Bluetooth Hearing Aids on a Budget – Your Guide

March 3, 2019

Bluetooth hearing aids are really popular right now across the world. Lot’s of people really enjoy being able to use their iPhones to stream audio or calls to their hearing aids. A lot of people think they are really expensive, but there are more than a few options for you if you are on a tighter budget.

Cheaper, Does Not Mean Inferior

Just because they are budget hearing aids, does not mean that they are dramatically inferior either. Bernafon, Oticon and Phonak offer Bluetooth enabled hearing aids at the entry level. In fact, Bernafon and Oticon even offer Bluetooth enabled custom in the ear hearing aids at the entry level. Let’s talk about what is on offer and from who.

The Oticon Siya

The Oticon Siya range was introduced globally in the middle of 2018. Oticon says that the Siya range falls within what they call they call the essentials level of technology. The Siya range is a full family of Oticon hearing aid models at two technology levels.

Oticon Siya
Oticon Siya

Siya Models

The Siya range includes the Siya miniRITE (comes in a rechargeable version), the Siya BTE13 PP, the Siya miniRITE-T and finally five in the ear hearing aids. All of the hearing aids in the range except the two smallest, the Completely In Canal (CIC) and the Invisible In Canal (IIC or Invisible hearing aid) are Bluetooth enabled hearing aids.

The Same Chip as the Opn

The Siya range is made with the same computer brain as the very popular Opn devices, however, there is one very big difference. The Siya range does not use the Opn Navigator which is responsible for the new directionality that the Opn has become famous for.

Instead, the Siya range uses a more traditional directionality feature. Oticon makes some pretty strong claims for the Siya, here is what they say:

  • Category-leading performance
  • 50 times faster data processing than ever before  
  • Category-leading resolution with 48 frequency channels
  • Directionality in 15 independent frequency bands for high precision
  • Super-fast noise reduction features
  • 2.4 GHz Bluetooth® low energy for advanced connectivity

In finishing, they are great hearing aids and they offer that Bluetooth connection that many people are after.

Bernafon Zerena 1 and 3

Bernafon is in fact, a stable mate of Oticon and they are both owned by Demant Hearing in Denmark. While the Bernafon hearing aids share the same hardware as Oticon hearing aids, what they do with the hardware is very different.

Bernafon Zerena hearing aids

Bernafon uses a very unique way to amplify speech, one that no other hearing aid brand uses. They apply the same level of amplification to all speech sounds, making all sounds in speech even the softer sounds more clear. They believe that this dramatically helps with speech understanding.

The other thing that is different with Bernafon is that they use a more traditional type of directionality unlike Oticon. The Zerena range has been around for a while, but Bernafon introduced the budget Zerena 1 and 3 ranges late in 2018.

Full Range

As with the Oticon Siya, Bernafon offers all of their models in the Zerena 1 and 3 range. That’s the miniRITE, the miniRITE-T the rechargeable miniRITE-T, the BTE 105 and five custom in the ear hearing aids. Again, all of the hearing aids are Bluetooth enabled with the exception of the invisible hearing aid and the CIC.

The Zerena 1 and 3 ranges are a very strong budget offer. They offer a Bluetooth hearing aid in any model type you wished at a bargain price. While the feature sets are reduced, they are built with the same outstanding chipset that the more expensive devices use. They also offer the dynamic directionality and even some noise reduction. The Zerena 1 range is basic, but if you combine it with a SoundClip-A or the TV streamer it offers the ability to hear in situations that many people find difficult.

The Zerena 3 range is a really solid offering, and it is equipped to help people hear in noisier situations. Again, if you combine it with Bernafon’s SoundClip-A, you should do very well.

Phonak Marvel 30 Hearing Aids

Phonak Audeo Marvel hearing aids

Made For Any Phone

Phonak introduced the new Marvel platform in October 2018. It is the very first Bluetooth enabled hearing aid that will connect to any phone. The Marvel range is offered at four levels of technology with the 30, being the entry level device.

The Marvel 30 level of technology is another really solid offering. It uses the Phonak automatic system which is called AutoSense. At this level it offers four automatic settings, calm situation, speech in noise and two Bluetooth streaming programmes.

Limited Model Range

The Marvel is only available in a few Receiver In Canal (RIC) models , Phonak calls their RIC range, Audeo. Right now there is a rechargeable Audeo Marvel 30 and an Audeo Marvel 30 using a 312 battery. There will soon be an Audeo Marvel 30 with telecoil using a 312 battery and and Audeo Marvel 30 with telecoil using a size 13 battery.

The Marvel range has been well recieved and they are outstanding hearing aids. While the models are limited right now, it still offers a fantastic experience and even at the 30 level of technology should deliver some real benefits to users.

If you are looking for budget Bluetooth hearing aids in Perth, Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane, why don’t you give us a call on 08 9386 7816 to book an appointment.

Posted in