Signia is one of the most well-known hearing aid brands in the world and is owned by WS Audiology, the largest hearing aid conglomerate in the world. Prior to 2015, Signia was known as Siemens, and they have been best known for quality devices, pioneering technology, and feature-rich hearing aids. The company was the first to develop hearing aids with directional microphones as well as wireless, ear-to-ear technology, and Signia continues to be a market leader in hearing aid features. Signia is also known for their focus on style and aesthetics without losing the function for which they have become to be known. There is a stigma associated with hearing aid use, and this focus on design helps to fight against that stigma. Signia, as one of the largest hearing aid manufacturers in the world, offers choices at almost every price point, for every style, and with different levels of technology.
The Signia Silk, including the X and Nx lines, are Completely-In-the-Canal (CIC) devices that are virtually invisible to the outside world. With silicone sleeves, they fit perfectly and snugly the first time you place them in your ears for an instant fit with little need for a special fitting. They operate on Signia’s well-known Xperience platform which gives you terrific sound quality and speech clarity so that you get a natural listening experience whenever you wear your hearing aids. There is a stigma associated with hearing aids as well. Many younger people do not want others to see the big clunky devices that sit behind your ear and would rather live with hearing loss than wear a hearing aid. The Signia Silk line of hearing aids helps to fight against that stigma, and sits invisibly in your ear so that you can fight against hearing loss without anyone even knowing your hearing aids are there.
Things to Consider Before Buying
The Signia Xperience is focused on providing hearing aid wearers with crystal clear and true-to-life sound in every listening situation. There are a lot of models and styles available with the Xperience platform, but the Silk X hearing aids are different. They are CIC hearing aids that do not require in-depth fitting from a healthcare expert. In fact, with the silicone sleeves available with the Silk X, you can be sure that the device will fit in your canal snugly and comfortably without being seen. Many smaller hearing aids trade out function and features for size, but that is not the case with Silk hearing aids. You get the Signia app and Signia Assistant as well so that you can control your hearing aids and get help making them work at their optimal level. Unlike many hearing aids, Silk hearing aids allow you to pick up sound inside your ear canal so you can make phone calls and listen to music like you always have, they even give you the ability to wear over-ear headphones. The “Twin Phone” function also lets you take phone calls directly to your devices if you need it.
- CIC hearing aids that are virtually imperceptible.
- You do not lose sound quality or features even with the small size of the device.
- The Silk Nx are 20% smaller and feature darker faceplates for even more invisibility.
- Silicone sleeves are available at different sizes so that your hearing aid fits perfectly into place with very little effort.
- Because they sit inside your ear canal, you can make phone calls and listen to music like you did before hearing loss.
- The e2e feature allows your ears to work together by synchronizing the sounds in your ears which allow you to hear better and pinpoint the direction and origin of sounds.
- A range of tinnitus therapy options available.
- Access to the Signia app and Signia Assistant.
- Twin ear allows you to place your phone to one ear and hear the conversation in both hearing aids.
- Available in CROS hearing aids.
- Binaural OneMic directionality helps you focus on speech even in noisy environments.
- No rechargeable battery option.
- No Behind-The-Ear (BTE) option available.
- On the expensive side.
- The silicone sleeves are nice, but the exact earmolds that audiologists can create can give you a more personalized fit.
- Streaming music is more difficult with Silk devices than many other modern hearing aids because unless you have an iPhone, you need a StreamLine accessory.
Features & Benefits
Signia Silk X
The baseline Silk hearing aid is the Signia Silk X.
Signia Silk Nx
Slightly smaller than the Silk X but with many of the same features and technology.
Design/Type of Hearing Aid
The Signia Silk X are CIC hearing aids that are virtually invisible to the outside world. The design of these hearing aids is one of their greatest strengths and what sets them apart from many other devices. Their design also helps to give them a more natural sound along with the ability to talk on the phone and wear over-ear headphones just like people who do not suffer from hearing loss do.
Fit and Wearability
With the silicone sleeves and the position in which it sits in your ear, Silk X and Nx hearing aids are very comfortable and they look great. The new Nx line features even darker faceplates so that they are even harder to see in your ear. One of the best things about them is that they sit so far in your canal that you can talk on the phone and listen to over-ear headphones just like anyone else with normal hearing. There are 4 silicone click sleeves and one of them will fit nicely in virtually any ear.
Maybe the biggest weakness of the Signia Silk CIC hearing aids is that there is no rechargeable battery option, and the size 10 batteries that you use will only work for about 2 to 5 days depending on usage. Also, if a lack of dexterity in your hands and fingers are an issue, then changing the batteries that need to be changed at least twice weekly will be a very difficult chore.
- Sound quality
Signia’s second generation Binaural OneMic directionality allows you to pinpoint the origin of the sounds that you hear and in turn helps you to hear more of what is most important to you. This feature highlights speech in difficult listening situations while the Dynamic Soundscape processing reduces the background and ambient noises that are less important. The e2e binaural processing also helps because it synchronizes the processed sound in your ears allowing you to use both ears to pinpoint the origin and direction of sound.
Because of where they sit, the comfort of the silicone sleeves, and their virtual invisibility, they are pretty easy to adapt to. The most difficult thing is finding the right sleeve, figuring out how far in the canal you want the device, and then changing the battery every 2 to 5 days.
- Adaptive noise reduction
Features like EchoShield, eWindScreen, and sound smoothing help to take some of the most annoying ambient noises out of the hearing equation. The rustling of paper, the sound of the wind, the echo noise sometimes associated with hearing aids, and other less important, ambient noises are reduced without the wearer needing to do anything.
- Automatic sound adjustment based on environment
You get crystal-clear sound in every situation no matter how quiet or how noisy it is. In general, holding conversations takes some level of concentration and effort, but with hearing aids it can be unbearable. With the Silk X and Nx hearing aids, you get the most important sounds and speech sent directly to your hearing aids while the background and ambient noise are lessened. You also get OwnVoice Processing which makes your voice and any other noises you hear inside your body sound more natural.
Streaming music, television, and other audio is easy no matter the device. If you have an iPhone, you can stream phone calls, music, and any other sound directly to both of your hearing aids. If you have an Android device or want to connect to a television or other Bluetooth electronics, you will need a StreamLine accessory, but the sound quality is still great. Many of today’s hearing aids connect almost universally over Bluetooth, but the Signia Silk is still behind in this matter.
- StreamLine Mic
The StreamLine Mic allows for a fully hands-free experience with both audio streaming and phone calls from either iPhone or Android. As long as your phone has BlueTooth capability, the StreamLine Mic can connect to it and provide stereo-quality sound for any occasion. It can also be used as a remote microphone so that you can hear a lecturer or converse with a friend one-on-one in a crowded environment.
- StreamLine TV
The StreamLine TV accessory allows you to stream audio directly from your television to your hearing aids with no interference. You can even change your own personal volume without affecting the volume of the actual television.
The miniPocket is essentially a small, discrete remote control that allows you to change the volume and settings of your hearing aids. It is much smaller than a smartphone and is the perfect option if you do not want to use your app but still want remote control of your hearing aids. You can even carry it on your keychain for better access.
The Signia Assistant feature in the Signia app features machine learning which uses AI to learn your personal hearing preferences. There is also a “hearing test” function that helps your device learn more about how you hear and what your preferences are. These AI features allow your hearing aids to learn to become better the longer that you have them.
Unique Perks and Features
Silk hearing aids do have Bluetooth technology, but it is not as advanced as what you find in many of today’s hearing aids. You can connect directly to iPhones which is great and you get high quality audio using StreamLine accessories, but not being able to connect to most Bluetooth electronics directly is a weakness of this device.
As opposed to other hearing aid manufacturers that offer multiple apps to handle different accessories and aspects of the hearing aid, the Signia app covers every Signia device in one place. With the Signia app, you can control your hearing aids from your own smartphone so that you can enjoy everything that they can do. Some of the features available on the app include control over audio streaming, a remote control to adjust the volume or fix the settings, and access to remote support to fix any issues you may have. It is easy to use and most importantly, when you have your smartphone, you also have access to every feature of the Signia App. You have access to the Signia Assistant, which is described below, and you can connect to other devices and stream audio all from your phone. With the Signia app you get:
- Remote control over the volume, settings, and features of your hearing aid
- Face Mask mode which makes it easier to communicate with people in environments where face masks are being worn
- Management of connectivity and streaming features
- The ability to schedule and attend virtual hearing appointments and to receive support from your hearing care professional
- The ability to take “hearing lessons”at your own pace, focussing on how to hear more effectively with your hearing aids
The Signia app is another way to take control of your hearing experience and personalize your hearing aids in a way that works for you. This app is very easy to use, intuitive in its features and function, and thorough. It covers all remote control aspects of your hearing experience.
The Signia Assistant, like the name suggests, was created to be your “hearing companion” as you learn to use your Insio Charge&Go AX. The Signia Assistant can be found exclusively within the Signia App, but it is important enough to get its own description here independent of our description of the app. The Signia Assistant uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology to learn your preferences over time, adjusting to your personal hearing style and providing the most personal hearing experience possible. The Signia Assistant is inspired by the way the human brain solves challenges and uses its highly developed live deep neural network to develop new listening skills based on the way your hearing functions. Basically, the Signia Assistant learns your preferences and creates a solution tailored to your individual hearing needs. Some of the features that you get with the Signia Assistant include:
- Availability for both iOS and Android systems
- Better speech comprehension
- Settings tailored to your personal preferences along with machine learning that can change intuitively as your preferences change
- 24/7 support within the app
- Confidence in your hearing success and control over the process
- Videos and troubleshooting guides to help you solve any issues that arise with your device.
- A live deep neural network that can develop new listening skills over time as it learns the way your hearing functions.
Silicone Click Sleeves
There are four different sizes of the silicone sleeves that allow your CIC hearing aid to fit immediately and comfortably with no help from a hearing healthcare professional. The silicone is soft and easy to work with and give you comfort, security, and an immediate fit.
Ultra HD e2e
This feature gives your hearing aid clear sound and excellent speech understanding in the noisiest environments. It gives you the best in binaural hearing available through Signia which means that your hearing aids work together to process sounds. When your hearing aids work together, you can more easily pinpoint the direction and the origin of the sound which aids in speech clarity and in lessening background noise.
Signia offers Notch Therapy to help those hearing aid wearers that experience tinnitus. Most tinnitus therapies exist to help lessen the symptoms, usually by introducing a new sound to the environment that can mask the tinnitus sound and effect. This does not treat the issue, it simply makes tinnitus harder to hear. Notch therapy, on the other hand, treats your tinnitus inaudibly, unobtrusively, and with a goal of curing the condition. Simply wear your hearing aids normally and the hearing aids will relegate the sound of tinnitus to the background of your hearing. Eventually your tinnitus will be barely noticeable. This type of therapy has the potential to take away tinnitus completely.
The lowest cost you can find a basic Signia Silk X hearing aid for one ear is about $1,000 and that price is without service or assistance from your audiologist. When you move up to the models with more features and better technology, you could pay $5,000 or more for a set of premium Silk X hearing aids. There are 2 distinct models, 5 different technology levels, and thousands of audiologists around the nation who charge different prices according to the services they provide. The best way to find a real price is by contacting your audiologist and figuring out what you need in a hearing aid.
- What is the cost of the Signia Silk X hearing aid?
The Signia Silk line of hearing aids starts at around $1,000 per ear and can be as expensive as $5,000 or more for a set. The difference in price comes from the fact that there are two distinct models and five different technology levels per model. The better the technology and the more features the hearing aid has, the more expensive they will be. In addition, the cost can be affected depending on where you make the purchase, what your health insurance does or does not cover, and the accessories and care you desire.
- What is the difference between the Signia Silk X and Silk NX?
The Silk Nx hearing aids were designed to be 20% smaller than their predecessors and also feature darker faceplates for better invisibility, but are similar in most other ways. The Nx still has the silicone click sleeves for an instant fit and give you a very natural listening experience. While the smaller size may be desirable for some, there is not that much of a difference in terms of discretion and some people prefer the slightly larger size because they are easier to work with.
- What is the best hearing aid on the market today?
The best hearing aid on the market differs from person to person and depends a lot on personal preference. The Signia Silk X are very discreet hearing aids that use a very malleable silicone sleeve to fit right inside of your ear, barely noticeable by others. If discretion and comfort are your most desirable features, the Signia Silk X or Nx may be a great choice for you. Each brand and each device has its own strengths and weaknesses, it is up to each individual to match their needs with the features and strengths of the device.
- Does Signia make a good hearing aid?
Signia is part of the largest hearing aid conglomerates in the world, and has been around for years in the hearing aid market. Before becoming Signia, the brand was known as Siemens, and even then they were pioneering hearing aid technology. They have all of the resources of the largest manufacturer in the world and the skill and expertise to constantly develop new products. On top of that, Signia is known for its quality products and for the durability they provide. They are one of the most reputable brands out there.
The combination of comfort, invisibility, fit, and features that you find in the Signia Silk X line of hearing aids is difficult to find. At the same time, the lack of a rechargeable battery and the fact that they do not directly connect to any Bluetooth devices other than iPhones may count them out for many people. The strength of the Silk X and Nx is their size and instant fit silicone sleeve technology. They sit all the way inside your ear canal, and the silicone sleeves make them both snug and secure while maintaining a high level of comfort. On top of that, you cannot even see them in your ears so that most people will not even know you are wearing hearing aids. The small size did not take away from the technology of the Silk X either as the sound quality and speech clarity are as good as any other Signia hearing aid on the Xperience platform.