Groundbreaking Audio Technology For the Hard of Hearing


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Our mission using HDSS audio technology is to restore the joy of music to those who have lost this wonderful experience.

According to the National Institute on Deafness and other Communication Disorders (NICID) 36 million people in the United States alone experience some degree of hearing loss — 15 percent of the total population! For so many of these individuals, the loss of their hearing is a tragedy not least of all because it robs them of their ability to enjoy one of life's purest joys: music.

We have received over the past few years many compliments and testimonials from hard of hearing persons about the clarity and stress reduction of HDSS sound. HDSS was developed for all persons but its apparent capability to provide a better hearing experience for people with hearing loss prompted us to look into this additional benefit of HDSS.

In December 2013, a we conducted an informal test at Gallaudet University to determine the sound quality of HDSS earphones. Overall test results indicate that HDSS sound technology enables persons with minor to total hearing loss to hear high quality sound without the use of hearing aids. The testing was performed with the HDSS 328R and 388B earphone models, on 53 participants.

Age range: 16-60 years
37 females / 16 males
Average hearing loss in right ear: 69%
Average hearing loss in left ear: 66%

HDSS (High Definiton Sound Standard) is based on patented ETL Technology developed by TBI Audio Systems LLC.

HDSS delivers undistorted sound to the eardrum without electronics (2) which may have restorative effects on the hair cells (5) and ease the interpretation of the electrical signals by the brain (6). 

Description of HDSS Sound Technology:

A sound wave vibrating a speaker cone causes its enclosure to pressurize, creating 3D turbulence as each sound wave seeks to compress to its new compacted internal wave length. This pressure distorts the sound, as the speaker cone responds disproportionately to different frequencies, thereby interfering with the quality of the sound being transmitted to the ear.

HDSS solves this problem by utilizing a non-electronic device (ETL) inside the enclosure that dissipates turbulent energy as heat. By removing pressure energy as heat from the combined waves, each new input signal is free to expand to natural dynamic levels. The 3D turbulence that creates distortion is prevented, leaving a smooth, layered sound,with pure tone.

There are two types of turbulence involved in this revolutionary process of delivering smooth layered sound with pure tone. The first type is called 3D turbulence which is produced in all speaker systems and causes distortion. The ETL device prevents 3D turbulence because the energy reaches the device as an incident wave inducing 2D turbulence within the device where an inherent viscous action dissipates this turbulent energy resulting in laminar flow being maintained within the speaker cabinet for all frequencies and their amplitudes.

One of the most exciting breakthroughs of HDSS® technology is that it enables people with hearing loss to capture dimensions of sound they may have missed using other technologies. The HDSS team is passionate about using our technology to help people with hearing loss experience audio in ways they wouldn't be able to otherwise.

The Hearing Loss Association of America, a national organization representing people with hearing loss, supports innovative and cutting edge technologies, particularly those that promise increased aural understanding by people with hearing loss. HLAA views HDSS, wide band/high definition audio, as some of the newer technologies that have great potential to benefit many people with hearing loss.

Here are testimonials from hard-of-hearing individuals about their experience with HDSS® Sound:

HDSS allows low level listening while maintaining natural bass response and the dynamic range  (ratio of loud to soft sounds) is greatly increased with compression sounds eliminated.


Audiophiles • Music lovers • Headphone & earbud users • Home theater owners • Video gamers • Car stereo listenersProfessional A/V users

The quality of the HDSS® technology means listeners can set their sound levels at much lower volumes, protecting themselves against ear damage and hearing loss. The most common cause of hearing loss is simply chronic exposure to excessive noise or regular iPod use with the volume cranked up. For the hearing and for people with hearing loss, HDSS® is about much more than sound clarity: it's about a safer, more healthful way to experience sound.

HDSS® brings out a level of quality and complexity in sound that no other sound system on the market today is able to capture.

Stereophile Magazine has said of our technology that it "answers to a different physics" than other premium sound systems on the market today.

Here are some  companies that use HDSS technology in many of their audio products:

Blue Ever Blue • Sharp • Altaz • Cooler Master • Nakamichi • Tech@Vogue
 Top Sound • Shape Technology • Flxtronics • Shapedigit • Tek Maker

Because of the simplicity of HDSS® technology, it can be incorporated into speaker systems, ranging from large systems to extremely small devices, at a much lower cost than other high-fidelity sound systems.

Jan Plummer, CEO
Jan is an audio technology visionary and innovator who received his first patent in the audio field in 1975. Over the course of more than 30 years of research and development he invented in 2007 the Embedded Transmission Line (ETL), the technology at the heart of the HDSS innovation.

Bentley Plummer, CFO
Bentley manages the finances. Bentley is a graduate of the USAF Academy and has a MS degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Carlton Plummer 
Carlton oversees product sales and marketing for HDSS. 

Chen Ming Jen
Chen assists OEM companies in adapting their products to the HDSS system.

Haruyoki Kuwajara 
Haruyoki heads up HDSS product sales and marketing in Japan. 

The team behind HDSS is honored and proud to be creating high quality sound systems that allow hearing-impaired people everywhere to reclaim the joy of sound, but we need your help to keep our mission going strong! 

TBI Audio Systems, a small US technology company and owner of the ETL patent which is the basis of HDSS, is conducting this crowdfunding campaign as a first phase in accomplishing the following investigations:

  • Conduct HDSS® brain scan tests utilizing hard of hearing participants and participants with normal hearing to establish hearing benchmarks and parameters. This test will be a follow up to the HDSS® double-blind Heart Rate Variability test with 10 normal hearing volunteers which resulted in a 14.32% reduction in psychological stress.

  • Conduct investigations into an HDSS system offered to the general public (normal to problematic) that could allow listeners to calibrate their ears using a series of clicks embodying the signals necessary to balance the brain's information input requirements to include frequency, level, and phase. The processing required could operate in the background of a smartphone and seamlessly integrate listening source priorities including mixing of live and recorded sources. The microphone requirements may vary with individual or environment allowing highly specialized applications or general communications.

  • Investigate the development of over- the- head earphones with a tension adjustment that places ear buds into the ear canal at precisely the proper insertion depth. This will also act as an additional seal to limit direct ambient sounds thereby allowing complete control of acoustic conditions at the eardrum. The system could be programmed to operate at a maximum safe level for the individual. This normalization process would reduce hearing loss from excessive levels in the environment.

We have some great rewards lined up to thank you for supporting our mission:

Pledge $10 or more and receive a Golden Certificate of Thanks. 

Pledge $20 or more and receive a pair of 328R HDSS earphones - that's a 20% discount! You'll also receive a Golden Certificate of Thanks.

Pledge $50 or more and receive a pair of 388B HDSS earphones and a pair of 328R HDSS earphones - that's a 22% discount! You'll also receive a Golden Certificate of Thanks.


Pledge $80 or more and receive a pair of 866B HDSS earphones, a pair of 388B HDSS earphones, and a pair of 328R HDSS earphones - that's a 30% discount! You'll also receive a Golden Certificate of Thanks.

Pledge $120 or more and receive a pair of 868B HDSS earphones, a pair of 388B HDSS earphones with mic, and a pair of 328R HDSS earphones - that's a 21% discount! You'll also receive a Golden Certificate of Thanks.

Pledge $400 or more and receive a pair of 878 HDSS earphones, a pair of 328R HDSS earphones, and a pair of HDSS MD1 bookshelf speakers - that's a 25% discount! You'll also receive a Golden Certificate of Thanks.

Pledge $800 or more and receive a pair of 878 HDSS earphones, a pair of 328R HDSS earphones, a pair of HDSS MD1 bookshelf speakers, and the award-winning Millenia MG3 amplifier, perfect for your TV, home theater, or computer. Receive all of these rewards at a 23% discount! You'll also receive a Golden Certificate of Thanks.


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