Musician and Nonmusician Hearing Aid Setting Preferences for Music and Speech Stimuli.


Purpose The purpose of this study was to evaluate potential group differences between musicians and nonmusicians in their self-adjusted (SA) gain and compression settings for both music and speech stimuli. Speech recognition, sound quality, and strength of preference for the SA settings and the original prescriptive (National Acoustic Laboratories-Nonlinear 2 [NAL-NL2]) settings were also compared. Method Participants included 12 musician ( M = 60 years) and 12 nonmusician ( M = 55 years) adult hearing aid users with mild-moderate hearing loss, on average. Self-adjustments were made to hearing aid gain and compression settings for 2 music stimuli and a speech stimulus. Speech recognition in quiet and noise, sound quality for 6 dimensions (clarity, pleasantness, naturalness, fullness, brightness, and overall impression), and strength of preference ratings using paired comparisons were then assessed at both the NAL-NL2 settings and the participants' SA settings. Results On average, self-adjustments made by both groups were quite small (