05/05/2011 Wedemark

Understanding Human Hearing - Sennheiser Presents New Online Hearing Portal

How does our hearing work? Which components make up our capacity to hear? How can I recognise if my hearing capacity is diminishing? What might be the possible causes? These and many other questions relating to the subject of hearing are answered by audio specialist Sennheiser’s new Hearing Portal at www.sennheiser.com. At the click of a mouse, visitors can follow a sound’s journey as it passes from our ear to our brain.

How sound waves become a sound experience

Soft whispering, the laughter of happy children, thunderous applause... the most emotional moments in our lives are ones that we hear for many years to come. Sound and emotions are inseparably linked. The ability to hear well is therefore a key part of our quality of life – and one that we must preserve at all costs. The new Sennheiser Hearing Portal provides an illustrative explanation of how the gift of human hearing works. At the click of a mouse, you can follow the sound’s journey from our ear to our brain. “The individual stations that the sound passes through, such as the external ear, the middle ear, the inner ear and the auditory nerve, are explained in a clear and comprehensible manner by illustrative animations and diagrams,” said Oliver Berg, Product Manager at Sennheiser.

Reduced hearing capacity goes almost unnoticed

Reduced hearing capacity goes almost unnoticed
We human beings are creatures of habit. We quickly adapt to reductions in our hearing capacity. We hardly notice how we have to ask people more and more frequently to repeat things, how we need to turn up the volume on the television set, or how we are no longer able to filter out the voice of the person we are talking to when there are many other conversations going on around us. “The deterioration of our hearing capacity is a gradual, subtle process. It’s important therefore to recognise the signals at an early stage. Ignoring the first symptoms can be a fatal error. The problem is that the brain can “forget” how to hear properly – which means that it is vitally important to act in good time. With its new Hearing Portal, Sennheiser aims to provide valuable information on the subject of hearing and hearing impairment,” Oliver Berg continued.

For that reason, the new Hearing Portal not only shows how we hear but also describes the effects of noise and common causes of hearing loss. Visitors to the Portal can answer a few simple questions to check whether they have any initial symptoms and may possibly be affected by a loss of hearing capacity. If they want to examine the subject in a little more detail, they can go to the ‘Reasons for hearing loss’ page. On this page, the different types of hearing impairment are described in more detail and are illustrated in an interactive graphic. “There are two basic types of hearing loss: conductive hearing loss and sensorineural hearing loss. In the first type, less sound is transferred from the outer ear to the inner ear, while the second type is usually caused by an impairment of the sensory hair cells in the inner ear. It is also possible to suffer from a combination of both types,” said Oliver Berg.

Sennheiser’s product range includes a variety of assistive listening systems that enable people with impaired hearing to enjoy watching television, listening to music or talking to others once again. A Product Finder allows visitors to the Portal to find the ideal models to suit their needs and applications. The Portal is also well worth a visit for all those who simply want to learn more about the phenomena of human hearing.

The new Sennheiser Hearing Portal is available in German, English, Spanish and French at the Sennheiser website www.sennheiser.com under Sennheiser Sound.