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Reviews Categories | Specialized Amateur Communication Products | MFJ-616 Speech Enhancer Help

Reviews Summary for MFJ-616 Speech Enhancer
MFJ-616 Speech Enhancer Reviews: 12 Average rating: 5.0/5 MSRP: $170.
Description: Tailors the sound of your radio to your ears.
Product is in production.
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W4JFR Rating: 5/5 Jul 19, 2003 20:11 Send this review to a friend
I am pleased  Time owned: more than 12 months
I purchased this item rather skeptically. I have never been a fan of MFJ and assumed at first that this was nothing more than a gimmick. But, like the first reviewer, I have experienced some deterioration in my hearing (age is 52). I have particular difficulty hearing in the lower range of the human voice. So, I thought I would give it a try. I have been very pleasantly surprised, to the point that now I can't live without it. I use it with a Ten Tec Paragon and Sennheiser HD 590 stereo headphones -- I have no speakers hooked up to the unit.

The audio quality is greatly improved and, more importantly it allows you to adjust for the variations in an individual's voice characteristics. Now, I find myself "tweaking" it every time I listen to a new station. The effect is not only higher quality audio, but a sense of noise reduction as well. It is particularly good with rather weak DX transmissions. Stations that I could never read clearly before, now sound much better.

The product lives up to its claimed performance and, I believe, is well worth the money.
Jim, W4JFR

WA6IPD Rating: 5/5 Jul 30, 2002 16:32 Send this review to a friend
Excellent  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have a severe hearing loss and have to use headphones to hear anything on the radio. It was becoming more and more difficult to copy voice signals so I thought I would give the MFJ-616 a try and WOW what a difference it made. I am using an Icom IC-756 with Kenwood HS-5 headphones, I also have the Heil Proset but for my ears the HS-5 works best. Everything they claim for this unit is true, I can actually make signals sound as clear as they did when I was 20 years old. I also find that sometimes when there is interference I can copy the signal 100% using the 616 but nothing when I hit the bypass. Itís a little pricey but for me well worth the money.
Here is some added information for those thinking about buying hearing aids. For minor hearing loss the in-the-ear units are fine. They tend to be fragile, the battery doors often break, they eat batteries, are uncomfortable and often oscillate. Most people quit wearing them after a while. The price of hearing aids is negotiable so never pay list price, shop around. You should also get units with automatic volume control, they call that compression. As your hearing deteriorates you will want to get behind-the-ear units. These have more gain but again they are uncomfortable, suffer from wind noise and transmit your chewing noise so when you are out eating forget about hearing. If you forget you are wearing them and it is raining you will likely need new aids. Here again insist on compression, also with this aid you can get directional microphones so ask for that feature and insist on wind shields for the microphones, even with wind shields you will be lucky to hear in the slightest breeze. I gave up on the commercial units and designed my own pocket unit which suffers none of the above problems. Had I done that to begin with I would have saved thousands.

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