Both of Seth's parents are now hard of hearing and they need headphones to watch TV. Is there a system that can do it for them? Leo says that hearing aids now can pair to the TV. So if they need a hearing aid, that's a good feature to get. But if he wants headphones, Leo got his mother a pair of Sennheiser wireless RF headphones. They work much better than Bluetooth.
Neil has Apple AirPods, and he says that the connection drops out a lot. Leo says that's because it uses Bluetooth and it's an antiquated technology that wasn't all that great to begin with. Bluetooth is well known for not always maintaining a stable connection. But Apple has put AirPods on deep discount and Leo suspects a version 2 is coming next month.
Here's a totally new product from Bose. No, it's not active noise reduction, which Bose is famous for, but a brand new way to mask annoying nighttime noises. Things like noisy neighbors, construction; or when traveling, vending machines, elevators, etc. Active noise reduction doesn't work for sleep, so they came up with a new technology, noise-masking. The new device is dubbed Bose sleepbuds. They don't (and can't) stream music, but they offer 10 preloaded soothing sound tracks (water, rustling leaves, crackling fire, etc.) designed to match and mask the unwanted noise.
Brian listens to music on his Bluetooth headphones with the Amazon Echo, but every time he gets a call, the headphones disconnect. Rich says it's probably a software issue. Unpairing everything and then re-pairing it could fix the issue. But if it doesn't, it's an Amazon problem and he'll just need to wait for a fix.
Jan is starting to lose her hearing, and wants to know what she can do to still hear people when she's talking on the phone. Leo says he has smart hearing aids that connect to his phone via Bluetooth and he can hear his phone great. If she can't afford those, then she can get headphones or earbuds that will use the phone's headphone jack. Jan has been using Google Fi, so in getting a new phone, she'll need to either get a Motorola Moto phone or a Google Pixel. Those are the only two phones that will work on Google Fi.
Steve wants to use his lightning headphones into a regular headphone jack. Leo says he probably won't be able to do that since the Lightning connector is proprietary. Those Lightning headphones are for one thing only — for use with the iPhone. Walmart does sell a female-to-male Lightning adapter, and there's one that actually comes with the Apple Pencil as well. Leo's not sure that this would actually work, though. It may be easier to just buy a cheap pair of earbuds that would have the proper connector.
Ken wants to know why he can't hear himself when he speaks with headphones? Leo says he'd need a mixer that can mix in. It's called Side Tone. It can be very distracting with Bluetooth on a phone though because of the latency. He would just end up getting confused by the echo.
Reed needs an audio solution for watching TV that doesn't bother anyone else. Leo says that Sennheiser makes a pair of wireless headphones that he can plug in with an audio adapter. The SR120 Mk. II is what the chatroom suggests.
Vidac wants to buy a good pair of headphones for radio work. What's a good pair? Leo says the most comfortable and accurate are the ones that Leo uses – AKG K240s. They're very affordable at only $50. He can even buy replacement earpieces when they wear out.
Nathan is wondering where he can get AirPods. Leo says that AirPods were delayed for a few months, and even now, they are hard to find because Apple isn't up to speed in making them as fast as they need to. The challenge is the new W1 chip. He can get a pair of Beats, though, which uses similar technology.