Need an amplifier for when I am sleeping

As I am sure you all know the beeping alarm for lows is definitely not very loud. I live by myself and need an amplifier of some sort so that this thing can wake me up. Does anyone else out there have one that works well or has any suggestions.

I’ve heard of people who keep their dex in a jar of coins. It doesn’t increase the beeping noise but the vibrate gets much louder. There have also been solutions with baby monitors. If you search for past discussions you should be able to find a bunch of tips.

I sometimes have trouble too since I have been using the rubbery “skin”. It seems to muffle the vibration and maybe the beeps. I am considering taking the skin off at night.

Mary here bought an alarm used for the deaf. It comes with a bed shaker. There was a discussion about it on TuD on the main forum if you search for that. Here user name here is MaryMary.

I put it under my pillow, in the pillow case, set to beep and vibrate. It’s never failed being near my ear and shaking my head!

My 13 yr old uses as a Dexcom but is a very sound sleeper. After reading a few threads on this topic here, we got a baby monitor and put the loud end in my room. I wake to the alarm easily and can check on my son when needed. Great improvement in our quality of life!

I’m using a shallow bowl with coins in it. I set the alarm to both beep and vibrate. My doctor recommended that before I even ordered my Dexcom. I leave it in the rubbery sleeve and I charge it at the same time. It works pretty well for me.

Derrick, I’ll go ahead and label myself as the expert on high-quality, LOW-NOISE, “baby monitor for yourself” technology. I’ll describe a near-perfect setup:

This setup costs more than many “consumer-grade”, toys, but it’s immune to hum. It’s also small enough to take with you on trips :)). The secret is using professional, 3-wire “XLR” equipment – like audio pros and bar bands. The microphone and microphone cable are connected to the pre-amp with 3 wires.

Rather than “signal” + “ground”, the 3 wires are “signal”, “ground”, and “signal inverted” – a wire with exactly the opposite voltage as the signal. 60-cycle hum (from house wiring), and similar electrical noise, spends it’s energy in effecting BOTH the “signal” and “inverted signal” wires. By consuming energy (i.e., noise) in the “inverted signal” wire, the 3-wire cable cancels out all of the noise which occurs along the cable.

Get cheap, but adequate, Berhinger equipment. You don’t need to “step up” into fragile condenser microphones and their need for 48V “phantom voltage”. (Although the the pre-amp I’m about the recommend CAN provide that phantom voltage.) Instead, you buy the cheaper and really nice Berhinger XM8500, AKA “Ultravoice”.

That microphone has, IMO, the indestructibility and sound of the “legendary”, best-selling Shure SM58… for considerably less $.

Pair it up with the Behringer “Xenyx 502” pre-amp/mixer. That pre-amp provides a socket for only ONE XLR microphone input, But IMO the fantastically small size makes up for the fact that you can only connect a single “good” microphone. (Tell your drummer to bring his own mixer.)

From the pre-amp, you use the “CD/Tape Out” jacks into a boom box mini-plug. If you can stand having earphones on, there’s also an earphone jack. Just be absolutely SURE that you’re buying a genuine, 3-wire “XLR” cable!. A lot of cables are sold with only two wires (signal and ground, with the 3rd connector pin “jumpered”.

These allows cheap trash (i.e., Radio Shack), to look “kewl”, and to connect into a professional mixer – but such a cable will be just as hum-prone as any other TWO-WIRE cable with 1/4" plug and jack, or RCA plug, or miniplug, or anything like that on one of the ends. If it doesn’t have Male and Female XLR at the two ends, with 3 wires, then it’s not your cable. Expect to pay $15-$20 for one long enough to keep the mixer, and the adjacent boom box (or stereo) far from your head and the microphone.

A real Shure SM-58 microphone costs about $100. (There’s tons of $50 “SM-58” microphones on EBay, but many are fraudulent look-alikes. Some of these fakes sound OK, others are absolutely atrocious.) The Berhinger XM8500’s cost $25 each, they sound great, they’re indestructible, and no one bothers to “clone” a product that cheap… For $50, you can buy two of them! (New, and in the Roady-proof storage boxes, of course.)

The Xenyx 502 costs about $40. The 802, with more inputs, costs only a few dollars more – but it’s twice the size. BTW, if you look at photos, you might not see the XLR connector: The box is black, and the connector is black as well. It’s in the top left corner.

Do not by a used, older Xenyx with “slider” gain/volume controls. Dirt gets in. The new ones have small dial controls along the bottom, they don’t have that problem.

I keep the monitor and microphone under my pillow, and the volume levels WAY up.

Oh, Rick, you lost me at square one LOL I am concerned about what I’ll do when the Vibe is out with no receiver to put under my pillow. I never hear the pump during the night.

OK, I got a little far into details. Keep in mind, though, that you don’t have to put it under the pillow – just anyplace where your breathing/snoring won’t create a feedback loop with the boom box/stereo speaker… and where the Dexcom isn’t screaming “out of range, too far away”.

You can probably do pump AND Dexcom with one microphone. And a battery-based boombox, plus the Xenyx running on batteries, works anywhere - a tent in the woods, a friend’s house; it’s an easy setup to take with you.

If you do EBay, I can send you a list of specific items which are currently “for sale” and exactly right. “Friend” me, and I’ll make up such a list and use TD’s messaging system to send it to you. Are you using a full stereo set in your bedroom, or just a boombox? If Boombox, it MUST! have a mini-plug for connecting music from a walkman, iphone, etc.

Please advise if I should also select a new boombox.

Hey Derrick, I tried an amplier, bad idea! A GREAT idea that I totally love is an alarm for deaf people, called the “super shaker” which when it hears a beeping sound from an alarm, it vibrates a device that you put in your pillow. You WILL wake up! I’ve never missed an alarm in a whole year since I’ve had it!! Let me know if you have problems finding it on the internet. You need to buy two devices for it. Call the company and they will hook you up. The total cost is $100 but totally worth it!

Just go to Amazon and order the Sonic Alert SB1000ss for 60 bucks and the Sonic Alert Baby Cry signaler for 43 bucks. That is all that you need. It comes with a bed shaker and alarm. You can use one or the other or both. The alarm can be set to different tones and loudness. It is very loud. Actually we marked the dial so she knows just where to set it so that it is not too loud. Best investment ever!

Since my sleeping arrangement is so full of background noise (speach, music, traffic, etc.) I’ve learned to sleep through much noise. Will the baby cry signaler be able to distinguish between the background noise and the Dex?

You put the receiver right next to the transmitter and there is an adjustment on it. There are times when my daughter would cough and it would set it off, or if I talk to her too loud near it. Also, thunder while we were camping in our RV set it off, but that is a metal roof and it was a bad storm. We may have been able to change the setting a bit and keep it on that night. The bed shaker will keep setting off the alarm, so you can’t just ignore it till it stops. I can’t guarantee that it will work for you, but i would sure give it a try if I were you. You could always return it and all you would be out would be the shipping.

Thanks, MaryMary, I’m ordering them right now.

I’ve had the Sonic Alert baby monitor and alarm with the bed shaker now for a couple weeks. It was a little touchy to set up and find the right location and position for the Dex next to the baby monitor but it now wakes me up just fine. What a great product for overcoming the Dex’s shortcomings. Too bad it cost another $100 that the Dex should have solved before ever being allowed by the FDA to release such and inferior alarm system. Night time hypo unawareness was the biggest reason for me to get CGM. The Nav was fine but the Dex is useless without the Sonic Alert.

Franco, glad it is working for you. The Navigator was louder, but there were so many alarms on it that my daughter learned to sleep through them. I would go in to check on her and she would be asleep with it in her hands. I am glad that the Dex has snoozes for the alarms so that if she is high, it is not going off constantly. We have the high snooze set for 2 hours and that seems to work out fine. So far my son wakes up with the Dex, because he is used to his phone being on vibrate and kind of half listening for it and for some reason vibrate wakes him better than alarms. He is also hypo unaware, but usually doesn’t have problems at night. He still has a working Navigator also and is likely back to using that now, after wearing both for a couple of weeks. He still trusts the Navigator more, but it is only a matter of time before it dies.