Consumer Headphones Improve Music Appreciation




It is well known that patients with varying degrees and configurations of hearing loss often find it difficult to enjoy music given current technology limitations. Approximately one third of the population with hearing loss have reported reduced enjoyment of music. Furthermore, hearing aids have been insufficient in restoring music enjoyment to the majority of the population with only 41% of hearing aid users reporting that hearing aids make music more enjoyable. Hearing aids are intended to improve audibility of speech, which is very different than music acoustically. As a result, people with hearing loss complain that listening to music with their hearing aids causes feedback, distortion, excessive loudness, inadequate audibility of soft sounds, reduced tone quality, and unbalanced frequency response.

To overcome these constraints, there have been developments in advanced consumer electronics that allow manufacturers to design and develop audio devices that are geared toward individual listening needs. The Even headphones use a technology called the EarPrint to customize the headphones to each listener’s hearing levels. During the EarPrint measurement, a voice assistant instructs the user to press a button when a short piece of music becomes audible. These music pieces are constructed with a narrow-band spectrum of varies frequencies. The Even headphones then produces a specific profile of the individual’s hearing and applies gains to the output music accordingly to compensate for the hearing loss. Research has compared Even headphone thresholds to audiometric thresholds and found that Even headphones can provide relatively accurate information on the listener’s hearing sensitivity. The purpose of this study is to measure the general subjective improvement of music appreciation and various music qualities with the use of the Even headphones.

Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 1-1-2020

Publication Title

Canadian Audiologist





First Page


Last Page