2019-12-25 (W) BCHearing Aid

I purchased a telephone recording pickup to use as a plug-and-play electrical coil in the hope that it would be able to sense vibrations on the magnet behind my right ear and convert them to sound. This would have been somewhere between a throat mic and an electric guitar pickup. Telephone pickups are essentially a microphone with no diaphragm. They work by sensing the magnetic field in a phone's speaker. Pushing power through them should also produce a magnetic field, so it was going to be tested in reverse to see if it could vibrate the magnet implant.  An inexpensive recorder was selected because it had separate ports for a microphone and headphones.
Recorder and phone pickup

A short clip of my voice was recorded through the built-in microphone and played back to ensure there was something audible. I plugged the phone pickup into the headphone port of the recorder, and felt tiny vibrations on my finger magnet during playback.
Testing output with a finger magnet

I held the coil to my ear magnet in different orientations, but I couldn't hear anything. I tried varying degrees of pressure, including holding the phone pickup on the other side of my ear.
Testing with the ear magnet

I tried a few things, including an ordinary pair of headphones in the microphone port. A speaker driven in reverse, vibrating its diaphragm, will produce some current on the line. I tapped on some headphones with, and without magnets and playback confirmed that I recorded something. When I held the headphones to my ear magnet, there was no noticeable change in the recording.
Headphones plugged into the microphone port

It was worth my time to prove that it would not work, at least not without modifications. Even if the parts did work, it would be necessary to change their size and shape to suit the project, but it might have given me a starting point for producing or recording sound.

Telling people about my successes is fabulous, and I hope I inspire folks. Speaking about my failures is vital too. This project did not result in a working prototype. Admittedly, I did not pursue all avenues, but what I saw encouraged me to spend time on other projects. If you read this blog and have questions about what I found, or you want to brainstorm a better model, I would be delighted to chat.
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The rest of the posts for this project have been arranged by date.
First time here?

Completed projects from year 1
Completed projects from year 2
Completed projects from year 3
Completed projects from year 4
Completed projects from year 5
Completed projects from year 6

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