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Shop the Best Hearing Aids of 2024

Up to 50% below retail prices, with local care included

Not sure what to choose? We can help! No sales pitch 🙂
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ReSound Nexia

$ 3198 - $ 4598 /pair
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Starkey Signature Series

0 reviews 0 video reviews
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Signia Styletto IX

0 reviews 0 video reviews
$ 3198 - $ 4398 /pair
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Phonak Virto Paradise

0 reviews 1 video reviews
$ 2798 - $ 4598 /pair
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ReSound Enzo Q

2 reviews 0 video reviews
$ 3198 - $ 4598 /pair
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Oticon Own

1 reviews 0 video reviews
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Signia Pure 312 AX

0 reviews 0 video reviews
$ 2598 - $ 4398 /pair
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Oticon Zircon

4 reviews 0 video reviews
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Widex Evoke

10 reviews 0 video reviews
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Signia Insio Charge&Go AX

1 reviews 0 video reviews
$ 2598 - $ 4598 /pair
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Signia Active X

2 reviews 0 video reviews
$ 2698 - $ 3998 /pair
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Written by: Jeff Hall, Hearing Aid Specialist
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Jeff Hall

President at ZipHearing

Jeff is a California licensed hearing aid dispenser and the President of ZipHearing one of the largest hearing aid suppliers in the country. More about Jeff Hall
Medically reviewed by: Brad Ingrao, Doctor of Audiology
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Brad Ingrao

Editor & Doctor of Audiology

Brad Ingrao, Au.D. has been in clinical practice since 1992 in a variety of settings including academia, private practice, educational audiology, the VA, and the hearing aid industry. More about Brad Ingrao
Updated: Jun 19, 2022

How to choose a hearing aid

With thousands of different hearing aids on the market, it can be overwhelming to know where to begin in choosing a device.

Ultimately, choosing a hearing aid is a decision that should be made with your local hearing care provider following a comprehensive hearing test and discussion of your needs.

Take some time to familiarize yourself with the different styles, features, and technology levels, as these are the key factors that your hearing provider will discuss with you in making this decision.

Top 3 things to consider

Hearing aid styles

Preferred by 90% of our customers

Sitting comfortably on the ear, the receiver-in-canal style is a versatile choice, suitable for individuals with mild to profound hearing loss.

Our favorite model is: Phonak Audéo Lumity


  • Most natural sound quality. In most cases, RIC hearing aids will not plug up a wearer’s ear canal. When the canal can remain open, some sounds pass through the ear canal as they naturally would without being amplified. This results in a more natural sound quality.
  • Most comfortable fit. Because the RIC style leaves the ear canal open, RIC hearing aids feel more comfortable than other styles.
  • Large enough for the latest technology like Bluetooth and rechargeability.


  • Receiver wire needs replacing. Every year or two the receiver wire that leads from behind the ear, into the ear canal, needs replacing. Receivers are usually covered by the manufacturer’s warranty, but when the warranty expires, their cost can range from $75-$250 each.
Preferred by 3% of our customers

Completely-In-Canal (CIC)

Often (but not always) custom built based on an impression of the wearer’s ear, the completely-in-canal style is a good choice for wearers with mild to moderate hearing loss.

Our favorite model is: Starkey Signature Series


  • Though not the most discreet style available, this is still one of the least noticeable styles. Usually, just the faceplate of the hearing aid will be visible to others, and maybe part of the pull string used to remove the hearing aid.
  • Will fit a larger amount of ears as compared to an IIC style. Most people that want to wear CIC hearing aids can, and a good physical fit can be achieved.


  • Wearers will sometimes complain of feeling plugged up when wearing CIC hearing aids- this is known as the occlusion effect.
  • More likely to break down needing repairs. Like all custom hearing aids, CIC hearing aids are more prone to breaking down.
Preferred by 3% of our customers

In-The-Canal (ITC)

Custom build based on an impression of the wearer’s ear, the in-the-canal style is a suitable choice for individuals with mild to profound hearing loss.

Our favorite model is: Starkey Genesis AI


  • Easier to handle than the IIC and CIC styles. They`re not small, but they are a relatively discreet choice, while still being large enough to easily handle tasks like changing batteries.
  • Improved battery life compared to the IIC and CIC styles. Most ITC hearing aids have a battery life of at least a week, compared to the 2-5 days of CIC and IIC style hearing aids.


  • More likely to amplify wind noise. The microphone on an ITC hearing aid is exposed to wind as it passes over the ear. This can sometimes lead to wind being amplified and making a sort of “shh” sound.
  • More likely to break down needing repairs. Like all custom hearing aids, ITC hearing aids are more prone to breaking down.
Preferred by 2% of our customers

Invisible (IIC)

Custom built based on an impression of the wearer’s ear, the invisible-in-canal style sits deep in the second bend of the ear and is a good choice for wearers with mild to moderate hearing loss.

Our favorite model is: Starkey Signature Series


  • The most discreet fit possible: invisible hearing aids sit so deep inside that ear canal that they’re usually completely hidden.
  • Lack of occlusion: a common complaint of people who wear in-the-ear hearing aids is having a feeling that their head is in a barrel when they talk. This sensation is known as the occlusion effect. Thankfully, IIC hearing aids sit deep in the bony portion of the ear canal, so occlusion is less of an issue with this style.
  • Reduced wind noise: some hearing aid styles unintentionally amplify the wind, because their microphones sit outside the ear. This creates an unpleasant scratchy noise. The microphone of an invisible hearing aid sits recessed in the ear canal, which prevents it from amplifying the wind as it passes by the ear.
  • Less likely to feedback: the speaker on an invisible hearing sits close to the eardrum, and as a result, doesn’t have to provide as much amplification (gain/volume) as other styles do. This reduced amplification also serves to reduce the chances of that annoying whistling sound that some hearing aids made, which is called feedback.


  • Short battery life: invisible hearing aids use the smallest batteries, and they need to be replaced every 2-5 days.
  • Can be difficult to handle: changing batteries and general maintenance requires excellent dexterity. If you have poor feeling in your fingers, invisible hearing aids are not a good choice.
  • Limited features due to size: in order to make invisible hearing aids as small as possible, the manufacturer can only leave room for essential features. As a result, you won’t find features like Bluetooth, rechargeability, or state-of-the-art background noise reduction in these small hearing aids.
  • More likely to break down: the ear is a tough environment for the parts inside hearing aids. It’s oily, warm, waxy, sweaty, and dark. All of this causes the delicate electronics inside the hearing aid to break down over time. If you get invisible hearing aids, you’ll almost certainly require more maintenance on the device as the years go by, as compared to other hearing aids which sit outside the ear.
  • Not suitable for severe to profound hearing loss: invisible hearing aids are so small that they can’t provide the power that larger hearing aids can. This means if you have severe to profound hearing loss, this style of hearing aid will not be powerful enough for you.
Preferred by 2% of our customers

Behind-The-Ear (BTE)

The behind-the-ear style is usually reserved for individuals with severe to profound hearing loss.

Our favorite model is: Oticon Xceed


  • Most reliable style. Because both the microphone and receiver are housed behind the ear and protected from the warm and oily environment inside the ear canal, this style tends to last longer than others and requires less repairs.
  • Most powerful style. BTEs are known to “pack a punch” that other styles can’t match.
  • Low maintenance. There isn’t much that can go wrong with a BTE. They require simple and routine cleaning to prevent excessive wax and moisture buildup.


  • Tubing needs frequent replacing. The tubing on BTEs needs to be replaced routinely or it gets hard and cracks. As a result, the tubing leaks sound and begins to feedback or whistle.
Preferred by 1% of our customers

In-The-Ear (ITE)

Custom built based on an impression of the wearer’s ear, the in-the-ear style is a suitable choice for individuals with mild to severe hearing loss.

Our favorite model is: Phonak Virto Paradise


  • This style is the easiest of all to use. In terms of maintenance, and taking the hearing aid in and out, it doesn't get easier than an ITE.
  • ITEs have the best battery life of all the in-ear styles, because they use the biggest batteries, usually size 13. Most people will get at least a week from their ITE hearing aids, as compared to 2-5 days from smaller in-ear models.


  • More likely to amplify wind noise. The microphone on an ITE hearing aid is exposed to wind as it passes over the ear. This can sometimes lead to wind being amplified and making a sort of “shh” sound.
  • More likely to break down needing repairs. Like all custom hearing aids, ITE hearing aids are more prone to breaking down.

Recommended Viewing

Preview for the "Hearing Aid Styles Explained [Pros & Cons]" video

Hearing Aid Styles Explained [Pros & Cons]

There's a lot to consider as you think about what type or style of hearing aid might be right for you. Some of these factors include your hearing loss, budget, cosmetic preferences, and features desired. Your local hearing care provider will help you determine which style will best meet your needs. WATCH

Hearing aid features

Thanks to advanced features, hearing aid satisfaction is on the rise

Satisfaction with hearing aids

Artificial intelligence, smartphone connectivity, language translation. You’d be forgiven if you thought we were talking about the hottest new consumer electronic product.

Hearing aids of the past were little more than basic amplifiers— they squealed a lot, and helped a little. But times have changed.

Think about it, modern hearing aids are part of the same digital revolution that brought us smartphones, voice-operated kitchen appliances, and self-driving cars.

Modern hearing aids are loaded with smart features, designed to help you hear your best in every environment.

How to think about hearing aid features

Hearing Aid Features

If you buy a car, you may look for features like heated seats and backup cameras. You’re probably less likely to ask for anti-lock brakes, because they come with all new cars.

The same is true for hearing aid technology. Many features which were once novel are now considered standard, and they come with all hearing aids. We call these, “must have”, or "essential" features.

But as hearing aids evolve, there are a growing number of “nice to have” features. These are features that we don’t consider “essential,” but could still drastically improve your experience with hearing aids.

Must have, "essential features"

These features are baked in to just about every hearing aid today. Cheap amplifiers will not usually have these features, and we'd consider each of these features to be critical.


Hearing Aid Features Programs

A hearing aid should perform differently depending on the sound environment that the wearer is in. For example, in a noisy restaurant, a hearing aid should have features working to help reduce background noise, so the “restaurant” program would be activated. A program is a predefined “memory” or “setting” in the hearing aid that can be activated in certain environments, thereby engaging particular features for that specific environment.

Sometimes programs are manually accessible and manually changed, sometimes they automatically change, and sometimes it’s a combination of both approaches. Your hearing provider can set up your programs and your control over them per your requirements.


Hearing Aid Features channels

When sound from the environment enters a hearing aid's microphone, it must be categorized or “split” into different channels for processing. For example, low frequency sounds will be processed in the low frequency channels, and high frequency sounds in the high frequency channels. This sound separation by frequency is important so the sound can be discretely processed by the hearing aid.

In general, the more channels a hearing aid has, the more precisely sound can be processed, the more natural it will sound in all environments, and the more expensive that hearing aid will be.



Also called “handles.” A band allows your hearing provider to control the gain (volume) at a particular frequency. The more bands your hearing aids have, the easier it is for your hearing provider to fine-tune the hearing aids to your exact hearing profile. The result is better sounding hearing aids.

When recommending the appropriate hearing aid for your hearing loss, your hearing provider will be considering the number of bands a given hearing aid has, as they’ll want to ensure they’ll have enough control over the hearing aid settings to meet your needs. The more bands a hearing aid has, the more expensive it will be.

Feedback cancellation

Hear how it works

You know that shrill, high pitched sound that you hear when a microphone gets too close to a speaker? That same thing can happen with hearing aids, and it’s called feedback. Feedback occurs when the sound coming out of the hearing aid's speaker leaks out of the ear canal and is picked up by the hearing aid's microphone.

This can cause a high-pitched whistling sound (similar to a tea-kettle) that is audible to the wearer, and sometimes, even to others. Properly fit hearing aids that have feedback cancellation will in most cases completely eliminate this whistling.

Noise reduction

Hear how it works

As the name implies, this feature works to identify noise (that you don't want to hear), and turn it down, so the speech you do want to hear can become more audible. Think of background chatter or ambient noise in a restaurant. Thanks to noise reduction features, hearing aids can separate that sound from the sound of speakers at your table, helping you hear what you want to hear and ignore the rest.

While this technology is incredibly important and helpful, we would urge caution and skepticism when reviewing claims some manufacturers will make as to the efficacy of their noise reduction technology.

Non-Essential Features

Calling these features “non-essential” is a little misleading. Yes, for most people, these features will indeed be non-essential, and a hearing aid can still be considered a hearing aid without these features. However, depending on your needs, some of these features may be essential to your success with hearing aids.


Hearing Aid Features Rechargeability

Forget the hassle of changing batteries every few days. Lithium-ion rechargeable hearing aids are one of the most popular optional features in hearing aids today. These hearing aids will last 16-30 hours on a single charge, and most will be fully recharged in just 3 hours.

The lifespan of rechargeable batteries is about 3 years, at which point they’ll need to be replaced by your hearing provider.


Hearing Aid Features Bluetooth

Use your hearing aids like a Bluetooth headset. Stream audio, phone calls, music and more, directly from your phone to your hearing aids. You can also use an accompanying app to make adjustments to your hearing aids, like volume, base, and treble.

You might not be interested in these features, but you may be surprised, and we’d encourage you to learn more about Bluetooth hearing aids before making any decisions.

Wireless accessories

Hearing Aid Features Wireless

Stream audio from your TV directly to your hearing aids. Clip a microphone to a companion's shirt in a noisy restaurant and stream their voice directly to your hearing aids.

There are several types of wireless accessories today which can provide very helpful functionality. Because sometimes even with the best hearing aids, you’ll need a little extra help in certain environments.

Tinnitus therapy

Hear how it works

Hearing aids are one of the only treatment options for tinnitus (ringing in the ears). Many hearing aids today have built in sound generators, which play soft, melodic tones, or white noise through your hearing aids designed to mask or eliminate the sensation of tinnitus. Tinnitus therapy can run all day in “the background”, or you can activate these features only when your tinnitus is more noticeable.

Please note that tinnitus therapy is not designed to cure tinnitus- but rather, reduce your perception of it.


Hearing Aid Features telecoil

A hearing aid with a telecoil built in is able tap into the speaker systems of “looped” venues like theaters, churches, and classrooms. These amplified sounds will be delivered directly to your hearing aids, bypassing the hearing aid microphones, which drastically improves the sound quality.

If you’re interested in this feature, definitely discuss it with your hearing provider or ZipHearing team member very early on in the discussion, as fewer and fewer hearing aids today are equipped with telecoils.

Automatic program switching


Hearing aids with this feature can automatically change the program they're in and their sound settings, depending on your sound environment. As you move from one environment to the next, your hearing aids will automatically adjust to the new environment, so you don't have to make manual adjustments.

Higher end hearing aids can automatically switch programs to accomodate for just about every sound environment you’ll find yourself in- and it’s probably the most compelling reason to buy the highest technology level you can afford.

Directional microphones

Hearing Aid Features directional-microphones

The most important feature for helping you hear in noisy environments. Directional microphones are microphones that can focus in on the particular direction that a sound is coming from, effectively tuning out other sounds. Directional microphones on higher end hearing aids can automatically change their focus, while lower end models usually require the wearer to do this through some kind of user control like an onboard button, or app

Directional microphones are usually only found on receiver-in-canal and behind-the-ear style hearing aids.

Binaural processing


This feature allows two hearing aids to work together as one complete system, just like our ears naturally do. When sound enters the hearing aid, that data is shared between both hearing aids, and decisions about the digital sound processing are made based on the combined information from both hearing aids.

When hearing aids work together in this way, they do a better job at everything from localizing sound, reducing background noise, and maintaining an appropriate volume level. The result is more automated hearing aids which require less interaction from the wearer.

Impulse noise reduction


The parts of speech that are most critical to understanding speech are high frequency sounds. As a result, most hearing aids are programmed to amplify high frequency sounds disproportionately more than other sounds. But this can sometimes be a problem, when other high frequency sounds like dishes clanking, or keys jangling, are then overamplified.

Impulse noise reduction is able to (within milliseconds), identify these shrill, non-speech sounds, and reduce them, making your hearing aids more comfortable.

Wind noise reduction

Hear how it works

When wind blows over hearing aid microphones, it can sometimes be amplified by the hearing aids and make a scratchy “shhh” sound. This sound is annoying to hear, especially when it drains out the speech that you want to hear.

Wind noise reduction works to suppress this annoying sound. If you’re active outdoors, this is definitely a feature you want, so be sure to discuss this with your hearing provider early on, as not all hearing aids offer this feature.

Frequency shifting


This feature is not appropriate for the majority of hearing aid wearers. But, if you have a severe to profound high frequency hearing loss, this can be a game-changing feature.

When high frequency sounds that you cannot usually hear enter your hearing aids, the hearing aids convert or “shift” those sounds into lower frequencies, so you can hear them.

Pro Tip

Be wary of features that are described in superlatives, by hearing care providers, or manufacturers. There is no independent body that regulates or quantifies the efficacy of the above features as they relate from one maufacturer to another. Words like “best” and “smartest” as they apply to the above terms are usually little more than marketing.

What features do actual hearing aid wearer consider important?

Overwhelmed with all the features available?

Consumer Reports did a survey where they asked experienced hearing aid wearers which features they deemed most important.

You may want to learn more about these most popular features and discuss them with your hearing care provider prior to choosing a hearing aid.

CR Members speak out about important attributes of their hearing aids
Rechargeable batteries 53%
Smartphone compatibility 43%
Tinnitus masking 43%
Automatic noise adjustment 42%
Multiple programs 41%

Hearing aid technology levels

Technology levels our customers choose

Hearing Aids prices range 65.6%
Hearing Aids prices range 65.6%
Tech level % of sales
Premium 65.6%
Advanced 22.8%
Mid 10%
Low 1.4%
Economy 0.2%

Source: Ziphearing customer sales data. Data updated each business day

What is a ‘technology level?’

It’s the single biggest determinant of the final price you’ll pay for hearing aids.

Think of it like a quality level, or performance level. Essentially, it’s how advanced the hearing aid’s features are.

As shown below, manufacturers categorize their hearing aids into 3-5 different technology levels.

Also sometimes called : ULTIMATE, PREMIER, SUPREME or PLATINUM
Preferred by 65.6% of our customers

Premium hearing aids are considered state of the art. A premium hearing aid will usually have every feature a manufacturer offers (depending on the style chosen), and the best version of that particular feature. For example, a premium hearing aid’s “noise suppression” feature will more aggressively reduce background noise, as compared to a lower level hearing aid.

Our favorite premium hearing aid is Oticon Intent 1 .

Price Range

Hearing Aids prices range

At most hearing clinics in the US, you can expect to pay around $2651 per device for premium technology.

*Data courtesy of

Also sometimes called : GOLD
Preferred by 22.8% of our customers

Known for providing excellent “bang for the buck,” advanced hearing aids often provide the same features as premium hearing aids, in a quality that’s almost as good, but for a substantially lower price - sometimes by as much as $500 per device. For most working professionals, this is the lowest technology level we’d advise purchasing.

Our favorite advanced hearing aid is Phonak Audéo Lumity 70.

Price Range

Hearing Aids prices range

At most hearing clinics in the US, you can expect to pay around $2357 per device for advanced technology.

*Data courtesy of

Also sometimes called : STANDARD, BASIC, SELECT, SILVER
Preferred by 10% of our customers

Mid range hearing aids will usually have all the basic features a “good” hearing aid should have. However, due to the reduced number of channels, mid range hearing aids can’t be programmed to match your hearing loss as precisely as advanced or premium hearing aids do.

Our favorite mid range hearing aid is Signia Pure Charge&Go 3 IX.

Price Range

Hearing Aids prices range

At most hearing clinics in the US, you can expect to pay around $2063 per device for mid range technology.

*Data courtesy of

Also sometimes called : ENTRY, BASIC, BRONZE
Preferred by 1.4% of our customers

Usually reserved for individuals with a low key lifestyle who spend most of their time at home, and in quiet on-one-one listening environments. Entry level hearing aids are usually lacking features that many would consider important, such as dynamic directional microphones and noise reduction.

Our favorite entry level or "low" hearing aid is Starkey Genesis AI 12.

Price Range

Hearing Aids prices range

At most hearing clinics in the US, you can expect to pay around $1604 per device for low technology.

*Data courtesy of

Also sometimes called : BUDGET
Preferred by 0.2% of our customers

When cost is a chief concern, and you just need to hear better for as affordably as possible, economy hearing aids are the right choice. Or, if you’re just not ready for the expense of a fully-featured hearing aid, but want more than an ‘amplifier’, an economy level hearing aid is the right choice.

Our favorite economy hearing aid is Oticon Zircon 2.

Price Range

Hearing Aids prices range

At most hearing clinics in the US, you can expect to pay less than $1604 per device for economy technology.

*Data courtesy of

Pro Tip

Don’t buy the highest technology level just for the sake of it being better technology. Ultimately, the benefit you realize from a technology level depends on your hearing loss and lifestyle. Don’t assume that the highest technology level will be best for you, or that the lowest technology level won’t work for you. Discuss technology levels with your hearing care provider.

Recommended Viewing

Preview for the "Hearing Aid Technology Levels Explained" video

Hearing Aid Technology Levels Explained

The single-most important factor in determining the end price of your hearing aid, is the "technology level." WATCH

Hearing Aid Brands

There are dozens of hearing aid manufacturers and brands (as shown in the brand map to the right).

However, just 5 manufacturers account for well over 90% of all hearing aids sold worldwide.

These manufacturers, known as “The Big 5,” and their most popular brands (6 in total), are widely considered to be the best hearing aid brands.

These 6 brands have been around the longest and have proven staying power.

They have the biggest budgets for research and development, and they release the most cutting-edge products.

The distribution and accessibility of these brands is unmatched, with wide availability throughout the United States and most of the world.


Estimated world market share of the 5 biggest hearing aid manufacturers

Hearing Aids prices range 25 %
Hearing Aids prices range 25 %
Sonova/Phonak Sonova Phonak 25 %
WS Audiology/Signia & Widex WS Audiology Signia/Widex 24%
Demant/Oticon Demant Oticon 24 %
GN/ReSound GN ReSound 16 %
Starkey Starkey Starkey 11 %

Top 3 reasons to buy one of these brand names

1. Brand stability

These big 6 brands have been around for a while— some have roots dating back over 100 years. They are giants in the industry and will be around to support their products in the future. Buying a smaller and lesser-known brand is inherently more risky, as in the event the manufacturer goes out of business (which is often the case with smaller manufacturers), there will be no one to support your hearing aids.

2. Research & development

These brands have the biggest budgets for research and development, allowing them to innovate at a faster pace than smaller brands. A recent example of this is Starkey Hearing Technologies' hiring of an ex-Intel executive, which led to the development of the first hearing aid with artificial intelligence. It takes years for advancements like these years to “trickle down” to smaller brands.

3. Wide distribution

Finding a service provider for one of these brands is never too hard— most cities have more than one provider who can service each of these brands. This isn't always the case with smaller brands. If your hearing provider goes out of business, you could find yourself driving very long distances to find a new hearing provider who can service your hearing aids. Another benefit of buying a brand that is widely distributed, is increased competition. If there are multiple providers for a particular brand in your community, competitive forces should work to keep prices in check.

Recommended Viewing

Preview for the "The 6 Best Hearing Aid Brands" video

The 6 Best Hearing Aid Brands

There are hundreds of brands to choose from. But, only a handful of these brands are true industry leaders, with a proven track record of delivering the most innovative technology. In this video I'll provide a quick review of these 6 best brands, with established reputations on the world stage, and why you should consider these brands over all others. WATCH

Tips for buying hearing aids

Tips for buying hearing aids

It’s one of the most expensive personal items most people will ever buy, yet one of the most difficult to understand.

The fact is, a huge amount of people overpay for hearing aids, aren’t sure what exactly they’re paying for, and fall for deceptive sales and marketing tactics.

Follow the 6 tips outlined below and you’re much more likely to be successful with hearing aids, without paying more than you need to.

Our top 6 tips for buying hearing aids


Visit more than one hearing provider

When most people buy a car, or a TV, they don’t walk into the dealership or store and buy the first thing they see, or the first thing that’s recommended. Hearing aids should be no different, yet, most buyers do not visit more than one hearing care provider for a recommendation.

Prices can easily vary by thousands of dollars for the same model depending on where you’re buying them. It’s also important to consider the total package of what’s included in your purchase, as well as the skill level of the hearing care provider, and your comfort level with them.


Beware of misleading marketing and high pressure sales tactics

Tips for buying hearing aids - buy 1 Get 1 Free

It may be tempting to purchase hearing aids based on special offers that appear to be outrageously good deals. For instance, some hearing aid retailers run marketing campaigns such as "buy one get one free." Others may advertise that they’re looking for "candidates willing to trial a new hearing aid for a study."

In both cases, these are simply marketing gimmicks, and they very rarely yield any real savings to the buyer. We would advise avoiding hearing aid offices that use such marketing tactics, as you’re also likely to be entering a high pressure sales environment when you go in for your consultation.


Avoid "locked" hearing aids

Tips for buying hearing aids - locked hearing aids

All modern hearing aids today are controlled by computers.

From time to time, you’ll want to visit your hearing care provider to get adjustments made to your hearing aids. If your hearing aids are “locked” that means only the provider who sold you your hearing aids can adjust them, via special software that only they’ll have access to.

This presents problems in the future if the provider goes out of business, or transfers to a new location, or simply says your hearing aids are not working, can’t be adjusted, and your only option is to buy new hearing aids.

When you buy locked hearing aids, you’re a captive audience. No other provider can help you with your hearing aids, and you're at the mercy of the retailer who sold you your hearing aids.


Understand your options for buying online, and the common pitfalls to avoid

With the average hearing aid in the US costing $2300, many people turn to the internet in search of savings.

Searching online is a smart decision, but one that needs to be made carefully.

If you treat shopping for hearing aids online like you would any other consumer electronic product, and just look for the lowest price, you’re bound to end up with a bad experience.

There are enormous savings to be had by shopping for hearing aids online, but there are also enormous pitfalls to be avoided.


Recommended for most buyers

Local support is crucial when you buy hearing aids. In order for your hearing aids to physically fit right and sound as good as they can, you need a local hearing provider.

It's also more convenient in the long term to have a local hearing provider for ongoing adjustments, maintenance, and warranty issues.

One of the things that scares people about buying hearing aids online is they think they'll miss out on the local support.

Luckily there are online companies that can partner you up with one of their affiliated hearing providers in your community. This way, you get discount pricing and local care. It's the best of both worlds.

These companies are called “discount networks” and, you guessed it- that is what ZipHearing is.


Hearing Aids prices range

Call the discount network and ask to be referred to one of their affiliate providers near you.

This doesn't require any special type of insurance or belonging to any kind of group. Discount networks are open to the general public.

Hearing Aids prices range

Have a hearing test and hearing aid consultation appointment with the local provider

Take a hearing test and have the results explained to you. Then, discuss the best hearing aid options for your hearing loss, budget, cosmetic preferences, and lifestyle.

Hearing Aids prices range

Buy your hearing aids and save big

At the end of your appointment, the local provider transmits the order information to the discount network. You pay the discount network and they overnight the hearing aids from the manufacturer to your local hearing provider's office. The price you pay the discount network can be as much as 35% off retail prices.

Hearing Aids prices range

Take delivery of your hearing aids and start your trial period

Once your hearing aids arrive, you'll go back to your provider's office, where they'll program them based on the results of your hearing loss, show you how to use them, and instruct you on ongoing care. Your trial period (usually 45 days) will begin at this time, and you'll usually be able to return the hearing aids within that time period for a full refund.

Hearing Aids prices range

Go back to your hearing provider's office as the years go by for ongoing care

Hearing aids require routine maintenance, and should be reprogrammed at least once a year. Your local hearing provider can help with all of this, as well as for unexpected repairs that are needed as the years go by.

NOT Recommended for most buyers

In most cases, we don't recommend this option.

There are many disadvantages to buying hearing aids online.

These disadvantages are not readily apparent, especially for a first time hearing aid buyer. But on closer inspection, the drawbacks to buying online (without local care) are hard to ignore.

If you're going to buy hearing aids online, we strongly recommend watching the video shown, so you understand the trade-offs your making.

Watch the video!


Hearing Aids prices range

Take a hearing test on the retailer's website, or send them your hearing test results

In order for any online hearing provider to advise you on the appropriate hearing aids, and eventually program those hearing aids, they'll need to see your hearing test results. Many will offer an online test, but online tests are not as accurate as tests provided by a hearing provider locally. If you can, we'd recommend getting a hearing test locally and then transmitting those results to the online company.

Hearing Aids prices range

Buy your hearing aids

After consulting with the online specialist about what hearing aids are best for you, you'll buy your hearing aids from the online company. There are multiple components to a hearing aid, and because the online specialist can't see you in person to examine your ears or size them, they'll take a guess as to what sizes, strength, and types of these components you'll need.

Hearing Aids prices range

Receive your new hearing aids

Your hearing aids will either come ready-to-wear out of the box, or, they'll be remotely programmed by the online company. Pro tip, you should not accept ready-to-wear hearing aids. Always demand real time remote programming from any online provider- this is the least they can do for you. They should spend at least 30 minutes with you, reviewing how the hearing aid works, making sure the sound is comfortable, and advising you on how to maintain the hearing aids.

Hearing Aids prices range

Mail your hearing aids back to the online company when you need service

This is the biggest disadvantage to buying from online providers. Because they don't have affiliated local hearing providers, anytime you need service on the hearing aids, you have to mail your hearing aids away, hope that the online company fixes the problem correctly, and wait to get them back. Pro tip- you should ask the online company not to send the hearing aid to the original manufacturer for repair, because the manufacturer may confiscate the hearing aid if the online seller is not an authorized retailer, and most online sellers are not authorized retailers.


Know what you're paying for

When you buy hearing aids, you're not just buying hearing aids. Anytime you receive a hearing aid quote, you should get a detailed list of what products and services are included.


Hearing Aids prices range

Hearing Testing

A hearing test should be completed in a sound booth or sound-controlled room. The results of this test inform the hearing aid selection and fitting process.

Hearing Aids prices range

Real Ear Measurement

This isn't a physical measurement of your ear. It's a measurement of the sound the hearing aids produce when you're wearing them, which ensures they're amplifying sound exactly how they should be.

Hearing Aids prices range

Follow up Care

Make sure you understand the service plan (if any), that's included with your hearing aid purchase. Hearing aids do require ongoing service, and you should know upfront if that's included, or extra.

Hearing Aids prices range


Warranties vary from 1-4 years in length, and cover things like routine repairs, loss, theft, and damage. Always make sure you know the warranty terms when you buy hearing aids, and especially when comparing prices.

Hearing Aids prices range

Accessories & Supplies

Make sure you know which accessories (if any) are included with your purchase, such as TV streamers, Bluetooth streamer, and chargers. Your purchase should include cleaning and maintenance supplies.

Hearing Aids prices range

Trial Period

Anytime you buy a hearing aid, you should know the terms of your trial period (if any), and how much time you have to return the hearing aids if you're unsatisfied, and any fees you may have to pay at that time.


Understand your trial period and return privileges

Your purchase should always include a trial period, allowing you to return the hearing aids within an allotted amount of time if you’re not satisfied. Many states have laws which dictate the terms of a trial period, but not all. Review the list below, and if your state does not have consumer-friendly hearing aid trial period regulations in place, we recommend reading your sales agreement closely and to make sure a trial period is being offered by the hearing aid provider.


State Trial Period Refund you're entitled to
AK 30 days Purchase price, less up to 10%
AL None required Matter of contract
AZ None required Matter of contract
AR 30 days Matter of contract
CA 45 days Purchase price
CO 30 days Total amount paid, less up to 5%
CT 30 days Total amount paid, less up to 12%
DC 30 days Total amount paid, less up to 5%
DE None required Matter of contract
FL 30 days Total amount paid, less up to 5%
GA None required Matter of contract
HI None required Matter of contract
IA None required Matter of contract
ID 30 days Total amount paid
IL 30 days Total amount paid less restocking fees
IN None required Matter of contract
KS None required Matter of contract
KY 30 days Total amount paid, less up to 10%
LA 30 days Matter of contract
MA 30 days Purchase price, less up to 20%
MD 30 days Purchase price, less up to 10%
ME 30 days Purchase price, less cost of earmolds and/or restocking fees
MI None required Matter of contract
MN 45 days Purchase price less up to $250
MO None required Matter of contract
MS None required Matter of contract
MT 30 days Purchase price, less up to $250 per device
NC None required Matter of contract
ND None required Matter of contract
NE None required Matter of contract
NH 30 days Matter of contract
NJ None required Matter of contract
NM 45 days Matter of contract
NV 30 days Purchase price, less up to $150
NY 45 days Purchase price less up to 10%
OH 30 days Matter of contract
OK 30 days Purchase price, less up to $250 per device
OR 30 days Purchase price less up to 20%
PA 30 days Purchase price, less up to $250 per device
RI 30 days Purchase price
SC None required Matter of contract
SD None required Matter of contract
TN 30 days Matter of contract
TX 30 days Matter of contract
UT 30 days Purchase price, less up to 15%
VA 30 days Matter of contract
VT 45 days Purchase price, less up to 5%
WA 30 days Matter of contract
WI 30 days Matter of contract
WV 30 days Purchase price, less up to $150
WY None required None required

Best Hearing Aids of 2024

Hearing aids considered
Verified purchases analyzed so far
Consumer reviews received

Hearing aid ratings you can trust

The hearing aids shown below are rated based on objective data, such as return rates and user reviews. We've done our best to use this data to create a comprehensive and unbiased hearing aid rating algorithm, but it's not perfect.

Here is a short overview:
  • 21 hearing aids considered
  • 10544 verified purchases analyzed so far
  • 44k data points
  • 873 consumer reviews received
  • No paid placements
  • Updated daily
  • Algorithm reviewed by statistician & data scientist
  • This website is independently-owned and unbiased
Read more about our methodology.

Our hearing aid rating algorithm was
designed with the help of:

Jeff Hall - president of ZipHearing

Jason Katz

MS, Machine Learning Engineer

Jeff Hall - president of ZipHearing

Jеffrеу Сhrаbаszсz

PhD, Data Scientist

Review Standarts:

No paid placements
Updated daily
Algorithm reviewed by statistician & data scientist
This website is independently-owned and unbiased

Top Rated Hearing Aids

Swipe on hearing aid with two fingers for 3D preview
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Rating 1
The image of color hearing aids
Chroma Beige (41.9% popularity)
4 more colors available
Oticon’s best overall model

Oticon Intent

30 reviews | 4 video reviews

Oticon Intent Revolutionizes Sound with 4D Sensor Technology

Released by Oticon on February 22, 2024, Oticon Intent is Oticon’s flagship line of hearing aids for mild-to-severe hearing losses. Oticon Inten... READ MORE

Rating 2
The image of color hearing aids
Silver Gray (22.6% popularity)
6 more colors available
Phonak’s best overall model

Phonak Audéo Lumity

96 reviews | 28 video reviews
$ 2498 - $ 4398 /pair

Conversations shine with Lumity

Released by Phonak on August 23, 2022, Audéo Lumity is Phonak's flagship line of hearing aids for wearers with mild-to-severe hearing loss. Audéo... READ MORE

Rating 3
The image of color hearing aids
Champagne (30.1% popularity)
3 more colors available
ReSound’s best overall model

ReSound Nexia

13 reviews | 2 video reviews
$ 3198 - $ 4598 /pair

Next-era hearing

Released by ReSound on October 12, 2023, Nexia is ReSound's flagship line of hearing aids for mild-to-profound hearing losses. Nexia is most well-... READ MORE

Rating 4
The image of color hearing aids
Beige (29% popularity)
2 more colors available
Starkey’s best overall model

Starkey Genesis AI

34 reviews | 3 video reviews

The sound barrier has been broken

Released by Starkey on March 28, 2023, Genesis AI is Starkey’s newest, most complete line of hearing aids suitable for all hearing losses. Genesi... READ MORE

Rating 5
The image of color hearing aids
Black (67.2% popularity)
-3 more colors available
Signia’s best invisible model

Signia Silk Charge&Go IX

5 reviews | 2 video reviews
$ 3198 - $ 3998 /pair

Ready to wear, rechargeable CIC

Released by Signia on October 3, 2023, Silk Charge&Go IX is Signia’s best, smallest, in-ear rechargeable hearing aid. Silk Charge&Go IX most wel... READ MORE

Recommended Viewing

Preview for the "Best Prescription Hearing Aids of 2024" video

Best Prescription Hearing Aids of 2024

What are the best hearing aids of 2024? Google has over 300 million results for you, and a bunch of YouTube channels also claim to answer this question for you. Problem is, in most cases, these sources will only provide you with paid ads, and/or subjective opinions. We thought we could do better—check out the video to learn more! WATCH

Common questions about hearing aids

Can a hearing aid stop tinnitus?
No. However, hearing aids can provide some tinnitus relief. Because the majority of people with tinnitus also have hearing loss, almost all modern hearing aids have tinnitus relief features built in to them. Read our comprehensive blog post about hearing aids for tinnitus.
How long do hearing aids last?
Hearing aids last between 4-7 years. At that point, most people upgrade their hearing aids for a few reasons. First, and most commonly, is to take advantage of newer technology. Second, once a hearing aid is 4-7 years old, it is likely to break down frequently, requiring repairs that can easily cost $500+ per year. The 4-7 years is a general estimate. We've seen receiver-in-canal hearing aids and behind-the-ear hearing aids that have lasted 10+ years with proper care. In-the-ear hearing aids, with delicate electronic parts that are subjected to the warm and oily inner ear conditions, are usually going to be on the shorter end of that 4-7 year estimate.
Does Medicare cover hearing aids?
Medicare does not cover hearing aids. Some Medicare Advantage plans provide some hearing aid coverage. However, do not assume that the hearing aid retailer your Medicare Advantage plan refers you to will actually result in the lowest out-of-pocket price for hearing aids. Always compare quotes between retailers to evaluate your true out-of-pocket costs.
Why are hearing aids so expensive?
There are many correct answers to this question. The answer that we think can withstand the most scrutiny, is that prices are high due to the way hearing aids are delivered to consumers. A properly fitted hearing aid requires the in-person involvement of a licensed hearing care provider. The cost of this service is often “bundled” in with the device cost, and can amount to as much as 2/3 of the total cost of a hearing aid. A natural conclusion one may come to when reading the above, is to simply “cut out” the hearing care provider from the purchase and delivery process. This direct-to-consumer model has existed for decades, and the majority of companies that have attempted this model have gone out of business. Simply put- hearing aids are priced the way they are because no company has (at any noteworthy scale or with any longevity) proven a delivery model that removes the hearing care provider from the equation, drastically lowers prices, and produces good results for consumers. However, in recent years the hearing aid industry has seen remarkable improvement in remote programming capabilities, and with it, an increase in new direct-to-consumer companies that may ultimately prove to be more successful those in the past. If these new retailers become a viable alternative to local, face-to-face care, we do expect that ultimately it will lead to significant downward pressure on hearing aid pricing.
How long do hearing aid batteries last?
Hearing aid batteries will last between 1-21 days. Super helpful, right?! How long a hearing aid battery lasts depends on multiple factors such as the size of the battery, how many hours a day the hearing aid is worn, how hard the hearing aid is working, and features the hearing aid has. The biggest factor in determining how long a hearing aid battery will last is the size of battery. A size 10 battery will usually last between 3-5 days. A size 312 battery usually lasts between 4-9 days. A size 13 battery usually lasts between 7-10 days. The largest, and rare, size 675 battery, can last up to 3 weeks.
What are the best cheap hearing aids?
In our opinion, the best cheap hearing aids that are professionally fit by a hearing care provider to match your hearing loss, are the Signia Silk, starting at $999 each. We understand $2,000 for a set of hearing aids isn't exactly “cheap.” However, $2,000 is relatively inexpensive compared to retail prices which routinely exceed $6,000 for a pair.
Which hearing aid brand is the best?
There is no “best” hearing aid brand. Each brand has certain features or niches that they specialize in which will make them the more appropriate and “best” choice for certain users. All of the biggest hearing brands make great products, and it would be unfair and irresponsible for us to call one the “best.” As a word of warning, if a hearing care provider or retailer strongly suggests that one brand is the best, while disparaging all other brands, it's a sign that they're either misinformed or dishonest.
How do hearing aids work?
Hearing aids have three major components- a microphone, amplifier, and receiver. The microphone captures sound from the environment and converts it into a digital signal. The amplifier increases the strength of the digital signal before transmitting it to the receiver. In sophisticated digital hearing aids, the signal is manipulated by advanced processing. The receiver, or speaker, then produces the amplified sound into the ear.
How much do hearing aids cost?
The average price of a hearing aid in the US is $2400. This is according to a 2015 report compiled by the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology.
What about over-the-counter hearing aids?
In 2017, congress passed a law that created a class of hearing aids that would be made available directly to consumers without involvement from a licensed hearing professional. After a lengthy delay (partially due to COVID), the FDA finally published the regulations for OTC hearing aids in August of 2022. We expect to see more OTC hearing aids on the market towards the end of 2022. However, if you are interested in OTC hearing aids, you don't need to wait. OTC hearing aids have been available to consumers for decades, without the involvement of hearing professionals. More than anything, the Over the Counter Hearing Aid Act simply establishes a regulatory framework that OTC hearing aid sellers must eventually abide by. If you're interested in our opinion on the impact of OTC hearing aids to the broader hearing aid market, check out this video.