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Phonak vs Signia

Brad Ingrao Dr. Brad Ingrao Audiologist

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Phonak and Signia are two global companies that offer hearing health solutions. I’ve been prescribing hearing aids from both companies to my patients for years. Both brands are known for manufacturing high-quality prescription hearing aids that are technologically advanced and have great sound quality.

If you’ve narrowed your hearing aid search down to Phonak vs. Signia, congratulations! You can’t go wrong with hearing aids from either one of these hearing aid giants. However, there are differences between their offerings that may influence your choice.

To make sure you get the best hearing aids for your needs, we’ll do a deep dive into my experience with Phonak and Signia. We’ll discuss the types of hearing aids they offer, the sound quality you can expect from each, and important features like app use, tinnitus tools, and more.

Phonak at a Glance

  • Solutions for mild to profound hearing loss
  • CROS solutions for one-sided hearing loss
  • Completely invisible extended-wear hearing aids available
  • Also makes BTE, RIC, and ITE hearing aids
  • Tinnitus solutions
  • SmartSpeech technology
  • Slim, ergonomically-designed RIC hearing aids for eyeglass wearers
  • Phonak is an international company that has subsidiaries and distributors in over 100 countries.1 They’re a core brand of the Sonova Group, a Switzerland-based corporation that was established in 1947.2

    Phonak manufactures a wide range of hearing aid styles, including two CROS (one-sided hearing aid) models. Phonak’s offerings include Lyric, a completely invisible hearing aid that’s inserted into the ear canal by an audiologist.

    FYI:

    FYI: Want to compare Phonak and Signia to other leading providers? Head over to our guide to the best hearing aids for seniors.

    Phonak hearing aids require an audiogram and are sold primarily through hearing professionals, such as audiologists. These hearing aids are known for producing clear sound quality, even in noisy or loud environments.

    Phonak’s tagline, “Life is on,” pretty much sums up the company’s ideology. Life is simply better when you can enjoy it fully with optimal hearing. Read our full Phonak hearing aid review to learn about our experience with this brand.

    Signia at a Glance

    • Solutions for mild to profound hearing loss
    • CROS Solutions for one-sided hearing loss
    • Nearly invisible, instant-fit (IIC) hearing aids available
    • Also makes BTE, RIC, ITE, ITC, CIC, IIC hearing aids
    • Tinnitus solutions
    • Integrated Xperience technology
    • Slim RIC hearing aids in multiple colors

    Signia, (formerly Siemens) is a core brand of WS Audiology, a Denmark-based hearing technology corporation. WS Audiology was formed through the merger of Sivantos and Widex, another hearing aid brand, in 2019. WS Audiology’s hearing aid brands also include Rexton.

    Pro Tip:

    Pro Tip: Want to compare all of your hearing aid options? Check out our Widex review and Rexton review.

    Signia manufactures a large number of hearing aid styles, including earbud and CROS models. Their offerings include Signia’s Silk Charge&Go IX, a nearly invisible, instant-fit, completely-in-the-canal (CIC) hearing aid. Like Phonak, Signia hearing aids are available by prescription only after being seen in person by a hearing professional.

    Signia’s hearing aids are known for producing natural, clean sound in windy outdoor environments and noisy indoor environments. The brand’s tagline, “Be brilliant,” emphasizes the user’s ability to excel and fully participate in life with hearing aids. Read our Signia hearing aid review to get the inside scoop on our experience with this company.

    Phonak vs. Signia Hearing Aid Types and Features

    Our favorite is Phonak
      Phonak Logo Signia Logo
    Level of hearing loss Mild to profound Mild to profound
    Bluetooth capability Yes Yes
    One-sided hearing loss CROS available CROS available
    Tinnitus support help Yes Yes
    Styles offered BTE, RIC, ITE, Extended wear BTE, RIC, ITE, ITC, CIC, IIC, Instant-fit
    Apps 2 apps for hearing aids and 1 for MyRoger microphone 1 app
    Accessories offered Wireless mic, partner mic, TV connector, remote control Streamline mic, streamline TV, miniPocket remote control
    Hearing aids for veterans Yes, through the VA Yes, through the VA
    Battery types YesRechargeable and disposable options Rechargeable and disposable options
    Website

    Our Experience with Phonak and Signia

    I’ve fit patients with Phonak and Signia products for years. They both offer a full range of behind-the-ear (BTE) and custom receiver-in-canal (RIC) products that fit hearing losses ranging from mild to profound. They both also offer in-the-ear (ITE) hearing aids that are invisible or nearly invisible.

    » Learn About: Best BTE hearing aids

    Phonak is known for its pediatric offerings in bright colors, along with an app designed specifically for those under 18. While not pertinent to seniors specifically, some of my older patients have opted into brightly colored Lumity hearing aid options.

    Phonak’s Lumity line also comes in “grown-up” color choices. One of the things I like about Lumity is Phonak’s SpeechSensor technology, which identifies the direction of the main speech signal. This enhances speech understanding and reduces listening effort. Phonak’s Lumity line also has StereoZoom 2.0, which helps the listener maintain engagement during conversations, even if the noise volume around the speaker increases.

    Phonak: Our favorite hearing aid brand for severe to profound hearing loss

    Phonak offers a wide variety of quality hearing aids for all levels of hearing loss.

    4.4 of 5

    Comparing Phonak and Signia Hearing Aids

    Both companies produce a wide range of innovative hearing aids, which are being updated and fine-tuned technologically all the time. Here are some of their current offerings:

    Slimmed Down and Discreet Receiver-in-Canal (RIC) Hearing Aids

    Phonak Slim, one of Phonak’s offerings, is an ergonomically-shaped, RIC hearing aid. it won’t compete with “real estate” behind the ear, even if you wear eyeglasses, thanks to its slim design.

    Phonak - RIC hearing aids. Photo credit - Phonak

    Phonak – RIC hearing aids. Photo credit – Phonak

    Like the Phonak Slim, Signia’s Styletto AX is an RIC hearing aid with trimmed-down appeal. It’s very lightweight and comes in 12 colors. The Styletto AX generates crystal-clear sound quality through Signia’s new Augmented Xperience (AX) technology platform. The AX platform processes speech and background noise separately, so the listener can better enjoy conversations in noisy environments.

    Wearing Signia Styletto hearing aids

    Wearing Signia Styletto hearing aids

    Hearing Aids For the Active Set

    For nightlife aficionados and active or athletic people, Signia’s instant-fit Active X hearing aids may be a great choice. These very visible hearing aids hide in plain sight by masquerading as earbuds. They’re Bluetooth enabled, so you can use them to stream phone calls and media. They’re built on Signia’s Xperience platform to produce clear, natural sound in noisy environments.

    » You Might Like: Best Bluetooth hearing aids

    Phonak doesn’t have an earbud style hearing aid, but their Virto Paradise hearing aids offer a similar look. Unlike Signia’s Active X instant-fit hearing aids, Phonak’s in-the-ear Virto Paradise hearing aids are custom-made to fit your ear perfectly. They’re visible, but super stylish. They’re also Bluetooth capable and produce clear, crisp, natural sound.

    Small but Mighty

    Phonak’s Lyric is an extended-wear hearing aid that’s inserted deep into the ear canal by a hearing professional. It can remain in your ear 24/7 for several months at a time. It’s completely invisible. You wear Lyric while you’re sleeping or participating in any of life’s activities that don’t require water immersion. A small study of around 100 people run by Phonak found that Lyric wearers experienced tinnitus relief faster than daily-wear hearing aid users.3

    » Related Reading: Best invisible hearing aids

    Signia doesn’t have an extended-wear or invisible hearing aid offering. Signia’s most discrete, smallest hearing aids are the Insio Nx in-the-canal (IIC) and completely-in-the-canal (CIC) models. Insio Nx are custom-made to fit each ear’s anatomy comfortably.

    Accessories and Apps

    Both companies provide hearing-enhancement accessories, like wireless microphones that make watching television easier. Phonak’s Partner Mic is a neat little add-on that’s tailor-made for couples. The partner mic attaches to your significant other’s lapel so you won’t miss a word during important conversations.

    Phonak’s myPhonak app enables Bluetooth streaming and hands-free phone calls for iOS 15 and up, Android OS 8.0 and up, and Google Mobile Services-certified Android devices that support Bluetooth 4.2. Not every Phonak hearing aid is app compatible. Phonak also has an app that syncs to the myRoger remote control.

    » Related Resources: Best made-for-iPhone hearing aids and best Android-compatible hearing aids

    If you’re looking for an app that does double duty as a step and activity counter, Signia’s My WellBeing app may be beneficial. Through this app, you can track your steps and daily activity levels, hearing aid use, and social interactions. It can help provide a more well-rounded picture of your day-to-day health and well-being.

    Signia can stream directly to iOS devices, and some of their newer hearing aids, like the Styletto AX and the Pure Charge&Go iX, are Bluetooth enabled. However, some Signia models require an intermediary device to connect to Bluetooth. If you’re looking for options that don’t require an extra device for Bluetooth compatibility, Phonak may be the better choice.

    Tinnitus Relief

    Tinnitus (ringing in the ears) is a common complaint among people with hearing loss. Hearing aids restore hearing while they’re in use, which is sometimes enough to reduce the annoyance of tinnitus noise. Both Phonak and Signia also have added tinnitus tools that may help.

    » Related Reading: Best hearing aids for tinnitus relief

    Phonak’s Tinnitus Balance app feature includes a large number of background sounds and soothing masking sounds that help the listener focus less on their tinnitus. The app is meant to be part of a tinnitus management program that’s set up and overseen by a hearing professional. To use the tinnitus tools, you’ll need to have Phonak hearing aids that are app compatible, such as the custom-made Phonak Virto Marvel or the Phonak Bolero Marvel.4

    Signia offers five types of static noise and ocean-wave therapy masking sounds that help tinnitus noise fade into the background. In addition, some of Signia’s hearing aids have built-in Tinnitus Notch Therapy, which generates an inaudible “quiet zone” to help your brain ignore tinnitus sounds over time. For people with tinnitus, Notch Therapy may make Signia a better bet.

    A Quick Note on Pricing

    Signia and Phonak don’t list their prices online. Hearing aid costs for these brands and other prescription hearing aids are set by the provider you buy them from. There are geographic differences in costs and other factors that may come into play. In my experience, Signia and Phonak hearing aids can cost between $1,000 to $3,500 per device.

    To find out the exact cost of Signia or Phonak hearing aids, you’ll need to contact a hearing aid professional that sells that company’s products. You can find more information on how to purchase these hearing aids in our Phonak pricing guide and Signia costs page.

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    Wrapping up Our Thoughts on Phonak and Signia

    Signia provides a comprehensive line of products with solid connectivity to hearing-enhancement accessories and smartphone apps. They offer solutions for mild to profound hearing loss. The technology behind Signia’s devices has been around for decades and has always proved reliable for my patients.

    Phonak offers a robust product line to suit the needs of a variety of people with mild to profound hearing loss. The company prides itself on providing the world’s only extended-wear hearing aid and for its products’ compatibility with Advanced Bionics cochlear implants.

    In my opinion, both companies provide high-quality hearing aids that produce natural sound, even in challenging environments. The differences between the two are relatively minor and won’t impact the wearer’s ability to hear and enjoy conversations and media.

    Citations
    1. Phonak. (2024). Global Locations.

    2. Sonova. (2024). This is Sonova.

    3. Phonak. (2024). Lyric Overview.

    4. Phonak. (2024). Tinnitus Balance Portfolio.

    Written By:
    Dr. Brad Ingrao
    Audiologist
    Read About Our Panel of Experts
    As a practicing audiologist since the 1990’s, Brad Ingrao, AuD has fitted thousands of hearing aids to seniors and people of all ages. Brad is the Official Audiologist for the International Committee on Sports for the Deaf and a well-known… Learn More About Dr. Brad Ingrao