A review of the new Resound Omnia hearing aids by Audiologist Cliff Olson
Hi, guys. Cliff Olson, doctor of audiology and founder of Applied Hearing Solutions in Phoenix, Arizona, and in this video, I'm doing a detailed review of the new ReSound OMNIA receiver in the canal hearing aids. Coming up. A few years back, ReSound launched a completely redesigned ReSound ONE hearing aid, which added a few new features including the M&RIE receiver which was designed to help you harness the power of your natural pinna effect as well as a new ultra focused feature which was designed to help you hear better in background noise. Well, ReSound just announced the launch of their new ReSound OMNIA hearing aid, which adds even more features to make this hearing aid even better than the ReSound ONE. How much better? Well, that is what I'm going to get into in this review video. But before I do, if you could do me a huge favor and click the like button. It really helps out my channel because it gets these videos in front of a broader audience. And while you're at it, if you have not yet hit that subscribe button with notification bell, go ahead and do that as well because that ensures that you never miss one of my newly released videos and I release multiple new videos every single week. That being said, I really appreciate it.
Now let's take a look at some of the disclaimers for this review of the ReSound OMNIA. First, I never give pricing in my review videos because the price that you pay will heavily depend on where you live and which services come along with your hearing aids. Trust me, if I could give you accurate pricing, I would, but I can't. Second, as with any review video on my channel, this video is not sponsored which means I get to say whatever I want to about these hearing aids, both good and bad, and there's nothing that ReSound can do about it. And third, it does not matter how awesome this hearing aid or any hearing aid is for that matter unless you've had it fit and programmed by a hearing care professional who follows best practices. Now, if you do not know what best practices are, I highly recommend that you check out my video that I will link in the description. If you would like an easy way to find a hearing care professional who follows best practices, then check out my website hearingup.com to find a HearingUp network member near you and experience the difference that exceptional hearing care makes. With that out of the way, let's go ahead and take a look at the things that you need to know about the new ReSound OMNIA hearing aids. Let's start with the available styles. Now, there is nothing new here with these styles. You get a rechargeable version of this hearing aid, you get a size 312 disposable battery version, and a size 13 disposable battery version that also has a telecoil. Since I already mentioned the telecoil, I should also add that you can actually get access to a telecoil inside of the rechargeable and size 312 disposable battery models if you have a ReSound multi-mic. This will give you access to a hearing loop system inside of a public venue to stream audio directly from that venue into both of your hearing aids.
The ReSound OMNIA does look very similar to the ReSound ONE hearing aid and personally speaking, I'm not a huge fan of this look. I do not like that point that sticks out off the top of the hearing aid. I really wish they would've changed that for this model, but it looks like they spent a lot more time working under the hood rather than on the hood. The OMNIA still comes in three different technology levels. You have the top tier level nine, the mid tier level seven, and the bottom tier level five. Each time you go down in technology level, it takes features and customizations away from your hearing care professional when they're trying to optimize your devices for you. Now, the recommendation I typically give is that you go with the highest level of technology that you can reasonably afford. If you cannot afford it, that is the only reason you should be dropping down in tech level. And then it is the job of your hearing care professional to optimize the performance of those devices. All of the OMNIA hearing aids are Bluetooth compatible with either an Apple device or Android device. Now, personally, I think it works better with an Apple device, but you can still use it with an Android device if you use the ASHA Bluetooth protocol, just make sure that you check out ReSound's website to make sure that whatever phone that you have is actually compatible with these hearing aids. Nevertheless, this Bluetooth compatibility allows you to send audio directly from your smart device into both of your hearing aids so you can significantly improve your performance whether it's on the telephone, listening to music, podcasts, or even YouTube videos. It's also worth noting that your hearing care professional can precisely program the streaming capabilities of these devices as well. So if you want to improve the sound quality there, that is in the hands of your hearing care professional. When it comes to rechargeability of the OMNIA hearing aids, it's very similar to the ReSound ONE hearing aids in that you get a lithium rechargeable battery that uses inductive charging with the rechargeable case that stores extra charges. These hearing aids charge pretty quickly. You typically charge them overnight, but it only really takes them three hours to get a full charge. These hearing aids are appropriate to use whether you have a mild level hearing loss or a profound level of hearing loss. Now, of course, if you do have a severe to profound level of loss, you're going to wanna make sure that you get custom ear molds made either by taking a digital impression with your hearing care professional or a physical impression with your hearing care professional so they can custom order specific ear molds for you.
The OMNIA also uses the M&RIE receiver just like they had in the ReSound ONE hearing aids. Now this M&RIE receiver is basically a microphone on the back of the receiver inside of your ear canal which allows you to use your natural pinna effect. The pinna effect allows you to better identify which direction sound is coming from called localization. Now, if you wanna learn more about localization, I do have a video talking about it that I will link in the description. The localization improvement due to M&RIE receivers will not only improve your ability to identify which direction sound is coming from in your horizontal plane, but it will also help you better identify which direction sound is coming from in your vertical plane. And this is up to 80% better compared to traditional receivers. Now, the M&RIE receivers do have more of a limited fitting range. So if you have anything worse than a moderate level of hearing loss, you're technically not a candidate for these receivers. However, I have tested them out on some individuals who have more than a moderate level of hearing loss and I didn't think that they were gonna get benefit, but every single one of the individuals that I've tested these on actually prefers M&RIE versus a traditional receiver. This M&RIE receiver is unique to ReSound. And if you want to try it, I just recommend that you ask your hearing care professional. One new feature that is pretty cool if you're a new hearing aid user is the Check My Fit feature. According to ReSound's press release, research indicates that improperly worn hearing aids can leak up to 11 decibels of sound from the ear which can significantly reduce your performance with hearing aids. This Check My Fit feature was designed to help you insert your hearing aids properly inside of your ear canal so you do not leave any potential benefit on the table due to improper insertion. This feature will also help you reap all of the new benefits from the ReSound OMNIA the hearing aids including better hearing in background noise. ReSound has made the bold claim that this hearing aid was made for hearing in background noise and can result in up to 150% improvement in speech intelligibility. The math on this 150% improvement still confuses me a little bit, but I can tell you that this front focus feature definitely improves your ability to hear better in a background noise situation based on my experience at a conference this last week and it is intended to improve your signal to noise ratio by up to 4.3 decibels, which is a lot.
Apparently, ReSound is sampling sounded a much higher rate than before and they are using a mix of full directional and omnidirectional microphone configurations for low, mid, and high frequencies which is helping them achieve this benefit. Now, if you are still looking for better performance in a background noise situation, don't worry. With the ReSound OMNIA hearing aids, you still get access to all of the great accessories that ReSound has including the multi-mic, the micro-mic, the remote control, the phone clip, as well as the TV streamer. The OMNIA is also better than the ReSound ONE because it reduces the amount of amplification that it gives to your own voice, which is really beneficial for a lot of individuals who are brand new to hearing aids. Typically, the sound of your own voice is something that you get used to with hearing aids and it does happen relatively quickly, but anything that you can do to speed along that process of auditory comfort of your own voice is always appreciated. When it comes to app controls, the OMNIA still uses the same ReSound Smart 3D app which ReSound has basically used forever. And it appears as though ReSound is taking the approach of if it's not broke, don't fix it. The Smart 3D app is actually rated 4.4 stars which is the highest of any of the major hearing aid manufacturer apps so I really can't blame them for not switching it. Inside the app, you can switch between different custom programs created by your hearing care professional or favorite programs that you've created yourself and activate your accessories like I mentioned before. Of course, you can adjust the volume of your hearing aids either together at the same time or separate the hearing aids and adjust them independently. Different programs will have different quick keys that you can use to help filter out background noise or enhance the clarity of speech. And through the sound enhancer tab, you can adjust a three band equalizer and your noise reduction settings. If you are in a restaurant program, you will also have access to your directionality settings. And if you are in an outdoor program, you will have access to wind noise reduction settings.
If you are streaming through one of your accessories like the TV streamer two or the multi-mic, you can adjust your streaming volume independently of your hearing aid microphone volume. This can help if you want to reduce the volume of your surroundings while still getting sound from your streaming device. You can also check to see if your hearing aids and active accessories are connected to the app and see your battery life in the status tab along the bottom of the app. The My ReSound tab will give you access to the find my hearing aid feature in case you lose your hearing aids and it will give you access to either live remote sessions or remote programming updates from your hearing care professional. You may also get software updates from time to time that you can initiate through this part of the app. You also get access to this Smart 3D app using an Apple watch if you want to use your watch to adjust your ReSound hearing aids I also recommend you request the new front focus feature as a manual program in your ReSound OMNIA hearing aids to ensure you can maximize your speech understanding in background noise. I recently tested this program out at a noisy conference and the difference was incredible.
Overall, I would consider the ReSound OMNIA hearing aid to be a nice upgrade from the ReSound ONE hearing aid but very similar in a lot of respects. However, if you were looking to get even better performance in background noise, a reduction in the perception of your own voice, or assistance on the insertion of your hearing aids, these could be the right hearing aids for you. That's it for this video. If you have any questions, leave them in the comments section below. If you like the video, please share it. And if you wanna see other videos just like this one, go ahead and hit that subscribe button. Also feel free to check out my new website hearing up.com.