In this article, you will learn more about my experience with the Signia Active, both personally and with my clients.
While other hearing aids are usually designed to be as invisible as possible, the Signia Active looks like Bluetooth earbuds. I was skeptical at first that the devices would not cause people to stop talking to them. However, my experience with the Signia Active and that of my clients who have worn these devices show that people in the environment do not pay attention to them and still talk to you even though the devices are worn.
The devices look very similar to earbuds and are often compared to air pods in the white version, but conventional Bluetooth headphones work completely differently. Unlike AirPods, the software can be adjusted by a hearing care professional here really individually to the hearing loss of your right and left ear.
However, the sound is not comparable to earbuds. These always have a larger speaker. The Signia Active hearing aids are comparable to a medium-sized hearing aid speaker. They just don’t sound as voluminous. Depending on which silicone earplug (also called click tip) you wear in the ear, a little more bass can be added. Here, however, you need a closed click tip.
The devices are designed for people with mild to moderate hearing loss. In most cases, this means that the high-frequency hearing loss needs to be compensated. This is what the devices can do. However, the position of the Signia Active in the ear canal (especially with a closed click tip) often leads to an increased perception of your own body sounds. This is often noticed during the following activities:
- When something is crunched (chips).
- Noises when walking
- the changed perception of one’s own voice
This experience varies from person to person due to the hearing loss and the different placement of the hearing aid in the ear. If a closed click tip is used you will also get amplification in the lower range, which many people do not need.
Sound Experience with the Signia Active
In everyday use, the sound quality was completely sufficient for streaming podcasts or making calls. For listening to music, I still preferred to use proper headphones like the AirPods Pro. But the Signia Active is not made for listening to music. They are meant to optimize speech understanding, and that works well for mild to moderate hearing loss.
There are similar limitations as with all other hearing aids. The app gives options to customize the sound image to your needs. However, the extent to which these options can be used in terms of volume control (all frequencies) or sound balance (high-frequency volume control only) is determined by the hearing care professional. This is because while the Signia Active is connected to the professional fitting software, the hearing care professional determines whether you have more or less control over the volume.
Standard Click Tip or Individual Ear Piece in Combination With the Signia Active – Which Gives You the Better Experience?
The silicone click tips fit most people’s ear canals. They come in a variety of sizes for all kinds of ear canals. For me personally, the Signia Active with the Click Tips did not fit optimally. In such a case, there is the possibility to have an individual earmold made instead of a click tip. This usually ensures a more even fit and better hold in the ear.
If the Silicone click tips or an earmold is used, it will also affect the performance and sound pattern of the hearing aid. Here come together with the following factors that affect hearing:
- Position and support of the click tip / individual earpiece in the ear canal
- Size and shape of the ear canal
- Mobility of the auditory canal
From experience, I can say that the last-mentioned factors influence the following:
- Perception of your own voice
- The ability of the Signia Active / Active Pro to reduce background noise
- The ability of the hearing aid to amplify frequencies
Here are some short easy to understand examples. If the lower jaw is very close to the click tip, the own voice will be much louder. As soon as a click-tip with holes is used, the perception of your own voice improves. However, the Signia Active then also loses power in the range of lower frequencies.
When a closed click tip is used, sounds only reach your ear through the hearing aid. This allows it to filter out noise optimally. If you use a Click tip with holes, sounds reach the ear canal and the eardrum directly. So you hear in a natural way. In addition, you also hear through the Active Pro. When you are in company and many people are talking at once, less noise can be filtered out.
Charging the Signia Active Hearing Aid
I would always recommend recharging the hearing aids directly in the charging case that comes with them when they are not being worn. Charging works wonderfully via the Qi standard. At work and at home I have the opportunity to briefly empty my pockets and place my phone and of course the Active Pro on charging pads to charge them.
Alternatively, you can also use the USB C connector on the back of the charging case. I have to do that partly with other devices when there were interruptions during charging. But with the Signia Active, I never had problems regardless of the charging pads.
How Much Does Signia Active Cost?
- Signia Active 1690.00$
- Signia Active Pro 1690.00&
The price of hearing aids usually consists of the service provided by the hearing care professional and the devices. In most cases, this means that you can find very different prices for the Signia Active and Active Pro on the market.
While one hearing care professional calculates to have the hearing aids adjusted in 20 minutes and never see you again after that, another hearing care professional calculates several hours into the price and service over the next few years. You decide with the price whether simply the product or also the quality of the fitting is important to you.
Difference Between Active and Active Pro
There are a few features that the Signia Active does not have that the Pro version does.
- Tinnitus programs
- Speech focus 360
- Extended bandwidth of frequencies
Wind noise is specifically reduced. eWindScreen proactively improves the sound impression by sending the signal of the less disturbed side from both devices.
Several tinnitus strategies are made available in the pro version: both traditional noiser therapy and tinnitus notch therapy.
Speech Focus 360
The microphones align with the dominant speech source. In this setting, signals from the front, for example, are emphasized and signals from the back and sides are lowered so that the user can better concentrate on the signals from the front.
You can also preset the directivity using the app. This means that if someone behind you is very loud and you actually want to hear someone in front of you better, you can activate this briefly in the app.
Extended Bandwidth of Frequencies
The signal processing bandwidth of up to 12 kHz provides excellent transmission of high-frequency speech, music and ambient noise.
This specific program provides better speech understanding and reduces listening effort in reverberant rooms.
How well these features work also depends on the individual earpiece. If an open silicone click trip is used, you probably won’t hear a real difference between the Active and Active Pro. Simply because the hearing aid can’t filter out anything when the sounds can enter your ear directly in the natural way. However, if it is closed and only the hearing aid makes sounds audible then the difference between the Active and Active Pro may be greater.
If you would like to learn more about the differences between the Signia hearing aids then I have an overview of all the devices for you and an article about the smaller in the ear device the Signia Silk.