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MDHearingAid Review: Are these affordable hearing aids a great choice?

Our expert testers will tell you everything you need to know about MDHearingAid so you can decide if these hearing aids are right for you

Medically reviewed by: Dr. Poonam Merai, MD
Last Updated: Oct 29, 2020

MDHearingAid Review

Traditionally, hearing aids have been very expensive, and yet so many of us could benefit from them. The result was too many people with hearing loss who couldn’t afford the help they needed.

That’s why MDHearingAid started over a decade ago. Based in Illinois, MDHearingAid sells American-made hearing aids designed by a doctor and approved by audiologists, all at a fraction of the cost of many other hearing aids.

How does MDHearingAid accomplish this? Are these hearing aids from MDHearingAid the right choice for you? Our experts thoroughly tested MDHearingAid to give you the pros, cons, and all the details necessary for you to decide.

Review Summary

Pros

  • Great value – MDHearingAid offers a great bargain in quality hearing aids
  • Digital and traditional analog available
  • Rechargeable model is equipped to work for 3 days before needing an electrical outlet
  • No-frills and very easy to use
  • Made in the USA
  • Free shipping
  • MDHearingAid gave our readers a dedicated phone line, for those who’d prefer using it: 1-800-315-3913
  • 45-day trial and money-back guarantee
  • MDHearingAid currently offers our readers a free one-year supply of hearing aid batteries! Just use coupon code INNERBODY20 at checkout

Cons

  • No custom hearing aid option
  • Only behind-the-ear models at this time

Bottom line

We recommend MDHearingAid because we find it to be what many people have waited for: straightforward and high-quality hearing aids that people can afford. It’s true that you won’t find custom-made devices tailored to you personally, which means that these hearing aids might never give you your best possible hearing on the face of the earth. But you’ll be able to afford these hearing aids and your hearing will be very high-quality. MDHearingAid delivers high value and great convenience.

Our Top Picks

MDHearingAid

MDHearingAid equips you with high-quality hearing aids at a fraction of the ordinary price of getting good hearing aids.

MyHearingAid offers 4 hearing aid options. You won’t find custom-made hearing aids here, but you’ll get high-quality hearing aids that save you hundreds of dollars compared to the competition.

Why you should trust us

Innerbody Research recently celebrated its 20-year anniversary online. Over the past two decades, we have helped tens of millions of readers make more informed decisions involving staying healthy and living healthier lifestyles.

We extensively test, experience, and order from each health service we review. Our review of MDHearingAid is no different. We try our best to give you, our readers, an unbiased exploration of at-home health services, free of marketing jargon or gimmicks. We evaluate the service based on our adherence to quality, the latest medical evidence and health standards, and a simple question: would we buy the product or service ourselves if it weren’t part of our job, and would we recommend it to family and friends?

Additionally, this review of MDHearingAid, like all health-related content on this website, was thoroughly vetted by one or more members of our Medical Review Board for accuracy.

MDHearingAid profile and products

MDHearingAid was founded over a decade ago by Dr. Sreekant Cherukuri, an Ear, Nose, and Throat specialist and surgeon. Dr. Cherukuri was disturbed by a serious problem: many patients in need of hearing aids were unable to afford them, and consequently never got the devices they needed.

That motivated Dr. Cherukuri to create his company. Together with audiologists, he has designed the line of hearing aids that you can find for sale on MDHearingAid. The goal was to provide vastly improved hearing to the many people who couldn’t afford the high-cost hearing aids in the past.

The company manufactures all of its hearing aids in Michigan and its headquarters are in Illinois. As Class 1 devices, the hearing aids sold here are all FDA-registered. There are four models at four different price points.

MDHearingAid occupies a sweet spot:

  • Super-affordable largely because it eliminates the middle man
  • High-quality thanks to its dedication and control over the manufacturing process

Based on our testing, this spells fantastic value for you if you’re looking for a good hearing aid.

If you aren’t sure whether you need a hearing device, MDHearingAid also happens to feature one of our top-rated online hearing tests. (For more information about online hearing tests, check out our full guide.)

Accessories

MDHearingAid also can sell you replacement hearing aid batteries and recharging stations; replacement tubes and bulbs; a variety of hearing aid care and ear care products (like ear wax removal and hearing aid cleaning kits); and options to extend your protection against incidental damages beyond the first year (the first year is free).

Buying hearing aids online vs the traditional process

The streamlined process of buying hearing aids online is another big way in which MDHearingAid saves you lots of time and money. You can start the process at the MDHearingAid website. Not only do you buy your hearing aids there, but the company becomes your contact for adjustment needs and will guide you through the process whenever you need help. You can also order by phone call using the number they provide our readers: 1-800-315-3913.

Traditionally this has been the general process of choosing and using hearing aids:

  1. Schedule an appointment.

  2. Travel to a hearing center. This may be easy for some but is very inconvenient for others.

  3. Buy the hearing aids. Traditional hearing aids tend to be expensive for hearing centers to stock. Of course, the cost rises as the hearing centers also take their cut to compensate for the cost of operating their business.

  4. Need to adjust your devices? Make another appointment and get to a hearing center.

Now by contrast, here is the experience we tested with MDHearingAid:

  1. Go online to the MDHearingAid website. Choose the hearing aid that best suits your needs, based on the detailed product descriptions and price. If you prefer to order by phone, MDHearingAid has given us a phone number for our readers to use: just dial 1-800-315-3913 to get started.

  2. Receive your hearing aid(s) in the mail – free shipping.

  3. MDHearingAid devices are simple enough to customize on your own.

  4. Need adjustments? U.S.-based, expert online support from MDHearingAid will help with whatever you need. No visits to a doctor’s office necessary.

Order Hearing Aids

So to summarize: your hearing aids from MDHearingAid are simpler, less fancy, and far less expensive than other high-quality hearing aids. You don’t have to go to a hearing center or audiologist to buy them or to make adjustments, which can get expensive.

Hearing aid options at MDHearingAid

MDHearingAid’s four models of hearing aids are the PRO, the AIR, the VOLT+, and the LifeEar CORE.

  PRO AIR VOLT+ CORE
Current Price $200 $400 $600 $800
Noise reduction
Environmental settings 2 4 4 4
Digital sound processing  
Feedback cancellation  
Dual directional microphones    
Rechargeable    
 
Water-resistant    
 
Adaptive technology      
Smartphone app compatible      
Personalized hearing experience      

Current deals and discounts

MDHearingAid is a good value even when there aren’t sales happening, but often there is a pretty incredible sale. For instance, there is often a “buy one, get one free” deal for the AIR, VOLT+, and CORE hearing aid models. During such times, your INNERBODY20 coupon code will still also allow you to get a free yearlong supply of hearing aid batteries, on top of your half-off savings. Together, these are a tremendous value.

Behind-the-ear

All models are small and well designed. But MDHearingAid doesn’t carry other hearing aid styles such as those nearly invisible hearing devices that hide within your ear canal. This is one of the tradeoffs of keeping prices so low. However, the devices are small compared to older behind-the-ear models, and the tubing is practically invisible.

Customization?

There’s no customization available for the shape and nature of the hearing aids. Why would this matter? The simple answer is that while there are many Americans with hearing loss, everyone’s ears are unique in shape and size, and hearing loss isn’t one-size-fits-all either. In a perfect world, every pair of hearing aids would probably be tailored precisely for the structure of each specific person’s ears and the personal hearing needs that they have. But guess what – that perfect world is extremely expensive right now! And customized, in-the-canal devices are not without their downsides as well.

MDHearingAid’s philosophy: we shouldn’t let the perfect be the enemy of the excellent. In addition to the fact that MDHearingAid controls the entire production and sales process of their devices, one of the factors in keeping their prices so much lower than the competition is the lack of customization and a focus on the essentials rather than fanciness.

Financing

You’ll notice the monthly payment pricing options below. MDHearingAid has partnered with Affirm to provide 12-month financing with 0% interest. This makes paying for these hearing aids more manageable for many people. Our testers certainly appreciate the efforts made to bring affordability to an essential product.

MDHearingAid VOLT Plus

Let’s start with the most popular product. It’s not hard to see why the new (and, honestly, much improved) VOLT+ has become the best-selling model for MDHearingAid. We find it very impressive; other hearing aids with the same quality and features tend to cost around $1000 more.

What primarily attracts people to the VOLT+ is its ability to recharge easily and last a long time, all for a super-affordable price. You don’t have to keep buying batteries and replacing them each month (or more frequently). But the VOLT+ has many other impressive features packed under that low price tag.

Features

  • Rechargeable hearing aids mean no more batteries.
  • Portable recharger case brings tons of added convenience and versatility.
  • Water-resistant coating protects hearing aids from sweat, rain, or an accidental drop in the water at the sink or on the fishing boat.
  • Two directional microphones give greater control to focus on the sound you want to hear.
  • Feedback cancellation means no whistling sound.
  • 4 audio settings mean you can control for quiet, social, and loud public settings.
  • Background noise reduction capabilities.
  • Single hearing aid price: $599.99 (or $50/month).
  • Pair of hearing aids: $1,199.99 (or $100/month), except during frequent “buy one, get one free” sales that drive the price of a pair down to just $600.

Charging is easier

One of the best things about MDHearingAid VOLT+ is its ability to recharge easily overnight. The VOLT+ requires about 2.5 hours to fully charge, which is a slight improvement over the original VOLT. Even on a short night, you’ll be able to charge your hearing aid completely. And the charge lasts 18-22 hours.

MDHearingAid VOLTPlus portable recharger case

The VOLT+ comes with a portable magnetic recharging case that can hold 3 full charges for your hearing aid – a big improvement over its predecessor. This means that you can recharge your VOLT+ as many as 3 times within its case without plugging the case into a wall outlet. For those who are often on the go, love getting outdoors, or find themselves off the beaten path during a vacation, the capacity of this recharging case makes a big difference.

Lasts longer before needing a charge

The VOLT+ carries over 24 hours of charge. In practice, we find that it performs between 24 and 30 hours before needing a recharge. This represents another valuable improvement over the original VOLT, which lasted about 18-22 hours.

Improved durability

In terms of size, VOLT+ remains on the low end of average for modern behind-the-ear models, at just over 3 cm in length, making it a little larger than the AIR but smaller than either PRO or LifeEar. But the VOLT+ is dust-protected as well as water-resistant up to 3 feet and 30 minutes submerged, thanks to an IP57-rated coating. You won’t have to worry about your hearing aid when you’re on the run and a rainstorm decides to give you an impromptu shower.

High-quality hearing

Whether you’re in a very quiet bedroom or a loud restaurant, the four environmental settings of the VOLT+ will have you covered. With advanced noise reduction capabilities, dual-directional microphones, and feedback cancellation, VOLT+ delivers clear hearing free from background distraction and any whistling feedback.

Order Hearing Aids

MDHearingAid PRO

Features

  • Single hearing aid price: $199.99 (or $16.67/month).
  • Pair of hearing aids: $399.99 (or $33.33/month).
  • You can get a year’s supply of hearing aid batteries for free using promo code INNERBODY20.
  • 2 audio settings: Flat loss and sloping loss.
  • Blocks some surrounding background noise.

MDHearingAid PRO is their most affordable device. The flat loss setting helps people with hearing loss across all frequencies while sloping loss is designed to help those with high-frequency hearing loss. MDHearingAid states that the two audio settings address the needs of 80% of the community of people with hearing loss.

A pair of PRO hearing aids will cost you only a third of the amount of money of the average hearing aids of comparable make and quality.

PRO hearing aids use the traditional analog, which is why they aren’t best suited for very loud public settings like a football stadium, for example. In terms of size, at 3.5cm the PRO devices are firmly average for modern behind-the-ear models – smaller than older, traditional behind-the-ear hearing aids in years past.

MDHearingAid AIR

Features

  • Feedback cancellation means no whistling sound.
  • 3 audio settings mean you can control for quiet, social, and loud public settings.
  • Better background noise reduction capabilities than PRO.
  • Single hearing aid price: $399.99 (or $33.33/month).
  • Pair of hearing aids: $799.99 (or $66.66/month), but frequent “buy one, get one free” sales make the price for a pair only $399.92. Look for those sale opportunities! They present a bargain that really impressed our testers.
  • Use INNERBODY20 coupon code to get the free one-year supply of hearing aid batteries, offered to our readers.

MDHearingAid AIR is the company’s most affordable digital hearing aid. Digital, rather than analog, means it can handle louder public settings like ballgames or church. The feedback and noise reduction capabilities were very good. It’s smaller than the other MDHearingAid models – at 1 inch in length, it’s on the very small end of modern behind-the-ear hearing aids in general.

And compared to competitors, it’s a real bargain at its price. The price is half of what you might pay for comparable quality among competitors.

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LifeEar CORE

LifeEar CORE features all of the cool qualities of the other hearing aids (aside from the recharging option) and adds even more on top.

Features

  • Supporting app for smartphones and tablets lets you adjust your hearing aid and customize your experience.
  • LifeEar hearing aids adapt to different sound environments on their own.
  • Customize your own ‘sound map’ following an easy guided process in the app.
  • Two directional microphones give greater control to focus on the sound you want to hear.
  • Feedback cancellation means no whistling sound.
  • 4 audio settings mean you can control for quiet, social, and loud public settings.
  • Background noise reduction capabilities.
  • Single hearing aid price: $799.99 (or $66.67/month).
  • Pair of hearing aids: $1,599.99 (or $133.33/month) – except during frequent sales, which drive the price of a pair of CORE hearing aids down to $1000, close to the same price as a single hearing aid.
  • Using our coupon code INNERBODY20 will get you a free one-year supply of batteries for your CORE hearing aids.

You can adjust the volume of this hearing aid in two ways – using a push button directly, or via a handy, discreet smartphone app, which is very cool. Our testers found the app to be very intuitive.

The customized ‘sound map’ for your own hearing needs can also be adjusted as your hearing changes over time.

The downsides?

  • Size. It’s the same size as their entry-level hearing aid, which makes it average in size for this style of hearing aid… a full centimeter longer than the AIR.
  • Battery life. The big downside is that the batteries in our testing only lasted for 5 days. MDHearingAid says the batteries for this model tend to last 5-6 days, and battery life does depend on environmental conditions and the amount of use of course. But regardless, that’s a rather short battery life compared to other hearing aids in this line of products or more broadly among competitors.

Frequently asked questions

Should I buy a pair of hearing aids or just one?

If you have any hearing loss at all in both ears, you are better off buying the pair – even if your hearing loss in one ear is mild. Having one ear that hears much better than the other can stress the parts of your brain that process sound. Without similarly strong hearing in both ears, your brain will have to process the same sounds but at different volume and clarity, making for a less optimal overall experience. So unless your hearing in your other ear is perfect, we would advise buying the pair.

Do MDHearingAid's devices really work for most people?

The short answer is: yes.

With four hearing aids total in its line of products, some people wonder if MDHearingAid will be able to suit their needs. Customization is kept to a minimum, which is one reason why MDHearingAid can control the entire process from manufacturing to sale and keep prices low.

From the standpoint of hearing quality, MDHearingAid has carefully pre-programmed its hearing aids to provide excellent hearing quality for the majority of people with mild to moderate hearing loss. When it comes to physical comfort, the company enables customization in the sense that its hearing aids can be used with tubes, tips, and ear domes of varying sizes. For most ears, these devices will fit very nicely.

MDHearingAid’s products will not work for everyone, which is part of the reason why the company offers a 45-day trial period with a money-back guarantee.

Do I need a prescription or diagnosis before buying?

Technically you don’t need this; you can sign a waiver exempting you from this requirement. However, MDHearingAid, the FDA, and we here at Innerbody Research believe you should always see an audiologist to learn about your hearing loss prior to buying hearing aids. Hearing loss may be accompanied by other symptoms or conditions that make it wise to visit an audiologist or suitably specialized doctor.

If I have tinnitus (ear ringing), will hearing aids solve my problem?

Hearing aids alone are not a cure for tinnitus, but they can help mask the ringing so that it isn’t so bothersome. Tinnitus is most commonly caused by exposure to very loud noises that irreparably damage the cells of the cochlea that are sensitive to sound.

With a good pair of hearing aids, you may not notice your ear ringing at all. If you have severe tinnitus, however, you should consult an audiologist and may require a larger investment in hearing devices with advanced technology specifically to mask the ringing.

Final thoughts

By controlling the entire manufacturing process and designing hearing aid models that don’t require professional involvement to order them or to make adjustments, MDHearingAid has streamlined the experience of buying and using hearing aids and made them significantly more affordable for everybody. In our testing, the quality was excellent, and at MDHearingAid’s low prices, the value is undeniably there. Unless you want to pay a much higher price for custom hearing aids concealed within your ear canal, we can recommend MDHearingAid.

How we evaluate health products and services

At Innerbody, we customize our evaluation criteria depending on the type and nature of the health-related service. For MDHearingAid and other health services and products, we have five areas that we use for our evaluations:

Quality: How well does the company deliver its core service(s) to the customer? For testing services, does the company adhere to the latest and most advanced testing technologies and achieve a very high degree of accuracy? For non-testing health services, is the quality of the service high enough that we would recommend it to loved ones without hesitation? If not, why not?

User-friendly: How intuitive and user-friendly is the service? Does the device/program/app/website achieve a good degree of user-friendliness for its customers?

Value: Are you getting your money’s worth? Are there any hidden costs or charges? Does the company offer discounts?

Privacy: If health data is stored, will your data be stored securely? Are payments secure?

Customer Support: Particularly in situations where ‘one size fits all’ doesn’t make sense, how well does the company help to make the service ideal for you?

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