Many years ago I got my first pair of hearing aids, Phonak V90. I think they were in the Audeo series, RIC style, using size 10 batteries. I wore them somewhat intermittently during the years I had them, and they worked fine until I accidentally wore them into the shower just at the start of the pandemic.
Finally I made a return appointment to my hearing aid center, and decided to try out rechargeable Marvels. I didn’t really consider other brands very seriously, since none seemed to offer the seamless Android Bluetooth support the Marvels promised. The day after I placed my order, Phonak announced the Paradise series, and so when I picked up the Marvels for my trial, the HA center went ahead and placed an order for Paradise P90s so I could swap them at my first HA check 3 weeks later.
The net result is that I trialed Marvels for about 3 weeks, and then switched to Paradise that I’ve used for about 5-6 weeks now. Both are rechargeable, without telecoil.
I’ll keep this brief, but I thought the Marvels were great, and the Paradise add a few useful features that make them even better. Bluetooth is wonderful, and a feature I can’t imagine living without now. It works and sounds much better than the Compilot Air thing I used with the old V90s. I had no trouble pairing with my Android Pixel phone. I mostly stream podcasts (speech), but sometimes music, and both sound pretty good. I’ve also had very good luck using it as a phone headset; callers say my voice comes through clearly. I’ve not yet tried pairing them to a second device, but apparently that’s something that works better with Paradise than Marvel.
I didn’t use the Marvels enough to really notice much difference in sound quality compared to the Paradise HAs. So I can’t claim sound quality is a solid reason to upgrade. But I do like the Paradise motion sensor feature that lets me start/stop Bluetooth programming by double-tapping my ear. It’s a life saver when my phone’s in my pocket streaming a podcast, and my wife asks me a question and I need to quickly pause the audio. I’m sure it looks bizarre to anyone watching, but works well for me, even when wearing glasses. The only glasses-related issue I’ve found is that sometimes if I bump or jiggle my glasses, I think the sensor detects a double-tap and pauses whatever I’m listening to. I guess another issue is that sometimes I’ll be listening to audio the traditional way, e.g. not streaming, and start repeatedly tapping my ear to try to make it stop. Someday I’ll learn…
I’m also a big fan of rechargeable aids now. It’s great never having to worry about changing the battery, and so far I haven’t had any problems with low batteries or the charger not charging them. The only issue I have is that once in a while, for no apparent reason, the right HA will use an unusually large percentage of its charge. Most nights they’re both around 50-60% when I put them on the charger, often with the right HA 3-5% lower than the left. But a few times, the right HA has been in the 8-15% range while the left HA is at 50+%. I’m hoping Phonak will release a firmware update to fix this issue, but who knows. So far it’s a little worrisome, but hasn’t actually caused any problems.
That’s all. Mostly I guess I’m just really excited about having an always-on Bluetooth headset.