Let me be upfront: the Eargo 7 shouldn’t be on this website. I try to find the best hearing aids under $1,000, and the Eargo 7 isn’t just a little over that – it’s about three times as much. So why bother? Well, the Eargo has been a top notch over the counter hearing aid (even when you couldn’t call them that). And I’ve got an alternative hearing aid with some of the same features, but a price tag of $999.
Exciting prospects, but the Eargo 7 itself has plenty to offer, too. Its predecessor, for example, was the first affordable waterproof hearing aid. You can also accidentally wear this new version into the shower without breaking them, but surely it has more features, right?
In this Eargo 7 review, we’ll find out. I’ll take you through the key features, but also discuss how it functions in everyday life. After that, let’s discuss some possible downsides and see what alternatives you have if you like the Eargo 7 (but not the price tag, for example). Finally, I’ll give you a buying recommendation.
Too much suspense? Go straight to the bottom of this post, where I’ve posted my usual 30-second visual review.
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It’s a bit lame, but one of the key features of the Eargo 7 is that it’s an Eargo. This company usually impresses. If not for its excellent marketing team and slick website, then for the models itself. The previous model, the Eargo 6, was water-resistant for up to 30 minutes. Drop your overpriced hearing aid in the fish tank? That’s okay, just scoop them up.
The Eargo 7 makes less bold claims, but should be okay with accidental water exposure. Most of the innovations are on the sound technology level, though. First of all, the Eargo 7 comes with an app that helps you set up the devices based on your needs. This self-fitting feature (called Sound Match in Eargo models) isn’t new, but it’s very helpful.
According to Eargo, the key feature for the Eargo 7 is the Sound Adjust+ technology with clarity mode. This means the smart audio processing inside the hearing aid automatically optimizes your settings based on your soundscape. Where other models give you different listening modes, the Eargo 7 can automatically adjust. You do still have the option to manually select a listening mode, too.
Who is this hearing aid for?
I often make the comparison with cars, because it’s an easy analogy to understand. The Eargo 7 is like buying Mercedes’ latest model. It has all the fancy gadgets, it has the name, and they’re kinda cool. You also pay extra for all those things that, let’s face it, do nothing for your hearing. If you want the best possible OTC hearing aid, the Eargo 7 is your coolest choice.
How well does the Eargo 7 work?
The Eargo 7 is also rechargeable. The hearing aids come in a charging case that’s easy to carry with you. Battery life for the hearing aids is 16 hours, and you can charge them for two days when the case is fully charged. That’s not impressive, but you normally wouldn’t need more than 16 hours on a charge. It takes four hours to charge just the hearing aids, or six hours to charge everything at once.
Sound-wise, everything works fine. Eargo always uses excellent technology to not just amplify sound, but also filter what you need to hear.
Another neat way the Eargo 7 works is the way you rotate through the four listening programs. Tapping your ear switching listening program, and you can also adjust sounds from the app. The device will tell you what listening mode is active.
The customer service at Eargo is great. The 7 is introduced with a 2-year warranty and a 45-day free return period. You get great support in the app, and you can pay monthly for the hearing aids with their financing option.
What’s not to like about the Eargo 7?
I’m sure there’s a good reason, but the Eargo 6 was water resistant for up to 30 minutes at a depth of a meter (about three feet). The Eargo 7 makes claims less bold: the model is “tested to withstand accidental water exposure”. Maybe that’s just because too many models 6 broke after people showed off their floating hearing aids, but it’s odd to see a regression.
Other than that, the 7 doesn’t really impress me. Its main feature is the Sound Adjust+. That sounds nice, but when you look at it, that’s simply an improved algorithm that’s a little better than the automatic adjustment in previous models. That means the Eargo 7 is basically a software update, because it hardly differs from previous models in anything else.
And that’s fine, but the full price for the Eargo 7 is nearly $3,000 (temporarily $2,650). I shouldn’t complain about the price tag, because that’s the price range for the company. At the same time, you can buy a less fancy version for less than $1,000. And if it is just a software upgrade compared to the Eargo 6, you pay $500 for the upgrade.
Alternatives for the Eargo 7
As the name reveals, the Eargo 7 has some predecessors. This automatically means you’ve got alternatives like the Eargo 6, Eargo 5, and Eargo NEO. All of these are similar models, which means you get a lot of flash and some neat features. Each device offers good sound quality, but especially for the Eargo 5 and Eargo NEO, the newness of the features has worn off.
If you’re not up for spending money to pay for Eargo’s marketing budget, there are some more affordable alternatives. Well, there’s just one real alternative: the Lucid Hearing fio. The fio offers the same type of model as the Eargo, while keeping costs under $1,000. This also means you’re compromising on some features, but you get a similar model with good sound for less than half of the price.
If you’re still looking to save, the MDHearing NEO also is a popular CIC hearing aid. Its popularity is mostly due to the price tag of around $300. Here, you start compromising on quality, although the NEO isn’t a bad hearing aid at all. It’s just less impressive than the great Eargo models and the fio.
Should you buy the Eargo 7?
If you’re looking for the very best and a gadget-worthy hearing aid: yes. There’s no denying that the Eargo 7 is another impressive model in a long row of great models by Eargo. At the same time, there’s a big charge to have a gadget-worthy hearing aid. Its main alternative, the Lucid Hearing fio, costs less than 40% of the Eargo 7. That’s a big difference, but it just might be worth it.