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SVD-Based Optimal Filtering Technique for Noise Reduction in Hearing Aids Using Two Microphones

Abstract

We introduce a new SVD-based (Singular value decomposition) strategy for noise reduction in hearing aids. This technique is evaluated for noise reduction in a behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aid where two omnidirectional microphones are mounted in an endfire configuration. The behaviour of the SVD-based technique is compared to a two-stage adaptive beamformer for hearing aids developed by Vanden Berghe and Wouters (1998). The evaluation and comparison is done with a performance metric based on the speech intelligibility index (SII). The speech and noise signals are recorded in reverberant conditions with a signal-to-noise ratio of and the spectrum of the noise signals is similar to the spectrum of the speech signal. The SVD-based technique works without initialization nor assumptions about a look direction, unlike the two-stage adaptive beamformer. Still, for different noise scenarios, the SVD-based technique performs as well as the two-stage adaptive beamformer, for a similar filter length and adaptation time for the filter coefficients. In a diffuse noise scenario, the SVD-based technique performs better than the two-stage adaptive beamformer and hence provides a more flexible and robust solution under speaker position variations and reverberant conditions.

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Correspondence to Jean-Baptiste Maj.

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Keywords

  • VD-based technique
  • beamforming
  • noise reduction
  • hearing aids
  • speech intelligibility
  • diffuse noise