On Hearing Looped Venues

Matt DearingHearing Loss

When You Need a Little More Assistance

These days, hearing aids are technologically advanced, digital, wireless devices that provide clear sound, fast processing, and great accessibility. Hearing aids keep you connected to the world around you.

However, there are instances when even the most powerful hearing aid is not enough. For example, public transportation hubs, where this is much noise both from vehicles, passengers, and announcements made of the PA system. If you’re trying to buy a ticket somewhere, you may have a difficult time hearing the ticket seller at the till.

In 1990, the Americans Disabilities Act became a law which prohibited discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life and also required public venues to provide accessibility assistance to said individuals.

As a result, most public places you visit, whether it is the train station or a theatre, you will be able to find some form of assistive listening device for people who are hard of hearing. There are small amplifiers that connect via FM or infrared waves, but more and more, hearing loops are becoming a popular choice to amplify sound.


What is a Hearing Loop?

Hearing loops are composed of a copper wire that is built into the foundation or ceiling of a venue and is connected to the PA system. This copper loop transmits amplified sound from the PA directly to your pair of hearing aids, through electromagnetic waves.

This provides a crystal clear channel of sound directly from the source of sound to your ears, without the assistance of an intermediary.

Are My Hearing Aids Compatible?

Some hearing aids are equipped with telecoils, or T-coils. To connect to a looped system, hearing aid wearers simply switch the program to “telecoil,” and the T-coil will pick up the transmission of the electromagnetic waves, which amplify sound.

If you are unsure whether your hearing aids are equipped with a T-coil, come visit us at one of our locations.

Where Do I Find Looped Venues?

Venues with hearing loops are popular all over the world, from London’s Westminster Abbey to Sydney’s Opera House. Recently, they are gaining popularity in the United States.

To search for looped venues in your area, you may visit these sites:



How to Advocate for Looped Venues in Your Area

Composer Richard Einhorn had lost most of his hearing at the age of 57 and found it difficult to enjoy concerts and musicals. In the New York Times, he recalls the first time he used a hearing loop: “There I was at Wicked, weeping uncontrollably – and I don’t even like musicals. For the first time since I lost most of my hearing, live music was perfectly clear, perfectly clean, and incredibly rich.”

Cities have begun to install hearing loops in places such as banks, museums, subway stations, stores, churches, and performance venues.

When you visit your favorite venues or venues you frequent, ask about their assistive listening devices and suggest that they consider looking into installing a hearing loop. Hearing loops are also available to be installed in the home, amplifying the sounds of your favorite TV, movies, and music.