I’ve been using Widex’s Uni-Dex device to stream audio to my Widex Evoke aids and have been very pleased with it, so I thought I’d share my experience.
Even with the aids, I’ve had increasing problems with speech comprehension in challenging acoustical environments. In many ways, moving to Zoom for work-related meetings has been a big improvement, assuming participants are using decent microphones. 20 people on Zoom–much better than 20 people in a large echoey conference room.
As I use a desktop Mac for Zoom and it can’t do bluetooth streaming to Widex HA’s, my audiologist suggested I try the Uni-Dex device. It plugs into the standard 3.5mm headphone jack on any computer, tablet, phone, etc., and the Bluetooth transmitting unit is worn around your neck. Volume is controlled by the device it’s plugged into. It has a control that will start and stop playback, and a button that toggles your aids’ amplification of external sounds. What I’ve found:
- Bluetooth streaming via the Uni-Dex is way more reliable than direct streaming from a cell phone or table to my aids, especially when moving. No sound cut-outs.
- The Uni-Dex is ideal for listening to podcasts/radio/audiobooks outdoors, as turning off external sound amplification is much more effective than Bluetooth streaming from phone to aids.
- Processing seems to be optimized for speech, and is superior in that respect to any of the three headphones/headsets I have around the house. (Not great for music, bass is weak.)
- As shipped, the built-in cord is long enough for using with a phone, but too short for comfortable use with a computer if you need to move around much. But headset extender cables of anywhere from 1 to 5 meters in length (or more) are inexpensive and easy to find.
Because it’s a wired device, it might seem too old-school at first sight, but it has made a big difference in my comprehension levels both at work and recreation.