Establish a personal t-coil loop

Instead of using Bluetooth, you can try using a personal hearing loop plugged in to your laptop. There is no latency. You don’t pair it – just turn on your telecoil. You don’t get “dropped”. And no battery drain.

Can you explain this a bit further? I assume this only works with the K9-T hearing aid (the Telecoil version, which I have). I’m guessing a lot of folks don’t have that version, which came out last year. Also, where can I purchase a personal hearing loop? Can you provide a link or two?

I am happy to give a lot more information, but I confess that I don’t know all the discussion protocols for this site. I will give a brief description and would be very happy to speak with anybody in person and to then follow up via email and to send some pdfs that we have developed. My direct line is 541-434-7002 at The Shedd Institute in Eugene OR. We are a 70,000 sq ft former church that we have converted in to a performance and education center – with different sized hearing loops in our performance halls, meeting/classrooms, ticket office and concessions bars.

Unlike when we put in an elevator and nobody asked us why we did it or how to use it, almost nobody understood loops and telecoils. So we began using the small, portable, counter top loop that we use on the bars as a teaching and practice tool for people who wanted to understand how great hearing with a loop is!

Then it dawned on us that this device should go home with these people so that they can hear everywhere that they need and want to. We added a plug-in microphone for more distanced speakers or the kids in the back seat, and a short cable for patching into a computer for Zoom or longer one for TV etc.

We also have loaned or donated them to area businesses and national HLAA chapters who want to replicate the “loop lending library” idea that our Loop Committee is running. There are two brands that I know of on the market, one of which is available on line. I don’t know if I am allowed to discuss brand names on this submission. The “kit” that we have developed costs $294, plus postage, just to give you a sense of expense. I’d be delighted to send photos and stories of these units in use!

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AMAZON sell them. Type in telecoil neck-loop.

We are talking about the Williams Sound PLA90. It is NOT a neckloop, but rather an 8"x8"x2" unit that sits on a table, for example. Or on a counter behind the Plexiglas.

__ Photos of portable loops in use at businesses and at home.pdf (4.8 MB) Loop Your Life concept for newsletters.pdf (468.4 KB)
I finally figured out how to upload some photographs and a “concept paper” along with some ideas of where to experiment using one of these to “Loop Your Life”. SHEDD Portable Loop Feedback Form.pdf (70.2 KB)

Gralph, Thanks for your informed replies. I appreciate it. I’ve had t-coil equipped aids for a few months now, but haven’t been anywhere to test the functionality–in part because of the pandemic lock-down issues.

I note the Williams device you referenced, and also note neck loops, etc.

This is a subject matter that a number of users on this forum might find useful. However, most won’t find it tucked away under K-9 bluetooth. Would you be interested in moving this conversation to a new posting?

It could, perhaps, be titled something like: Establish a personal t-coil loop. I could create it and post a question, if you’d be willing to provide some of this content.

All the best,


I apologize, folks – I didn’t mean to divert the topic.
Thom: I would be happy to start a new thread.
Could you ask something like this:
I have telecoils in my new hearing aids and am excited to use them, but all the places that have hearing loop assistive listening systems near me are closed. How else can I make use of this technology?

[For the moment, let’s stay away from “neckloops” – they tend to confuse folks because the phrase gets misused. And also, the biggest use for them is in concert halls and houses of worship that have FM/Infrared sound systems – and they are all closed too!]
Thank you! Ginevra Ralph

Telecoil threads show up here somewhat frequently.

I like to think of the loop as a speaker. Due to the fact that the center speaker is the primary dialog speaker for tv and movies, I have had success with using a 5.1 amp and splitting out the center speaker and inputting that into a line converter and outputting that into a small amp like a powered computer speaker. Then connecting the loop to the output of that. Connect one end of the loop into the “black” side and the other end into the “red” side. Speaker. The loop is just a very thin wire. There’s some math somewhere as to how long or how thick it should be. My last one was something like 75’ using iirc 18ga wire.
Always remember that there’s no stereo. It’s inherently mono. Fine if you’re listening to early 60’s mono music but not so good listening to later 60’s and 70’s creative art music ie. not just plain ol’ pop music which would also be fine as they generally don’t play around with sounds flinging left and right.
But perfectly fine listening to somebody using a mic.

The neckloops are useful if running a wire around isn’t very possible. The advantage with them is that they stay local to you (obviously). With a large loop, tipping your head or stepping out of the loop will lose the sound.
I have the ClearSounds one. Haven’t used it in quite a while but it works. It can take line-in and bluetooth. Not sure which version or codec on it.

There’s also the option of dialing up the center speaker and dialing down the surrounds to enhance the dialog if just using HA’s in the room.

I think the telecoil method is woefully under-rated. The user is discrete. Unlike a neckloop or those clunky headphone things. Or that bluetooth isn’t applicable to broadcasting multi-connections. A loop and telecoil is just there. Magic. :slight_smile:

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Friends: Again, I apologize with playing catch up to how this forum works. Even the title of this current strand is problematic. Let’s start with absolute basics.

There are 4 components to a Hearing Loop assistive listening system whether it is a large, basketball arena-sized loop system, a counter-top loop, or a small portable loop that can be used by you personally for your daily activities. They are:

  1. A copper wire in the shape of a loop that sets up a magnetic field.

  2. One or more microphones to “collect” the desired sound (not to broadcast it the way most non-hearing aid users think of microphones).

  3. An electronic “driver” that transmits that sound through the loop.

  4. A tiny coiled wire, called a telecoil (or t-coil), inside a listener’s hearing aid, cochlear implant, or special receiver packet, to directly receive the sound from the hearing loop. [The telecoil program must be activated by one’s hearing specialist.]

With large, public settings such as a performance hall, house of worship, conference room, or indeed any time a loop system is provided by somebody else such as a subway station, ticket kiosk, a pharmacy, a London taxi cab, etc. the first 3 components are provided and managed by the venue or “owner” of the loop. The telecoil that receives the sound signal is managed by the individual who is using the loop. user.

Our Hearing Loop advocacy group that with a small, self-contained, counter-top loop YOU effectively own and manage your own hearing loop system. The copper wire, microphone and driver (#1, 2 and 3 above) are contained within its casing. YOU stay within the the loop field by keeping the unit within 2-3 feet of you. YOU determine what sound you want to pick up by where you direct the microphone or by adding a plug-in mic to extend that pick up range. The “driver” is activated when you turn the loop unit on – either plugged into an outline or up to 6 hours on its rechargeable battery.

Plexiglas is no barrier to loops. If you have never heard an example that compares the sound, here is a great one from the NYC subway: Hearing Loops: A Demonstration - YouTube

You can also use a 3.5mm cable to plug the loop into your TV or computer. Even if you have Bluetooth some users prefer this system because there is no latency, no dropped/paired signals, and no battery drain.

You can put the plug-in mic in the back seat with the kids, or in the middle of a book club gathering. You can “daisy chain” or add mics for larger meetings. Grandkids can whisper into the mic and you will hear their secret!!

Take one to your lawyer/doctor/CPA to actually hear their advice – and let them know that you expect them to have one on site for you and others to use if they want your continued business! Ditto for anywhere you frequent and hearing is a challenge – experiment and advocate. It is incredibly self-empowering!

I have attached some materials for your interest – feel free to use the contact information therein to ask any questions directly tooHELLO card with loop info on back.pdf (130.2 KB) Loop Your Life concept for newsletters.pdf (468.4 KB) __ Photos of portable loops in use at businesses and at home.pdf (4.8 MB)

This is very helpful; thanks for posting it. I plan to explore further.

Hi, Ginevra,

It’s evident that the moderator has decided to move this to a new forum for us–acknowledging that this is a topic of interest to many followers. This should result in a good number of future ‘hits,’ as people explore this interesting subject.



Wonderful – it is such an important access issue!!
Thom, I hesitate to put my email in this forum, but if you would like to communicate 1:1, please call my office and I will give it to you. 541-434-7002

Giving your phone number is fine by me but another option is sending a PM (personal message) Go to upper right corner and click on your avatar, then click on initials to the left, then scroll down to messages.

Thank you! I think I have finally learned my way around!

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