Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Have a question for Sound World Solutions? Take a look at our frequently asked questions below by clicking on a category to display the questions and answers. Don't see your question below? Contact us and one of our staff will be happy to answer it.

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  • General
  • Q. What is a Personal Sound Amplifier?

    A. Personal sound amplifiers, also known as Personal Sound Amplification Products or PSAPs, are designed for people who occasionally find themselves in situations where the volume and clarity of the sounds around them are less than what they would prefer.

    Q. How is a PSAP different from a hearing aid?

    A. Hearing aids are designed to help compensate for specific types of hearing loss and are meant to be dispensed by qualified professionals and worn by the patient all of the time. PSAPs like the CS10, CS50+, and The Sidekick are designed for occasional use for amplifying sounds that are inherently difficult to hear. PSAPs are not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease. If you believe you have hearing loss, we encourage you to seek help from a qualified professional.

    Q. Can I try out your product before I buy it?

    A. Since our PSAPs are so highly customizable we recommend that you spend more time with it than a typical demo. We expect that it will take you a while to find the best settings and become accustomed to our PSAP. Therefore, we offer a no-risk 30-day money back guarantee. If you use the device for 30 days and don't feel it's providing a benefit we'll take it back, no questions asked.

    Q. Can I stream music or other audio content through my PSAP?

    A. Unfortunately, the CS10 does not have audio streaming available. However, our newest model the Sidekick & the CS50+ are capable of streaming audio from music, movies and other media wirelessly via Bluetooth connection.

    Q. Will your PSAP help with tinnitus?

    A. Our PSAPs are not a tinnitus masker. However, some people who suffer from tinnitus have been able to find comfort through amplification that our products provide.

  • Fit & Finish
  • Q. Can I make the PSAPs more comfortable to wear?

    A. Absolutely. Both of our PSAPs are user customizable with a number of adjustments you can make to get the perfect fit for your ear. First be sure the ear tip is the right size. Three different sized ear tips are provided with the smallest coming attached on the PSAP. The perfect fit should be snug, but not tight. You don't want the PSAP to be loose or flopping around when you wear it. If none of the supplied ear tips are large enough, please contact Customer Support for a free extra-large ear tip. Next, you can adjust the length of the battery wire so the device lies more comfortably on your ear. Grasp the body of the earpiece in one hand and the battery wire in the other. Gently slide the wire until you reach a comfortable length for your ear. See our "Getting Started" video for a demonstration.

    Q. Can your PSAP be worn with eyeglasses?

    A. Absolutely. We have a number of beta testers, customers, and some members of the SWS team wearing the device comfortably with their eyeglasses. The best option is to have the earpieces of your eyeglasses nearest to your head, then nestle the battery from the PSAP between your earpiece of your glasses and your ear.

    Q. Can I wear the PSAP all the time?

    A. We have designed our products to be comfortable enough to wear through an entire lecture, or even an all-day conference. However, if you feel that you need full-time hearing assistance, we recommend that you see a qualified professional to determine if you have treatable hearing loss, or need hearing aids.

    Q. Can I move my PSAP from one ear to the other?

    A. Unfortunately, no. Specific versions of the PSAP have been optimized for either right ear or left ear use.

    Q. Can I use a PSAP in both ears?

    A. Yes, you can use both a left and right PSAP simultaneously. Just be aware that they need to be set up independently and only one at a time will pair with your smartphone.

    Q. Is your PSAP available in other colors?

    A. Yes but with one caveat only our new model, the Sidekick, comes in with 2 different metallic colors: black pearl, and white gold. In regards to our CS10 & CS50+, to paraphrase Henry Ford, "...any color you want so long as it's black." Our PSAPs were designed to look like a Bluetooth headset, not a hearing aid, so we decided to go with a look that is consistent with that type of product. Feel free to drop us a line if you have suggestions for future products.

  • Batteries
  • Q. How long does it take to charge the batteries?

    A. It will take up to 2 ½ hours to fully charge a drained battery.

    Q. How long will a charged battery last?

    A. You can expect to get up to 9 hours of operation from a single battery when used as an amplifier with the CS10. The CS50+ will provide up to 15 hours of operation by using new technology that uses low energy. Battery life will be somewhat reduced if using your PSAP as a Bluetooth headset for phone calls.

    Q. How long can I keep recharging the battery?

    A. With regular use, the batteries can be expected to survive recharging for up to 2 years. When needed, replacement batteries can be purchased on our website.

    Q. Why is my battery not recharging?

    A. Check that the charger kit is assembled and plugged in to either an AC power source or a USB connector on a computer. If the charger points are getting power, the LED lights will glow blue. Once a battery is connected, the LED should turn either red (needs to charge) or green (fully charged). If the lights remain blue after the battery is attached, adjust the position of the battery so that the contacts seat properly to the charging station.

    Q. Can I leave my batteries on the charger all the time/until I need them?

    A. Yes, it is safe to leave them on the charger all the time. You will not damage the batteries or the charger. In fact, we do it here at Sound World Solutions so we'll always have a fresh battery.

  • Connectivity
  • Q. How do I pair the PSAP to my mobile phone?

    A. First be certain Bluetooth is turned on in the mobile device you are trying to pair to. In most devices you can go into the "Settings" options to find the Bluetooth menu where you can turn Bluetooth on or off. Our PSAPs will only attempt to pair with a device for the first three minutes after powering up. Once the mobile device is ready, reattach the battery to your PSAP and your mobile device should discover the device. You may have to select your CS10 or CS50+ on your phone as the Bluetooth device you want to connect to. We have also created a video tutorial to help you pair our products to your phone.

    Q. How to use the Companion as a Bluetooth headset with a smart phone.

    A. The Companion has direct Bluetooth capability and therefore turns into a Bluetooth headset when receiving/making phone calls. First you will need to pair/connect the Companion to your smart phone. Once paired/connected here is what you can do:
      — Press & release middle button – Answers and ends phone calls on the Companion
      — Press & hold the top volume button – On most smart phones this activates the voice command
      — Volume buttons – During a phone call, you can increase or decrease volume using these buttons

    Q. How can I improve the sound quality for people on the other end of a mobile phone call?

    A. With mobile communication devices you should be sure that you have good signal strength and reduce as much ambient noise as possible. You can optimize the performance of the Bluetooth link of the amplifier by being sure to use it within 10 feet of your mobile phone.

    Q. How can I maximize the Bluetooth connectivity between my amplifier and mobile phone?

    A. Ensure that your phone is on the same side of your body as your amplifier when in use (for example, if you are wearing the amplifier on your right ear, keep your phone on your right hand side, either in pockets or in the console of your car). You want to avoid making the Bluetooth signal go ‘through’ your body, which is a rather effective signal block.

  • Customization
  • Q. How do I get the Customizer app?

    A. You can download the free Android version of the app from the Google Play store and the iOS 7 version of the app in Apple's App Store. There is a link from our home page, or from the Customizer app page of our website. Both Windows and Mac OS X desktop versions of the app can also be downloaded from that page of our website.

    Q. Do I need a specific smartphone to use your products?

    A. No. Our devices are ready to be used as a Personal Sound Amplifier right out of the box. Both offer three preset amplification profiles to choose from in addition to a personal volume control. Our PSAPs can also be used as a headset with any Bluetooth enabled phone. Our free Customizer app for computers and smartphones allows you to tap into additional features and to further personalize your device, but it is not mandatory. Device compatibility can be found on the Customizer app page of our website.

    Q. Will the CS10 work with my iPhone?

    A. The CS10 works as a wireless headset for any mobile phone with Bluetooth, including current and previous versions of the iPhone. Unfortunately, there is no iPhone version of our Customizer app for advanced setup and control of the CS10. However, there are versions of the Customizer app available for both Mac OS X and Windows desktops. As long as your computer is Bluetooth enabled, you can achieve the maximum level of advanced customization for your CS10. If you want the customization feature for your iPhone, there is an iOS 7 version of our Customizer app for our CS50+ & the Sidekick.

    Q. What if my Windows computer doesn't have Bluetooth?

    A. USB Bluetooth adapters are very common and are fairly inexpensive. Just be sure the adapter you select is Bluetooth version 2.0 or newer, and supports your version of Windows.

    Q. How can I access the Environment modes?

    A. To access the Environment modes, on the CS10 you will need some version of our free Customizer app. Once you select any profile in the app (personal profile or preset profile), the back button on the CS10 changes function and will allow you to toggle between the environment modes. One beep is your baseline profile. Two beeps is "Restaurant Setting" with more directionality to help you hear more clearly in noisy locations. Three beeps is "Entertainment Setting" with a more balanced frequency response for musical or theatrical events. The CS50+ gives users access to these settings directly from the program button on the back edge of the device without the need of our Customizer app.

    Q. How do I tell which mode my program button of my CS10 is in?

    A. When you push the program button on the back edge of the CS10, you will either hear a voice saying "Preset 1", "Preset 2", "Preset 3", or you will hear a series of beeps. If you hear the beeps, your device is in Environment mode. One beep is your baseline profile. Two beeps is "Restaurant Setting", and three beeps is "Entertainment Setting." If you hear the voice, your device is in Program mode, where you can switch between the three preset amplification profiles.

  • Troubleshooting
  • Q. What can I do if there is too much bass (boomy, muddy, or rumbly)?

    A. Preset 1 and Preset 2 each have less low frequency emphasis than Preset 3. If none of those settings adequately reduce the bass response, you can use our free Customizer app on your smartphone or desktop computer to create your own personal profile or make specific individual EQ adjustments.

    Q. Why would the sound from my PSAP become muffled or garbled?

    A. This is likely due to the natural buildup of wax. We recommend that you clean the ear tip and nozzle of your PSAP once per week. For a demonstration of how to use the wire loop cleaning tool that came with your PSAP, please see our "Cleaning" video. You may also need to clear any wax build up from your ears.

    Q. What can I do if my PSAP sounds thin or tinny?

    A. It is normal for your brain to take some time to get used to amplified sounds. However, if the high frequency response is distracting or annoying, you can turn down the volume or try a different factory preset with a more balanced frequency response (Preset 2 or Preset 3). Be sure you adjust the volume each time you select a different preset. You can also access an Equalizer screen through our free Customizer app where you can set specific EQ settings and set your personal sound profile.

    Q. What do I do if my PSAP is squealing?

    A. The squealing sound is caused by feedback, or sound from the speaker being picked up by the microphone and creating a loop. To eliminate this, there are a number of solutions that could work for you depending on your use needs.

    • Press and hold the button on the face of the unit to reduce the volume.
    • Increase the size of the ear tip you are using to prevent sound from escaping from your ear and being picked up by the microphone.
    • Avoid putting your hand or other objects near the PSAP. Putting a firm surface next to the device will reflect sound back into the microphone creating a feedback loop (squealing).
    • If none of the previous solutions work for you, try reducing the high frequency response of your CS10 by adjusting the presets with the button on the back edge of the CS10, or by using our free Customizer app to make specific EQ adjustments.

    Q. Why is there no sound coming from my CS10?

    A. First be certain that the battery is charged and attached properly. If the unit is powered up, but no sound is coming out, try pressing the button on the face of the unit to increase the volume. If that doesn't work, check for obstruction of wax that may have built up in the ear tip or nozzle of the CS10. See our "Cleaning" video for details. You may also need to remove wax build up in your ears.