Into The Cochlea

Have you ever thought about how we are able to hear high and low tones?

A low tone is a slow vibration. Only slow vibrations make it into the depth of the inner ear, sometimes called the apex of the cochlea.

High tones are fast vibrations. They do not move very far into the inner ear.

Experience description

How does a cochlear implant take care of the wide range of tones - low, mid and high tones? Most importantly, a cochlear implant needs to consider the natural place for each tone in the inner ear.

Find out which parts of the sound activate which area in the inner ear.

Very low tones need to be transmitted to the inner most part of the cochlea. Only then they sound low, finds Reinhold Schatzer [1] in cochlear omplant users with single sided deafness (

If all parts of the cochlea are being activated, the world sounds the most natural. How a cochlear implant might sound has been explored by Michael Dorman [2], also in a group of cochlear implant user with single sided deafness (

Note that we are not trying to simulate the sound of a cochlear implant here, but to show which areas of the cochlea need to are stimulated naturally.


  1. Schatzer R, Vermeire K, Visser D, Krenmayr A, Kals M, Voormolen M, Van de Heyning P, Zierhofer C. (2014). Electric-acoustic pitch comparisons in single-sided-deaf cochlear implant users: frequency-place functions and rate pitch. Hear Res. 2014 Mar;309:26-35. doi: 10.1016/j.heares.2013.11.003.
  2. Dorman MF, Cook Natale S, Butts AM , Zeitler DM , Carlson ML. (2017). The Sound Quality of Cochlear Implants: Studies With Single-sided Deaf Patients. Otol Neurotol. 2017 Sep;38(8):e268-e273. doi: 10.1097/MAO.0000000000001449.
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