Configure AirPods Pro 2 as a hearing aid Arguments for the AirPods Pro 2 ear fitting Adjust AirPods Switch off interference Tinnitus and doorbells Conclusion
My mother-in-law was unhappy: she had bought a new hearing aid from a hearing care professional for over 2,000 euros, but she didn’t want to wear it. On the one hand she shied away from the social stigma unfortunately still associated with hearing aids, on the other hand other people and her own voice sounded tinny.
I told her about a 2022 study in which scientists from Taiwan examined whether AirPods could be used as hearing aids. The result: The cheaper AirPods 2 were less suitable, but the more expensive AirPods Pro met four out of five criteria of the US standard ANSI/CTA-2051 for so-called PSAPs (Personal Sound Amplification Products). These are hearing aids from the field of consumer electronics that do not meet any medical requirements and are not financed by health insurance companies. But they only cost about a tenth of medical hearing aids.
The first generation of AirPods Pro already met the requirements for amplification performance and frequency response. Only the noise behavior of the integrated microphones was slightly worse than required. Apple is now delivering the next-generation AirPods Pro 2 (test). Among other things, the so-called transparency mode, which is used for hearing aids, has been greatly improved. With online retailers you pay around 250 euros. There are also costs for the EarPods earphones for audiogram measurement for 15 euros and possibly a safety strap or ear hook for just under 10 euros. If you don’t have an iPhone or iPad, a refurbished iPhone 7 is available from used dealers for around 70 euros – a mobile phone contract is not necessary to use the AirPods as a hearing aid. The AirPods Pro transmit sounds and conversations into the ear with external microphones. You can not only adjust the sound behavior on the paired iPhone, but also create an audiogram with a hearing test to compensate for individual hearing impairments. This also improves the sound of their AirPods on the iPhone for people with normal hearing. However, the settings are well hidden in the iOS setup. Once properly configured, the AirPods Pro 2 can even function as a hearing aid without the iPhone. We explain in detail how this works.
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