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Melbourne’s leading hearing care specialists for over 17 years, with centres in 7 convenient locations.

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Which Style Suits you the Best?

Hearing aids come in various styles, which differ in size, the way they sit on your ear and consequently how visible they are to other people.


Whilst some people don't mind showing off their new hearing aids; after all, they are very high-tech medical products, there are still a large number of people who prefer more discreet styles.

Generally, your audiologist will guide you through the style of aids best suited to you based on; your hearing levels, the size and shape of your ear, your ability to manage the aids (e.g. changing the battery), your lifestyle and your personal preference of how it looks on your ears.

Hearing aids are available in a range of colours to match skin and hair colour, as well as an array of fashion colours to match your personality.

Invisible-in-the-Canal (IIC)

IIC hearing aids are the smallest custom hearing aid available, custom made to fit deep inside your ear canal and totally hidden from sight.  They are suitable for mild to moderate hearing losses.  These hearing aids are the smallest and least visible of the available styles, however the small style does have some disadvantages.  IIC hearing aids have no space for features such as volume controls, directional microphones or wireless features.  IIC aids cannot be fitted to small ear canals due to size restrictions.  

Completely-in-the-Canal (CIC)

CIC hearing aids are similar to IICs, being custom made to fit inside your ear canal and are suitable for mild to moderate hearing losses.  The difference between the IIC and CIC is that the CIC is visible at the entrance of the ear canal.  As with the IIC style there is little available space for volume controls or directional microphones with CICs but they can fit slightly larger ear canals than IIC’s.  

In-the-Canal (ITC)

ITC hearing aids fit partly in the ear canal, are custom made to the shape and size of your ear and are visible from the sides but not when facing the user.  ITC hearing aids can accommodate mild to moderately severe hearing losses. This style may contain features such as a volume control or program button or telecoil that don't fit in CIC aids, but the more features that are added, the larger the aid becomes.  

In-the-Ear (ITE)

ITE hearing aids completely fill the outer ear and are suitable for mild to severe hearing losses. They are custom made to the size and shape of your ear. ITE aids are more visible from the front and the sides to other people and may be more vulnerable to picking up wind noise. But the larger size can make them easier to adjust and insert. The bigger batteries in these hearing aids are likely to last longer than those in the smallest aids.

Slim Tube Behind-the-Ear (BTE)

The slim tube BTE hearing aids are very small behind-the-ear style aids.  The electronic parts are held in the small plastic case worn behind the ear.  Sound travels from the instrument through a thin tube to a tiny dome or small custom made ear piece that is located in the ear canal. They are very discreet and difficult to see from the front or from the sides.  If you have long hair they are difficult to see from the back as well.  These aids can leave the ear canal more open, known as an “open-fit”, and are therefore suitable for mild to moderate high-frequency hearing losses where low-frequency hearing is still normal such as noise induced hearing loss.  In addition, some people may prefer open-fit hearing aids because their perception of their own voice does not sound “plugged up”. 

Receiver-in-the-Ear (RITE) or Receiver-in-the-Canal (RIC)

RITE/RIC hearing aids consist of a very small Behind-the- ear unit and a thin wire connecting it to a tiny speaker (receiver).  Sound travels from the instrument located behind your ear through the thin wire to the tiny speaker positioned in the ear canal.  The speaker is secured in place with either a generic ear tip (dome) or small custom made ear piece.  RITE/RIC hearing aids are the most versatile style available and are becoming the most popular.  They are very discreet aids and there are versions which are suitable for people with up to a severe to profound hearing loss.

Behind-the-Ear (BTE)

BTE hearing aids consist of a plastic case worn behind the ear, which holds all the electronic parts of the aid.  This is connected via a silicon tube to a plastic earmould that fits inside the outer ear and ear canal. Sound travels from the hearing aid through the earmould and into the ear. Behind-the-ear hearing aids can be the most powerful and often are the easiest type to adjust.

What hearing aid Add-On options are there?

We offer a range of add-on devices that complement your hearing aids and allow you to connect wirelessly to your TV, phone, tablet and more; making your hearing aids work like a personal wireless headset. They empower you to participate in almost any situation. They are great for business, home and leisure. Keep reading to find out more...
Read more

Which hearing aid performance level and price will suit my needs?

Melbourne Audiology Centre offers a full range of hearing aid solutions at a range of prices to suit your budget. We provide full audiological services with your hearing aid fittings; this means we assist you in every step of your personal journey to good hearing.

We understand that price will be a big consideration in your decision to purchase hearing aids. At MAC, the price you pay for a hearing aid solution includes;

  • the hearing aids and your personal hearing rehabilitation program
  • any custom made ear pieces or ear moulds
  • appointments with your audiologist to ensure accurate fitting, fine-tuning and adjustment of the aids to your personal needs. Read more on what's included in the price of hearing aids.

For a quote on your personal hearing aid solution, complete our online enquiry form or call us on 1300 761 021 and make an appointment to see one of our audiologists. If you have a written quote from another hearing aid provider, we are happy to provide you with a competitive quote for free. We will need to see your quote before we can do this, please email us your quote or call us on 1300 761 021 for more information.

Price and Performance of hearing aids

The price of hearing aids will depend on the aid's performance level; premium, advanced, value and economy.  The performance is determined by the technology in the aids, which in turn defines how well they will perform in different situations.

Premium level hearing aids provide better performance in more demanding listening situations such as restaurants, clubs or parties. In consultation with one of our audiologists, you will find the best hearing aid solution for your lifestyle needs and for your budget. Read more.

Your choice of hearing aids will depend on the situations where you would like to hear better i.e. your lifestyle. The table below will give you an indication of the performance level that will suit your lifestyle. For example, if you have a very social lifestyle and need to hear in lots of complex noisy environments, a premium hearing aid will better meet your needs. 

    Performance level and price range for a pair of aids

    Lifestyle - where do you need to hear better?


    Home, quiet conversation, TV, phone, family gatherings
    Out and About
    Shopping, in the car, cards/bridge, visiting, home, quiet conversation, TV, phone, family gatherings
    Meetings, lectures, open-plan office, mobile phones, cafes, shopping, in the car, cards/bridge, visiting, home, quiet conversation, TV, phone, family gatherings
    Worship, music, theatre, movies, meetings, lectures, open-plan office, mobile phones, cafes, shopping, in the car, cards/bridge, visiting, home, quiet conversation, TV, phone, family gatherings
    Parties, restaurants, clubs, cocktail bars, worship, music, theatre, movies, meetings, lectures, open-plan office, mobile phones, cafes, shopping, in the car, cards/bridge, visiting, home, quiet conversation, TV, phone, family gatherings
    Latest Products include*: 
    Oticon Alta Pro, Phonak Audeo Q-90, Phonak Bolero Q-90, Phonak Naida Q-90, Phonak Virto Q-90, Unitron Quantum2 Pro, Unitron Moxi2 Pro, Widex Dream 440, Starkey Halo i110
    Latest Products include*:
    Oticon Nera Pro, Phonak Audeo Q-70,  Phonak Bolero Q-70,  Phonak Virto Q-70, Phonak Naida Q-70, Unitron Quantum2 20, Unitron Moxi2 20, Widex Dream 330, Starkey Halo i90
    Latest Products include*:
    Oticon Nera, Oticon Ria Pro, Phonak Audeo Q-50, Phonak Bolero Q-50, Phonak Virto Q-50, Phonak Naida Q-50,  Unitron Quantum2 16, Unitron Moxi2 16, Widex Dream 220, Starkey Halo i70 
    Latest Products include*:
    Oticon Ria, Unitron Quantum2 10, Unitron Moxi2 10, Phonak Audeo Q-30, Phonak Bolero Q-30, Phonak Naida Q-30, Phonak Virto Q-30,  Widex Dream 110, Starkey Z series i30

      to       relative performance of the hearing aids,  from least to best performance.

    (*We have included only some of the latest hearing aid models from leading manufacturers on this list, if you are searching for other models and brands please contact us as we can most likely supply them).


    All privately purchased hearing aids come with a 3 year manufacturer's warranty. This warranty covers any faulty parts or workmanship; it does not cover accidental or wilful damage. We will give you a copy of the warranty conditions with your purchase.

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