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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Click on the "General Information" button (top button above) for an overview and general information on this category of hearing aid.

 

Body Type Transistor Hearing Aids

Phonic Ear Model HC-527 (Rechargeable) Transistor (Body) Hearing Aid

This Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid was manufactured by Phonic Ear, Inc. of Mill Valley, CA in 1978.

This hearing aid contained an integrated circuit and AGC (automatic gain control).

The unit measured 2 7/16" x 1½" x 13/16" (6.1 x 3.8 x 2.1 cm) and weighed 2.6 oz (74 g) without the battery.

The Phonic Ear hearing aids were actually auditory trainers for children in school. This aid was also an FM receiver so the child could clearly hear the teacher's voice.

There were actually 2 cheaper submodels of the HC-527—the Economy HC-527E and the Super Economy model, the HC-527SE.

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Top front view of the Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid showing the round microphone grill (left) and the name "Phonic Ear" and under it, the model number (HC-527) (right).

This aid used an electret microphone.

 

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Front view of the Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid showing the tone control and below it the AV (volume) control. To adjust these controls you popped off the plastic plugs, then set the volume and tone using a small screwdriver.

Between the microphone grill and the tone control is the uniquely-formed plastic pocket clip.

 

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Top view of the Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid. Note that unlike most hearing aids, there were no controls whatsoever on the top.

 

 

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Bottom view of the Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid showing the two audio input jacks (upper left) and below them, the two battery recharging terminals.

The DAI (direct audio input) jacks could connect to any audio device such as a record player or tape player (in those days) to give the child practice with specific listening skills.

This hearing aid contained a rechargeable battery and was put in the recharging cradle each night to recharge the battery.

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Left side view of the Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid showing the two-pronged receiver cord plug and jack (center).

 

 

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Left side view of the Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid showing the 3-position switch (left). This switch switched between M—microphone, M/T—microphone and t-coil together and Audio—direct audio input (from the Audio Input jacks (shown above).

On the right is the two-position on/off switch shown in the off position.

 

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Rear view of the Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid showing the legend for the switches on the side. Along the right side (from top to bottom) are the "M", "M/T", "Audio", "Phone", "O" and "I".

 

 

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The person that used this particular Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid had a hearing loss in both ears. Thus, the use of a "Y" cord so two receivers could be plugged into the one hearing aid.
 

 

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View of the back of receiver 1 of the Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid.

 

 

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View of the side of receiver 1 of the Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid showing the two-pronged plug and jack. Note that the jack and plug had different sized prongs/holes so the cord couldn't be plugged in wrongly.

 

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View of the front of receiver 1 of the Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid.

This wasn't the original receiver, but was an Oticon receiver (model AW-180) made in Denmark.


 

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View of the back of receiver 2 of the Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid.

 

 

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View of the side of receiver 2 of the Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid showing the two-pronged plug and jack. Note that the jack and plug had different sized prongs/holes so the cord couldn't be plugged in wrongly.

 

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View of the front of receiver 2 of the Phonic Ear Model HC-527 transistor body hearing aid. Stamped on the rim are the numbers "51" (top) and "135" (bottom).

 

 


 

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