Beltone Hearing Aids

Beltone is a US based hearing aids company. Beltone devices try to cover every audiology need you can think of, see below what is the hearing aid that you might need. Technology wise (and price wise) Beltone is not in the front line of the hearing aids’ manufacturers.

On 2004, the Danish Giant Corporate Gn purchased Beltone. Under Gn umbrella, you can also find Resound and interton hearing aids brands.

Most popular Beltone Devices

Origin

The new basic series by Beltone. You can get it in a variety of types and levels. It enables you decent solution in an affordable price. A solid device that gets the job done, not very fancy or too sophisticated.


Miicro Invisa

miicro invisa beltone hearing aid Miicro Invisa IIC hearing aid.
Courtesy Beltone

Beltone smallest device. Sits deep in your ear canal. Naturally, it’s great if you want an invisible device. It is practically invisible. Like all invisible-in-the-canal (IIC) hearing aids, you just push it in to locate it, and you use a tiny cord to pull it out of your ear.

It got some of the Beltone’s technologies, but not all, since it is so small and located deep in your ear. Adding microphones to improve localization, for instance, isn’t possible. It does support features like feedback handling and wind noise preventing.

Generally speaking, it may be good for you if you got minor to moderate hearing loss.


Beltone Promise

A new device by Beltone. You can get it on three different grades and It’s available on several sizes. Its main feature is that both hearing aids communicate with one another. The right hearing aid and the left hearing aid got a wireless communication between them, which enables them to cooperate when it’s relevant.
It should improve few things:
 - Your localization ability. Localization is your ability to locate where the sounds come from.
 - Synchronization between the ears. For instance, if you increase the volume on one device, it can amplify the other device too.
 - Using phone. Once you put your phone next to your ear, the hearing aid on the other side will reduce its volume a bit, to minimize noises and interferences.

As expected, it got all of the Beltone’s technologies to prevent feedback, wind noise and so on. You can also use all of Beltone wireless accessories with this device. This can help you when watching TV and listening to music.

Belotone Prime

beltone prime hearing aid Beltone Prime hearing aid.
Courtesy Beltone

Small and almost invisible device. The microphone is placed inside the concha, and the device itself is right in the canal. It’s also super easy to wear it because of that. (They used this method for the Tune series and with the Touch series).

Like many other microphone-in-concha hearing aids, the purpose is to emulate the way sounds are normally received, using all the ear’s curves. They want the sounds to be transferred into the ear canal exactly in the same way it happens if you don’t use a hearing aid. It uses the natural anatomy of the ear to do so, since every part and wrinkle in the outer ear actually takes part in receiving sounds from the environment. The microphone location also helps decreasing wind noises.

Another benefit of this type is that it can be great for you if you can’t wear BTE with glasses. You can also take it for a trial period right away, since it doesn't require any molds or special adjustment. The clinic should be able to fit it for you right on the first visit.


Technology wise, it got all the goodies Beltone has to offer, including the moist resistance. The later is really important as you’ll have this device inside your ear.


Beltone Prime Vs. Micro Invisa

An obvious comparison, as the two devices are the top of the line devices, both are tiny and almost invisible.

  1. They are both on the same technology level (the highest).
  2. On the Prime, the mic is separated from the receiver, while on the Invisa its attached. This makes a different feeling in the ear. In addition, typically you have less feedback when the mic and the receiver are separated (like in Prime).
  3. Both devices use the ear’s anatomy instead of additional microphone to have directional hearing (both of them got only one mic)
  4. Both the Prime and the Invisa aren’t for you if you got severe hearing loss.
  5. Bottom line - you’ll have to try them both and decide what feels better for you.

Additional Available Beltone hearing aids

Turn and Mira

Basic hearing aids. You can choose between three amplify levels. The audiologist trims it with some small screwdriver (Not connected to any PC). They got the very simplest mechanisms to handle feedback and noise. These hearing aids can give you some amplification if you have budget limitations. You can find even simpler models, if you are interested in the simplest digital hearing aid: Arca and EZ-trim.


Change/Access

You can have them in most sizes. Basic technology level, something like the turn-6. They are distinguished from the basic hearing aids since they got slightly better directional mechanism, and they support some basic data logging (recording usage history for future adjustments)


Edge

A small and discreet open-fit device. Technology wise it stands in line with the Beltone hearing aids above.


Touch

Used to be one of Beltone’s flagship devices, especially due to its unique structure. It’s a CIC, but the microphone is separated from the device body. It enables two things: first, to make the device smaller, and second, the microphone can be located on one of the wrinkles in the outer ear. The main advantages are that the microphone is shielded from wind noises and it’s far from the receiver (should save you feedback squeaks).

You can have it in three grades. On the high grade, it comes with some mechanism to deal with tinnitus. You can also have this hearing aid with a stronger receiver, in case you have a deeper hearing loss.


Reach/One

It was the high-end of Beltone hearing aidsm until the Promise came along. Keep in mind, though, that in this market, a device from a few years ago can be a great one. They have it in all sorts of sizes and shapes. They differ one from another by some features the ‘Reach’ got whilst the ‘One’ hasn’t got. The ‘Reach’ got mechanisms to handle winds better, directional mechanism, and it is coated with some stuff to protect it from moisture. Like the ‘Touch’, it supposed to help you if you got tinnitus of some level.

True

A Receiver-in-the-canal device, pretty small, available on three different grades. The grades differ mainly by the amount of programs they support and by the complexity of the directional mechanism (it supposed to deal noises better). On all models, you can connect to TV or audio equipment (wireless). It enables you to get the sounds and voices directly to the hearing aid.
Like some other Beltone hearing aids, ‘True’ got a coating to protect it from moisture.

Marq

A small light BTE hearing aid. It got nice size-to-power ratio and you can have it in two quality levels (Marq9 and Marq17). The levels are different in the number of channels and in automatic operation of some of its features (The Marq 17 is better).
As for its technology, it stands shoulder to shoulder with the best of Beltone hearing aids like ‘Reach’, ‘Touch17’, ‘True17’ and ‘One’.

Identity

A good, solid hearing aid, available on all sizes (Somewhat like Touch9 and True9). You can have it on an open-fit version and with two amplification levels.

Linq

A medium-level device (slightly below devices like Identity/True9 or Touch9 when it comes to handling noises and directional mechanisms). Here too, you can have it on an open-fit version and with two amplification levels.

Force

A strong BTE hearing aid, got nine channels, it is somewhere between the basic devices and the medium level (True - Change).


Beltone Hearing Aids Technologies

Beltone technology tries to give you a feeling of natural hearing. They got few mechanisms and features they use on their hearing aids. I’ll try to explain them in simple day-to-day words.


Spatial Directionality

Beltone uses a strategic where one device receives sound from a specific direction, and the other device covers all directions equally. It enables the system to figure out what is noise and what is not. In specific, it tries to locate the human speaker and let you hear him well even if there is noise around.

Feedback eraserTM with WhistlestopTM

This system is designed to deal with feedback issues. It supposed to prevent the feedback before you even hear it. There is a more basic system called ‘adaptive feedback cancellation’ you might come across. This one works by sending a tone to your ear with same frequency and amplitude as the feedback but with the opposite phase of the feedback whistle.

Sound Cleaner Pro

A noise suppression system. The system recognizes    the noisy parts of the speech and sounds and suppress it, without affecting the speech itself. A more basic system is called ‘Sound cleaner’.


Smart Beam ™ 

This one automatically focuses on human speech if there are background noises. It is planned to adjust the receiving band of the directional microphone in order to get only the relevant sounds.

Wind noise suppression

Like the name implies, it reduces wind noises.

Speech Spotter

A system of directional microphones that automatically switches between a directional receiving mode and a equal-spread receiving mode. It does so according to environmental conditions.

Smart Gain

A system that automatically switches between seven different acoustic programs to fit its surrounding.

Learning volume control

Increases (or decreases the volume automatically, according to your last usage of the volume wheel.

Satisfaction journal (Data logging)

It logs your preferences (what programs you use, what volume, etc). Your hearing aids' expert can use it later to do some tuning so that your device will fit you better.

Ear to Ear synchronization

Adjusts the volume and program of one side’s device to the volume and programs of the other side’s device. Meaning, any time you change something on one ear, it automatically changes the other ear too.

Asymmetric phone handling

Once you put a phone next to your ear, the volume on the OTHER side will be decreased, to reduce background noises.

AFX music mode

Supposed to overcome distortions you might get when listening to music

Music Audio Alert

Instead of getting beeps as alerts, you can change it to tones or some music. Just a gadget, not too functional...

Safeguard Feedback Control

Yet another feedback canceling mechanism.

Silencer system

Aims to reduce annoying background noises such as a fridge or an AC


Here is some more info regarding what you can have on every Beltone hearing aid.



Beltone hearing aids by Grade

I tried to divide the different hearing aids by its grade. One might argue with this partition, but I think it can be helpful to clarify the big picture regarding Beltone hearing aids.

Latest hits

Prime, Promise 17

Top notch hearing aids series

Touch 17, Reach, One, True 17, Promise 9, Miicro invisa

Medium/good

Identity, Change, Acess, Linq,True 9, Touch 9, Promise 6, Origni

Some more basic product lines

Edge, Turn, Mira, Force


Older devices

Arca and EZ-trim






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