Phonak Hearing Aids

Updated: Apr 14, 2023
Medically Reviewed by:

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About Phonak

Owned by Sonova, Phonak is one of the largest and most ubiquitous hearing aid manufacturers in the world. In business for 75 years, Phonak is represented in over 100 countries and offers a vast selection of hearing aid options that are frequently updated to accommodate new technology. The company was founded in Zurich, Switzerland in 1947 and was the first brand to take advantage of Bluetooth technology for hearing aids in 2003.

Phonak not only designs hearing aids for more common mild to moderate hearing loss, but the company also designs advanced tech features for difficult-to-treat conditions. They manufacture products for all ages and types of hearing loss including children and teens and those in need of cochlear implants.

Phonak Review

Key Takeaways

  • Phonak is one of the largest hearing aid manufacturers with industry-leading technologies, like speech enhancers, feedback reduction, FM technology, and noise cancellation.
  • Phonak employs advanced Bluetooth capabilities, allowing users to easily stream audio, video, and phone calls.
  • Most designs incorporate moisture protection, and some models are fully waterproof.
  • Many models are designed for challenging noise environments like offices and schools.
  • Phonak is relatively expensive compared to other brands and only sells through hearing professionals, not directly to consumers.

Phonak is one of our top hearing aid picks because they offer a wide range of customizable options with advanced technology features suited for many different types of users. We like that they offer behind-the-ear (BTE), receiver-in-the-canal (RIC), in-the-ear (ITE), and invisible-in-canal (IIC) hearing aid models with multiple performance levels to meet different hearing loss needs. 

Most Phonak hearing aids are also Bluetooth compatible, which allows users to connect their hearing aids to devices including smartphones, televisions, speaker systems, and more. This also allows users to manage and adjust their Bluetooth-compatible hearing aids using the myPhonak app. We especially like the variety of technology features that help improve hearing in noisy settings, like crowded restaurants or busy streets. 

Finally, Phonak does not sell directly to consumers but instead requires the use of a third-party distributor (an audiologist or hearing specialist) in order to get a highly customized hearing solution. The hearing aid focus group discussion from our 2022 Hearing Aid Testing Summit highlighted the importance of customized selection and fit in order to have a positive experience with new hearing aids. “A hearing aid is only as good as the person working on it,” said summit attendee Dr. Candace Ortiz-Hawkins, an audiologist and co-founder of the Capital Institute of Hearing & Balance.

Phonak InCase Wood

Pros and Cons of Phonak Hearing Aids

Pros

  • Extensive range of models available

  • 75 years in business

  • Bluetooth-enabled devices

  • Accommodates challenging noise environments

  • Rechargeable, long-lasting, and extended-wear battery options

  • 100% invisible option

  • Advanced technology features

Cons

  • Prices are not featured on website

  • Prices vary widely by distributors

  • Expensive compared to competitors

  • Professional consultation required to purchase

  • One-year limited warranty

Phonak Hearing Aid Models and Prices

Model
Audéo Fit
TypeRIC
Type of Hearing Loss TreatedMild to severe
BatteryRechargeable
Bluetooth with Multiple Connections
*Starting Price per Pair$1,699
CROS Paradise
TypeRIC
Type of Hearing Loss TreatedUnilateral (one-side)
BatteryRechargeable or replaceable option
Bluetooth with Multiple Connections
*Starting Price per Pair$1,090
Audéo Lumity
TypeRIC
Type of Hearing Loss TreatedMild to profound
BatteryRechargeable
Bluetooth with Multiple Connections
*Starting Price per Pair$2,498
Naída Paradise
TypeBTE
Type of Hearing Loss TreatedMild to severe for the Naída P-PR model, severe to profound for the Naída P-UP model
BatteryReplaceable
Bluetooth with Multiple Connections
*Starting Price per Pair$2,400
Naída Link Marvel
TypeBTE
Type of Hearing Loss TreatedSevere to profound (for use with cochlear implant)
BatteryReplaceable
Bluetooth with Multiple Connections
*Starting Price per Pair$1,059
Virto Paradise
TypeITE & CIC
Type of Hearing Loss TreatedMild to severe
BatteryReplaceable
Bluetooth with Multiple Connections Only the P-312 model
*Starting Price per Pair$2,798
Lyric
TypeIIC
Type of Hearing Loss TreatedMild to moderately severe
BatteryWorn 24/7 for 2-3 months at a time (no battery maintenance)
Bluetooth with Multiple Connections
*Starting Price per Pair$3,000–$6,000 for yearly subscription

*Pricing may vary between third-party distributors

  • Starting Cost: $2,498
  • Type: Receiver-in-canal
  • Type of Hearing Loss: Mild to profound
  • Battery: Rechargeable
  • Bluetooth: Yes

The latest offering from Phonak, the Audéo Lumity, comes in three models and five performance levels, all of which have advanced tech features. SmartSpeech technology is designed to deliver improved speech understanding and reduced listening effort in a wide variety of settings. All Lumity models include personalized noise cancellation. Lumity universally connects to iOS, Android, and other Bluetooth-enabled devices, allowing for up to eight paired devices with two connected at the same time. It utilizes the popular MyPhonak app which includes health data tracking of heart rate, steps, and activity levels. The Audéo Life Lumity is fully sweatproof and waterproof up to .5 meters. This is the model of choice for those seeking the latest technological advances allowing for greatly improved hearing in highly challenging environments. The Audéo Lumity line comes in eight color options.

  • Starting Cost: $1,699
  • Type: Receiver-in-the-canal
  • Type of Hearing Loss: Mild to severe
  • Battery: Rechargeable
  • Bluetooth: Yes

The Phonak Audéo Fit is the lone remaining model of the Audéo Paradise line. As the name suggests, it is suitable for those wanting to closely monitor their health and fitness tracking data. It’s water resistant and dust tight, boasting an IP rating of 68, which allows for continuous immersion in 1 meter of water for 60 minutes and eight hours in a dust chamber without damage. The health-tracking features include wear-time, heart rate, steps, activity levels, and distance walked or ran. Goal setting is available for wear-time and steps.

The Audéo Fit maximizes tech features in order to provide a crisp, natural sound and superbly-enhanced speech understanding. One such technology, SoundRecover2, uses an advanced algorithm to automatically lower speech frequencies to those easier to hear for most types of hearing loss. It utilizes universal Bluetooth connectivity to connect with smartphones and the MyPhonak app. This hearing aid model also features tap control, allowing you to scroll through functions simply by tapping on your ear quickly twice. The Audéo Fit comes in two performance levels, depending on your needs, and three colors: silver gray, chestnut, and sand beige.

  • Starting Cost: $1,090
  • Type: Receiver-in-the-canal
  • Type of Hearing Loss: Unilateral (one-sided), un-aidable
  • Battery: Rechargeable or replaceable zinc air option
  • Bluetooth: Yes

CROS stands for “contralateral routing of signal” and is designed for those with one-sided un-aidable hearing loss. The CROS Paradise has two parts—a microphone worn on the side with hearing loss and an aid worn on the hearing side. This allows you to use your normal-hearing ear to hear sounds and voices coming from the direction of the affected ear. 

The CROS Paradise uses all of the same noise-enhancing technology as the Audéo Fit and offers the same level of water and dust protection. It comes in four performance levels and eight color options.

CROS color choices screenshot
  • Starting Cost: $2,798
  • Type: Behind-the-ear
  • Type of Hearing Loss: Severe to profound for replaceable battery model; mild to severe for rechargeable model
  • Battery: Rechargeable or replaceable option
  • Bluetooth: Yes

The Naída Paradise from Phonak supports people with a wide range of hearing loss types to better discern speech from distracting background sounds using noise-canceling, motion-sensing, and speech-enhancing technologies. It’s designed to improve hearing in a range of situations, from intimate conversations with friends to noisy environments like street traffic. It comes in two models that differ in battery type and power. The Bluetooth technology allows you to answer phone calls, access voice activation, and stream music all by simply tapping the device in your ear. Naida Paradise comes in eight color options.

We tested the rechargeable battery model at our testing summit, where it earned high scores, tying for second place among the 15 models tested. We were especially impressed with the wide array of advanced features and functionality, including the tap control feature. Our tester was able to accept phone calls, switch between devices, and activate voice assistant apps by double tapping their ear. The Naida Paradise earned high points in almost every feature category considered, including ease of set-up, app functionality, battery charging, Bluetooth functionality, care and cleaning, and durability.

  • Starting Cost: $1,059 
  • Type: Behind-the-ear
  • Type of Hearing Loss: Severe to profound
  • Battery: Replaceable
  • Bluetooth: Yes

Naída Link Marvel is designed to adapt to progressive hearing loss and for those who require a cochlear implant. One Naida Link Marvel can be worn on one side with the cochlear implant on the other. Studies show that wearing both a hearing aid and cochlear implant together provides significantly higher speech understanding and sound quality than provided by wearing one or the other alone. 

As with most Phonak devices, Naida Link Marval hearing aids are dust and water resistant, utilize Bluetooth connectivity, and connect to all of the accessories Phonak offers. Naida Link Marvel comes in four color options.

  • Starting Cost: $2,798
  • Type: In-the-ear and completely-in-the-canal
  • Type of Hearing Loss: Mild to severe
  • Battery: Replaceable
  • Bluetooth: Only the P-312 model

Customized to fit fully in the ear, the four Virto Paradise models offer discreet, nearly invisible options. Each of the four models features a different type of replaceable battery. The Paradise is designed to deliver crisp, natural sound in challenging listening situations, improving speech understanding in noisy environments and over long distances. Speech Enhancer technology boosts soft-level speech. Paradise can distinguish between speech and music, automatically adjusting levels for the ideal listening settings for both. The Paradise Titanium model is the third generation of the world’s first titanium-shell hearing aid. A titanium shell is 15 times stronger than a standard acrylic shell, allowing for a thinner shell and overall smaller device. The Virto P-312 model includes Bluetooth functionality and connects to the MyPhonak app. The other models feature remote control adjustments.

  • Cost: $3,000–$6,000 per pair (per yearly subscription)
  • Type: Invisible-in-canal
  • Type of Hearing Loss: Mild to moderately severe
  • Battery: No charging or replacing
  • Bluetooth Streaming: No

The Phonak Lyric hearing aid is known for being 100% invisible. This device is discreet, comfortable, and precise. Its miniature design fits within the natural anatomy of the ear and uses the shape of the ear canal to amplify sound, giving a more natural listening experience. Because it sits deep within the ear canal, the Lyric must be custom fit and inserted by a specially trained audiologist.

Many customers choose the Lyric for its extended-wear technology. It fits seamlessly into active lifestyles because users can wear the aid 24/7 for months at a time. Because it is worn around the clock, it often provides speedy treatment for tinnitus. Lyric customers can easily use the aid with a helmet, under earphones, and even in the shower. The device features moisture protection so you don’t have to think twice before exercising or showering. It is not fully waterproof, though, so swimming is not advised. Dr. Rachel Magann Faivre, a longtime audiologist and owner of Oklahoma City-based ASH Audiology, noted that the Lyric is also good for people with dementia. “It eliminates the need for personal device maintenance, however, more frequent device changes are done since the patient often can’t accurately tell you when the device has died,” she said.

Lyrics are different from other Phonak hearing aids in that they are sold with a yearly subscription. Distributors generally see you every few months and replace your Lyric whenever the battery dies (generally every two months). There is no cleaning or battery changing or charging required. It’s important to note that the Lyric lacks Bluetooth function. You may make volume adjustments with a remote.

Warranty and Trial Period

Phonak does not directly offer free trial periods to customers, but their third-party distributors may. Each distributor determines the conditions of their trial period offerings individually, so you have to check with them about the exact terms. State licensing law dictates the minimum return period that can be offered, which is typically 30-45 days. However, some clinics may offer a longer return period than their state mandates.

Phonak offers a one-year limited international warranty covering manufacturing and material defects in the aid itself, but not in accessories such as batteries, tubes, ear molds, or external receivers. The warranty does not cover damage from improper handling or care, exposure to chemicals, immersion in water, or undue stress. Damage caused by third parties or non-authorized service centers renders the warranty null and void. Your distributor may offer their own additional local warranty.

Apps and Accessories from Phonak

MyPhonak App

The company has designed its own app to support remote hearing aid adjustment through Bluetooth-enabled smartphones. You can also use the app for telehealth appoints with your hearing professional to make real-time adjustments to your device. We found the app easy to install and use during our testing of Phonak’s Naída Paradise at our hearing aid testing summit. We were able to adjust volume and switch between preset programs without difficulty. The app also controls your connection to other Phonak devices you use such as a TV connector or Roger microphone. The app is compatible with all devices that use Bluetooth technology.

TV Connector

Phonak’s TV Connector pairs your television with your hearing aid. It streams the television audio, just as if you were using wireless headphones. The connector supports streaming to an unlimited number of hearing aids. It is compatible with any hearing aid with Bluetooth capabilities.

Partner Mic

PartnerMic is designed to be worn for one-on-one conversations, or for when a speaker is at a distance such as during a lecture. It is a small, discreet microphone worn by your conversation partner on their lapel (or anywhere near their mouth). It uses AirStream technology to instantly connect to and stream their speech directly to your Lumity, Paradise, or Marval hearing aids. It has a long range of 25 meters and the rechargeable battery supplies six hours of use at a time.

Remote Control

If you prefer not to navigate through a smartphone app to make hearing aid adjustments, you have the option of using the Phonak remote control. It allows you to manage volume levels, check battery life, and see program status with a small, easy-to-use and hide device. It offers a more discreet way of making adjustments as users can often use it while it remains in a pocket or purse. It can also be used to activate your Phonak TV Connector. “Remote controls in general can be helpful for older patients who may not have a smartphone or who only use their smartphone as a phone and not apps,” said Dr. Magann Faivre.

Roger Microphones

Some users need to enhance their hearing aid with the use of directional microphones. Phonak’s portfolio of Roger microphones enhances sound differently for a range of scenarios. The Roger On supports users looking to distinguish a voice from background noise. The Roger Table Mic II works best in group discussions and connects to a MultiTalker network for large groups. Designed for students in school, the Roger Touchscreen can be worn by a teacher or placed in a small group of students. The Roger Clip-On microphone is a small clip-on microphone for on-on-one conversations in environments with background noise. Roger microphones are compatible with hearing aids that have a direct audio input or telecoil.

Phonak Customer Reviews

Stories from Phonak Users

We spoke with two Phonak customers directly. Dr. Alan Lidsky is a retired internal medicine physician who has asymmetric familial hearing loss, meaning that it is worse on one side and was inherited from his father. All of his siblings also inherited hearing loss. He recently acquired Audéo Paradise hearing aids after first trying out another brand and returning them due to discomfort. He said he loves the ease of use of the MyPhonak app and admits that he doesn’t know what most of the settings do but is easily able to make adjustments when necessary. His Kaiser insurance covered $2,000 of the $5,000 total cost.

“I’ll never forget my first hike with my new hearing aids because I was able to hear a trickling brook and rustling leaves, something I had not heard in many years.”

Dr. Lidsky reported that his friends and family are relieved to not have to constantly repeat themselves. He told us, “I’m happy with my choice and my audiologist.”

Dr. Alan Phonak profile photo

For Ian Kelly, 30, of Denver, Colo., who has bilateral high-frequency hearing loss caused by his years working on jets while in the Marine Corps., the free Phonak Bolero Marvel hearing aids he was able to get through Veteran Affairs has helped improve his comprehension in loud environments like restaurants. “I really like the reduction in tinnitus that my aids give,” he said. “The constant ringing is the worst part of my hearing loss. My only complaint is that I wish they were waterproof. I’ll try to get waterproof ones next time.” He was told that he can get new devices through the VA every four years.

Online Reviews

We also browsed hundreds of online reviews. While we found many strong reviews of Phonak products, we also included some customer complaints to provide a more thorough overview of some of the issues encountered with this brand.Phonak has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and minimal reviews, with only six customer reviews and a score of 2.33/5 stars, it’s hard to get a complete picture. However, Phonak is always quick to respond to every review and take care of any unresolved issues. There has been only one complaint filed with the BBB in the last three years.

Trustpilot gives Phonak 2/5 stars with 17 reviews considered, so again, there are a minimal number of reviews. Many of the complaints were regarding difficulty with the app. On Facebook, Phonak has 3.7/5 stars with 124 reviews. While most reviews praised the sound quality, comfort, and capabilities, negative reviews were mainly focused around not being able to get the tech to work properly.

“Connectivity is a big headache for every hearing aid user. When it works, which is most of the time, it’s great. However, phone updates often wreak havoc on connectivity until the apps catch up and fix the glitch. So, it’s an ongoing issue over time, but one that luckily doesn’t last long each time,” said Dr. Magann Faivre.

screenshot of Phonak Hearing Aids TrustPilot profile

Buying Phonak Hearing Aids

Phonak hearing aids can only be purchased through a third-party distributor. We spoke with one, Connect Hearing, a nationwide Phonak distributor. (Note: Connect Hearing is owned by Phonak parent company Sonova.) Dracey Kirby, a patient care coordinator, explained that they carry Phonak hearing aids because of their “ease-of-use, wide array of options, and great app.” She explained that most hearing centers provide a free initial hearing evaluation, then recommend the aids best suited to your needs. To help you purchase Phonak hearing aids near you, the company offers a provider directory on the website.

screenshot of Phonak Hearing Aids find a provider feature

Phonak offers a wide range of colors, sizes, and performance levels for users to customize their hearing experience. There is also a range of options for users to customize their device’s functionality. Customers often have a choice between built-in, rechargeable lithium-ion batteries, or changeable zinc batteries. The four performance levels, Essential, Standard, Advanced, and Premium, describe the device’s speaker and receiver functions, streaming programs, and features like motion sensors and noise cancellation.

Finally, users can find the most natural fit by choosing from a variety of sizes and styles. Phonak offers behind-the-ear, receiver-in-canal, in-the-ear, and invisible-in-canal designs. In-the-ear models, like the Virto, come in a range of sizes so you can customize your device to comfortably sit in your ear.

Online Hearing Test

Phonak’s free online hearing screening allows potential users to confirm that they have a problem with their hearing. It takes about 10 minutes and consists of answering several screening questions then using headphones to listen to various tones while noting the lowest level of volume that you can hear for each ear. Of course, this hearing test is not comprehensive—it is only meant as a screening to be followed up with a full evaluation by an audiologist.

Cost of Phonak Hearing Aids

Kirby quoted a range of $1,000–$5,000 for Phonak hearing aids from her office. She explained that the price will depend greatly on your health insurance coverage, the model you select, and the power level you choose. As mentioned previously, pricing can vary greatly between distributors so it’s a good idea to talk with several before making a commitment.

Phonak vs. Other Hearing Aid Brands

Hearing Aid Brand
Phonak
Price Range (Per Pair) $2,100–$7,000
Types of Hearing Aids Behind-the-ear, receiver-in-the-canal, in-the-ear, invisible-in-canal
Types of Hearing Loss Mild to profound
Jabra Enhance (formerly Lively)
Price Range (Per Pair) $1,195–$1,995
Types of Hearing Aids Receiver-in-canal
Types of Hearing Loss Mild to moderately severe
Oticon
Price Range (Per Pair) $3,000–$7,500
Types of Hearing Aids Behind-the-ear, receiver-in-the-canal, and in-the-ear
Types of Hearing Loss Mild to profound
MDHearingAid
Price Range (Per Pair) $299-699
Types of Hearing Aids Behind-the-ear, in-the-canal
Types of Hearing Loss Mild to moderate

How We Reviewed Phonak

Our experts independently research and test products we believe provide value to the lives of our readers. We personally tested the Naída Paradise, along with several other popular brands and models, in our 2022 Hearing Aid Testing and Research Summit. Our extensive testing included:

  • Charging and battery life
  • Features included
  • App usability 
  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Ease of cleaning
  • Performance after submerged in water to verify its water resistance
  • Durability of the product after dropped

To create our review of Phonak hearing aids, we examined the brand based on price, the number of models available, the types of hearing loss covered, advanced features, comfort and fit, customer reviews, and warranty options.

See our full methodology.

Bottom Line

Phonak hearing aids are high quality, but you’ll pay a premium for your device. This isn’t a budget-friendly hearing aid, which is reflected in Phonak’s high-performance technology. While this brand is known for leading in new technology, its distribution model is still traditional. To purchase a Phonak device, you’ll need to visit a hearing center and consult with an audiologist. This leads to unpredictable (and often high) prices, depending on your location and the services you need. 

We like Phonak because it offers lots of different hearing aid options that are often customizable in terms of size and style. Most models also include upgraded versions with four performance levels for different hearing loss needs. These upgrades add features like noise cancellation, tinnitus balancing, and the ability to adjust to different noise levels. Phonak also stands out because it offers the Lyric hearing aid, the only invisible hearing aid that is placed inside the ear canal and can be worn 24/7 for a few months.

Regardless of brand, treating hearing loss with hearing aids is of utmost importance to our aging adult population. Even mild untreated hearing loss can have serious negative effects on an individual’s social, psychological, cognitive, and overall health. Studies have linked untreated hearing loss to the following effects:

  • Irritability, negativism, and anger
  • Fatigue, tension, stress, and depression
  • Avoidance or withdrawal from social situations
  • Social rejection and loneliness 
  • Reduced alertness and increased risk to personal safety 
  • Impaired memory and inability to learn new tasks
  • Reduced job performance and earning power
  • Diminished psychological and overall health
  • Increased number of falls and accidents
  • Potential decrease in cognitive skills 
  • Reduced short-term memory
  • Higher incidence of dementia

It’s no surprise that acquiring hearing aids is found to correlate with higher quality of life scores in studies.

Hannah Sherk contributed to this report.

Frequently Asked Questions

Phonak makes high-quality technologically advanced hearing aids. Online reviews are mixed but the company has an A+ rating from the BBB.

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WRITTEN BY

Lauren Sherman, M.S., is a health content writer with a master's degree in human genetics from the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Center, laboratory experience at National Jewish Health, and clinical experience at Children’s Hospital Colorado. She has extensively researched products to help those wanting to age in place such as medical alert systems, walk-in tubs, adjustable beds, and oxygen concentrators.

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MEDICALLY REVIEWED BY

Dr. Magann Faivre is an audiologist with a passion for being active in audiology organizations, particularly concerning advocacy, patients’ rights issues, and teaching student leadership. She intimately grew up around hearing loss and empathizes with patients when discussing their hearing journey. She is dedicated to creating a positive and integrative hearing healthcare experience so patients leave informed and confident. Dr. Magann Faivre currently serves on The Audiology Project’s Board of Directors and on Northern Illinois University’s Advisory Board. She is a longstanding fellow of the American Academy of Audiology and Academy of Doctors of Audiology.

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