Making the World Louder for Hearing Impaired

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By Les Goldberg

“What did you say?” “Can you repeat that?” “I’m sorry I am late, I didn’t hear my alarm go off.”

 If those words sound familiar, then you may be one of millions of mature adults who suffer from hearing loss.    Whether you wear a hearing aid or not, there is plenty of help available from the world of technology to boost your ability to listen, converse and make sense of sound.   Here is a sample:

 Powertel 500 Amplified Phone


Designed especially for seniors and baby boomers, the Powertel 500 by Amplicom USA allows you to turn up the volume to 50 decibels.   For sound clarity, it offers five frequency settings that can be adjusted, remembered and switched at the touch of a button.  



Priced at $139.95, each phone features a big button, high-contrast keypad, bright LED display and an extra loud visual ringer.   The phones are available both in corded and cordless versions, and are compatible with hearing aids and cochlear implants, meeting the standards of the Telecommunications Industry Association and Hearing Loss Association of America.  For more information, go to

Comfort Duett Personal Listener

If you don’t have a hearing aid but find noisy situations or one-on-one communication difficult, or if your hearing aid isn’t helping in certain environments, the Comfort Duett Personal Listener (HC-DUETT) could be the solution you are looking for.  

 A personal listening device, the product is small and easy to use and rechargeable (the battery can last as long as 20 hours on one charge, depending on usage.)  It can be used with earphones in place of a hearing aid, or with an induction neckloop (not included) to amplify conversations and sounds from a variety of sources, like TVs, radios and phones.

Resembling a small MP3 player, it is stylish while powerful, operating in the 275 to 9000 Hz bandwidth and with up to 60 decibels of volume amplification.   The $169.95 price includes headphone and earbud, base charger unit, an AAA NiMH battery and headphone rest stand.   It is available at

TCL Alarm Clocks

The TCL Series Alarm Clocks are, according to their manufacturers, the first to come with a chargeable wireless vibrating  or “shaker” pad that slips under your pillow and vibrates to wake you at your preset time.  Or you can opt to use the extra loud 90 decibel ringer.

The TCL 100 (analog) and TCL 200 (digital) feature adjustable volume and tone controls, large, easy-to-see illuminated numerals and controls, five different alarm patterns, batteries for power back-up, plug-in connection to any phone so you will awaken when the phone rings, and a snooze button with five or 15-minute delays.  It is priced at $89.95.

The digital version, which retails for $99.95, includes five different languages (English, Spanish, French, German and Italian),  the ability to program multiple alarms and the days of the week you want the sound or vibrating modes.  More information is at


Les Goldberg, APR is an award-winning, experienced journalist and public relations practitioner.    His firm, Les Goldberg Public Relations, is one of Southern California’s pioneer public relations agencies specializing in high technology and consumer electronics. 

Throughout his career Les has shared his knowledge and experience as a part-time professor for the marketing and business schools at several Southern California universities, including UCI, Chapman University and California State Universities in Fullerton, Long Beach, Los Angeles and Dominguez Hills. 

Today, in addition to his agency and teaching responsibilities, Les is a columnist for senior publications, including his popular “The Gadget Geezer” column which appears in Senior Reporter, Not Born Yesterday, Life After 50, and   As a full-time journalist, he was a staff writer for the Los Angeles Herald-Examiner, Glendale News-Press, Culver City Star-News, Stars & Stripes Europe, OC Metro, OC Home & Outdoors and Digital Photographer.

Among the companies that have benefited from Les Goldberg’s brand of public relations include Doctors Telehealth Network, AST Research, Ashton-Tate, US Robotics, Phoenix Technologies, Odetics, MAI/Basic Four, American Home Theater, Inland Technologies; Freedom Innovations, Flex-Foot, Incline SoftWorks, USA Wireless Inc., D-Link Systems, Bell Micro, Seiko Instruments and Etak, Inc., a division of Sony.

Les holds a Certificate in Public Relations from UCLA, bachelor’s degree in journalism from California State University, Northridge and accreditation (APR) from the Public Relations Society of America where he served two terms as president of the Orange County chapter and member of the PRSA National Board of Directors. A past winner of the chapter’s Distinguished Service Award, he has been frequently honored for his achievements and contributions to his profession and his community.

Visit Les’ site at


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