The Oticon Xceed SP is without a stylish behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing device, and beneath the smart looks is also a lot of power, innovation and features, gaining it a well-deserved place in our guide to the best hearing aids. Oticon’s BrainHearing tech adapts to speech by keeping up with sound-processing abilities of the brain, while the OpenSound Optimizer works to alleviate feedback for a more comfortable listening experience.
According to guidance from the American-Speech-Language Association (ASLH), there are a few things every hearing aid should have as standard. These include a microphone to pick up sound, a volume adjuster (amplifier), a receiver that sends the louder sounds to your ear, an on/off switch, and a built-in battery that's either disposable or rechargeable.
Oticon claims it has made the “world’s most powerful hearing aid” with the Xceed, which comes in two styles: the SP (super power) and the UP (ultra power). Both the SP and the UP are available in three technology levels to suit your particular needs.
Here we will focus on the Oticon Xceed SP, which packs in all the same great features as the UP, leaving you with the choice to upgrade if you want extra power for more profound hearing loss. Your hearing aid health professional will be able to advise you on which one to go for, and we would advise speaking to them first before making a decision.
If you're looking for a more affordable hearing device, take a look at our guide to the MD HearingAid AIR, which costs $399 for two devices. They aren't on the same level in terms of tech and performance as the innovative Oticon Xceed SP, but they offer four levels of volume and noise suppression.
Oticon Xceed SP: Spec
- FDA classification: Class 1 medical device
- Design: behind-the-ear (BTE)
- Fit: Universal (left or right)
- Noise reduction: Yes
- Feedback Cancellation Technology: Yes
- Battery size: 13
Oticon Xceed SP: Price and availability
The Oticon Xceed SP is expensive compared to other hearing aids, but the level of technology and the quality of features on offer here, all geared towards people experiencing severe hearing loss, is very impressive. Also, the Oticon Xceed SP price depends on which level of Xceed SP is recommended for your hearing.
Oticon Xceed hearing aids are widely available throughout the US at hearing care centers with authorized Oticon dealerships. Such retailers should be able to advise you on repairs, warranty questions, and to provide general customer support. There is also a trial period available on the Oticon Xceed SP, so ask your audiologist for further details.
Prices generally start from $1,500 for a single Oticon Xceed SP device with the lowest technology level, but the final price you’ll pay depends on where you buy the hearing device from, and the exact specification that’s recommended for you.
Oticon Xceed SP: Design
The design of the BTE Oticon Xceed SP is smart and modern, with push buttons for easy control of hearing programs and volume. It’s made of premium materials and has an IP68 rating, so it’s dust resistant and should resist water too if you’re caught in a rain shower, for example, though experts always recommend keeping your hearing aid dry.
The Oticon Xceed SP is slim and comes in seven different colors: Chroma Beige, Silver, Terracotta, Chestnut Brown, Diamond Black, Silver Grey, and Steel Grey. There is certainly enough here to suit a wide range of hair colours and skin tones, or to match the color of your eyeglasses.
Oticon has spent a lot of time researching and testing its products, and with the Xceed SP it offers some interesting performance stats. For example, it claims the Oticon Xceed SP can create a 10% improvement in speech clarity, especially in noisy environments, with an average of 10% less listening effort required.
Oticon also claims that tests on existing users showed an improvement of 15% when it came to short-term recall, enabling users to instantly join in and keep up with conversations.
The Oticon Xceed BTE SP is not rechargeable, and instead takes a size 13 hearing aid battery. There is also a range of accessories available (at an extra cost), including a remote control, Bluetooth streamer, and remote microphone.
Oticon Xceed SP: Features
The Xceed Oticon SP includes something called OpenSound Navigator, a feature that helps wearers select and understand speech in all sound environments by balancing the sound sources and suppressing background noise and blocking feedback.
The American-Speech-Language Association’s top advises checking your aid's batteries regularly, and keeping spares on you at all times. Also, clean the hearing aid according to your audiologist’s instructions, or those given to you by the manufacturer. Finally, keep your hearing aid dry, and schedule regular listening checks to ensure the hearing device is still right for you.
Oticon also promises to improve your sound experience with less noise and less effort than before, giving you more access to speech throughout the day with a 360° soundscape and consistent amplification without significant gain reductions.
As you can imagine, the list of technical specs is long, but key features include tinnitus support, wind-noise management, bass boost (streaming), 48 processing channels (for adapting to different environments), transient noise management and clear dynamics.
The Oticon Xceed SP also features the brand’s BrainHearing technology, which provides ‘more access to speech’. Oticon explains that we hear with our brains, not our ears, and so our hearing aids should be fast enough to keep up with the brain.
The BrainHearing technology has been created to scan your surroundings 100 times per second to provide better speech clarity, reduced listening effort, and to improve short-term recall. In other words, you should experience less stress or anxiety when it comes to clearly hearing other people and the world around you.
Meanwhile, Oticon’s OpenSound Optimizer uses tech designed to alleviate feedback in a new way. How? By preventing it from happening in the first place. This feature works best after a prescribed fitting, which is essential for buying yourself a hearing aid that works specifically for you.
The Xceed SP also offers connectivity with its accompanying accessories, such as the Oticon TV adapter so that you can stream audio from your TV. You can also take calls from your iPhone, but be aware this will only work in conjunction with the ConnectClip, which is available separately.
There is also an OticonOn App, which works with both iOS and Android to adjust the hearing aid and provide extra features such as battery level and volume adjustment. It will even locate your hearing aids should you misplace them. Curiously, and considering how advanced the Oticon Xceed hearing aids are, they do not come with Bluetooth.
Oticon Xceed SP: User reviews
Oticon has several videos available online, explaining in clear detail its various hearing aids and the technology they use. On one such video provides user feedback from a person called Anna-Carin, who has severe hearing loss in both ears.
She says, “I use Oticon Xceed all the time and didn’t [want to] switch back to my old hearing aids. They were good from the beginning, and when listening to music I heard lots of detail.”
Meanwhile, another user, Hans, shared how his long-term hearing loss has had a negative impact on his quality of life. However, after being fitted with his Oticon Xceed SP hearing aids and trialling them for two months, he said, “There were far more birds in the garden than I thought. Suddenly I could hear more. I could hear a faucet. I have never been able to hear water running. There were many instances where I could suddenly hear things I couldn’t before.”
Oticon Xceed SP: What other websites say
On the Hearing Tracker website, a user review says of the hearing aid: “Oticon's Xceed continues my experience that each new generation of aids improve (modestly) on the model it replaces. That said, my hearing profile forces me to accept that no miracles are likely.”
The website itself shares favorable ratings for the Oticon Xceed SP, including 100% for ‘Benefit in Quiet’, as well as 100% for ‘Reliability’ and ‘Improvement’.
Meanwhile, EarPros lists the advantages of the Xceed, stating that they are “a powerful device” with “superior sound quality with less listening effort.” They cited the lack of a rechargeable option as a disadvantage.
Should you buy the Oticon Xceed SP?
This super-smart hearing aid, designed for people experiencing severe to profound hearing loss, certainly looks exceptional on paper thanks to the inclusion of multiple cutting-edge technologies, such as Oticon’s BrainHearing. The trial period is especially useful on the Oticon Xceed SP, as this is a higher value hearing aid so you need to be sure it can do what you need it to.
On the flipside, there’s a lot of technology here that might be overkill if you have only mild hearing loss. And if you want a rechargeable hearing device, and especially one with Bluetooth connectivity, then you will need to look elsewhere.
Ultimately, the Oticon Xceed SP is one of the most advanced hearing aids you can buy right now, and we would recommend speaking to an audiologist to determine which variation is right for you.
Looking for more health content? If you have ongoing medical requirements, take a look at our guides to the best health insurance and the best Medicare Part D plans to see how coverage could benefit you. You may also be interested in our guide to the best medical alert bracelets, which can be engraved with your medical details.