Advances in hearing aid technology mean that we now have many more automatic features in all levels of hearing aids than ever before. This allows for individual lifestyle and needs to be taken into account when selecting which hearing aid is right for you. The cost of the hearing aid generally depends on the technology and the features that the hearing includes and not necessarily how the hearing aid looks.
Entry Level hearing aids generally require the wearer to make some manual adjustments in certain listening situations - such as turning a volume control up or down.
Entry Level hearing aids are computer programmable, but may have fewer or more limited adjustments available for fine tuning and customization as compared to advanced technology.
Each hearing aid manufacturer offers several levels of advanced technology. As the level of technology increases, hearing instruments become more automatic, and are equipped with more sophisticated features for people who regularly encounter dynamic listening situations.
Multiple Listening programs - This makes is possible to have different (customised) programs for specific listening situations including hearing in noisy situations listening on the telephone, accessing hearing loop systems, or listening to live music.
Wind Noise Reduction - Reduces the whooshing noise of wind blowing across the hearing aid microphone(s). Designed to improve listening comfort for people who spend time outdoors - golfers, boaters, walkers, etc.
Feedback Cancellation - Feedback cancellation has improved across the whole range of devices. It's less common to suffer feedback these days than days gone by.
Environment Detection - Hearing instruments today have the ability to scan the sound environment and detect the presence of different types of sounds such as speech, background noise and wind noise.
Data Logging - Stores data in the hearing aids about the listening environments and adjustments made while worn. Data can be viewed by hearing care professional and used for more precise and objective fine tuning to optimize the hearing aids settings for clients' personal needs.
VC Learning - Hearing aids learn based on changes made by the wearer, such as to the volume, and then automatically make these changes. More precise personalization of the instruments enables a more accurate, individual fitting.
Wireless technology - All levels of instruments use this technology to communicate with each other when wearing two hearing instruments. This can provide the following features:
Binaural Coordination - with wireless technology wearers can use the control only on one side to operate both devices simultaneously for ease of use and a more balanced sound picture.
Wireless connectivity +Bluetooth Interface - Enables hearing aids to wirelessly connect to mobile phone or other Bluetooth devices. Designed for better use with mobile phones without distortion or interference; enables audio streaming from other devices such as MP3 players, computers, etc. Bluetooth adaptors can be added to other devices such as landline phones or TVs for audio streaming from such audio devices.
Bluetooth Connectivity - Allows the hearing aid to connect to iPhone and Android without the need for a Bluetooth interface