Missing “Link” for wireless communication!

There is a neat little product available that enables non-Bluetooth audio sources to transmit Bluetooth signals. The ClearSounds QLink is a stereo Bluetooth transmitter that connects to any non-Bluetooth TV, i-Pod, CD player, laptop, etc via a 3.5mm stereo jack and then wirelessly transmits the audio to compatible Bluetooth receivers, such as the Quattro Bluetooth neckloop, with A2DP technology. For example, if you have a patient who currently uses a Quattro Bluetooth neckloop who wants to listen to their TV via their hearing instruments, rather than investing in a traditional TV listening system, the QLink is a viable option to consider. Simply pair the QLink to the Quattro Bluetooth neckloop, plug the QLink directly into the 3.5mm headset jack of an analog TV set (or via RCA style connector), and the user will be able to receive audio wirelessly from the TV. The QLink offers an operating range of 30 feet with an in-use time of about 7 hours.

The QLink is compatible with any Bluetooth receiver that supports A2DP technology. What is A2DP? A2DP stands for Advanced Audio Distribution Profile which is a special technology that allows streaming of CD-quality audio from one device to another via Bluetooth technology. Not all Bluetooth devices support A2DP technology and it will be necessary to consult manual or feature listings of Bluetooth devices to determine if the QLink will potentially work with that Bluetooth device.

About AU Bankaitis

A.U. Bankaitis, PhD is a clinical Audiologist with extensive clinical, research, and business experience within the hearing industry. Dr. Bankaitis created this blog to educate her colleagues on viable product solutions for their patients and/or clinical practice.
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10 Responses to Missing “Link” for wireless communication!

  1. Paul says:

    I’ve used this device on my TV. The latency or delay factor is quite noticeable to me and I found it distracting. I probably will not use it for TV much for this reason but do note that it is probably fine for watching sporting events on TV because then the announcer is usually off-screen. (In other words, the latency is not such a problem with voice-over dialogue. ) That said, I may use it for watching TV while traveling because it is quite portable, not requiring an AC power source.

    My reasons for using this device are strictly hearing impairment related. I have an Oticon bluetooth transmitter that works with the Oticon Streamer and it has so little latency that I cannot discern it while watching TV. However, it costs much, much more than this device and also requires an AC power source.

    I am keeping my QLink because I think it is a good value for the price. It’s fine for MP# players, etc. Even if they must increase the price of the QLink, I think they should move ahead and engineer a product with less latency so that it is a better option for TV viewing.

    However, it is faster than

    I also have an Oticon bluetooth transmitter it

    • aubankaitis says:

      thanks for the feedback. I will see what I can find out from the manufacturer re: latency delay as I have not heard too many complaints. Will get back to you soon with some insights, I hope, to see if perhaps we can try a few things out to see if it improves your TV watching situation.

  2. Dan Schwartz says:

    AU and Juliette: This was covered at the HLAA hearing aid technology symposium: The Latency specification for Bluetooth is 150 mSec, which is due to sending an acknowledgement and compensating for any dropped packets.

    Television is a complete mess, however: Although the obsolete analog NTSC didn’t have latency issues, the same is not true once the analog signal is digitized and compressed, as the AC3 and MPEG codecs used perform a lousy job of keeping sync’d… And it’s made worse by cable companies, as they try to jam as much as they can down their fibre & coax.

    In other words, as I pointed out in Milwaukee, latency has become a Serious FML

  3. How is the delay in devices like this? And what about the frequency response?

    I imagine that if there is a delay that this would work well for telephone but these may not work so well for TV or video clips on a computer as it would cause a mismatch with the lipreading/mouth movements. A reduced frequency response might not be a big deal either if it concerns a telephone signal as most have a pretty poor and width. Do you have any personal experience with them?

    Any idea how I might find out about delays and frequency response?

    • aubankaitis says:

      great questions; I will find out from the manufacturer in terms of specifics on their end. We did try out the QUATTRO with an iPod and it seemed to work great. We have not tried these devices with the TV or anything so I can’t comment on that. If I have an extra demo laying around, I may send it to you to try out to get your feedback if you would be willing; let me know. In the mean time, I will contact the manufacturer for some specific answers to your questions.

      • I would love to try… I also have a son who plays X-box and I can ask him… he tried it with the Oticon streamer and did detect a delay. I could understand why this works for audio only – especially speech over a telephone/cellphone… as long as there is a good Frequency response – delays are not an issue but for movies it may be a different matter. Fascinating gadgets… now if they would only work in looped facilities we’d be all set, right?

  4. How is the battery charged? Also, there appears to be a mini USB jack: Is that for a USB connection to a non-BT PC?

    Also, there is no URL to the QLink itself 🙁

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