Hard of hearing fans can now enjoy a hockey game’s blow-by-blow commentary, Stevie Nicks’ velvety voice or a circus ringmaster’s baritone with a new wireless assistive listening system now installed at Nebraska’s largest new venue.
The modern Qwest Center Omaha, with more than one million square feet of convention, arena, meeting, exhibition and ballroom space, installed Listen Technologies’ assisted listening system in its grand arena and convention center in time for a late September opening. The Listen system, which uses FM radio waves to wirelessly transmit noise-free sound to individual patrons wearing headsets or ear buds, was chosen for its clear signal that is effective for medium- to high range hearing impairment, for its ease of use and versatility.
Beth Ellsworth, a field representative with the Nebraska Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, tested the system and liked what she heard. “This particular system makes the sound not just louder, but much clearer,” said Ellsworth, who has a moderate-to-severe hearing loss. “This system screens out the background noise. It was really great.”
Like many who are hard of hearing, Ellsworth has not attended many concerts. But she plans to now. “I’m going to look at the Qwest Center schedule to see when Simon and Garfunkle are coming,” she said.
The Listen system at Qwest Center, which also meets the requirements of the federal Americans with Disabilities Act, includes both portable and permanently installed transmitters, which are wired into the building sound systems. Patrons who use the system clip on small battery-powered receivers and don headsets or ear buds, channeling the clear sound right to their ears.
Christy Harris, senior vice president of administration and Qwest Center project director, said she is pleased to offer patrons a full experience, whether they have come for sports or music, a convention or a circus.
“This system allows the hard of hearing the chance to experience the excitement and sounds here, just like everyone else,” she said.
For more information on Listen products, check the website at www.listentech.com. To see the Qwest Center Omaha event schedule, go to www.QwestCenterOmaha.com.