Whenever I find a new hearing amplifier to review, the first thing I notice is the name. In that regard, the HEARPRO iClear stands out for a few reasons. First, an all-caps name feels counterintuitive. When you’re selling hearing amplifiers, the last message you want to send is that you need to yell its name. You’re there to stop the yelling, not to keep it going. The HEARPRO iClear also seems the concoction of two fancy-sounding hearing words.
But that’s no fair way to judge a hearing amplifier, of course. That’s why this review for the HEARPRO iClear will look at everything behind the name: how it works, who benefits most from buying it, and what its downsides are. Before giving you a final buying recommendation, I’ll list some alternative hearing amplifiers, too.
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Key features of the HEARPRO iClear
This section will be rather short. The HEARPRO iClear lacks any distinctive features. It’s got everything you need in a hearing amplifier, but literally nothing stands out. With changes in regulations around hearing aids and hearing amplifiers, the market has opened for smaller businesses to sell their own hearing amplifiers. Technological advances over the last few years have made it cheaper and easier to create a baseline product, and so you’ll find plenty of one-off hearing amplifiers for sale.
The iClear is exactly such a product. It capitalizes on this technological progress and gives you a standard hearing amplifier for an attractive price. This may sound negative, but it really isn’t. A few years ago, the sound quality you can now buy for less than $100 would cost you at least $500. Consumers are the real winners here. Even if the iClear has nothing special to offer, the price quality that it can bring you is quite special itself.
Who is this hearing amplifier for?
The HEARPRO tackles mild to moderate hearing loss. That means it’s targeted at people in the beginning stages of hearing loss. These stages are the first moments you (or often, others around you) start noticing there’s something different. Do you turn the volume of your TV higher than before? Do people have to repeat themselves often? Are you agitated in a public space because the background noise makes it hard to have a conversation? All those are signs of early hearing loss.
How well does the HEARPRO iClear work?
As my wife would say, “Fine”. And truly, it works fine. Just as it lacks key features that stand out, it doesn’t lack anything it should have. The sound quality is taken care of with four digital channels, noise reduction technology, and adaptive feedback cancellation features. These are all up to par, and by now, you’d expect nothing less from a hearing amplifier.
There are three listening programs. Again, these programs differ from other listening programs in absolutely no regard. The programs allow you to change your listening experience based on your environment: normal, high frequency (focusing on speech), and noise reduction, for louder environments. On top of that, it has five volume settings. You control both the volume and the listening programs with the same button, which may take some getting used to.
The HEARPRO iClear uses size 312 batteries and comes with a travel keychain holder.
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What’s not to like about the HEARPRO iClear?
First, a little pet peeve. The HEARPRO iClear comes in one color: flesh colored. In reality, that just depends what your skin tone is. For some, it will look like a darker spot behind the ears, whereas for others it will stand out as the lightest part of your skin. If we’re calling a spade a spade, the iClear is flesh colored only if you’re white, but don’t have a very light skin tone.
On a similar note, I wish HEARPRO would have left the marketing lingo at home. It’s designed by audiologists – as is every other hearing amplifier. Also, I can’t confirm this, but I suspect no audiologist sat down to design this specific one. I’m pretty sure any of us can buy the blueprints for this hearing amplifier and start selling it, too. The blueprint is probably designed by audiologists.
Then there’s the advanced technology that was advanced a few years ago, but is fine now.
None of these are actual problems, but part of me wishes HEARPRO would have said, “We bought this basic model hearing amplifier that offers you a baseline listening experience for an amazing price.” Because that’s what the HEARPRO iClear is.
Hearing amplifiers that are good alternatives
At first sight, the model most similar to the HEARPRO is the Banglijian BLJ-109. Much like the HEARPRO, the BLJ-109 is hardly exciting, comes at a very competitive price, and gives you a good budget option. The biggest difference is that the Banglijian brand is a bit more reputable and that all their models are rechargeable.
The LAIWEN LP-01 is a slightly more elaborate hearing amplifier. It’s ranked as the best hearing amplifier, and even if it doesn’t compete on some technical levels with fancier models, its price makes it the next best thing to a no-brainer.
Should you buy the HEARPRO iClear?
The HEARPRO iClear doesn’t excite, but it shouldn’t want to. Five years ago, buying a hearing amplifier this good for under $100 would have been great news. I guess we’re spoiled now. I can’t think of a good reason not to buy the HEARPRO iClear. That said, there are better options out there that don’t cost all that much more. If you’re looking for a little extra, those options are a better choice. If you’re ready to settle, you won’t make a mistake buying the iClear.