Resound Omnia 961 rechargeable versus 962 with 13 zinc-air battery

I have been trying the Omnia 961 rechargeable for about two weeks. It is ok but I am considering the 962 which is equiped with the 13 zinc-air battery to avoid the need of placing HA in charger everyday.

This is my very first HA so I don’t know if this is a good choice. Any inconvenience with the 962 version (the cost of battery is not a issue for me)? Is there anyone who has chosen the 962 or 961R?


I have the 962 with size 13 batteries. I change them every Saturday morning, I think they will go another day or 2 depending on streaming. I buy the size 13 batteries from Hearing Tracker, prefer Power Ones. I am pleased with the Omnia HA’s. Have been wearing Resound for about 5 years or so.

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You are going to get strong arguments for both rechargeable and disposable battery options. I really like rechargeable and the Resound Omnia uses Apple’s low power MFI so you will get about 30+ hours of use on a single charge (more than enough to get through a day). It’s really a personal preference.



The length of runtime you’ll get with size 13 batteries will depend in part on your hearing loss and how long you wear your HA’s each day, plus the amount of streaming you do. I have ReSound Omnia 962s with size 13 batteries, and I get at least 10 to 11 days of runtime with about an hour of streaming a day (on the rechargeables ReSound says nonstop streaming reduces the runtime from 30 hours to 25 hours, so streaming has only a modest effect on battery runtime). I wear my HA’s about 13 to 14 hours a day.

The main reason I chose the replaceable battery option was that when I had rechargeable ReSound Quattros and turned them in for “refurbishment” at the end of the 3-year warranty period, I got replacements that had less than brand-new battery capacity. I wanted hearing aids that would continue to function for years as backups for my next set of HA’s after that without worrying about a rechargeable battery degrading as it ages and not being replaceable. I find also that I have to charge up my now-backup Quattros every few weeks to keep their batteries from running down, which is a drag.

I do like the rechargeables and being able to start each day “fresh” and knowing that I’m not going to run out any time during the day. One could just do as @louyo does and change the replaceable batteries shortly before you expect them to run out, but since I’m at home most of the time, I don’t mind waiting for the ding, ding, dong warning before changing mine.


I had to go into hospital for a procedure. I stressed about my hearing aids. Phonak Audeo Paradise P90 with rechargeable batteries.

Thought about it for days.I still wish I had replaceable batteries in these hearing aids.


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Thank you everyone.

Besides the reasons mentioned, I usually have long trips and that’s why I don’t want to depend on the rechargeable battery, even with the Premium Charger.

@louyo and @jim_lewis have you tried to turn on the Flight mode to turn off wireless connection and lengthen the life of replaceable 13 batteries?

No. Like I said, I replace every Saturday morning, I stream a lot but have never had them die. I keep a few in the car and at my daughter’s house just in case. That is about .60 a week, buying them from Hearing Tracker.

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The 10- or 11-day battery life is fine for me. I got enough free size 13 batteries with my Omnia purchase from TruHearing (something like 96) to last me about 2.7 years at that runtime. And a pack of 48 batteries only costs about $9 at Costco. I have an old screwcap Teflon centrifuge tube. I’m saving my used zinc-air batteries in that tube to recycle at San Antonio’s hazardous waste facility when I dispose of other stuff like old 2-cycle gasoline/oil fuel mixtures.

Whenever I take my hearing aids out, I open the battery doors. I’m not sure flight mode saves that much battery power. Keeping the basic circuits running in flight mode, having the external mics listening for sounds, and amplifying the sound for the receivers, probably still takes a fair amount of juice. The reason for believing this is that if constant streaming only reduces battery runtime from 30 to 25 hours. Clearly, most of the battery consumption is in basic hearing aid function, which is still going on even in flight mode. The spec sheets for most HA’s show they still draw a good deal of current even when not amplifying sound.


@jim_lewis Yes it’s true that the cost of batteries is like nothing. I am asking it just for some hypothetically urgent cases of my long trips. Also, as this is my very first HA, I feel a little paranoid about having two electrical pieces constantly emit and receive wireless radio on my head LOL.

For the flight mode power consumption, the reducing battery runtime from 30 to 25 hours is true by their spec sheets, but is misleading because the radio part is still on (that’s why the HA connect immediately to phones when we turn on the Bluetooth) and by the rule of thumb, the radio components consume 100x the processing counterparts. Maybe the ratio is much lower for HA but I am not surprised if it is still 10x.

I think I will take the 962. Do you have any other advices for this HA? For example I learn that we need to leave the zinc air battery sit for a couple of minutes before putting it into HA, and I should wash my hand before changing the batteries.

Some people claim they should sit for at least 5 minutes. I have never been that patient. They can be ready for use in as little as about 20 seconds after removing the seals.

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@ssa could provide a far better answer than I could, but the BT radio and any acknowledgments it has to send are far less active when there is no streaming. The HA is acting as a RECEIVER in streaming and then amplifying the radio signal it receives. BT LE means it’s not active when it doesn’t need to be and transmits only in bursts, not a continuous stream. BT Classic involves continuous ON activity. By contrast, the Phonak Marvel battery life decreases from 24 hours just listening to environmental sounds to only about 11 hours when both constantly streaming and listening to environmental sounds at the same time. Phonak unveils Lumity hearing aid platform - #73 by jim_lewis. I would imagine that BT LE signals from a smartphone to an HA are otherwise only emitted when the user changes HA settings on the smartphone.

Here’s what I means that most battery power in HA’s that are not heavily streaming is consumed just by running the onboard electronics. The following line is from a table of Omnia 961, 962 specs for LP (two left entries) and MP receivers (two right entries) for Quiescent and Operating HA’s, You can see that ~80% of HA power is just consumed “idling.” I should imagine “quiescent” is when the dang thing is powered up awaiting sound or streaming input but there is none.

Source: datasheet for standard receivers on following page: Hearing aids ReSound - ReSound OMNIA - Hearing Aids

Bing ChatGPT search for ISO definitions of “quiescent” and “operating” :

  • Quiescent conditions: The hearing threshold deviation is measured in the absence of any sound stimulus.
  • Operating conditions: The hearing threshold deviation is measured in the presence of a sound stimulus.

I like the M&RIE receivers, but you have to essentially require MP (medium power) receivers or less and have a certain shape type of loss. If you search on M&RIE receivers, you can come up with a bunch of posts on that subject.

Also, see the following post along with mine below it: ReSound Omnias with M&RIE Receivers - #31 by JT337


@jim_lewis thank you. Another question, as you have tried both 961 rechargeable and 962, could you please comment about the sizes of the two HA? Is the 962 significantly larger?

I didn’t find the 962 much bigger than the 961. They are both larger than the Phonak Lumity. I’m not size- or wire-conscious about my RIC hearing aids. In trying out colors, I was having a hard time deciding what color to go with; my hair is getting decidedly grayer. My audi suggested the black color would match the color of my temple tips of my eyeglasses (the part that goes over and behind the ears). So, that worked out well. From behind, it looks like I just have large temple tips on my eyeglasses.

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I would like to continue the discussion about the hypothesis of the battery saving via turning on flight mode.

First, the 80% of HA power being consumed in Quiescent conditions does support my argument that most of power is drained by the Bluetooth radio idling. Specifically, quiescent means no sound stimulus and therefore, no processing power. This is consistent with the common knowledge that radio components are the main consumption source in modern electronic devices.

Second, I have tried to use my 961R with and without the flight mode to see if the battery consumption is different. It is. With flight mode on HA and Bluetooth on my phone both turned off, meaning the Bluetooth of HA is in idle mode, Resound Smart 3D app showed that there was 40% battery remaining (2 green dots among 5, see photo) after 15h usage. The same test, with the HA flight mode turned on, meaning no radio at all at HA, I got 60% battery remaining (3 green dots). Of course there was no streaming as there was no connection to my phone in both tests. In spite of lacking the precise battery percentage of HA, I think it is safe to say that turning on the HA flight mode does increase the battery life.

I do some math, if 15h usage with the Bluetooth of HA in idle mode drops the battery from 100% to 40%, a full charge should last 25h in the same usage condition (there must be some optimization of Resound when the battery is low to extend the battery to 30h). With flight mode, 15h usage = 40% battery, then a full charge should last 37.5h, which is 50% more.

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I would expect the difference to be greater with Phonak aids that use Bluetooth classic instead of Bluetooth LE.

Since you only have crude charge measurements and you haven’t controlled for the sound during any listening period, your conclusions are very speculative at best.

When my rechargeable Quattros were new, I would measure charge drop from just charging until an LED came on until that LED dropped off, checking every 15 minutes in the 5 to 6 1/2 hour time range in the Smart 3D app. Brand new ReSound Quattros with the BT connection to my HA’s turned on would invariably get about 6 hours of run time between 60% and 40% charge with very carefully watching the LEDs come on during charging and go off during usage. You’re trying to find reasons to disagree with ReSound’s claim that a full charge lasts 30 hours with no streaming and 25 hours with constant streaming during that period, basically saying that claim is all hogwash, and they cheat at the end by having a special extended runtime. If you’re not getting the battery life claimed in rechargeable runtime, it’s much more likely there’s something wrong with your HA’s. Maybe you want to have them checked out and replaced under warranty if they’re not performing as they should, rather than apply unfounded theories that how your particular HA’s perform applies to all similar ReSound HA’s.

I’ve also had replacement ReSound Quattros that arrived with inferior runtime in the 60% to 40% runtime range and an overall runtime of less than 30 hours. What I found with those, carefully timing the drop in charge from 100% is the runtimes did very well in the 100% to 80% range and the 80% to 60% range but as soon as the SOC got down to about 60% the rate of runtime drop between 20% levels increased rapidly, i.e., shorter runtimes, from there on down to <10% charge, when the red charge warning comes on. So, in my experience with bad ReSound rechargeables (that got worse as I used them), ReSound does not extend runtime at low charge levels. Bad batteries show up as decreased runtimes at low states of charge, not so much above 60% SOC.

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No, I claim nothing about that 30 hours. I talked about it to find the consistency with my tests to show that flight mode turning on does increase battery life of my HA. As I have also said above, this is not precise and I do agree that they were crude charge measurements. However, the result and/or the conclusion are far from speculative, because the 50% gain of battery life in my tests is large enough to cover most of errors in measurement and setup, meaning maybe there will be not such 50% gain with precise tests, but the gain is certainly there.

About the claim 30 hours, I don’t want to argue about it just because I don’t have precise measure tools (it seems that Resound does not want to provide precise battery percentage in their app either). However, I would be skeptical about your conclusion “ReSound does not extend runtime at low charge levels” of your Quattros tests because the discharge curve of Li-Ion batteries is always steeper at low charge levels. Also, I would like to say that even if Resound does lower the performance of HA in low charge levels, it is the common practice and it is a good thing and I would not call it “cheat”.

It’s great to be able to exchange with people who want to know exactly how their HA work. Thanks again.

If running in Airplane Mode did make a big difference, why wouldn’t ReSound want to advertise it? They advertise that you get a longer battery life when you don’t stream. The HA’s, AFAIK, function perfectly well without a BT connection to my iPhone (I’ve lost the connection occasionally and haven’t noticed until I checked the Smart 3D app). I’m sure one will save some battery life, but the math on the 37.5 hr runtime in flight mode you calculate is not a “50%” increase. 7.5 hr increase / 30 hr runtime without streaming is a 25% increase in runtime over that advertised by ReSound. And if your 7.5 extra hrs were correct, 7.5 / 37.5 = 20% of available runtime, i.e., if turning on Flight Mode does completely shut off BT, then BT is only consuming 20% of the battery charge during normal operation with some level of sound input taken for granted by ISO standards.

Because the aids stop communicating with each other and their speech intelligence is reduced. Their programming is based upon the aids communicating with each other, sharing information.

Then what would be the point of entering flight mode relative to your HA’s except if it helped keep the batteries from going dead - but as long as you’re in flight mode (according to your thesis), the function of the HA’s would be seriously degraded. Entering Flight Mode would help comply with former FAA regs for NO wireless devices, but I think they’ve relaxed the rules for weak devices like HA’s, which can be kept on now, IIRC.

Starkey’s current advice:

  1. Don’t turn off your hearing aids or their wireless features on a plane. The FAA exempts devices like hearing aids and pacemakers because they don’t emit signals that might interfere with aircraft controls.

Source: Five do’s and five don’ts of traveling with hearing loss (

I think the bottom line is there is very little reason to use Flight Mode these days. It’s not even enabled by default in ReSound Fitting software (how about Oticon & Phonak?), it’s not required by the FAA, it doesn’t save much battery life at all compared to the long runtime of ReSound rechargeable or battery-powered HA’s, and according to @prodigyplace, it greatly interferes with normal hearing aid function.

Another weird thing about Flight Mode for my ReSound Omnia 962s is that I see no sign that it’s working. I enable it in Smart Fit (exit the program, reconnect, and confirm it shows Enabled checked for both HA’s). I leave my right HA off for simplicity. I open and close the battery door on my booted left HA 3x within 10 seconds. The left HA still shows up in the Smart 3D app on my iPhone as connected, it can still have its external mics turned on or off by the 3D app, have the mic volume changed, or the program changed, stream a podcast, and the left HA shows up in the Find My Hearing aid interface of the Smart 3D app, whereas the turned-off right HA was last seen minutes ago. The left HA shows up in an iPhone BT scanner app, too. It doesn’t matter if I fully open the battery door or only open it to the partially-open catch (where it’s normally turned off anyway).

It would be interesting to hear from other folks if the rechargeable Omnias or any other HA brands show up at all in a BT scanner when put in Flight Mode. Perhaps no one at ReSound bothered checking whether Flight Mode actually works for certain ReSound Omnias like the 962s because no one uses it anymore or has noticed that it’s gone south and reported it as a bug to ReSound? Or maybe my particular Omnias are both defective in entering flight mode?

One sophisticated possibility would be that my Omnia 962 only enters flight mode when the iPhone BT is also turned off but ReSound makes no mention of having to do anything about one’s smartphone in disabling wireless function for an Omnia. It just doesn’t seem to work for me. :roll_eyes: