Signia Insio Charge AX Review – The convenience of lithium-ion rechargeability now in custom in-the-ear hearing aids
In a relatively brief period, lithium-ion rechargeability has become the standard battery power for hearing aids. The reason for its popularity comes down to three major advantages over disposable, zinc-air batteries.
- Ease of management – usage is much more convenient as there is no need for weekly, fiddly battery changes
- Cost savings – no ongoing battery costs which can be significant when powering today’s high performance wireless hearing aids.
- Reliability – integrated lithium-ion batteries, means the hearing aids’ housing is sealed, so there is less chance of dust/dirt and moisture ingress.
The majority of behind-the-ear (BTE) and receiver-in-canal (RIC) hearing aids are rechargeable. However, the vast majority of in-the-canal (ITC) hearing aids are still powered by disposable, zinc-air batteries. In fact, until recently there was only one mainstream brand offering a rechargeable ITC; Starkey with their Livio ITC.
In November 2021, Signia joined Starkey by offering a high-performance rechargeable ITC called Insio Charge&Go AX. There are three major reasons why we believe Insio C&G significantly raises the performance bar in terms of ITC hearing aids.
Reason 1 – Insio C&G AX uses wireless or contactless rechargeability.
This is the same technology used on the latest smartphones whereby to initiate charging, phones can simply be placed on compatible wireless charging pads. Similarly, Insio C&G AX wearers do not need to connect a charging cable or line up battery charging contacts, they simply need to place their hearing aids into the charger.
Due to Insio C&G AX’s custom-made shape (individualised for the wearer), the hearing aids need to be pushed into a silicon cushion in the charger to ensure the hearing aids are orientated correctly for optimal charging.
Another advantage of wireless charging is improved reliability. Insio C&G AX’s lithium-ion battery is effectively sealed in the housing, meaning there is no battery compartment improving moisture resistance. In fact, the Insio C&G AX has an Ingress Protection (IP) rating of 68 making it more water resistant.
Reason 2 – Insio C&G AX uses Signia’s latest Augment Xperience (AX) sound processing technology.
This processing is very different from the approach of traditional hearing aids which process sound in a single stream or track. The hearing aids include two sound processing chips, each capable of processing a separate track or stream of sound.
One stream is for in front of the wearer, Signia calls this the Focus Stream and one stream for around the wearer, they call this the SoundScape Stream. Just like during movie production, in real time, the hearing aid analyses both the Focus Stream and the SoundScape Stream, then recombines them in a way that optimises speech clarity, while maintaining a natural ambiance.
Reason 3 – The Insio Charge&Go AX hearing aids offer improved connectivity options, increasingly more important in today’s connected world.
Insio C&G AX supports direct streaming from both compatible Apple (Made for iPhone) devices and Android (ASHA) devices. Of course, wearers can still purchase the popular StreamLine TV and Streamline Mic solutions to further enhance the functionality of the hearing aids.
In addition, the hearing aids are compatible with the free Signia app. The app offers not just remote control but a Signia Assistant which uses its AI deep neural network to offer immediate support whenever users need to adjust their settings.
In-the-ear custom hearing aids are popular with many hearing aid wearers. It is great to see that wearers can now benefit from rechargeability in this style. Since its launch Sounds of Life has fitted a number of Insio Charge&Go hearing aids with good results. The hearing aids are fully featured and do not compromise on performance.. The only potential negative is the internal rechargeable battery module is larger than traditional disposable batteries. As a result the hearing aids are built slightly larger than if they were using disposable batteries which may not be ideal for clients wanting optimal discretion.
The Insio Charge&Go AX range is currently available for sale at Sounds of Life.
Premium – Insio BT RIC 7AX – $3900
High-End – Insio BT RIC 5AX – $3450
Mid-Range – Insio BT RIC 3AX – $2690
About Sounds of Life
Sounds of Life audiology is a member of Audiology Australia and Independent Audiologist Australia. We adhere strictly to Code of Conduct and Code of Ethics. We pride ourselves on:
- Being fully independent – We are not owned or operated by a hearing aid manufacturer or large chain.
- Ethical Practices – We are focused on providing the highest level of care and do not pay commissions.
We also follow the Australian Government Hearing Services’ protocol for hearing services.
If you feel hearing loss is impacting your life contact Sounds of Life.
Contact us today on 1300 744 432 or via our contact form below:
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