Hearing aid users attending the 2015 Santa Barbara International Film Festival will find their experience vividly enhanced, thanks to a temporary hearing loop system available at many of this year’s festival locations. The move comes courtesy of Otojoy, a Santa Barbara tech start-up and hearing loop installer, in partnership with the Independent Living Resource Center and the public-awareness campaign Let’s Loop Santa Barbara, which is working to make Santa Barbara one of the most hearing-friendly cities in California.
As for how it works, the hearing loop is an induction wire that when strategically installed, wirelessly transfers pure, clear sound without background noise directly to anyone’s hearing device. All the user needs to do is switch his or her hearing aid to the “T” function, and they’ll hear quality sound tuned to their own settings and customized for their hearing loss. It works with most hearing aids, as well as cochlear implants.
Both the Lobero Theatre and the Santa Barbara Museum of Art’s Mary Craig Auditorium have permanent systems installed and available for use during the fest. In addition to those, hearing loops will be temporarily installed in two of Metro 4’s theaters.
For film fans with hearing issues, moviegoing has never been more immersive and inclusive.
To see a complete list of venues using the Loop in Santa Barbara, visit loopsantabarbara.org.