The Halo i90 from Starkey is a Receiver In The Ear (RITE) style hearing aid. The discrete and stylish behind the ear casing is available in a range of neutral colour options so it is easy to choose one to suit you. Along with the Halo i110 it is part of Starkey’s new ‘made for iPhone’ hearing aid range.
The Halo contains Bluetooth 4.0 technology which makes it compatible with your Apple devices, the Halo i90 also contains many features to improve your hearing experience.
This hearing aid is equipped with 12 sound imaging channels which capture and process the sound frequencies around you to produce great quality of sound. The Acoustic Scene Analyser contains three levels and assesses the sound around you to improve the sounds you want to hear. It can assess machine and wind noise and reduce them so you can hear other sounds around you. It also helps to distinguish between loud speech and soft speech to make conversations clearer whilst reducing background noise.
In noisy or demanding environments the directional microphones will help you to target your listening to an area in front of you or to the side, so that noise in other areas does not drown out the sound of conversation. In more peaceful environments it will help you to pick up sound from all around you, so that you don’t miss a thing.
The Purewave feedback eliminator ensures that you are not distracted by feedback by processing the sound and removing it before you hear it. It works constantly in the background, without distorting other sounds such as speech, so you won’t even know the feedback was there.
The Spectral iQ program is designed for those with hearing loss in the higher frequencies. Many people with hearing loss struggle to hear women and children speaking because their voices fall into the higher frequency range. This program processes the higher frequency speech sounds and lowers them, so that they are within your hearing range. ISO compression is used to reduce the harshness of loud speech whilst subtly raising the volume of softer quiet speech to make listening to conversations more comfortable. It also separates the different voice sounds to help you work out who is speaking and focus on them if there are other voices in the room.
The Halo’s powerful processor and Bluetooth 4.0 capability allows you to pair the hearing aid with your iPhone, iPod and iPad without needing any other equipment such as neckloops or extra wires. You can have a hands free conversation on your iPhone with the callers voice streamed directly to your hearing aids. You can listen to music directly from your iPod or iPhone without needing headphones, and switch easily from voice and sound streaming back to your normal listening programs.
All this is easy to control using Starkey’s specially designed app called Trulink. This app, which is free to download from the Apple store, turns your iPhone into a remote control for your hearing aids and allows you to discreetly change from one listening setting to another just by tapping the touch screen on your iPhone.
You can also use the app to fine tune your volume settings. A visual indicator bar lets you adjust the volume, bass and treble so that you can find the settings perfect for you. Once you have your ideal settings you can save them as a Trulink memory and retrieve them easily whenever you want.
Using the GPS capability in your iPhone you can geotag your favourite locations. The Trulink App then allows you to pair your location with the saved Trulink memories. It will then automatically change your hearing aids to your saved settings the next time you are in that location. This is ideal for those who are constantly on the move as the App will change your hearing aid settings as you move from work to home to your favourite bar or restaurant.
Other features on your iPhone, such as the microphone can be used with the app to help you in different situations. If you put your iPhone on the microphone setting it will stream the sound to your hearing aids just as it does with phone calls and music. This is ideal in situations such as meetings or lectures, where you need to cut out the background noise. You can also use the recording feature and listen to it again later.
The clever ‘find my hearing aids’ program will make sure that you don’t misplace them. An indicator will show you how close they are and help you to locate them quickly and easily. With so many features, and new Apple Apps constantly in development these hearing aids are ideal to help you stay connected.
Paul has been in the audiological industry for over 20 years. He studied audiology at Cambridge and has worked in both the manufacturing and retail sectors of the industry.
He worked for one of the largest hearing aid manufacturers as Trainer, Product Manager and also Sales Director. He later became the National Sales Manager for one of the national hearing aid retailers.
He has dispensed many hearing aids as a private audiologist and he sits on the Council of the British Society of Hearing Aid Audiologists (BSHAA)
Do not spend hundreds of pounds without getting a second opinion from us.
If you are looking at this page then it is likely that an audiologist has suggested that you purchase this particular hearing aid, so is this the best model for you?
In general, any audiologist will always be recommending to you the model that best suits your needs. Here is a useful check list to make sure that is the case.
If in doubt, feel free to give us a call. That's what we're here for.
If you have a significant hearing loss in both ears, you should be wearing two hearing aids. Here are the audiological reasons why:
Localisation. The brain decodes information from both ears and compares and contrasts them. By analysing the miniscule time delays as well as the difference in loudness of each sound reaching the ears, the person is able to accurately locate a sound source. Simply put, if you have better hearing on one side than the other, you can't accurately tell what direction sounds are coming from.
Less amplification required. A phenomena known as “binaural summation” means that the hearing aids can be set at a lower and more natural volume setting than than if you wore only one hearing aid.
Head shadow effect. High frequencies, the part of your hearing that gives clarity and meaning to speech sounds, cannot bend around your head. Only low frequencies can. Therefore if someone is talking on your unaided side you are likely to hear that they are speaking, but be unable to tell what they have said.
Noise reduction. The brain has it’s own built in noise reduction which is only really effective when it is receiving information from both ears. If only one ear is aided, even with the best hearing aid in the world, it will be difficult for you to hear in background noise as your brain is trying to retain all of the sounds (including background noise) rather than filtering it out.
Sound quality. We are designed to hear in stereo. Only hearing from one side sounds a lot less natural to us.
For most people, the main benefit of a rechargeable hearing aid is simple convenience. We are used to plugging in our phones and other devices overnight for them to charge up.
For anybody with poor dexterity or issues with their fingers, having a rechargeable aid makes a huge difference as normal hearing aid batteries are quite small and some people find them fiddly to change.
One downside is that if you forget to charge your hearing aid, then it is a problem that can't be instantly fixed. For most a 30 minute charge will get you at least two or three hours of hearing, but if you are the type of person who is likely to forget to plug them in regularly then you're probably better off with standard batteries.
Rechargeable aids are also a little bit bigger and are only available in behind the ear models.
Finally, just like with a mobile phone, the amount of charge you get on day one is not going to be the same as you get a few years down the line. Be sure to ask what the policy is with the manufacturer warranty when it comes to replacing the battery.
For most people, the answer is yes. But it's never that simple.
The majority of hearing problems affect the high frequencies a lot more than the low ones. Therefore open fitting hearing aids sound a lot more natural and ones that block your ears up can make your own voice sound like you are talking with your head in a bucket. Therefore in-ear aids tend to be less natural.
However the true answer is we can't tell until we have had a look in your ears to assess the size of your ear canal, and until we have tested your hearing to see which frequencies are being affected.
People with wider ear canals tend to have more flexibility, also there are open fitting modular CIC hearing aids now that do not block your ears.
There is also the age old rule to consider, that a hearing aid will not help you if it's sat in the drawer gathering dust. If the only hearing aid you would be happy wearing is one that people can't see, then that's what you should get.
Most people can adapt to any type of hearing aid, as long as they know what to expect. Have an honest conversation with your audiologist as to what your needs are.
Generally speaking, six or more. Unless it's none at all.
The number of channels a hearing aid has is often a simplistic way an audiologist will use to explain why one hearing aid is better than another, but channels are complex and it is really not that straightforward.
Hearing aids amplify sounds of different frequencies by different amounts. Most people have lost more high frequencies than low and therefore need more amplification in the high frequencies. The range of sounds you hear are split into frequency bands or channels and the hearing aids are set to provide the right amount of hearing at each frequency level.
Less than six channels and this cannot be done with much accuracy, so six is the magic number. However, a six channel aid is typically very basic with few other features and is suitable only for hearing a single speaker in a quiet room. The number of channels is not what you should be looking at, it's more the rest of the technology that comes with them.
As a final note, different manufacturers have different approaches. One method is not necessarily better than any other. For example some manufacturers have as many as 64 channels in their top aids. Most tend to have between 17 and 20. One manufacturer has no channels at all.
When we refer to a product as 'New', we mean that the product is new to the market.
When we refer to a product as 'Superseded', we mean that there is a newer range available which replaces and improves on this product.
When we refer to a product as an 'Older Model', we mean that it is has been superseded by at least two more recent hearing aid ranges.