Using Bose Speakers or Hearing Aids for Ham Radio – When you need it.
Sometimes I just want to sit back and listen to my favorite Ham Radio net on the Bose speakers. In those cases I route the audio from both receivers in my radio to the Bose Companion speakers on my PC. I don’t do this all of the time because the internal speakers in the radio sound good when I am operating. It is a nice alternative though. See more ideas including using hearing aids below.
Bose for Ham Radio
I purchased Bose Companion speakers a long time ago when I had a Flexradio. They were suggested by many of the Flexradio owners. I use them when listening to videos or audio from websites.
Any decent powered speakers will work in this situation. Just be cautious of the wall wart that accompanies them. They could cause RFI.
I have the Bose connected to my PC with the supplied speaker wires. They have an extra jack for running wires from my radios external speaker jack, but I don’t use it that way.
I am using the audio from the USB cable. For the moment the Icom 7610 is in the shack, but this will work with many other radios as well.
Windows 10 Pro
Things have changed in the past months with Win10, but it’s easy to configure.
- In the Sound Control Panel go to the Recording tab and double-click to enter the USB Audio CODEC Properties.
- On the Advanced tab select a 2 channel, 16 bit Quality. I am using (CD Quality).
- On the Listen tab click the box “Listen to this device” and select the Speakers for Playback.
Use it when you need it.
- Right-click on the speaker icon in the lower right of the Win10 taskbar.
- Select “Open Volume Mixer.”
- Widen the window until you can see the USB Audio CODEC slider (it may be hidden to the right).
- You can enable or mute the audio when needed from here.
Ham Radio Video – High Quality Audio When You Need It
My friend Jon, NQ4A asked about connecting his Bluetooth hearing aids to his PC and listening to the audio from his radio. Your PC needs to have Bluetooth capability. Pair your hearing aids with your computer and connect them. Then use the above method, but select the hearing aids for the Playback device in the USB Audio CODEC Sound Properties.
Works with Bluetooth headsets too. If your PC doesn’t have Bluetooth, a cheap USB dongle will work.
If I had the speakers hard wired to the radio I could not switch back and forth as easy. This way, a click of the mouse mutes the Bose and I can listen to the internal speakers while operating.
Here is an excellent and FREE software equalizer for your computer speakers. The BOSE had a little too much bass and using the APO I was able to customize the audio quality.
Here is a link to the front end for the Equalizer APO:Peace Equalizer
If you have any questions, comments or solutions, please comment below. I prefer the comment section here or in YouTube over e-mail because your comments and questions will help others as well.