Lawton, Ben W.
Variation of young normal-hearing thresholds measured using different audiometric earphones: implications for the acoustic coupler and the ear simulator
International Journal of Audiology, 44, (8), . (doi:10.1080/14992020500189062).
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This paper questions the necessity for two calibration devices to measure the acoustic output from different types of audiometric earphones. International standards give the audiometric zero for TDH39 earphones on the IEC 60318-3 acoustic coupler; the IEC 60318-1 ear simulator is intended for other supra-aural earphone types. If hearing threshold samples from young, healthy ears were found to be more variable using TDH39 earphones, then that earphone and its coupler might be taken out of service.
The audiological literature yielded threshold survey results for over 5100 otologically normal ears of subjects aged 31 years or less. These independent samples showed smaller variation for TDH39 samples than for samples using other earphones; this finding does not support abandoning the TDH39 and its coupler. Nevertheless, benefits accrue from calibrating TDH39 output to the audiometric zero as measured on the ear simulator.
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