Oticon OPN S Hearing Aid Review

in this video I'm reviewing the new Otakon open s hearing aids coming up [Music] hi guys cliff Olson doctor of Audiology and founder of applied hearing solutions in Anthem Arizona and on this channel I cover a bunch of hearing related information to help make you a better informed consumer so if you're into that make sure you hit that subscribe button and don't forget to click the bell to receive a notification every time I post a new video when the original Otakon open was released in 2016 it was one of the most popular hearing aids on the market because they completely changed the way their hearing devices performed in a background noise situation instead of putting the blinders on when you go into a noisy situation by removing sound from behind you into the sides of you Otacon was able to leave that listening landscape open to give you more awareness to where sound was actually coming from but still being able to eliminate background noise but since that original release other hearing aid manufacturers have been making significant improvements to their technology requiring Otakon to do the same which has led to the release of the Otakon open s hearing devices the open S hearing aids utilized the Newville access chip which was designed to improve upon the older Velox chip in the original line of open devices by providing 15% better speech understanding in noise ten percent reduced listening effort and ten percent improvement and memory recall the new open s hearing devices come in three performance levels you have the open s1 which is their highest tier device you have the open s2 and then you have the open s3 and of course there are several different models of these devices you have the mini right which is a mini receiver in the ear you have the mini right T which is their telecoil version the mini right R which is the rechargeable version and you have the BT E power plus which uses a tube and an ear mold for the purpose of this review I happen to have the open s1 mini right are rechargeable hearing devices which happens to be the first pro of this line of devices which is they now have a lithium rechargeable version like most lithium rechargeable hearing aids they give you a lot of battery power in just a short amount of time it only takes three hours to fully charge these hearing devices because of that let battery and then you get 20-plus hours worth of battery life out of them for each charge now if you are gonna be streaming a lot from an iPhone because these are directly compatible with an iPhone then you are gonna want to make sure that you have your charger with you throughout the day if you are going to be wearing these for longer than 20 hours the good news is is that it only takes about a thirty minute charge to give you an additional six hours of battery life now the other cool thing that Otakon has done with their lithium batteries is that they've made them interchangeable in the office now you can't use a disposable battery with these devices like you could with the first generation of open devices that use Z power but you can actually have your hearing care professional change these in the office and so you can see there that I can pop open that battery door it takes a very specific tool to be able to do that but at the end of the day it makes it so you don't actually have to send these hearing aids back to Otakon to get them fixed if there's a battery issue the other thing that I really like is the charger the charger is very simple one to use if you have finger dexterity issues it is just a very gentle lifting of these hearing aids out of the charger there's nothing to really hold them or pin them in there it uses the magnet and then it uses induction charging to make sure that you charge up that lithium battery but there's nothing really to prevent you from just very gently pulling those out but if you turn it upside down they don't fall out either the second Pro is the new feedback control if you ask me one of the major flaws of the original open devices was that their feedback control is not very good those hearing aids would tend to have a lot of feedback which is that whistling sound that you get when a hearing aid has sound leaking out of your ear canal and cycling back through the microphone but I have these set actually to a pretty steeply sloping hearing loss as I put them in and I don't get a whole lot of feedback when I hold my hands over my ears and that is with a completely open dome Otacon claims that their new open sound optimizer can actually increase the threshold by 6 decibels before you start to experience feedback and this results in 30% more access to speech cues which can dramatically improve how good your speech understanding is it actually analyzes the amplified sound 56-thousand times per second so if it detects it it's about to start feeding back it puts in that breaker signal and prevents it from happening there is a white paper that I have linked in the description so if you're interested in learning more about this particular feature go ahead and check it out the third Pro is the open sound booster the open sound booster is the most aggressive form of noise reduction inside of otacon's open sound navigator in the programming software under open sound transition there is now an option for very high which is basically open sound booster as you can see when you move from low to medium to high and then very high it shows the reduction in the amount of amplification given to sounds to your side's and sounds from behind you let me show you that again when you switch from low to medium you can see those circles getting smaller then when you switch to high they get even smaller and then you switch to very high and they are at their smallest all except for the circle that is directly in front of the individual this is designed to improve how well you can understand speech that is directly in front of you in the Otakon on app which is basically the same as the original Otacon on app you now have the ability to toggle on this open sound booster once you turn this on you can see a little lightning bolt if the program was set by your hearing care professional to very high open sound transition you will not have the option to turn this feature on or off because it is already set to on by default this particular feature is supposed to perform better on the open s1 line of devices compared to the open s2 and the open s3 the fourth Pro is that these open s hearing aids are ip68 rated basically meaning that they are extremely resistant to dirt and dust infiltration and they're extremely resistant to moisture you can actually take these hearing aids and dump them in a bucket of water even though I don't recommend it and you can take them out of that bucket of water and they will still be functioning so if you happen to jump in the shower or get pushed in a pool don't worry your hearing aids will be fine now I love what Otakon has done with the open s hearing aid they've improved upon a lot of things that they needed to in order to get their older technology up to date but of course there are a few things that I don't love about these hearing aids and the first one is is that Otacon only made the top tier level of the rechargeable version of these hearing devices upon their initial release well this could be a supply chain issue with these rechargeable devices the same thing occurred in 2016 when they released their original open hearing devices the second thing that I don't love is the Otakon open booster now I know you're probably thinking cliff you just said that that was one of the pros of these particular devices but let me explain you see Otacon the whole concept behind what they're doing with open devices is they're trying to leave the listening landscape open what they're claiming is that they can give you better speech understanding and not have to put these blinders on but based on my evaluations of the open sound booster it seems to be exactly what they're doing as soon as you flip on open sound booster it's almost like it puts these blinders on it's reducing more sound from the sides and more sound from the back which really gives you that perception that they're trying to do the same type of directionality that a lot of other manufacturers are already doing the third thing that I don't love isn't really a knock against these hearing devices it's more about the claim of increasing the amount of gain by six decibels before hitting feedback thresholds and the reason that I have an issue with this is because it's assuming that you're getting up to your prescriptive target there is no guarantee still that if you increase the gain by six decibels if you have a really high frequency sloping hearing loss that you're going to be hitting your high frequency prescriptive targets anyway so any amount of benefit that you would get from this increase in amplification before feedback doesn't guarantee that you're going to be hitting your prescriptive target and getting all of this speech information back and of course the fourth thing that I'm not a huge fan of and it goes for a lot of other manufacturers as well is that these are not directly compatible with an Android phone I happen to be more of an Android user of course I do have an Android and an iPhone for doing these video reviews but you can only stream directly from an iPhone with this particular device cons aside Otakon has taken several steps in the right direction with these openness hearing devices and I expect to get a lot of requests for these hearing devices inside of my clinic from individuals who are looking to step up their hearing aid game to the next level just remember it does not matter how good your hearing aids are unless your hearing aids have been programmed correctly using real ear measurement now if you don't know what real ear measurement is I highly recommend that you watch my video that I will link in the description that's it for this video if you have any questions leave them in the comment section below if you like the video please share it if you want to see other videos just like this one go ahead and hit that subscribe button I'll see you next time [Music]

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