Phonak, the Swiss hearing aid manufacturer, have announced the launch of their latest hearing instrument – the Phonak Ambra. Launched in October 2010, the Ambra is set to be the market leader in terms of product innovation and high tech hearing solutions.
The Ambra is packed with all kinds of clever features designed to improve the wearer’s whole listening experience and quality of life. If two hearing aids are worn then they communicate wirelessly with each other and “share” information about the acoustic environment. Each hearing aid has two microphones (front and rear) which enable the aid to selectively and automatically focus on sounds from any direction.
When using a telephone, the hearing instruments automatically pick up the sound wirelessly from the telephone and the hearing aid microphone is automatically turned down. The sound is then wirelessly transmitted to both ears for a truly stereo telephone experience. Even better than sticking your finger in your other ear when trying to use the telephone in a noisy place.
The feature list of the Ambra is impressive and includes the very best available noise reduction (NoiseBlock), echo elimination (EchoBlock), feedback cancellation (WhistleBlock) and wind noise reduction (WindBlock). The Ambra will be available in the full range of models from tiny completely-in-the-canal to powerful behind the hear versions. It is therefore appropriate for almost all hearing losses – even the most severe. The most popular style of hearing instrument nowadays is the mini behind the ear models which convey the sound to the ear with a near invisible tube.
All this innovation however, comes at a price. National retailers will probably sell these instruments for around £3000 each. Like anything else these days, price comparing on the internet is driving competition. With a bit of careful research it should be possible to purchase these from one of the few networks of independent hearing aid audiologists for around half this price. The price includes fitting, warranty and a lifetime of free aftercare.
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