Updated: 5 days ago
I receive quite a number of patients from Kent, Sussex and Essex to our clinic in Crystal Palace (SE London) who play golf as a hobby. More than half of these patients are either retired or semi-retired and playing golf is an important part of their leisure and life.
Although the number one challenge of people with hearing loss is understanding speech in noisy environments, nothing can be as annoying as hearing the wind noise while bragging about the next shot with the other golf players. Read this article to learn about the best hearing aids for golfers.
The problem of wind noise is not only for golfers. People who enjoy sports and other open space activities such as hiking, gardening, fishing trips, and camping would notice annoying wind noise on their hearing aids as soon as the wind starts blowing.
People who work outside could equally suffer from wind noise when wearing hearing aids. Those commuting on bikes, construction workers, gardeners, and several outdoor professionals are among this group of patients.
Let's answer the questions about the best hearing aids with wind noise cancellation in two domains:
What is the best hearing aid model for wind noise cancellation, and
What is the best hearing aid technology for wind noise cancellation
What is the best hearing aid model for wind noise cancellation?
The best hearing aid model for wind noise cancellation is the invisible hearing aids including IIC and CIC hearing aids (invisible-in-canal and complete-in-canal respectively). The reason is that the IIC and CIC models are the closest integration of the hearing aids to the natural auditory system of humans. They fit inside the ear canal and have no piece to sit outside the ear. The result is that your pinna (the visible outer part of the ear) does its job in avoiding the wind and steering the sound towards your ear canal where sound is picked up and processed and amplified by the hearing aid. Under this category, you can choose from easy-click CIC hearing aids or any custom-made IIC/CIC.
What is the best hearing aid technology for wind noise cancellation?
Other models of hearing aids including BTE and RIC (behind-the-ear and receiver-in-canal) are placed on top-behind your pinna. For that simple reason, they pick up wind noise easily. Every hearing aid brand uses different technology to cancel the wind noise through sound processing. Not all have been very successful until recently. Two of the rechargeable RIC hearing aids stand out when it comes to wind noise cancellation:
Resound Omnia with M&RIE - Resound Omnia or Resound More equipped with M&RIE receivers are the best of two worlds. The receiver bit that goes in the ear is coupled with a microphone at the end of it. This microphone can work just like a complete-in-ear (CIC) hearing aid. The result is that your hearing aid seamlessly stitches between a behind-the-ear RIC and the in-the-canal hearing aid. In the outside world when there is high wind noise the hearing aid goes on M&RIE receiver mode and allows your ear pinna to remove the wind noise naturally. This is the utmost way of cancelling the wind noise as it doesn't damage or cut from the speech noise that you intend to hear.
Oticon Real - Oticon did the trick by using the most advanced wind noise cancellation algorithm in their latest product Oticon Real. The noise cancellation through algorithm has a bit of a trade-off as the intended speech is often affected by the wind noise cancellation software. but their data shows that using such an algorithm has a net positive impact on the signal-to-noise (SNR). See our Oticon price comparison here.
How can I adjust my hearing aid for wind noise cancellation?
In addition to the introduced technologies, most of the premium hearing aids have a mild to moderate algorithm for wind noise cancellation. Often this is something that your hearing care professional or audiologist can set up for you. In 2023 some of the hearing aid manufacturers added a feature to the hearing aid Apps for the wind-noise-cancellation. If you have any questions about this topic please feel free to post your questions on this page or contact us for professional advice.