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Models & Sizes

Hearing aids are available in an extensive range of colours and sizes. This chart shows some of the more common hearing aid models available.


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No two people have exactly the same experience with hearing loss. For this reason, there are many different models and styles of hearing devices to choose from. The choice of what hearing aid best suits the needs of someone with hearing loss comes down to a number of factors, including:

  • Extent of the hearing loss
  • Lifestyle considerations
  • User dexterity
  • Budget considerations
  • Aesthetics

Hearing aids can essentially be placed in three categories.

  • Invisible in the Canal (IIC)
    – Custom in-the-ear models (CIC, MC, ITC, HS, ITE)
  • Behind-the-ear (BTE)
  • Receiver in the ear (RITE)

Invisible hearing aids

Invisible hearing aids are a new subset of the custom hearing aids models described below. However, thanks to the ongoing work of circuitry miniaturisation, a new class of hearing aids has arrived that can be described as truly invisible and therefore deserve their own classification.

Much smaller than previous “in the ear” models of hearing aids, Invisible-in-the-Canal hearing aids sit beyond the first bend of the ear canal, which has a number of benefits:

  • They work with the natural way the ear captures sound
  • Being closer to the eardrum reduces the “echo-like” sound quality of older in-the-ear hearing aid models
  • Wearers can use headphones and telephones without a problem, and don’t need to be concerned about how they wear their hair or whether they wear eyeglasses

Although there are no switches or buttons to control hearing aid settings, they adapt automatically as listening environments change. It is important to mention that these solutions are not suitable for severe hearing losses and particularly narrow ear canals.

Suitable for: mild to moderately severe hearing loss.

Custom in-the-ear models

Custom in-the-ear models are custom made to fit the contours of your ear canal. Custom, in the ear hearing aids include:

  • Completely in the Canal (CIC)custom-hearing-aids
  • In the Canal (ITC)
  • Half Shell (HS)
  • In the Ear (ITE)

Depending on the specific type, it may be more or less invisible in your ear. The size and shape of your ear canal along with your specific hearing loss determine which type of custom hearing aid is right for you.

Suitable for: mild to moderately severe hearing loss.

Behind-the-Ear models (BTE)

The main section (case) of this hearing aid is hidden behind your ear and connected to a moulded receiver that fits snugly in the outer ear. Your consultant can help you determine whether you prefer a fully automatic aid that requires no manual adjustments or a hearing aid that offers full control.

These hearing aids offer a volume control and/or push button that allow selection from multiple programs for specific performance situations.

Suitable for: all types of hearing loss

Receiver-in-Canal or Receiver-in-the-Ear (RIC or RIE)

Receiver in the Canal (RIC), sometimes called Receiver in the Ear (RITE), hearing aids combine the advantages of the behind-the-ear and custom (in-the-ear) models.ric-hearing-aids

The microphone has been moved to the outer ear and is connected to the main body of the hearing aid by a thin transparent tube.  The result is a virtually invisible hearing instrument that offers Open-fitting comfort and maximum wind noise suppression.

Suitable for: mild to moderately severe hearing loss

Personal Sound Amplfiers

Personal sound amplifier are a low cost alternative to a hearing aid that uses digital technology to enhance speech and music for people who:

  • Personal Sound Amplifier thumbnailFeel they don’t need a hearing aid all the time
  • Prefer large tactile controls due to limited hand dexterity
  • Want an extra boast from their hearing aids in certain situations

Maxi is intuitively user-friendly and has superior sound quality. Maxi helps you hear conversations, televisions and radios loud and clear, even when there is a lot going on in the background.

Suitable for: mild to moderate hearing loss