2023 update: the hearing aid discussed below is no longer available, but has been replaced by the Zyon Rechargeable 2.0. This new version is on my list to review, but in the meantime I’ll the review below.
The Zyon rechargeable hearing amplifier stands out for a few reasons. First, Zyon isn’t a brand you come across often. The company sells one model hearing amplifier, and that’s it. Second, the receiver-in-ear design is still a relatively new design with behind-the-ear hearing amplifiers. And third, it’s smaller than competitors in the same price range.
Speaking of its price range, hearing amplifiers between $100 and $200 can be tricky. It’s a fascinating price range, where you can find both outdated models that should be turned to scrap metal and great deals that rival prescription hearing aids.
To see where the Zyon belongs, I will take an in-depth look at its model below. I will discuss the key features, assess whether its performance delivers on promises made, and explore the possible downsides of Zyon’s hearing amplifier. As always, I’ve put a visual summary of my findings at the bottom of this post.
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Key features of the Zyon Rechargeable Hearing Amplifier
The first key feature is right in the model’s full name: the Zyon hearing amplifier is rechargeable. While not a unique feature, it does stand out. Using a rechargeable hearing amplifier saves batteries and is better for the environment. With 4 hours of charging, the Zyon works for 18 hours.
A much more distinctive key feature is the RIC design. The receiver-in-ear design lets you insert the receiver in your ear canal, rather than working with the standard tubing most other hearing amplifiers use. The more direct delivery of sound gives you a clearer sound than a behind-the-ear model would.
Another unique feature of the Zyon rechargeable hearing amplifier is that it automatically adjusts to your environment. The listening programs built into the device are selected based on the circumstances that the Zyon detects. This means that there are no buttons to manually select a listening program.
Fun fact: the Zyon is listed in our post with the five best rechargeable hearing amplifiers.
Who is the Zyon for?
With a 40 dB peak gain, the Zyon hearing amplifier is best suited for people with mild to moderate hearing loss. This is the sort of hearing loss where it starts to get a bit harder to understand everything people say or where you find yourself turning up the TV more often. The price point of under $200 makes it available to a wide range of people.
Does the Zyon Rechargeable Hearing Amplifier work?
The sound quality is excellent. The digital circuitry, four channels, and twelve bands are all industry standards these days, and deliver a crisp sound. The wide dynamic range compression (WDRC) amplifies the sounds that are difficult to hear, while loud sounds are reduced.
Seeing big buttons on a hearing amplifier almost feels like a relief. I understand that it can be a challenge for designers to keep hearing amplifiers small and easy to operate at the same time, but the buttons on the Zyon rechargeable hearing amplifier look sturdy and feel easier to operate than some other models. As most users of this device will be of age, that hardly feels like a luxury.
Although it’s not really a reflection on how the Zyon works, I think the 45-day trial period and 1-year warranty are good to mention. Finding a hearing amplifier can be a matter of trial and error for some people, and knowing you have a trial period makes the trials easier and the errors less costly.
What’s not to like about the Zyon Hearing Amplifier?
Although the Zyon automatically selects the best listening program based on conditions, the loss of control might be a downside for some people. With this fancy feature, the convenience of not having to tweak your device based on circumstances is traded for not being able to tweak when you want to. Whether or not this is a real downside will depend on how well your preferences align with the Zyon’s ‘recommendations’.
Some users report feedback issues. As with most models hearing amplifier, the (chance of) feedback can be reduced by lowering the volume.
Alternatives for the Zyon
The first alternative that comes to mind is the Banglijian Ziv-201. This device is pretty comparable to the Zyon in price, sound quality, and overall performance. On top of that, the Ziv-201 also has a charger and comes in a variety of models that allow a little more customization to suit your needs. For people who like the Zyon but choose control over convenience, the Banglijian would make a good choice. With a few different listening programs, you can tweak the device based on your environment and preferences.
The Zyon rechargeable hearing amplifier features the rare RIC setup that was discussed above. This, too, is a matter of personal preference. If you’ve tried the Zyon and didn’t like the receiver-in-ear setup, take a look at these other hearing amplifiers under $200.
Should you buy the Zyon Rechargeable Hearing Amplifier?
The RIC design of the Zyon delivers a great sound quality right in your ear. Its smart technologies ensure that the amplified sounds are those you want to hear, while other sounds are filtered out. It’s really a neat device.
One thing I particularly like about the Zyon is its great price point. I don’t just mean it’s a good deal, but that it’s priced well. A cheaper model would compromise on sound quality, whereas a more expensive model will generally improve your overall hearing experience. If you’re looking to pay around $150 and sit neatly in between price categories, this device is a great buy.
The 45-day trial period is a good length of time, too. It gives you enough time to actually get used to the device and then decide whether the RIC design and automatic adjustments fit your preferences.
Please note that the Zyon is designed for the right or left ear. Buying a pair doubles the cost, but trying one for a short period is a good way to make sure the Zyon is the right fit for you.
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