I’m currently deciding between these two tiers. I am a lifelong hearing aid user with sever-profound loss. I’ve always worn BTEs with custom, closed molds. My audiologist - who has fitted my last several pairs of aids (all phonak) and whose assessment I trust - recommended the P70 and felt that while I might see some additional benefit from the P90, that it might be a little overkill. In the past I’ve always gotten the *50/Standard tier for financial reasons. I’ve tried to research the differences as much as possible and seems they mostly boil down to:
- More programs in the automatic setting - hearing aid (hopefully) chooses the correct program based on the listening environment.
- Better “UltraZoom” - 33 Beamforming channels instead of 12 Beamforming channels. I think this determines how granular the hearing aid is about filtering background noise in directional modes (edit: yes it is).
- “EchoBlock” - additional processing to suppress reverberation. Used for the “Comfort in Echo” program. Can only be adjust in Target software.
- “Speech Enhancer” - Supposed to improve intelligibility of soft speech. Can only be adjusted in Target software.
- “Dynamic Noise Cancellation” - Supposed to provide additional SNR in noisy settings and is only active in directional microphone modes. Can be adjusted in Target software and in the app.
I’ve been trying to understand how the Dynamic Noise Cancellation works and how it differs from the “regular” noise suppression (what Phonak calls NoiseBlock). I was initially under the impression that DNC is similar to noise canceling headphones and the hearing aid outputs an inverted signal to further reduce background noise in noisy settings. That’s what’s implied in this video, but after digging more it’s unclear to me if that’s how it works or if it’s just intended to have a similar functional benefit. I’m not an expert in this domain but it would make sense that if the hearing aids did have true active noise cancellation, then it would be of most benefit to people with less severe losses or open fittings, who don’t get as much isolation of sound from the hearing aids. My hearing aids completely block my residual hearing so I definitely don’t fall into that group. On the other hand if the DNC is just another, perhaps better processing algorithm (as implied here) to further reduce background on top of “NoiseBlock” then it might not matter as much what kind of fitting you have.
Can anyone shed some light on this? I’m mostly interested because I like the idea of having more things I can control in the app, but if it’s something that really only benefits people with more residual hearing than I have then it wouldn’t be worth it.