Telecoil - what is it?

I have Phonak Audeo V90’s and they don’t have telecoils, but when I use some phones, I hear the phone in both ears. They make a little magnet you are supposed to glue to your phone if is doesn’t have enough magnetic force to activate the feature. I don’t really like this feature and take my aids out when using a phone or headphones to listen.

The Phonak Audeo V90s do come in a Tcoil version with a 312 battery. They are very slightly bigger but hardly noticeable. Unfortunately interference can be a real problem with Tcoil and I cannot use it at home for phones due to interference from lights. I have not found a good use for it anywhere else yet. Apparently some tourist venues can pipe their commentary via Tcoil but it isn’t very common in Australia. The local airport purports to have Tcoil but its only on two of the gates and my flights have always involved different gates so I have not been able to use it.

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I agree with that, but adaptation of Bluetooth has been slow in hearing aids, probably because of the battery-life issues.

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Telecoil - what is it? Obsolete

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Not all hearing aids have a telecoil. Some hearing aids are not able to have a telecoil. Telecoil is an older technology that is still in use. Most newer hearing aids are not made with telecoil, but can be added if requested at the time you order your hearing aids. You can have a telecoil in your hearing aids, but it must be activated by your audiologist for it to function.

Read this to find about generic telecoil–across all brands of hearing aids: " Install Telecoil or Not in your hearing aids?

Of course, each brand makes their telecoil/bluetooth versions of Hearing Assistive Devices, which cost a lot of money. But you can get “generic” telecoil for a lot cheaper (which doesn’t have the bluetooth capability). So these $60 neck loops use cords and can be plugged into many devices, including any device that has a headphone jack. I even used my $60 neck loop on the airplane to listen to their movies–a bonus was that it blocked out background airline humming noise really well. I put it on (manually) my telecoil setting in my hearing aid. Outstanding experience! (NOTE: The Automatic telecoil setting doesn’t block out background noise nearly as well.)

My hearing aid has a 312 battery and includes telecoil–purchased from Costco. Costco does not charge for telecoil installed in their hearing aids.

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Here is my Telecoil Information Sheet:

Bluetooth and Telecoil are two completely different technologies; they do not conflict with each other. They can be used together or separately. Telecoil is “loop” technology; Bluetooth is “cordless” technology. Their different uses are explained below.


  • Bluetooth is technology that eliminates cords between devices.
  • Both devices must be bluetooth enabled. Some cars have bluetooth, but older cars do not; new TV’s can have Bluetooth while older ones do not.
  • For bluetooth to work, you need to “pair” two bluetooth capable devices. They can then communicate, without using cords.
  • Some telecoil devices use Bluetooth and some telecoil devices do not.

Telecoil (sometimes called T-coil)

  • Telecoil is technology that uses a wired loop to transmit direct sound, from the sound source to your telecoil equipped hearing aid. It may be a neck loop, a table loop, or a loop installed around the room or auditorium, etc. You may or may not see this loop.

  • See your hearing aid dispenser to activate telecoil in your hearing aid or cochlear implant. Costco sells the Kirkland hearing aid – with telecoil – at no additional charge. Telecoil is old technology (from the 60’s) and cheap technology. According to HLAA 71% of hearing aids sold in US. automatically have this copper t-coil installed inside. Telecoil is generic technology and can be installed/activated across many models of hearing aids.

  • There are advantages/disadvantages between the automatic setting vs. manual telecoil setting:

    • The automatic turns on when it senses the loop–neck loop, building loop, counter top loop, etc. BUT it does not eliminate background noise: it mixes the sound coming from your hearing aid with the telecoil sound! You cannot turn that off.
    • The manual telecoil setting (button on your hearing aid) can be pure telecoil sound with no hearing aid sound–this means you get no background noise when listening to the telecoil direct sound source–which could be a microphone, a computer, a TV etc.
    • If you can choose the “manual” option, you may ask for 2 telecoil settings
      • Pure Telecoil (so it eliminates background noise)
      • Telecoil + Hearing Aid Sound (for example, when you want to talk to the person next to you at the movie.)
  • In sum, telecoil helps hearing aid users hear in background noise, by:

    • Providing direct sound from the microphone (or through the head phone jack) to your hearing aids — no sound bouncing off walls, or going through speakers, etc.
    • Blocking out background noise (more background noise is blocked if you have the “manual,” as opposed to the “automatic” setting.)
    • Adjusting this sound to your own hearing aid prescription.
  • By purchasing a neck loop (about $60 from Amazon), you can use your telecoil as a kind of noise cancelling device, (using the pure telecoil setting explained above) for a very nominal price! Plug in your neck loop (with an audio cord) to any headphone jack—TV, computer, audiobooks, etc. Using it on the Airplane reduces the airplane background humming noise, while receiving best available sound for their movies. (Note that the new iPhone needs a headphone jack adapter.)

  • In many states, hearing aid providers are not required to discuss telecoil with you. Therefore, you may not know anything about this technology. (*HLAA is working to change that, with legislation.)

Auditorium – looped

You can use your telecoil activated hearing aid in many venues, such as churches and auditoriums. If these venues have been looped, with wire around the perimeter of the building, you are automatically inside the wired loop. If looped, there is the letter “T” in the right hand corner of the auditorium hearing aid sign. (see above) If so, just turn on your hearing aid telecoil setting! If there is no “T” on the sign, the auditorium does not have a loop & you will need a neck loop & receiver from the ushers to use your telecoil.

Auditorium – no loop

  • Upon arrival you can check out, from the usher, a FM receiver, which looks like a black box and a neck loop.
  • Turn on the receiver to verify that it has power and is set to the appropriate channel
  • Connect the neck loop to the receiver (same way you did the earphones before). The neck loop substitutes for the earphones and connects to the FM receiver box.
  • Put the neck loop around your neck and turn on your hearing aid telecoil.

*HLAA = Hearing Loss Association of America at


Nicely done.
A couple things in as far as I understand things:
Using a telecoil is equally “cordless” as bluetooth.
I would say more like some loop devices use bluetooth and some don’t.
The neck loop product could also receive via bluetooth (see above)…not just a headphone jack cable.

You replied to user KenP…I haven’t seen him around here for a while. Not sure about his status.

Let me comment on: “Using a telecoil is equally cordless as bluetooth”

Actually I have two neckloops–one is cordless and one is not cordless. I believe that it is the “bluetooth” technology in the one that is cordless that makes it cordless–not telecoil. Telecoil is “loop” technology. . For bluetooth you have to “pair” two devices. For telecoil you don’t do anything like that. I realize that the two technologies can be combined or be separate.

I am not talking here about the hearing aid manufacturers’ technology, as I am not privy to how they combine (or don’t) the two technologies, with their patents, etc. I am only talking about the copper telecoil in your hearing aids, & room/neck/counter looping technology, etc.

You may be talking about the fact that there is no cord between your hearing aids and the neckloop. That is true but that is because of magnetic conduction technology --which is telecoil & not bluetooth. (Notice that you don’t pair your hearing aids with your neckloop.)

Actually I think we are saying the same thing–just expressing it differently.

How does a corded loop work with a telecoil though? That “last mile” is always going to be cordless, over the air, wireless, look ma no cords. From loop earhooks to looped conference rooms…cordless. And it uses induction.
But at this point it’s all semantics. Don’t get me wrong…I’m a fan of them. I looped my tv room. I like the free and open idea and not the closed proprietary methods. The fact that it’s inherently mono is a bit of a drawback though.
I also have the Clearsounds neckloop. It can receive from a cord and bluetooth.

I have a 1.5 month old pair of KS8T hearing aids from Costco. They were an upgrade from the standard KS8 aids. KS8 aids hav size 312 batteries and no telecoil. KS8T aids have a size 13 battery and a telecoil. KS8T aids cost just a bit more. I don’t remember if it was $100 more each or for the pair.

I am in the US. Are you also?

I believe mine were previous, Version 7 model. Mark Reid, at Costco (Lacey, WA) tells me that the telecoil Kirkland hearing aids should not cost more than the ones without telecoil. Is that your question? Yes, I am in the US.

“Mark Reid, at Costco (Lacey, WA) tells me that the telecoil Kirkland hearing aids should not cost more than the ones without telecoil.”

Interesting. I’m pretty sure that mine cost more (I’ll dig out my receipt to confirm). They are a slightly different model number (KS8T vs. KS8) and use a different battery. Seems strange that there would be a difference between WA and WI.

A Telecoil is an old but always needful feature since nowadays. They are build in HA since more than 50 Years. My first HAs I got in the age of 8 years. My newest HAs has Telecoils too. But is was necessary to let tem unlock by the audiolgist. This Telecoils helps me to use many types of Telephones. But some modern Telephones have a too weak loudspeaker with a very small magnetic field in the handset. Those Telephones are not useful with a Telecoil. Also some cordless models and cellularphones are too weak or their radiosignal disturbs the magnetic field.

Personally I would not watch TV without it! If you buy a neckloop on Amazon, you can use it in place of a fancy headphone and the sound is better…just plug the neckloop in to a headphone jack, using an audio cord. (There is also a bluetooth version if you TV is bluetooth compatible. Be sure your TV has a headphone jack. And any device with a headphone jack (audiobooks, computer, etc) can use this neckloop system

I also use the neckloop with the FM amplifier device at church (or at a theater playhouse, etc. Much better than the earbud they supply! Just swap out the ear bud for the neckloop!
I even used it on the airplane to watch their movie!

So many uses…including auditorium use…if they provide you the FM receiver…

On Amazon I bought for about $60:


I second that! :smiley:
Recently saw some aids I really liked the sound of until I discovered they didn’t have the coil built-in so I changed my mind. I have always used my Tcoil settings for many years and still do to this day. I live in a bungalow so the loft/attic is just above us in the lounge where the TV is. So I built my own loop in the loft and wired it into the TV. So wherever I sit in the lounge, I can hear the TV through the Tcoil settings. Freedom to move around with no dangling receivers around my neck. Bliss! It’s also so much cheaper to use a loop system (especially when I can build my own) than expensive streamers (which I can’t build myself, sadly)
I do also have both wired and BlueTooth neckloops for other devices such as my phone, laptop, computer and for other TV’s when away from home.

Here in the UK there’s no need for the FM receiver, they use a loop system and most work very well I’ve found, if they’re in working order! :rage:

Yes I agree with you !

Thank you so much! I figured it’s the telecoil I miss the most. It helped alot by gaining my confidence. I like autimatic one which I had before.

My telecoil on resound live worked very well on cellphone. I was happy until I got these RIC HA with Bluetooth only. I had no idea what happened. Neither my audiologist.