Styletto and Silk IX review

Styletto and Silk IX review

User feedback on the latest hearing technology from Signia


Review Details

Consumer review by Mr. D. Mitchell
Signia Styletto 7 IX and Silk 7 IX hearing devices
Fitting: Both left and right ears
Fit by: Maria Brown Hearing Clinic

Start of test: 08.04.2024
End of test: 22.04.2024



We’ve all been there. You’re at a crowded social event and people are enjoying themselves, maybe helped by some wine and a bit of background music. The general noise level rises, making everyone speak louder than normal.

So there you are, managing to follow the conversation, maybe missing the odd word or two. Too bad if you missed the punch line of a joke, or someone’s quick, witty comment.

Normal hearing aids really struggle in this situation. Remove them, and everything sounds muffled. Put them back, and the conversation gets drowned in background noise. One solution is to turn down the volume and join everyone else shouting above the noise. Or, on a bad day, go home. (Worst option).

Thankfully, help is at hand. The team at Maria Brown Hearing Clinic asked me to road-test two new aids from Signia that largely fix these problems.

In my opinion, these two newcomers are game-changers, and probably the best things since hearing aids went digital.

The first was the Styletto IX, which looks like Signia’s other slim-line behind-ear models, but with much improved directional ability, thanks to some pretty intense engineering.

The second device was the Signia Silk IX, an aid that sits completely in-ear, and is thus very hard to see.


Styletto IX

These look like Signia’s previous “slim-line” behind-ear aids, but that’s where the comparison ends.

With eight microphones, I was curious to see how they held up in crowds, and the answer was: Excellent. Multi-person conversations were absolutely fine. Almost like not being deaf at all!

Conversations at the far end of a 5 metre conference table were still audible, even with others talking.

Bluetooth gave responsive control using Signia’s app without having to fiddle the smartphone speaker volume, and as a bonus, you can adjust L and R volumes separately, or tap again to synchronise.

Music quality was excellent - not quite as brilliant as the Silk IX, but much improved on the earlier noise cancelling designs.

Bluetooth allows the luxury of taking phone calls through the hearing aids. It is possible to set the aids to answer calls by tapping on them, which is pretty cool.

Unfortunately I found the voice quality on calls to be very faint and a bit thin and “reedy”. On a busy street, conversations were almost impossible, but I am confident this was because the device was not optiimised for this beforehand. Disabling bluetooth fixed the problem, but unfortunately also disabled the controls! This really needs to be set up in the shop before you start wearing them.

I understand phone answering can be excluded during setup at the clinic, and I would definitely suggest testing it before leaving the clinic.

Bluetooth also permits remote diagnostics / setup (aka”Telehealth”), but is probably only useful if you live remotely.

As rechargeable aids become the norm, it’s worth looking at charging: Inevitably, the gold plated contacts will pick up skin oils and other small debris, which can prevent reliable contact. It is essential, about once a week, to gently clean the gold contacts with a cotton bud dipped in pure alcohol. Don’t use sanitiser, gin, or your best Scotch, because other ingredients in those will prevent proper cleaning and may damage the connectors.

In summary, a remarkable new product from Signia which takes all round performance to a new level, especially in noisy places.


Styletto IX summary

The good

In noisy environments it was almost like having normal hearing

Multi person converations

Ease of use for answering calls was impressive

Rechargeable batteries

The not so good

Phone call setup needs a bit of work to get right

Silk IX

Although tiny in size, these little aids perform well over the odds.

I was hugely surprised at how well the Signia Silk handles music. Sounds were crisp and clear, although a bit lacking in bass. They really are the best yet. Listening to music I know well, I heard instruments and sounds I’d forgotten were even there.

I was aware of them after initially putting them in, but this settled and after a day or two it was like they weren’t there.

Signia’s noise rejection is already excellent, but the in-ear design is great in noisy places, and especially in crowds.

Because the microphones are right at the ear canal entrance, the outer ear is able sort out where sounds are coming from, and “tune out” stuff we don’t want. This only works if you have both ears fitted.

Television was much easier to hear with other noise present, which is a great improvement on earlier designs. I am sure this is partly due to the inherent noise rejecting ability of our natural ear shape, working with the aids.

Wind noise isn’t a problem, possibly because of the hide-away design, complementing Signia’s already mature technology.

Feedback was absent unless I wound the volume flat out , and then only an occasional chirp. If you need that much hearing assistance, you probably need a different device.

The Silk IX didn’t come with bluetooth, but in an aid this small, that would shorten battery life, so it’s not really surprising.

Charging uses a nifty matchbox sized case, and the aids click in with a secure magnetic attachment. Charging lights show that contact has been made.

Removing these in-ear aids is simple. With your thumb, push upwards against the base of your ear from below. This pushes the aid outward, enough to grab it with your thumb and index finger.

All in all, a step up from everything else I have tried, and great performers in noisy places, which I would not say about my existing aids.


Silk IX summary

The good

Listening to music was a delight with these aids

Impressive in a noisy environment

Works very well in wind

Rechargeable batteries in a truly tiny size

The not so good

No Bluetooth

Took a day or two to get used to them

So small, there is an increased risk of loss


In summary, two remarkable new products from Signia which take all round performance to a new level, especially in noisy places.

Which one to choose? That is a matter of individual taste, and also your particular type of hearing loss. That said, I had a slight preference for the Styletto IX on the grounds of comfort, and the customisation offered by bluetooth.

One final comment- because the Silk devices are so small, there’s a serious risk of losing them. Of all things, these would be worth insuring, especially as there are new options available.