Why are those of us with hearing loss more sensitive to lip-sync error?
Watch the clip above a few times and see if lip-sync error is obvious.
If you "do what he says" it probably is.
Since you've arrived here from our recent ad in Hearing Health Magazine to discover why you - or a loved one - may be more sensitive to lip-sync error, we would appreciate your answering three questions to help us understand this problem better: (the survey is anonymous)
Then glance over the research on lip-sync error (audio asynchrony) done by Byron Reeves and David Voelker at Stanford over 23 years ago or read on and come back later for all the statistics:
The Reeves and Voelker study shows most viewers don't consciously notice lip-sync error but still suffer the same negative impact as those who do.
Their research proved viewers evaluate characters more negatively (e.g. less interesting, more unpleasant, less influential, more agitated, less successful) when lip-sync is off which notably are similar to feelings we have about those who don't make eye contact with us.
Why would lip-sync error cause this?
In the real world sound travels 1100 feet per second (13.2 inches every millisecond) so we always hear speech "after" we see lip movement - never before - but on TV where video is often delayed sound can arrive first which is impossible! We can't process that impossibility so we must avoid it by subconsciously looking away.
The Reeves and Voelker research shows lip-sync error causes the same negative feelings as if the characters were not making eye contact although in this case it seems the viewer is the one looking away.
Many viewers can look away far enough to ignore 40 to 75 ms lip-sync error but those of us with hearing loss who lip-read to augment our hearing may notice much smaller error.
Once we correct it we not only eliminate its distraction and interference with our hearing but also the negative impact it has on our perception of the characters and story.
I've had tinnitus since my early twenties and recently realized it's the reason I am more sensitive to lip-sync error and probably why I started this company eleven years ago.
What we don't know - and your answers to those three questions above will help us understand - is whether the degree of hearing loss is related to the sensitivity to lip-sync error. It is quite possible mild hearing loss or tinnitus may increase sensitivity and severe loss may decrease it - so please share your thoughts.
Take a look at the rest of our website which goes into a lot of detail on lip-sync error - how video delay causes it and how an adjustable audio delay will correct it.
If you are in the US and decide the DD740 could make watching TV enjoyable again I will make trying it a no-risk proposition:
Use the link below to go to our DD740 Order Page and put "Hearing Health" in the comments section and if after trying it for 30 days you decide it doesn't work for you we will send a prepaid return shipping label (within the US) and refund 100% of what you paid including shipping both ways.
If you are outside the US we extend the 100% refund for the product but unfortunately can't refund international shipping costs.