Phonak 2-way Streaming. Worth the Trouble?

I am ready to replace my old Phonak HAs with either the Oticon More 1 or the Phonak Paradise 90. They are basically the same price. The only difference that I am aware of is that the Phonak is capable of 2-way streaming which I guess means that my phone can stay in my pocket and the HAs serve as both the microphone and the phone speaker. With the Oticon I guess I can hear phone audio through the aids but I would have to keep the phone next to my mouth so that the phone microphone picks up my voice.

My question is … does the Phonak 2-way streaming work well enough to tilt the scales to the Phonak or is this one of those features that seems like a good idea but doesn’t work very well? Thanks

Well I’ve seen complaints here that in a noisy environment people can’t hear what you’re saying. I personally haven’t experienced that but I avoid phone calls in a noisy environment because I would struggle understanding what the speaker was saying

4 Likes

It works well only if you are under quiet conditions. The mic picks up surrounding noise as well, and doesn’t have the noise cancellation properties that modern wireless headphones have. Knowing that, it worked quite well for me and I definitely enjoyed the convenience of it.

Another thing to note, if you have a somewhat recent iPhone: it may just be a matter of time before two way streaming is available on the Mores. The Resounds are already getting their firmware update in December that should allow for 2 way, I would imagine Oticon won’t be too far behind. I could be wrong, but their hardware is set up to allow 2 way already, so the capability is there.

2 Likes

I agree with @hass5744. That’s what I have heard.

I have used this feature and to be honest, it’s useful, but it would not tip the balance for me.

There are other differences between the aids that I think could be more noteworthy, but if the streaming capability is important to you, then fair enough.

2 Likes

I own a pair of phonak naida paradise and I agree that that alone would not turn me away. Can you trial both because it really comes down to which you hear better with

1 Like

I use the hands free phone feature on my P-90Rs quite a bit. I like it a lot, and I haven’t had many complaints. Being able to hear the call in both ears helps a lot. I don’t need to touch my phone to answer.

I don’t use half the BT features, but what I use works pretty well for me.

More important, though, would be things like speech in noise. Does one or the other help you hear better? People seem to like one or the other better.

WH

4 Likes

My experience with P90R is the same. Know nothing about the other aids.

1 Like

What do you see as the differences?

I cannot comment accurately because I have not worn both devices, but I do wear the KS10 (Phonak Paradise white label) from Costco and have an UK NHS Oticon Dynamo, and I can perceive differences in the philosophy of both aids. These are generalisations, but I think true and you will see anecdotal reports confirming this. The Oticon is more open, literally from their product name of the device released on the Velox platform in 2015/2016 - Oticon OPN - whereby more sound comes in and can be heard. For some this allows the whole soundscape to be perceived and it helps in background noise situations. On the other hand, this can be a downside for some people who are overwhelmed by the sound and lack the physiology to tell sounds - specifically voices apart and for this reason some prefer the Paradise, which does more filtering of unwanted sounds.

That’s not just it. I think the Oticon MFI aspect - iPhone connectivity using that protocol as opposed to classic bluetooth might attract some people and on the whole some are swayed by Oticon’s perceived nicer sound, as opposed to a more boxy sound from Phonak.

Again - don’t shoot me for generalisations. At the end of the day, it’s down to one’s preference after trialling the devices.

2 Likes

I have used hearing aids for a dozen years. Two generations of Oticon (Alta and Opn) and now the Phonak P90T-R. As I approach 80 years I find that BT and convenience features move higher in my priority stack. The P90 is so good going from my theater to a workstation or to an Android phone that I almost feel sorry for people with naturally good hearing. It is very well done. From hospital emergency rooms, to noisy cab tractors to very loud open-top roadsters—never had a problem with people understanding me using the microphones on the hearing aids. So “worth the trouble?” I would answer What Trouble?

9 Likes

@VinceJ - Hear, hear!

1 Like

Run a quick search on some threads for Mores vs. Paradise (and also a thread with Signia AX vs. Paradise which includes discussion on the Mores). I have a couple initial impression comparisons and experiences along with other folks. I’m sure people are tired of hearing my reviews, plus I’d prefer not to re-summarize :slight_smile:

I’d echo glucas in that if you get the chance, you should really try both out for yourself. My own experiences are not necessarily reflected in other peoples’.

2 Likes

This doesn’t exactly address your question but I have the Oticon OPN’s. I have never had to hold my phone next to my mouth in order for people to hear me. If driving my car for example I can lay my phone on the center console or even on the passenger seat and they seem to hear me just fine. Anywhere within a few feet seems to work just fine.

1 Like

Until Oticon implements the new BLE standard, the best option is to use the ConnectClip.
People complain about requireing a streamer on a lanyard, or clipped to your shirt, but the benefits outweigh the negatives, for me.

I just purchased a ASHA compatable android phone, and it only took a day for me to disable the h/a feature, and pair my C’Clip.
It’s a remotecontrol as well as a streamer, and the BT connectivity is excellent. You can leave your phone in another room, and answer/end calls.
I’ve never had issues with external sound, because the mike is a high quality component that can also operate as a remote mike in meetings, or gatherings.

As @glucas stated, the Oticons use an open paradigm, and the Mores expand on it with built in DNN.

Phonak has some nice features, and I think if you can, you should trial both.

2 Likes

I haven’t tried the Phonak but did try the Kirkland 10 which are similar. They were decent. I trialed the Oticon More and I did not like the lack of app control. There is only volume control and no tone controls. I have asymmetrical hearing and recruitment so I need to to be able to adjust each ear somewhat. If you have patience, the neural net of the Oticon might kick in. Otherwise, I would choose the Phonak or try the Kirkland for 1/3 the price.

1 Like

I agree with VinceJ…except my perspective is with older phonak Marvel M-90-13T aids
what trouble? These things just plain work.

I trialed teh Oticon aids that were their high end at the time…I forget what they were called. They were very good aids as far as hearing…but required a little box to link the android phone. Worked well enough but another device. Also these aids had programs that you’d manually have to switch…noisy environment, quiet environment, etc… Al ot of this had to do with just learning aids…but I remember consantly fiddlinig with the things trying to find the best program for the new environment I found myself in…enter a new room…switch programs…is this one better…or switch again is that one better?

My phonaks switch programs automatically and I never think about it. Never have to adjust the volume or touch them…only when I want to use T-Coil. Connecting to the phone just always works. I’ve never been anyplace where I couldn’t make a call through them

2 Likes

I have the Phonak Marvel M-90, one generation older than Paradis P-90. I answer phone calls all the time with my h/a and would not enjoy having to hold the iPhone in one hand to talk back through its microphone were the h/a only able to receive. The two-way phone feature works just fine on the M-90, probably no different on the P-90.

1 Like

I have the Phonak Paradise P90Rs (I tried the Oticon More1s before going with Phonak) and find the hands-free mobile calls one of their best features. It’s great to just be able to leave my phone in my pocket and listen and talk through the HAs. I’ve haven’t found them more of a problem in noisier environments than I would with calls directly through my phone.

3 Likes

You can adjust her much of the mic you want to hear when you stream, you can completely shut it off.

When streaming, open the app and the button right settings button. Move the slider to adjust the mic to stream ratio

1 Like

@Zebras: For me, that has not been much of an issue at all. I have only had one comment about not hearing my reply’s in over 10 months of use… even when driving. I guess it would be problematic in a noisy restaurant or at a concert though.

2 Likes