Horizon Mini Hearing Aid Review and Newer Horizon Options

Updated: Aug 15, 2022

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Horizon Mini Hearing Aid
Horizon Style AX and the Horizon Go AX

Horizon Style AX and the Horizon Go AX

Key Takeaways

  • Hear.com is a popular resource if you’re shopping for hearing aids. In 2021, the company launched its own brand of hearing aids—the Horizon Line, including the Horizon Mini and the Horizon Style. 
  • Hear.com launched a second-generation of Horizon hearing aids in 2022—the Horizon Go AX and the Horizon Style AX. These are currently the only Horizon hearing aids actively marketed by the company. 
  • Horizon hearing aids are small and discreet and designed for younger, more active seniors. 
  • The Horizon Mini is the only receiver-in-the-canal (RIC) hearing aid in Hear.com’s Horizon line. 
  • Unlike Horizon’s BTE styles, the Horizon Mini lacks Bluetooth connection, doesn’t have rechargeable batteries, and cannot accommodate profound hearing loss.
  • Only the Style AX and Go AX models have the latest technology, including Speech Focus, Panorama Effect, and Relax Mode. 

Horizon Mini Hearing Aid Review

Hear.com is a popular resource for all things related to hearing aids, including hearing aid technology, styles, and prices. The site guides consumers through the hearing care process, connecting them with brands like Phonak, Oticon, and Signia. In February 2021, after years of research and input from millions of consultants, the company launched its own brand of hearing aids. It did so in partnership with German engineers from Signia, a hearing aid brand owned by Hear.com’s parent company, WS Audiology. The first-generation Horizon hearing aids Hear.com introduced were the Horizon Mini and the Horizon Style. The Horizon Mini is as small as a coffee bean and fits in the ear canal, so it’s practically invisible. The Horizon Style is a behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aid that’s slim and discreet. Hear.com says most people preferred the Style over the Mini because it’s Bluetooth-connected, rechargeable, and covers more levels of hearing loss.

In January 2022, the company introduced the second-generation Horizon hearing aids packed with the latest technology—the Horizon Go AX and Horizon Style AX. Both are BTE hearing aids described by Hear.com as “sleek, sexy, and nearly invisible.” Operating on Signia’s Augmented Xperience (AX) technology platform, the hearing aids utilize a dual-processor to improve a user’s listening experience. Hear.com’s Horizon next-generation hearing aids are specifically designed for active older adults.

Hear.com no longer actively markets its first-generation Horizon hearing aids, instead focusing on its newer-generation models. Given Hear.com’s strong reputation, the AginginPlace.org team reviewed the Horizon Mini and compared it with newer Horizon models. Here’s what they found.

What Is a Hearing Aid?

Bluetooth Hearing Aids

A hearing aid is a medical device designed to improve hearing in people with hearing loss by making sounds audible and voices easier to understand. Hearing aids are typically prescribed by an audiologist, physician, or hearing instrument specialist. Some hearing aids are available over-the-counter, without a prescription. Hearing aids come in various styles, such as behind-the-ear (BTE) and in-the-canal (ITC).

What Is Horizon Mini?

The Horizon Mini is one of Hear.com’s first-generation hearing aids, along with the Horizon Style. The Horizon Mini fits ITC, virtually invisible, whereas the Horizon Style is a slim, discrete BTE version. In January 2022, Hear.com launched its second-generation Horizon hearing aids, the Horizon Style AX and the Horizon Go AX, both of which are BTE hearing aids. The company no longer actively markets the Horizon Mini because it says that most people prefer the Bluetooth connectedness and rechargeable batteries that come with the other models. 

The newer Horizon hearing aids operate on Signia’s Augmented Xperience (AX) technology platform, which equips them with high-tech sound processing and other features to enhance the listening experience. Hear.com claims its Horizon-brand devices are the first Bluetooth hearing aids designed for younger, active people.

How Do Horizon Mini Hearing Aids Work?

Hear.com designed its Horizon Mini and Horizon Style first-generation hearing aids after years of research and input from millions of consultants. The result is hearing aids designed to be small, comfortable, nearly invisible, and packed with sound-enhancing features. Before purchasing the hearing aids, you will need to answer a questionnaire and complete a hearing test with a Hear.com hearing specialist. 

Once a specific Horizon hearing aid is identified as the best for your needs, you will be sent a set-up kit and instructed not to open it until your scheduled video meeting (with provided tablet). At your meeting, a hearing professional will walk you through the set-up process and provide training on using the charger, remote, and smartphone app, if applicable. You will then have to return the set-up equipment to Hear.com with the prepaid mailing label. 

For the next 30 days, you will have access to a hearing coach to help you adjust your hearing aids to your needs. After that time, if you wish to return your hearing aids, you will have 15 days to do so. 

Horizon Mini Hearing Aid Features

Hear.com doesn’t actively market its first-generation Horizon hearing aids, including the Horizon Mini and the Horizon Style. The second-generation models—the Style AX and the Gap AX—have a few special features that separate them from most other hearing aids:

  • Augmented Focus feature processes the sounds you want to hear separately from other noises. 
  • The Own Voice Processing feature enables your hearing aids to recognize and process your voice differently from other sounds. This feature is unique to Hear.com and Signia hearing aids. 
  • Panorama Mode works with a smartphone app that enables you to hear from all directions, providing a 360-degree listening experience. 
  • Relax Mode allows you to turn off the microphones of your hearing aid and “unplug” from the rest of the world. You can relax in complete silence. Relax Mode also offers soothing noises, such as sounds of the sea. 
  • Speech Focus is an algorithm that allows you to manually control your hearing aids in noisy environments. 
  • Acoustic Motion Sensor detects when you are in motion and automatically adjusts your directional listening accordingly. 

Additional features of Horizon AX models include:

  • Horizon’s second-generation hearing aids were redesigned to look like ear pods. The canal is even smaller than an Apple Airpod, so they’re practically invisible. 
  • Horizon hearing aids enable you to easily adjust the volume or settings with your smartphone. With Bluetooth connectivity, you can stream TV shows, podcasts, audiobooks, and phone calls. 
  • Horizon hearing aids come with rechargeable lithium-ion batteries. Just a three-to-four-hour charge will power your hearing aids all day. 
  • The smartphone app is easy to use.
  • Qi wireless enables you to wirelessly charge your hearing aids without plugs or cables. 
  • Mobile charging cases will charge hearing aids up to three times on a single full charge. 
  • The IP68-rating means the hearing aids resist moisture, sweat, dust, and dirt, so you can feel confident exercising and staying active while wearing them. 

Warranty, Return Policy, and Trial Period

Hear.com offers a 45-day, no-risk trial and a money-back guarantee on its hearing aids. Horizon hearing aids come with a four-year warranty. Hear.com also works with all major health insurance providers, including Cigna, United Healthcare, Humana, BlueCross BlueShield, Aetna, and Kaiser Permanente. 

Pros

  • Small, discreet hearing aids fit ITC, making it practically invisible.

  • Hear.com offers a 45-day risk-free trial on its hearing aids.

  • New-generation Horizon models have high-tech features, smartphone capabilities, and rechargeable batteries.

  • The small, sleek design of newer BTE models makes them more discreet than many other types of hearing aids but not as “invisible” as the Horizon Mini.

  • A hearing coach is available during the first 30 days after purchase to teach you how to use and program your hearing aids.

Cons

  • The Horizon Mini is not Bluetooth-connected.

  • It does not come with a rechargeable battery.

  • The Mini is not suitable for profound hearing loss.

  • To purchase Horizon hearing aids, users have to undergo an in-person or online hearing test.

  • Remote fitting and set-up process is involved and requires a lot of equipment.

  • Expensive equipment–which accompanies the “Fit Kit” for remote set-up–must be returned after the set-up process (a prepaid return label is included).

Things to Consider

Purchasing: If you are interested in purchasing Horizon mini hearing aids, you will first be instructed to answer an online questionnaire. A hearing specialist will then contact you to assess your hearing needs. Once the correct device is identified, you will be sent the hearing aids and set-up kit. Horizon Mini hearing aids are designed for more tech-savvy users, and it is assumed that the user is comfortable and competent enough to set up, fit, and adjust their hearing aids remotely with the assistance of a remote Hear.com specialist. After the hearing aids are set up, users are expected to return the Fit Kit using the included prepaid return label. 

Alternatives: There are several alternatives to Horizon Mini hearing aids you may want to consider:

  • Lexie
  • Eargo
  • Widex
  • Lively
  • MDHearing

Price: Hearing aids are an investment. Horizon Mini hearing aids are one of the higher-priced hearing aids available, costing $4,500–$6,500. Remember that insurance, discounts, and financing options may be available to help with this cost. 

Warranty: Hear.com’s Horizon hearing aids come with a four-year warranty, one of the best warranty packages on hearing aids we’ve found. 

Battery life: Horizon Mini hearing aid rechargeable batteries can last all day on a single three to four-hour charge. Horizon Go AX is also available in a disposable battery option. 

Reputation: Hear.com has proven itself as a reputable resource for seniors looking for information on hearing aids. The company has an impressive 4.45- out of 5-star rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and an “excellent” 4.4- out of 5-star rating on Trustpilot.

Plenty of accessories: The latest generation of Horizon hearing aids come with several accessories:

  • Dry&Clean battery charger and hearing aid dryer (Go AX only)
  • Horizon app for remote adjustments
  • miniPocket remote control for remote adjustments without a smartphone app
  • Portable battery charger (Go AX only)
  • StreamLine Mic Bluetooth streamer and remote microphone 
  • StreamLine TV streamer

Who Can Benefit from Having a Horizon Mini Hearing Aid?

Horizon Mini hearing aids are designed for more active adults who prefer their hearing aids to be nearly invisible. Because they are smaller—about the size of a coffee bean—these hearing aids may not be suitable for adults with dexterity issues. Hear.com’s second-generation Horizon hearing aids are an easier-to-handle BTE-style that are discreet and offer several high-tech features. Because the remote set-up and smartphone app adjustments require some technical awareness, these hearing aids are best suited for more tech-savvy users. 

Why You Can Trust Our Expert Review

4,000+ Hours of research
11 Experts consulted
17 Brands considered
18 Models considered
10 Models selected

Our experts research and recommend products that can help give you a better quality of life. Using our high standards and rigorous testing methodology, we’ve spent more than 4,000 hours, collectively, researching the best hearing aids to help you find the device that’s best for you. Throughout our research process, we did the following:

  • Consulted with audiologists and geriatric care experts
  • Mystery shopped the brands
  • Surveyed hundreds of hearing aid users
  • Tested various models of hearing aids
  • Interviewed experts in the field
  • Read thousands of verified customer reviews

Frequently Asked Questions

Marco Vietor and Paul Crusius founded Hear.com.

Pricing is accurate as of June 3, 2022.

WRITTEN BY

Jennifer Walker-Journey is a writer with special interest in the research, development, and federal regulations of medical devices, pharmaceutical drugs, and psychedelic therapies. Her clients include law firms, healthcare systems, financial corporations, public health entities, and digital marketing groups. Her work has been featured in USA Today, HowStuffWorks, Psychedelic Spotlight, Health, AARP, Everyday Health, Women, and Sea Island Life, Salamander, and Omni magazines. She is also a contributor to the books Birmingham: Magic for the New Millennium and Birmingham At 150: Built To Last. When she is not writing, she runs, almost daily, and still considers qualifying for the Boston Marathon among her greatest accomplishments.