Today, hearing loss is becoming an increasingly common issue in society. This is both because we are in general living for longer as a population and because of the prevalence of devices that require headphones, which are suspected to contribute to hearing loss. It is therefore predicted that the number of people suffering from it will double by 2030. As a result, the demand for hearing aids to offset the effects of hearing loss is now higher than ever.
The Phonak Audeo Marvel is widely regarded as one of the best hearing aids on the market today, with over a million units already sold. Read on for an in-depth review of the product.
Design is understandably a major concern for hearing aid-wearers when choosing a model because this is one of the areas where hearing aids differ the most. Therefore, if you’re not careful, you can find yourself with a clunky and uncomfortable model that can be a headache to wear.
Fortunately, this is not an issue in the slightest with the Marvel. The Marvel boasts a sleek and small over-ear design that that doesn’t protrude unnecessarily and also comes in a wide array of colors. The over-ear design, while also more visible than in-ear alternatives, offers premium comfort for the wearer and prevents the device from blocking the ear canal, which can result in a drop in sound quality.
It is in regard to sound quality where the Phonak Marvels really shine as hearing aids. As a high-end model, the Marvel comes equipped with all the latest technology for best-in-class sound clarity. Like most modern hearing aids, the left and right hearing aids of the Marvel are interconnected, which goes a long way towards replicating more realistic sound.
However, what really distinguishes the Phonak Marvel from other current models is its use of artificial intelligence (AI) technology. This enables the hearing aid to improve its performance with use and tailor its input to the specific environment and the needs of the user. In addition, unlike other hearing aids, the Marvel does not suffer from feedback and high-frequency whistling noises at louder volumes.
For a long time, Phonak has been pioneers of the rechargeable lithium-ion batteries in hearing aids, having released the first rechargeable model back in 2016. The Marvel is no different in this respect, as it is equipped with fully rechargeable batteries. This is a big advantage in several ways. First, it prevents users with vision or dexterity issues from having to fiddle with tiny hearing aid batteries. Second, it is preferable from a cost perspective, as it means you won’t need to pay money to regularly purchase new batteries. Finally, rechargeable batteries are much more convenient than replaceable batteries, as they are not always easy to find in stores.
In terms of battery life, the Phonak Marvel will reliably give you a full day of hearing from one full charge. This isn’t the best battery life on the market, as some rechargeable batteries can last for up to 30 hours, but is perfectly serviceable, providing you remember to charge them overnight. It is also worth noting that, even though they last much longer than traditional lithium-ion batteries, rechargeable ones still require replacing every 3-5 years.
A handy feature of modern hearing aids is their ability to wirelessly connect directly with technological devices such as smartphones and smart TVs. This enables the user to take phone calls, watch TV, and stream audio without having it interrupted by background noise.
What separates the Marvel from the pack in terms of connectivity is that it uses Bluetooth to link with smart devices. This is a huge selling point for the hearing aid, as most makes of hearing aid today use the Made-for-iPhone (MPI) platform for connectivity, which means that they can only connect with Apple devices. As a result, the Marvel is much more versatile than many of its other competitors and is compatible with a much wider array of smart devices, including Android phones, which account for 86% of all smartphones worldwide.
Ease of Use
The Phonak Marvel truly ticks all the boxes as far as convenience and ease of use goes, as well. When setting up the Marvel, all you will need to do is first charge the device. Upon doing so, the hearing aid should function exactly as intended automatically, as soon as you attach the devices to your ears. Additionally, unlike some linear hearing aids, the Marvel is able to intuitively and automatically adjust its amplification volume based on the sound of the input and the environment you’re in.
The Phonak Marvel also offers a suite of additional useful tools which you can access via the myPhonak smartphone app, which go a long way towards increasing the utility of the device.
One major benefit that you can access via the app is a 24-hour helpline, which you can use to talk face-to-face with an audio specialist if you are having issues with the hearing aid. You can also use the app to adjust the volume of the hearing aid to your preference. Moreover, if you are still having difficulty hearing with your Marvel in, the app offers real-time voice-to-text transcription to help you out.
While the Marvel is certainly one of the standard-bearers for modern hearing aids, it is not without its issues, although they are minor. Most of these stem from its use of Bluetooth technology, which, while more versatile than other methods, can at times be unreliable. In addition, the connectivity can sometimes drop unexpectedly, which can be frustrating. If you primarily use Apple smart devices, you may then consider a hearing aid with Apple-specific connectivity.
The other major drawback of the Marvel is its price, which definitely puts it on the higher end of hearing aid models. However, while this can be a tough pill to swallow initially, its excellent sound quality and added features make it well worth the additional cost.
Phonak is currently the leading company in the production of hearing aids, and from taking a look at the specs of the Marvel, it is no surprise why. Combining crystal-clear audio, ease of use, and comfort, the Phonak Audeo Marvel is a great choice for anyone looking for a high-quality hearing aid.