New Oticon Opn S Hearing Aid



Sure, I am not hankering after normal hearing. I have worn hearing aids for 40 years. The first 23 years of that were with Analog hearing aids. When I went to University it was a nightmare as I could not hear in most if not all social situations. When I first started wearing digitals I noticed some improvements in noise situations - particularly when I switched to ITC aids. In the last 5 years the changes have been massive. When I used to go out in the past, under analogs, there were some nights where I could only hear about 5% of the conversation. Now, that is very rare. Depending on the venue and noise, I would say I always hear around 90% of the person next to me, and around 50-60% plus of a group situation. The hearing aid industry has been about incremental improvements, never a big bang introduction that will cure hearing loss overnight. I am excited about incremental improvements because it is further progress. Yes, normal hearing is the grail, but I don’t expect hearing aids will deliver that. There is a lot of interest in restoring hearing from bio-techs and pharmas, so it will happen eventually - but I’m not sure it will happen in our lifetime - it seems to be that complex. A recent trial by Novartis for severe/profound loss did not succeed, although some with profound loss improved a little (from memory).


I get new aids from the veterans Administration about every 4 to 5 years, or depending on my hearing and the condition of my aids. And I have to say I struggled through my last 10 years of work with and without hearing aids. And ended up retiring sooner than I wanted to. And now I almost laugh because with the hearing aids now I could have worked a whole lot better and I wouldn’t have had to retire. But I have to say this there is no way I want to go back to work anymore. I worked for over 50 years and and that is enough


From what I hear, the VA office carries premium technology hearing aids and give veterans a choice of which one they want. Did you happen to try out the other hot new models like the Quattro, Marvel, Evoke, Livia, etc? How did you come to settle on the OPN? Is it mainly due to your choice of ITE which the other models may not have yet?


This is my third pair of Oticon hearing aids, and I also wanted in the ear aids due to my activities. To be honest this time I was at a brand new VA clinic that just opened the day before. The Audi and I talked for about 30 minutes after the hearing test, I gave him the update on how my hearing had been going with the Alta Pros that I had, I am talking the original Alta Pros. He had my records and knew I had the older TV connect, streamer pro, and phone connect. I also said that I was very happy with the sound of the Oticons. So we ordered the Oticon OPN1s ITE half shells with the full connectivity features possible for the ITE aids, the only thing I couldn’t get was the t-coils and to be honest I haven’t missed them.
I also remember him telling me that Oticon was using the latest processors and the software would be updated later in the year. Not sure if he was hinting at this aids having the new processors or not.
But I am so happy with what I got I could care less abut what is coming


It take some time (maybe 6 months or more) for newly released hearing aids to work their way into the VA’s hearing aid list.


My Audi said now with contract that the VA and Oticon has that the aids are making it to the VA before the puyhas them or at least the same time


Well, currently for Oticon it wouldn’t really matter because Opn’s are old technology. What would be more representative is whether new technology is available for;

  • Phonak Marvel
  • ReSound LiNX Quattro
  • Starkey Livio

When I asked they were not available at the VA for the reasons given above.


And with my experience with 3 different VA Regions I think depends on where you are.


Maybe we can try asking others?


What a weird world hearing aids are in, half in tech sales and half in hearing healthcare. The Opns were a fantastic hearing aid. They still stand up 3 years later, but they are “old”.


The age of hearing aids means nothing it is if they work or not.


I purchased Oticon OPN 1s last October. Now Oticon is coming out with an “S” model. Does anyone know if the firmware for the “S” will be available for the OPN 1s ?

If so, is it better to wait to see my audiologist until after the new firmware is available? Will this firmware make a big difference?

The hearing aids have not yet filled my prescription as I could not handle the amount of sound, finding it overly distracting and creating sensory overload. My audiologist pulled the power back to about 55% of the prescription which I have become accustomed to. So I am not sure if it is not better to wait for a new fitting until after the firmware has been released if that will make a difference.

Any thoughts on this?



If I understand your question correctly, then it was answered already above.


As far as I can tell with the limited marketing information on the S, it will not be backward compatible to the older OPNs through a firmware update because the S is developed on a new variant of the Velox hardware platform, called the Velox S platform.

It sounds like the Velox S platform enables a new technology they call the OpenSound Optimizer. Not exactly sure what entails in this technology, except that it seems like the feedback manager is much more improved, solving both the feedback issue that anyone may currently has with the regular OPN, and being able to add an additional 6dB of improvement in SNR (Signal to Noise Ratio).

It seems like this extra 6 dB SNR implies better noise reduction even further, for even better speech clarity than currently available.

The improvement in feedback management will also allows a better chance for many people to move to open domes to avoid occlusion if they choose to.

So the way I see it, this is still just an incremental improvement and not a quantum leap like with the original OPN. If you’re already happy with speech clarity on the OPN, have plenty of margin for gain (and it sounds like you do), and no problem with feedback (most likely not with your only moderate loss), I don’t think you’ll have much to gain from switching to the S. I also assume that you’re already wearing open dome without any problem. So you don’t need any of the improvements that the S brings to the table.


I am trialing the S as soon as they are available through Amplifon as my insurance will pay up to 80% / $3500 after my deductible…of course this depends on the price. Their assumption is that these new S aids will be roughly the same price as the current OPN 1 aids I am wearing.

My two biggest issues with Oticon have been feedback and noisy environments and that is supposedly addressed according the marketing speak about the S version.

We are expecting the pricing and contract to be done between Amplifon and Otricon 4/1 hopefully.


Below is a screen shot of the new Genie 2 2019.1 “What’s New” note. It talks about the rechargeable Lithium-ion option -> it says it can easily be replaced by the provider. If so, that’d be an industry-first from what I can tell -> don’t need to send the hearing aids back to the factory for battery replacement if the provider can do it on the spot for you.

It also talks about the new OpenSound Optimizer. Seems like it’s all about feedback improvement giving more stable gain.


One question I can’t find an answer to…are they offering this only as a rechargeable? That would make them useless for many people including myself


The rechargeable model is the mini RITE R version. The other versions without the R in the end should be the disposable battery version.


“Some features can be update through firmware on the OPN1” ??
I hope so since my OPN1s are brand new as of November 2018. Problem is than in addition, my loss is asymmetrical with moderate-severe low frequency loss on the left ear that isn’t present in the right. Both ears have the ski-slope loss at higher frequencies.
Maybe this product won’t help. I’m not overjoyed with my new OPN1s but over the months my brain is catching on.


According to the Oticon marketing info, the OPN S is only about 10-15% better than the original OPN in terms of listening effort. So it’s really only a slight marginal improvement over the original OPN. I wouldn’t sweat over it if I already have the original OPNs.