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Trends Amplif. 2013 Jun;17(2):108-34. doi: 10.1177/1084713813486851. Epub 2013 May 17.

The master hearing aid.

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1Starkey Hearing Technologies, Eden Prairie, MN, USA.


As early as the 1930s the term Master Hearing Aid (MHA) described a device used in the fitting of hearing aids. In their original form, the MHA was a desktop system that allowed for simulated or actual adjustment of hearing aid components that resulted in a changed hearing aid response. Over the years the MHA saw many embodiments and contributed to a number of rationales for the fitting of hearing aids. During these same years, the MHA was viewed by many as an inappropriate means of demonstrating hearing aids; the audio quality of the desktop systems was often superior to the hearing aids themselves. These opinions and the evolution of the MHA have molded the modern perception of hearing aids and the techniques used in the fitting of hearing aids. This article reports on a history of the MHA and its influence on the fitting of hearing aids.


audiology; hearing aid; master hearing aid

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