The Phonak Roger Pen features in a lot of Access to Work recommendations, alongside other microphones in the Roger family. And they feature a lot in discussions in hearing loss Facebook groups.
So, for the curious, here’s a little bit about them.
First up: the Roger Pen:
The Roger Pen acts as a microphone to bring sound closer, improve clarity and help deal with reverberant environments (the kind of places like cafes, meeting rooms and restaurants where sound bounces around).
It’s a clever little thing, automatically changing the microphone mode depending on how you hold or position it, without you having to press any buttons. So you can listen to everyone around you, a select few or focus in on one voice in a crowd if that’s what you need.
And it’s super discreet. Mine (pictured) is red because I can’t resist colourful things. But even so it looks just like any other pen in the meeting room. You can also get it in blue and brushed silver.
It’s often recommended by assessors because of its versatility. As well as helping with noisy environments and meetings it also connects to landlines and mobiles to stream calls.
Next: the Clip-on Mic
The clip-on mic can be used on its own or in a network with other Roger microphones.
It’s often recommended for people who attend presentations, conferences or training, or the kind of meetings where one person (a manager for example) does most of the talking, but other attendees chip in too.
It’s also very useful if you try to have 1-2-1 conversations is noisy environments. So, for example, if your colleagues love holding catch-ups in the canteen, or you regularly walk or travel in the car with someone to meetings, this can make a huge difference. Just ask your colleague to clip it onto their shirt, tie or jumper and you’ll hear every pearl of wisdom that flows from their lips over any background noise.
It’s handy too if you do the Times jumbo crossword on a Saturday in a your local coffee shop, and you want to hear your husband reading the clues out (yes, I know I could read them, but it’s a habit we’ve fallen into and anyway it’s nice to have the choice!).
Finally: the Table Mic
The table mic is the latest work-related microphone to join the Roger family. It’s designed for people who attend large meetings (more than 8 or 10 people). I’ve also personally found it very useful for meetings with fewer people but challenging acoustics.
So, for example, I like to use the table mic rather than the Roger Pen when I’m in a meeting at one of those long boardroom tables where, no matter where you sit, people always seem miles away. And I also prefer it when I’m at meetings in rooms with high ceilings, or where there are just a few of you rattling around in a huge room. It creates a kind of listening bubble which works well for me.
I did a more detailed review of the table mic in an earlier blog, if you’d like to read more about it.
Have you used any of these? What has your experience been?