the first hearing device (10).
    9. Apparatus according to claim 8, wherein interference of the output sound of both hearing devices (10, 20) is analyzable by the analysis means (50).
    10. Device according to one of the preceding claims, wherein the result of the analysis of the first hearing device (10) to a remote control (70) transferable and reproducible with the remote control (70).
    11. The device of claim 1, wherein the first hearing device (10) is identical to the second hearing device (20).
    12. A method for acoustically analyzing a hearing device
      marked by
      acoustic interaction of a first hearing device (10) with a second hearing device (20),
      Analyzing the interaction with the first hearing device (10) or with a separate analysis device (50) and
      Outputting an analysis result from the first hearing device (10).
    13. The method of claim 12, wherein the two hearing devices (10, 20) communicate with each other through a tube system (30).
    14. The method of claim 12, wherein the two hearing devices (10, 20) are housed in a closed container (60) and acoustically communicate with each other by direct mutual exposure (61) and / or reflections (62) on the walls of the container (60) ,
    15. Method according to one of claims 12 to 14, wherein for analyzing a chip (14) to the first hearing device (10) is infected, which initiates the analysis and / or provides test data for analysis.
    16. Method according to one of claims 12 to 15, wherein output sound of both hearing devices (10, 20) cooperate and an interference of both output sound is analyzed.
    EP10160033A 2009-04-27 2010-04-15 Device for acoustic analysis of a hearing aid and analysis method Withdrawn EP2247119A1 (en)

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    DE102009018994 2009-04-27

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