I have used both a Roger Pen and a Roger Select in the past and I have been immensely impressed with the devices. They offer an outstanding ability to understand speech in noisy situations and where people are a little distant from you. Phonak has introduced a new Roger device, the Roger On, which takes the best from the Roger Pen and the Roger Select and amalgamates it into one device. The Roger On can be used as a remote microphone, a pointing microphone and finally an intelligent desktop microphone. The device streams its audio direct to many Sonova brand hearing aids, such as the Phonak Marvel and Paradise, The Costco KS9 and 10, and the Unitron Blu. It will also stream to any hearing aids that have a Roger X receiver attached. So, why would you use it? Aren't hearing aids enough? Let's talk speech discrimination, hearing in noise and hearing in the far field.
Why Would You Buy it?
Some people, even if they are wearing the very best hearing aids, just can't understand speech in noisy environments. For the luckier of us, hearing aids are enough to help out, however, if your speech discrimination is heavily impacted by your hearing loss, even the very best hearing aids are going to struggle in noise.
Speech discrimination is key to being able to decipher all the speech cues so that conversation makes sense. In particular, it is crucial to understand speech in noise. Surprisingly though, the level of hearing loss does not necessarily always coincide with speech discrimination ability. Some people with moderate hearing loss have lousy speech discrimination, while others with more severe loss have solid scores.
An understanding of your speech discrimination is important for both you and your professional so that you can make good decisions about hearing aids and the need for ancillary devices. In the recent past, many within the profession have begun to focus on wider solutions to communication needs, as opposed to focusing solely on hearing aids as a one size fits all solution.
To do it, we need to understand a lot about you and your ability to hear. In many cases, professionals have turned to the QuickSIN (Quick Speech In Noise) test to help them understand your discrimination in noise. The results of this test allow a professional to understand what type of technology is most suitable for your needs and whether that solution may include ancillary devices to meet your needs in every situation.
If you need them, there are a variety of different communication accessories for hearing aids, everything from remote mics, phone and TV streamers to intelligent desktop mics. Every hearing aid brand offers them, some more than others. For instance, ReSound has a comprehensive offering for their hearing aids.
When it comes to microphones though, Phonak and their Roger system are recognised as the very best available. That of course is reflected in the price, Roger devices are expensive, so they are a considerable investment on top of a set of hearing aids. In some cases, and for some people, they are worth every penny.
The Roger On
Let's get to the meat of it, Roger On is a remote microphone dedicated for all conversations that occur in background noise and over distance. It gives the users have the flexibility to focus on the conversations that truly matter at work, in lectures and during social activities. Like the Roger Pen, it can be used as a handheld device. Its new Pointing mode 2.0 uses three microphones in a row, instead of the two, used in the Roger Pen™.
The three microphones create different microphone beams that combine to create a very well-defined, zooming beamformer. It allows you to focus on one person talking or in a group conversation when background noise is present. On top of this, it can also be used in a desktop application.
Like the Roger Select, it uses a MultiBeam mode when laid flat on a table. The new MultiBeam 2.0 technology selects the beam with the best SNR (Signal to Noise Ratio) and streams it direct to the hearing aids. It also provides you with spatial information which allows you to understand which direction the speech is coming from.
It is the first Roger microphone that allows for stereo sound. It will switch to stereo sound transmission when a stereo capable receiver, such as a set of two hearing aids with RogerDirect, is paired to it. It also offers you the use of the myRogerMic app, which allows you to steer the microphone, mute and unmute, and more.
Devices like the Roger deliver a better experience for those people who need it. If your speech in noise scores aren't great, or if you attend meetings or conferences for work, well then a Roger device is not a bad investment. It will stream the very best signal possible directly into your ears. It can be the difference between hearing in some situations and not.
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