Ensure the testing environment is as quiet as possible. Ideally test in a sound-treated room, though this is not essential.
Check the eartip to ensure that it is fully inserted and that the foam has expanded to fill the ear canal. Gaps can cause low-frequency noise leakage.
Check that the probe cables are not touching each other and are not touching the power or USB cables.
Ensure the probe cable is not moving against the patient or catching on hair, clothing, or earrings. Use the supplied shirt clip or Velcro pad to stabilize the cable. Drape the probe cable over the back of the chair, or suspend it so it doesn’t touch the patient. A cable-holder such as those used to hold up the cable of a domestic iron can be clipped onto a table to help keep the cable clear of the patient. The cable should not rest on the patient as small movements can cause noisy measurements. The cable should not be moved during the measurement.
- Noise can often be from breathing - ask them to breath through their mouth, not their nose (or vice-versa).
Check if they're clenching their jaw or grinding their teeth and try to get them to relax, perhaps keeping their jaw dropped.
- Check if they're uncomfortable and restless and try to mitigate it - sometimes people being tested don't want to complain.
- If the person being tested is using a device such as a mobile phone to entertain themselves while being tested, check that their finger/hand movements aren't causing movement and noise. Also check that the device itself is not causing interference.
- If they are anxious and clenching their jaw, giving them a closed-captioned video to watch might relax them.
- Consider providing a high backed armchair for testing so that the head can be relaxed on the head rest. But be careful they don't fall asleep as sleeping can change some OAE and MOCR results.
Do let us know if you have any handy hints!