Hugh Hetherington Hearing Aid Museum
Hugh Hetherington Hearing Aid Museum

The Hearing Aid Museum

Hearing Aids of all types—Ear Trumpets, Carbon Hearing Aids, Vacuum Tube Hearing Aids, Transistor Hearing Aids, Body Hearing Aids, Eyeglass Hearing Aids and much more!

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Eyeglass-Style Transistor Hearing Aids—
General Information

Eyeglass-Style Transistor  Hearing Aids—General Information

Eyeglass-style hearing aids, which appeared on the market about the same time as behind-the-ear hearing aids, enjoyed some popularity with consumers right through until the late 1970s.

They had disadvantages such as thicker frames, especially with the early generation ones, and the fact that you automatically took your hearing aids off when you removed your glasses.

With smaller and smaller BTE and ITE hearing aids becoming more popular, the eyeglass-style eventually lost favor with the hard of hearing consumer.

The early eyeglass aids were for single ear fittings since the relatively large components had to be fitted into both temple pieces of the eyeglass frame. As they reduced in size, it became possible to provide binaural fittings. Both air conduction and bone conduction eyeglass styles were available.

There were some interesting innovations with eyeglass hearing aids.

For example, early eyeglass hearing aids had the microphone on one side and the earpiece on the other side because of technical limitations. Then, years later when people realized the advantages of such configurations, CROS hearing aids (where the microphone is on the deaf side and the ear piece is on the the hearing side) were deliberately designed for BTE and ITE hearing aids.

Another interesting innovation that was first brought out in eyeglass hearing aids was a solar-powered eyeglass hearing aid called the Solaris. It was unveiled by Zenith on May 1, 1958. This hearing aid sold for the then princely sum of $250.00. Click here to read the news item in the New York Times.

Click picture for larger view


Example of an Eyeglass-Style Transistor Hearing Aid

Click on the "Transistor (Ear)"
button (on the left), and then on "Eyeglass-style" to see the details
of this and other eyeglass-style
transistor hearing aids


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