When the TV entertains the whole house



Just then, things get dramatic in the film: the hero of the story finally confesses to his beloved that he... but why doesn't he speak more clearly? He can hardly be understood from the TV armchair. Then the rubbish truck drives by on the street outside - and all suspense is gone.

Why can't the sound be as clear as if the performers were in the room? Why does everything sound so flat and so difficult to distinguish? The times when you instinctively moved closer to the TV when it was important should really belong to the past. And quite honestly, simply turning up the sound is no solution either. The noise is no fun, and the actors are not really easier to understand.

TV sound is often poor

The prerequisite for the best functioning social programme is that we can enjoy it with our senses awake. After all, if our hearing is impaired, cosy TV evenings quickly become a continuing nuisance. Especially on Sundays - viewers are annoyed by the sound in "Tatort" and "Polizeinotruf". But even the favourite TV series or the latest action film can have bad sound if the music and environmental noises are much too loud and the dialogue too quiet. The viewer then only understands what is going on.

More complex is not necessarily better

Sound design for films is a complex texture of music, atmospheres, effects, special effects, action sounds and speech. And today's television sound is hardly comparable to that of earlier times. The era of 5.1 home cinema, the aim is to give the viewer the most impressive cinema experience possible on the television set at home. Loud music and spectacular sound effects are part of this, which quickly push televisions with "normal" sound output to their limits and makes listening exhausting.

New techniques in film production, but also the ultra-flat design of modern equipment, lead to a deterioration of speech intelligibility. Good sound needs space. This is hardly given in flat devices with the corresponding loudspeakers. The result: dialogue is more difficult to understand today than ever before.

All the more so when hearing is also deteriorating.

Reason No. 1 for visiting hearing care professionals

Intact hearing is important for social interaction. While our loved ones adjust to an incipient hearing loss, e.g. by simply speaking a little louder, the TV does not. The TV set thus acts as a "truth machine": in front of it, we have to admit to ourselves for the first time that something is wrong with our ears.

It is a fact that not being able to understand the TV is the main reason why people consult an ENT specialist or go straight to an audiologist.

As far as speech intelligibility on television is concerned, this step can now be postponed until later. Because technical innovation solves the issue in its own, elegant way.

Hearing deteriorates

That our hearing deteriorates over time is all too human. We lose the ability to filter out spoken words from distracting noises. We often still hear well, but the typical TV mix of dialogue, music and background noise takes us to our limits.

An intact ear perceives both very low (from 16 hertz) and very high (up to 20 kilohertz) sounds. Sounds with very different sound levels can be perceived, from the dropping of a pin to the take-off of a jet plane. The lower limit of the hearing range is called the hearing threshold, the upper limit the pain threshold. The hearing range that is important for speech and music is approximately between 50 hertz and 4 kilohertz.

Hearing impairment / hearing threshold shift

With increasing age, hearing becomes weaker. Especially the high and at the same time soft tones are no longer heard. This process is called a hearing threshold shift. In the case of hearing threshold shifts, it is mainly sounds in the range of 4 kilohertz that are affected. In speech, these are mainly sibilants, and in music, the overtones that are important for sound quality. With the age-related hearing threshold shift, this can lead to serious impairments in speech understanding.

With OSKAR, TV dialogues become good entertainment again


How nice it would be now if you could be acoustically in the middle of it instead of just being there. And that's exactly what you can do - with the help of OSKAR, a real innovation. The handy and user-friendly device has the technology to transmit every sound, no matter how quiet, to the couch, but also to the next room or bathroom, as if it were being spoken "live" there. Crystal clear. Ambient noise is filtered out, voices are optimised. You suddenly understand every word again. Even if you wear a hearing aid!

With OSKAR, your TV finally speaks plain language again at normal volume. That makes your partner and the neighbours happy.

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