What are the benefits of using an intermediary device vs. direct streaming?

Two questions - Since direct streaming has been out for a while why do other competing HA manufactures still push a connect clip or device you have to wear (as a link) to direct streaming? You would think everyone would be on the same page here - since direct streaming would be the preference of most HA users. One less thing to worry about, one less thing to buy.

With that said are there some benefits of using a connect clip for streaming versus direct? Also which of the two actually has the best connection? I’m just puzzled why half the HA manufactures push direct streaming while the other half still seem to be tied to connect clip.

Also seems to be that HA manufactures going the connect clip route might be doing so to make extra sales on the connect clip itself - though I don’t know how much that device costs. To me life would be easier if we all could compare apples to apples (HA performance wise - cost wise) versus this game of wear a clip or stream directly.

I wanted a smaller hearing aid which is not big enough for the direct streaming chip. Therefore I need an intermediary device to stream.

OK - I wasn’t aware that the size of a hearing aid determined the streaming capability of the aid. In any case are you satisfied with the your streaming connection via intermediary device? And what brand HA do you use?

I have Oticon OPN1 ITE hearing aids and I love the direct streaming, but I also have the connect clip for my computer streaming so both work great for me.

Widex Evoke 440 in the IP In the ear size, I then use the Comdex device for streaming. I am very happy with it, the sound is awesome. My son has the F2 440 Evoke RIC, they stream direct to iPhone. We both love them. How about you?

  • Use as remote microphone for meetings, presentations, etc.
  • Unobtrusive control of aids (volume, program, mute)
  • Easy control of phone (double press to awaken assistant)
  • Use to answer and control phone while across the room (or in a different room)


I picked up my OPN S aids 2 weeks ago. I had ordered them with the TV streamer and a connect clip. I have decided to return the accessories as the OPN S aids work so well for me. I had Vigo and Nera Oticons before these new aids and I had TV streamers for them which I needed. The new aids are so much better that I just don’t need the other devices. They work flawlessly with my iPhone 10R and iPad.

I have resound enzo which is direct stream and work just the same as when I where a phone clip for work phone or android phone so I don’t see any benefits from having a clip unless you have android phone. If you have iPhone then it’s fine without clip

A disadvantage of having a second device to help stream is that it also needs to be charged and can run out of charge. With direct streaming you only have the HA battery to worry about. It may not last as long as without streaming but it should be predictable after a bit of use/experience.
Then there is also the bulk of the second device and where to wear it. A clip can come off and may not have a great place on every item of clothing and a necklace style device cramps ones ability to wear jewelry.


Since getting MFI Signia hearing aids I’ve had a great experience. The only draw back is that I can’t mute the mics like noise cancelling phones do. It was a feature on my Comdex streaming device I had for my Widex aids with Android phone. The MFI direct sound is more convenient and better quality sound overall.

Psocoptera - your answer was what I was looking for to compare the two streaming methods. But what’s interesting is that no one has mentioned the clarity nor quality of the streaming connection be it device free or with a second device (clip). So from a hearing stand point direct streaming to HA or through a secondary device gives relatively the same level of sound input to the HA user? Personally I’d prefer not to wear something clipped to my shirt but if the “stream quality” is the same (as direct stream) then I’d probably go with what ever HA I heard best with and accept a connect clip as part of the package.

This is why I came to intensely dislike the necklace device for my Rexton Trax 42s. It worked great for phone calls and tv (which is all I do), but I disliked it more and more as time passed and often didn’t wear it when I was out and about and then came to regret it when I could have benefited from having it and didn’t.

The wire showed around my neck it anything short of a turtle neck. It made an unattractive bulge on my chest under anything I wore short of a winter coat (I referred to it as a third breast).

The first hearing aids I ever tried were Widex and the audi told me in her experience men had no problem with the necklace transmitter the model she was trying to sell me used at that time, but that women disliked it. If that’s true, I totally understand.

I admit a large part of the attraction of the KS9s for me is getting rid of the intermediary device.

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This is exactly what I am contemplating. The mic was good, although I could not hear my own voice in the hearing aids, which tends to make you speak too loud. And I imagine you have to speak into the phone whilw hearing the other party in the aids. And I hear there is a lot more control in the app. I do use Android, and hope that will not be a problem’

Digital signal tends to be all or nothing so the connection depends on things like battery and signal strength. The quality of the sound still depends on the HA.

So far I have found I need to make volume and program changes each day. My goal is for that to stop and go all day without the need to make aid changes.

Some changes are due to noise or wind for example. Other needed changes are for phone or TV streaming needing more or less volume.

The Phonak aids I wear have both volume and program buttons and I also have the Phonak Compilot2. The use of a smart phone app to make these changes would be not be very handy and I prefer not to use the phone that way.

I can see someone getting their aids tuned to the point of not needing to make changes. In this circumstance the direct streaming would be very nice but some of us are not there yet.

I have Opn S1 HAs and I use a ConnectClip. I have a laptop and two phones, one iphone and one android phone. I also have a bluetooth transmitter, which I use on the airplane. Opns support MFi, so they stream directly to iphones. This works pretty well although occasionally I have to turn bluetooth on the phone off and on again. I use the CC daily with my laptop (for work), often for several hours at a time. It is very reliable and I have no complaints about it. I would rather not have to use a CC, but I don’t mind it, because it just works.

Previously, I had Marvels, which stream directly. I found them to be unusable due to the single pairing issue (which has since been changed to dual pairing) and because the BT connection to my laptop frequently dropped during use. I also had a lot of complaints about the sound of my audio.

Had the Marvels not had the above issues, I would not have returned them and switched to Opns. However, I’m very happy with the Opns and I have no regrets about them. The CC is a minor inconvenience. It pairs to multiple devices, although I wish it could be connected to multiple devices at a time. I would rather have an intermediate device that works as reliably as the CC than the unreliability and other issues of no intermediate device as was my experience with the Marvels.

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I would only add to your statement that in the pass before my OPN1 aids I had Oticon aids that I had to use the streamer and streamer pro with. The Connect clip is so much smaller that the streamer or streamer pro but the streamer pro had the Advantage of having built in T-coil which I used with the older aids when I went to the theaters. But I have to say with the OPN1 aids I no longer need the t-coils and I sure don/t miss the big ugly streamer around my neck. The connect clip works for me with my MacBook and also with the home phone connect I use for calls to our house phone.
So both have their advantages and a lot of us really need both.

I can’t speak to some of the brands mentioned, but I have Kirkland 5.0’s which are a ReSound hearing aid. I have two of the Bluetooth clip interfaces, because I lost one and had to re-order it. Of course I found the missing clip after purchasing a second clip!

For sone of the reasons mentioned, (extra device to charge, loss, self-image) I dislike wearing the clip in public. I use them in my cars by clipping the interface on my seatbelt. They work very well. I’m considering purchasing Kirkland 9.0’s after the first of the year. I use an iPhone 10, and having the direct link would be good. I have a 2008 Panasonic plasma TV, so am sure there’s no BT to HA’s. That said, I don’t use a streaming device now (I had one for Bernafon and never used it), so am hoping the new HA’s work well with TV. I find that my streaming experience, excepting phone calls, has been tinny sounding and dissatisfing.

When I bought my Phonak Breo 3 HAs from Costco, I was sold an fairly inexpensive blue tooth connecting device. It was only $100. I ended up returning it. It worked fairly well when connected to the headphone output of my TV … delivering TV audio straight to my ears. BUT,

UNLESS I specifically UNPLUGGED the power USB cable, i.e. unless I turned the intermediate device off, it connected to my HAs automatically every time the TV was turned on. Even if I was NOT in the room! And its range was notable. I’d be coming up the driveway to my garage and the thing would connect if my wife were watching TV. VERY ANNOYING. Also, if I was in my den and on the phone! EXTREMELY annoying.

The answer was to turn the intermediate transmitter off and on or to switch the HA connection on and off.

BTW, I TRIED to get information from the Phonak company about the Bluetooth used. All I could glean is that it is DIFFERENT than the Bluetooth used by cell phones, etc. Phonak does NOT like communicating directly with us suckers who buy their products!