Widex Beyond 440 rechargeable ZPower retrofit performance


#1

I have had my Widex Beyond 440 aids for a little over a year and am interested in getting the retrofit for the ZPower rechargeable batteries. My audiologist sent me a spec for the Oticon Opn models that use ZPower that showed the battery life for streaming is not very good. She said that she thought the Widex Beyond would have the same battery life performance. Does anyone have the new ZPower aids? Has anyone ordered the retrofit for the Beyond 440s and what was the retrofit fee? Lastly what is your opinion on battery life for the ZPower rechargeable batteries in general?
Thank you


#2

Rechargeable is a moving target where they will improve longevity over time. Doesn’t help much if you’ve got an unimproved version. Early reports said the 312 did not last 16 hours while a 13 size did.

All is conditional on use. If you stream a lot, need heavier amplification, or the brand current drain is different; your result can vary quite a bit.

Costwise it is less expensive to use replaceable batteries. Some brands say replace rechargeables annually and that can be as high as $200.


#3

I am waiting for Widex to start distributing the retrofit kit. So far, it seems they are way behind here in the US. My audiologist has reported to me that the BEYOND Z’s that she has fit so far have had very good results with battery life. As long as I can get a full 14-15 hours on a charge, I will be a happy camper. Also, I believe Widex will charge the providers somewhere around $270 for the kit.


#4

Thank you. Your information and opinion are helpful.


#5

Thank you for responding. I am not totally clear on how the recharable unit and batteries work. Can a second set of the rechargeable or stanard disposable batteries be used if the ZPower batteries discharge from a streaming event while in use? Even I f you can use the disposable batteries I guees the concern might be having to still have to purchase them.
I had seen that the Oticon Opn streaming lasted for a couple of hours but no specs for Widex. Do the ZPower batteries perform the same for the Beyond 440, which use the 312 batteries as the Oticon Opn? Do you know the price for a set of rechargeable batteries for backup or if that will be an option?
Thank you


#6

Wow, $200 would be pretty high to have a backup set of batteries.


#7

PowerZ system allows for use of standard 312’s if necessary.


#8

With the Z Power retrofit you replace the empty battery door with a special battery door that would still fit inside although slightly larger and may protrude a tiny bit because the special battery door has special charging circuitry inside the door.

The rechargeable Silver Zinc batteries cost $50/set of 2 to replace, lasts about 1 year before needing to replace. You can buy a back up pair if you want, I would think. But I don’t know if they have a shelf life longer than a year or not. From what I understand the Z Power charging system has a warranty but the replaceable rechargeable batteries are not under any warranty. If they fail the next day, it’s on you.

The way it works is that you put in the rechargeable Silver Zinc battery into the special Z Power door and the circuitry inside the door will provide the appropriate voltage to power your hearing aid. At the end of the day (or when it runs out of juice), you leave it inside the HA (with the battery door closed) and simply slip the whole HA casing inside the ZPower charger for wireless charging through induction. In the morning (or when charging completes), you simply take the HA out of the ZPower charger (no wire to unplug) and use it. In that sense, it’s similar to smart phones that have wireless charging nowaday.

If your Silver Zinc rechargeable battery runs out of juice prematurely or you forgot to charge it overnight, just take out the rechargeable battery and put in a disposable Zinc Air battery and it’ll power your HA just the same. i guess the circuitry inside the door is smart enough to know that it’s a disposable kind and leave it alone to power the HA without making any necessary voltage adjustment like with the Silver Zinc rechargeable battery.

You CANNOT take the rechargeable battery outside of the HA’s ZPower battery door and charge it stand-alone while using either another rechargeable or another disposable battery to power and use the HA. The HA is UNAVAILABLE FOR USE because it’s needed to be inserted into the ZPower charger to charge.


#9

Thank you so much. Your information is very helpful. I believe that the retro fit for my Widex Beyond 440 aids may be a good choice for me. I have the Bose Hearphones that I can use for long streaming sessions instead of my aids, which could solve the short ZPower battery life when streaming for music or movies that I watch on my iPad Pro. I can also use another speaker for movies with my level of hearing loss. The backup batteries because of the shelf life may not be a good choice or a real need. Again, thanks for your help.


#10

You probably don’t have to resort to using headphones or speakers and limit streaming by just trying out at first how long the rechargeable batteries will last. If it lasts long enough then great. If it’s a couple of hours short on average, just do a short charging session some time in the middle of the day when you don’t need the hearing aids for half an hour or something, maybe while you take an afternoon nap or do some quiet reading or some activities that don’t require the HAs.


#11

We just received the ZPower charging kit for our Widex Beyond 440 hearing aids. Interestingly, the instructions state that the aids should not be left in the charger once the charge is complete, or the batteries will be drained. So if we place the aids in the charger at bedtime and the charge is completed before we wake up, we’ll not have a full charge when we take them out.


#12

When these were first announced, I was pretty excited about them. Then I read about the price and battery life. Then I did some number crunching. I get batteries fro the hearing center at Sam’s, and they come 40 on a card for about $9.00. At about six days on battery life, that’s about 17 weeks per card, or about a third of a year. That makes a years’ worth of batteries (120) run $27. Now, let’s say that the zpower retro kit is $250 and that it includes batteries(no clue if that’s correct or not). That makes the first year’s cost roughly equivalent to 1,110 batteries (at Sam’s prices). At the rate I go through batteries, that’s about nine years worth of batteries.

I’m sorry, but that just doesn’t make sense to me, just for the convenience of not having to change batteries.


#13

I use ZPower for Oticon OPN’s. My literature, as well as what I read on ZPower’s site, state not to leave the HA’s in the recharger IF the charger is unplugged. Leaving them in the charger after fully charged is fine.

Here is the blurb from ZPower:

Charge Your Batteries When You’re Not Using Your Hearing Aid

If you remove your hearing aids during the day (i.e., to take a shower, go swimming, etc.), put the hearing aids back on the charger. A good rule of thumb to go by is: If the hearing aids are not on your ears, they should be in the charger. The batteries will not overcharge, and storing them in the charger will not decrease the overall lifespan of the battery. If the charger is not available, it’s OK to open the battery door for a few hours until you either need to wear your aids again or you can place them on the charger.


#14

I moved to the Phonak Marvel M90 (M-R) due to the constant problem I was having with my Widex Beyond 440 rechargeables. They had so many issues… I am VERY happy with my new HA’s!