General

We developed BeHear headsets to help people hear better in various situations, taking into account individual preferences and the uniqueness of each person’s auditory system. Hearing loss is an example of “uniqueness” that can be addressed by BeHear headsets, and compensated to some extent depending on the listening/hearing conditions. BeHear was designed to help people with mild-to-moderate hearing loss, who may not need amplification in every hearing situation (although customers with severe hearing loss also report their satisfaction). It can help clarify dialogue, enhance music appreciation, and improve intelligibility of phone conversations.

While BeHear headsets use the same digital signal processing algorithms as most advanced hearing aids, they are not hearing aids (nor are they medical devices).

While the advanced algorithms used in BeHear headsets can improve the hearing/listening experience, they cannot restore hearing completely.

BeHear NOW is supplied with numerous sets of silicon ear tips and ear hooks in different sizes and styles. We trust that you will be able to find the right combination for your ears.

 

Absolutely! The earbuds are “in ear”, with nothing resting on the back of your ear (where your glasses sit).

 

 

Yes, we offer a limited 1-year product warranty against manufacturing defects.

 

Operating Instructions

  1. The default settings (OFF, ON or Last State) define the initial state of the function (Hearing, ListenThrough or EasyListen) when appropriated operation mode is active (call, music play or nothing). The default settings serve only for user convenience to start operation in desired state of the related function. For example, setting the status to ON for EasyListen will cause an automatic slow down of the speech in every call. You can turn the function ON and OFF during operation manually by pressing the MODE button (central button in the right control box) or tapping the desired tempo in the W&H BeHear app.
  2. App version 1.6.xx and above allows you to manage device settings at any time. Simply choose Settings in the bottom menu and then tap the Device icon. This is the place where default settings of the functions are available. It is possible to change them, specifically to set EasyListen and ListenThrough to the desired default state.

The battery in the BeHear NOW headset is rechargeable (tested up to 600 cycles) but not replaceable. We designed it this way to provide protection against water and dust damage for the life of the product, as well as to keep the price down.

BSP-best-sound-point-screenshot

Our BeHear headsets have technology for enhancing nearby speech while dampening down distracting background noise. These are displayed on the “Personal Hearing” screen:

  • the “Best Sound Point” grid 
  • the “Noise Reduction” controls

There are four microphones in the headset (two in the ear buds and two in the control boxes, which lie near your collarbone). These microphones pick up ambient, nearby sounds, like your conversation.

Use the grid to focus on your conversation partner by choosing a square that sounds best to your ears (depending on the pitch of the partner’s voice). Each square in the grid defines a specific sound level which is a unique combination of frequency (left to right is low to high) and amplitude (bottom to top is low to high). The edges of the grid represent the extreme combinations. For more information about this grid, read this post.

If the background noise is bothering you, the Noise Reduction levels will help screen those out.

Watch this video for more information about Personal Hearing mode.

Tag: battery

There are two ways to check the battery level:

  1. On the headset itself
  2. Using the W&H smartphone app

For more information, use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

 

BeHear NOW is supplied with a micro USB charging cable. Use it to charge the headset from your computer, or together with a standard AC outlet adapter (purchased separately) to charge the headset from a wall socket.

Use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

 

You can choose whether to accept or reject the call, either by pressing buttons on the control box (located on the headset cable) or using your mobile phone.

Use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

In the Settings screen there is a balance option. You can slide the silver dot right or left to set the desired amplification balance between left and right ears.

This setting is applied to the volume control, in addition to the results of the built-in hearing assessment, and will be active in all operation modes of the headset: phone calls, audio playback and personal hearing amplification.

For more information, use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

 

For Android phones, download the “W&H BeHear” application from the Google Play Store. (The iOS version for iPhones will be available shortly from the Apple Store.)

For more information, use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

 

While it is possible to benefit from enhanced ambient hearing without a smartphone, we highly recommend that you first use a smartphone (along with our free, dedicated W&H BeHear app) to assess your hearing and have the results automatically applied to the headset, in order to personalize it for you. The smartphone is also instrumental in fine-tuning the hearing environment in real time. However, the headset itself includes seven built-in control buttons that allow you to use it autonomously. So, if you want to use the device for ambient hearing only (not mobile phone calls or audio streaming from a phone), you do not need a smartphone.

You can pair BeHear and use it with any Bluetooth device such as a feature phone, music player, laptop, etc. and use it for hearing enhancement, phone calls or listening to music or other recorded audio.

Yes. You do not need Bluetooth to benefit from the ambient hearing functionality.

However, without Bluetooth you will not be able to stream audio from your mobile phone or music player directly to the BeHear NOW headset.

 

The earbuds contain magnets and will stick together (even through the wind protectors) in front of your chest.

Use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

 

Absolutely! BeHear headsets can support multiple audio sources simultaneously. For example, you can listen to media on your laptop, and still be connected to your mobile phone.

For more information, use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

There are two ways to customize BeHear:

  1. Using the built-in Hearing Assessment in the smartphone app, which applies the results automatically to the four presets (Indoor, Outdoor, Crowd and Live Music) to match your preferences and capabilities.
  2. In real-time, using the controls in the Personal Hearing section of the smartphone app to select a preset, fine-tune gain across frequencies, and determine the amount of noise reduction.

Use this link to see the video instructions for the Hearing Assessment, or this link for Customizing in Real-Time, or this link to read the manual.

The EasyListen feature is built into the BeHear NOW headset. It slows down phone speech dynamically and intelligently to improve comprehension, without distorting it, or disrupting the natural rhythm of conversation.

Use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

 

The BeHear NOW headset will continue to operate as a personal hearing amplifier, even without any connection to any smartphone (the parameters are saved in the headset, not in the phone). The smartphone is necessary if you want to run the BeHear NOW control application, but the headset itself includes seven built-in control buttons that allow you to use it autonomously. You can watch this video for specific instructions.

Have you used the W&H BeHear smartphone application to run the hearing test assessment? If so, note that the results are applied to the presets (Indoor, Outdoor, Crowd and Live Music), and are programmed into the headset itself (not the phone).

Still, we recommend downloading and pairing your new smartphone with the headset so that you can get maximum benefit. Watch this video for detailed instructions.

 

All W&H BeHear “How to” videos support captions.

To see closed captions from the W&H BeHear app

  1. Click the three vertical dots in the upper right-hand corner of the screen.
  2. Tap “Captions”.
  3. Tap the desired language:

To see closed captions on your laptop/desktop computer

  1. Click the Settings icon in the lower right section of the video frame.
  2. Click “Subtitles/CC” to see the available languages.
  3. Select the language of your choice.

Return to the “Videos” page.

For release 000F (for Hardware Version 1.0.0) and release 000E (for Hardware Version 1.0.1) upgrade time for Android phones is approximately 10-15 minutes. Upgrade time for iOS phones is several hours (therefore, nighttime upgrade with the phone attached to a charger is recommended). The long upgrade process is due to the Bluetooth connectivity framework on iOS and how our headset functions within it. Our developers are working to reduce the amount of time needed to perform the upgrade.

The results of the hearing assessment (presented in graph and tabular formats) are stored in the headset, not the app. Therefore, uninstalling the app, or connecting to the headset with a different Bluetooth device, will not affect the results.

If you are using the W&H BeHear app on an iPhone the Bluetooth option in the “Settings” screen will show two connections for your headset: one for an audio device,  the other for the BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) control. Although it is confusing, it is the way iPhone works with BeHear.

EasyListen can only be activated for mobile phone calls and voice messages. Think how disconcerting it would be to watch television when the actors’ lips are not synchronized with their speech…

HearLink may be helpful in this case, however. Because it sends the audio signal directly to the paired BeHear NOW headset it eliminates ambient noise, room reverberation, and other types of sound interference which hamper understanding of speech from the television.

Product Specifications

  1. The BeHear ACCESS headset is calibrated with a standard inductive loop transmitter as per the ANSI S3.22-2009 standard.
  2. Signal levels can be adjusted based on the current environment using the headset’s volume control (either manually or via the free app we provide for iOS and Android smartphones).

While both products look and function like a Bluetooth® stereo headset, and also include fully customizable hearing amplification and noise reduction for live conversations, mobile phone calls, music play, and ambient sounds, AND clarify speech (and if needed during mobile phone calls, slow it down!), AND enhance music, there are five basic differences.

As opposed to BeHear NOW, BeHear ACCESS:

  1. includes two telecoil receivers to deliver optimal sound in locations outfitted with induction loop technology.
  2. has large, tactile buttons for easier operation (especially if dexterity is an issue).
  3. comes with a magnetized charging cradle, as opposed to a direct USB cable which attaches to the neckband (also a usability issue).
  4. will cost $349 retail (as opposed to $249 for BeHear NOW)
  5. will be available for commercial sale in a few weeks (while BeHear NOW is available for purchase now in our on-line store)
  • in “hearing mode”: 13+ hours
  • for phone use: 10+ hours
  • for music play: 8+ hours
  • typical battery lifespan: ~3 years

Note: A full charge takes 2-3 hours.

There are many audio transmitters on the market, but HearLink has some unique features that set it apart as the transmitter of choice for assistive hearing.

  1. It supports ListenThrough™ technology to allow important ambient sounds (like a conversation with a TV viewing partner, or the doorbell) to pass through on top of the streamed audio.
  2. During incoming phone calls the audio stream will be stopped and then automatically resumed when the call is completed.
  3. It supports up to two BeHear® headsets simultaneously.

The box includes a headset, a USB charging cable, a travel pouch, three types of silicon ear tips in different sizes, three pairs of ear hooks in varying sizes, 2 pairs of wind protection covers, and a printed Quick Start Guide.

 

  • in “hearing mode”: 12+ hours
  • for phone use: 10+ hours
  • for music play: 8+ hours
  • in standby mode: ~600 hours

Note: A full charge takes about 2 hours.

The HearLink box includes the transmitter, a micro-USB cable for charging directly from the television (where supported) or from an electrical wall socket, two audio cables (3.5mm and 2xRCA for convenient connection to various appliances), and technical documentation.

 

The maximal gain provided by BeHear NOW is approximately 45dB.

 

The BeHear NOW smartphone application supports both Android (from version 4.4 and up) and iOS (from version 9 and up).

 

No. Current BeHear headsets are not waterproof. We are creating a different model for our “Wear & Hear” family called BeHear ACTIVE which will suit people with active lifestyles.

HearLink’s Bluetooth connectivity is not restricted to BeHear Now headsets. You can download the HearLink User Guide here for more information.

Technical

All models of the BeHear personalized hearing amplifier have their own microphones, four in total. Two are located in the ear buds, and two in the control boxes on the cables. BeHear doesn’t use the cell phone as a microphone. The lag/processing time is about 20 (out of 1000) milliseconds.

This depends on your specific TV. Some televisions support dual audio output devices while others do not. One way around this is to purchase the Wear & Hear “Harmony Bundle” which includes two headsets and one HearLink. Both you and the other person will then be able to hear the TV without ambient noise and optimized for your own hearing (while staying aware of important sounds, and able to speak to and hear one another).

Here is more information about the bundle: https://wearandhear.com/product/hearing-harmony-bundle/

Depending on the application, BeHear may appear either as a headset or as a headphone, just like most other Bluetooth headphones.

For most music players it will be listed as a “headphone” while for messaging services, such as Skype/Viber/WeChat etc., it will be listed as a “headset”.

 

Experiment with the different styles and sizes of silicon ear buds and ear hooks supplied with the headset. Use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

Try using the supplied wind protection covers. Use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

 

Reduce the volume of ambient sound using either the right control box or using the phone app. Use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

Verify Bluetooth pairing. Either the device has not yet been paired or has been erased from the pairing list. Turn the headset on and place it into pairing mode, then, check if it appears in the connection menu.
Use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

  1. Verify that you are not more than 10 meters (approx. 30 feet) away from the device.
  2. If you are using BeHear NOW outdoors, we recommend that you carry your phone on the right side of your body. When indoors, the Bluetooth radio waves can bounce off walls and it doesn’t matter on which side the phone is located. Outdoors the phone needs a direct line of sight with the antenna, which is on the right side of the neck-band.

 

  1. When connected to a phone, the phone notifications take precedence over hearing amplifications. This is so that you don’t miss any important phone calls. Therefore, we recommend changing the phone settings to turn off key tones such as touch sounds, keyboard taps, and some notifications according to your preferences. Phone calls will still take precedence, but this will greatly reduce the number of times the hearing is “interrupted”.
  2. Settings for phone notifications behavior is usually accessed through the smartphone’s “Settings” menu, in a section called “Sounds and Notifications”.

 

  1. Updates are sent automatically to the W&H BeHear app. You can verify the availability of an update by checking the “Headset Update” screen through the app’s main menu.
  2. If there is a new version available, follow the on-screen instructions to update the headset.

Use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

 

If your BeHear NOW behaves unexpectedly there are three ways to reset it: you can restart it, remove the Bluetooth connection data, and/or restore the original factory configuration.

  1. To restart BeHear in a simple reset, connect it to the charger. All configuration and connection data will be preserved.
  2. To restart BeHear and remove the Bluetooth connection data only:
    1. Power on the BeHear NOW headset.
    2. Press and hold the Power button + the middle and bottom buttons on the right control box simultaneously for approximately 8 seconds, until a purple L.E.D. blinks once.
    3. Power off the headset and then power it on again.
  3. To restart the BeHear NOW headset and restore the original factory configuration:
    1. Power on the BeHear NOW headset.
    2. Press and hold the Power button + the middle and top buttons on the right control box simultaneously for approximately 8 seconds, until a yellow L.E.D. blinks once.
    3. Connect the headset to the charger.
    4. Disconnect the headset from the charger and then power the headset on.

Use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

 

Unfortunately, it is not possible to change the volume of the headset notification sounds. We plan to include this improvement in a future version of the software.

BeHear does not integrate Active Noise Cancellation because that technology is not helpful for listening to ambient sounds. Actually, the purpose of Active Noise Cancellation is to cancel out all sounds that come from the environment, while for hearing enhancement we strive to identify and clarify important sounds. So, the noise reduction technique in BeHear uses our field-proven algorithms on the microphone signals that are later amplified, according to the customer’s hearing loss parameters.
For more on this topic, see our blog post about active noise cancellation.

Yes, we have some support for directionality:

  1. Based on the location of the main microphones in the BeHear headset
  2. Utilizing additional microphones in the control boxes that help to provide very good sound localization, even in very noisy environments
Tags: battery, sound
  1. Check the battery level – either in the smartphone app or by briefly pressing the power button (when the headset is on)
  2. Adjust the volume level
  3. Check ear caps for debris
  4. Use this link to see the video instructions, or this link to read the manual.

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