Do any hearing aids work in a restaurant with background noise


Maybe something even better, more portable than a tripod for holding expensive remote microphones above the dining fray perceptively called out as a potential problem by @1Bluejay. How about a completely foldable phone stand? My wife got one to give her 97-year old father, I’ve been looking for a spare phone stand myself, and said, “Man! That one is NICE!” The stand is very sturdy and both the base and phone holder can be folded flat on the back for travel OR, if you were going to use it to hold a remote microphone up above gravy level on the table, the phone holder can be folded perfectly horizontal and would let the bottom of the mic stand ~5 inches (130 mm) above the table . If the mic has a clip, that could be used to secure it to the stand or perhaps the right size and thickness rubber band would do the trick equally as well. BTW, in spite of the product name, it does work with Android and Windows devices, too! <<<just kidding>>>


Everyone’s hearing loss is different so for someone to suggest that a particular product works great for them, that means them only and not you. There is no way anyone can advise on any particular aid that is going to work for you, guaranteed. You have to try one and then another and again another to make a comparison in order to find which one works best for you. My Widex Unique 330’s RIC aids have improved my overall hearing and it was amazing to hear the things I couldn’t hear without them like being able to hear our kitchen wall clock ticking away. I can hear birds chirping in the distance outside, etc, but when it comes to someone talking in a noisy restaurant, I still have trouble. I hear them talking but not clear enough to make out all their words clearly but still… a tremendous improvement. I have no complaints really. I’m happy enough just to be able to hear the things in life I missed.


I have a pair of old Resound Vivid HA’s from Costco that were set up by a HIS at Costco who wears HA’s and when in a noisy restaurant and I click it on to restaurant the noise in the background disappears and all I hear are the people at the next table and those at my table. Truly amazing.


Don’t know how wide spread the chain restaurant Chili’s is but I would suggest that if anyone really wants to put their HA’s to a test, go to a Chili’s as the ultimate NOISY RESTAURANT TEST. Everything is very bare. Lots of hard surfaces, tiled walls, sports bar with TV’s blaring away on multiple channels. And the place is usually crowded with lots of people talking up a storm. My wife’s comment was that it’s very hard for a person with even normal hearing to have a conversation in our Chili’s. We went there on Saturday night to test my ReSound Quattro 9 61’s. I used the Restaurant setting. The Noise Reduction option under the Restaurant setting introduced too much of a quaver into the sound of my wife’s voice and other sounds. The Speech Focus option in my limited experimentation worked the best for me set to a Narrow straight ahead focus. Chili’s is so noisy that unlike @seb’s experience with his ReSound Vivid’s, all the other noise did not disappear but I’d say I was able to hear the wife about as well as she could hear me (her hearing is pretty good). On the good side of Speech Focus, I could still hear sounds off to the side, like the waiter coming to ask how we were doing, and I did not perceive any Sound Wall effect at all with the Quattro’s (I have open domes and reasonably decent low-frequency hearing, so that helps avoid a Sound Wall effect but also helps me still hear lots of noise bypassing my HA processing). The wife is not keen on me getting a Multi-Mic or a Roger Select but my feeling is that to handle a restaurant with the noise level of a Chili’s I’m going to need a remote mic to help me out. For people like me with open domes and reasonable low to mid frequency hearing, a mic would help amplify the conversation that I want to hear that much more over the noise because it would be so much closer to the desired source than I can get my HA’s.


Another good restaurant to try is the Cheese Cake Factory. They have tall ceiling and a lot of reverb mixed in with the noise as a result of this.


And I like the food there, too! Next stop with wife!


I don’t understand this. I’ve encountered this attitude before where for some reason it’s the WIFE who does not want to wear a microphone. I find it a bit infuriating. Can you imagine if someone needed cruches and their wife was like, “Oh no, I don’t want you to use those. They are unattractive.”


Yes, Cheesecake Factory is the acid test!


One thing that I’ve found in noisy restaurants and having good lower frequency hearing is to decrease the overall volume. I have my speech in noise program set up with lower gain than my regular program. The noise is just so overbearing that decreasing the overall level lets me focus better.


I am discouraged about a number of things in connection with my new (first) hearing aids (ReSound Quattros). And hearing in noisy situations, like restaurants, parties, lecture halls, are some of the biggies. (Also, my hearing in cars.) One-on-one or in small groups, I can hear speech much more clearly. I don’t miss the start of words anymore. But in just about EVERY other situation, I can hear better without my hearing aids. This, coupled with the fact that 8 weeks in I continue to have comfort issues (domes slipping forward in the ear canal and no one seems to be able to adjust my glasses to work well with the aids), is very disheartening. I am planning on keeping plugging along–but it’s not been the “journey” I hoped for.


I wonder whether it would be worth a trip to an optical store to try different styles of frames to see if any others would interact better with your HA’s? I decided that it works better for me to put my glasses on after my HA’s as the frames on top of the wires with the HA’s between my ears and the frames makes everything very locked in place. I find my wires perhaps a bit too short but I wonder if the exact way your wires are shaped could help keep your domes where they should be. Since I’m an ignorant newbie, there are probably lots of other folks around here with decades of HA experience who could offer you better advice.

On the visit to the optical store, I guess you’re likely to find like I do, even if you found a set of frames that worked better, “I’m sorry. Your current lenses no longer fit any of the glasses frames that we currently carry…” Something like that happens all the time to me when I want to keep my current set of frames but get new lenses, I’m warned if the old, reused frames give out in my next go-around, that none of the frames in stock will hold lenses cut to fit my old beloved frames and I’ll be SOL.


Thanks so much for the input. I’ve had the temples of my current glasses adjusted twice at the optician’s. Currently the new arrangement is that they are hugging my head instead of my ears. Better for hearing. Except they bounce some now and hit my HAs. Worse for seeing because they wiggle some and are triple progressives. But I think you’re right that I am going to need new frames. Likely wire frames instead of the plastic that I have now. I’m waiting on an eye doctor appointment to see if I need a new prescription as well. It’s all starting to wear me out. (Apologies for hijacking the thread. On topic, I’m not faring very well in restaurants either.)


I erred in saying my frames cross on top of my wires (that’s what I thought was happening when I plopped the glasses down on top of them). The wires go between my ears and the frames but the audi made the wires so short and told me to keep the HA’s close to the top of my ear “crevice” that the relative tautness of the wires holds the HA’s down in the slight “crevice” between the inside of my ears and the ends of my frames behind the ear. - We can claim to not be hijacking the thread as this is about how to wear one’s HA’s in a restaurant to better be able to hear all the noise while being comfy at the same time!


JIm, I had the same problem when wearing sunglasses the HA would sit up high on my ear with a 2 receiver wire … I had my audi change it out to a 3 receiver wire and the problem went away… HA now sits lower


The Multi-mic is pretty awesome. With it, you will hear your wife better than she can hear you. It also works with telecoil loop equipped theaters, has a europin receptacle, and a 3.5mm stereo input.


I think the two things that affect her are the total bill that I’m running up - I’ve let her know that maybe I’d like a TV streamer, too! - and the fact that she really can’t put on my HA’s and try something like the Multi-Mic or the TV streamer and appreciate directly how helpful it might be. OTH, when we’re both at the same spot in the gym and the treadmills are whining away and the punching bags are being pounded to smithereens and she can barely hear her own podcast in her ears, she appreciates directly the value that gun muffs or noise-canceling headphones might have. She’s been very supportive of getting the HA’s themselves but she questions how far true need goes and where just fun toys begins - and I don’t blame her for the total cost outlay.

Thanks for the tip! Seeing such positive comments on remote mics really reassures me that the extra cost will be worth it.


Thanks for the tip. I’m very happy with the position of the HA’s. I think a longer wire might be better just for being able to take a more contoured, circuitous route to my ear canal.

I was actually suggesting to Noreen that maybe her difficulties were caused in part by the HA’s sitting too far back from the top of the ear (her hearing dislikes) and the domes getting dislodged by not enough tension between the wire in the ear canal and the fitting of the wire around the ear to keep things in place.

The wire and the tip of the HA at the top of my ear essentially point parallel to the line of the glasses frame. I know pressure of the glasses frame on the HA, slightly pressing it against the inside of my ear helps keep it in place because if I take my glasses off and rapidly move my head from side to side, I can hear a slight rustling sound of the HA moving against my hair but I can’t create the same sound wearing my glasses even violently shaking my head left to right or up and down.

The ReSound manual says to position an HA at the top of an ear - but has a lousy, unclear line drawing illustrating placement. Oticon has a pretty nice video of HA placement and removal with the user having a nice curvaceous wire that fits ear contours beautifully (I’ll have to show my audi the video on my first fitting revisit!!!). Looks like the person in the Oticon video, given the length of the wire up at ear level, puts her HA’s just a tad further back behind her ear than I do. But I love the perception of sound and localization so much with my HA placement, I don’t want to start moving things around too much and ruin it.

BTW, I loved the pithy instruction of my audi on which HA goes where. “All you need to remember,” she said, “is RED is RIGHT!”

How to put on and remove RITE and miniRITE hearing aids | Oticon.


It is worth it. You know, you can catch good deals on these accessories on eBay on occasion. The multi-mic can be had for $225 to $400+ Just be SURE that you get the right accessories. The older line will not work with the newer hearing aid and vice versa.

Right now, the only one I see is about $370


Yeah, you’re definitely into the toy area. Much lower cost options were available that would have quite likely met your hearing needs.


To help Noreen get her placement right, here are two pictures of the Quattro on my left ear, front and back. My ear lobe holds the Quattro in place because if I bend the ear lobe away from my head, a slight tension in the wire makes the HA pop up from my ear and move forward. I wish the wires were longer and didn’t come so straight down but the audi thinks #3’s would be way too long.