Best Online Hearing Tests

woman using her phone to self administer a hearing test

If you’re having trouble hearing but don’t want to pay for a professional hearing test, you may have heard you can get a free hearing test online, and you’re wondering if it’s a good alternative. While they’re no substitute for an exam by a hearing care professional, online tests are still valuable tools for maintaining your hearing health. 

A free online hearing test can help you find out how old is your hearing and decide if you need to see a medical professional. They’re an excellent way to monitor progressive hearing loss if you’ve already been diagnosed. Our experts at AudiologyNow put together this guide with all the facts about the best online hearing tests today.

MDHearingAid

MDHearingAid is a Midwest company that offers a wide array of affordable and high-quality hearing aids with a variety of features. MDHearingAid online hearing test is designed by professional sound engineers and takes approximately eight minutes to complete. 

The test instructions are easy to understand, and the interface is user-friendly. The test results indicate your hearing ability in each ear on a scale ranging from healthy hearing to profound hearing loss.

You’ll need to take the test using headphones in a room free of distractions and background noise. The company recommends setting your device to maximum volume throughout the test. 

To create a profile, you will have to fill in some personal information, including your name and email. Once you make the profile, put on your headphones. You’ll be asked to do a sound check to verify whether the headphones are placed correctly and working correctly.

Test

When the test begins, you will see a set of soundbars with buttons labeled “‘softer” and “louder”  on either side. Tap the soundbars or use the buttons to set the volume to the lowest level you can hear. Similarly, sounds of different frequencies will be presented to evaluate your hearing.

Results

After the test, you’ll see a graph representing the severity of your hearing loss in both ears. If the test results show hearing loss, consult a licensed audiologist for a more extensive hearing evaluation. 

Rating

  • User-friendliness: 4/5
  • Report quality: 4.5/5
  • Overall: 4.5/5

Eargo

Eargo is a hearing aid manufacturer known for its smart proprietary technology, invisible hearing aids, and personalized smartphone applications. Eargo offers a free online hearing test on its website. The test comprises a questionnaire, setup process, sound calibration, hearing evaluation, and a hearing simulator. 

To prepare for the test, connect headphones to the computer, set the device volume to 50 percent, and calibrate the sound.

If you do not have headphones, you will be directed to a short screening questionnaire which will generate a result based on your answers.  

For sound calibration, the device will play the sound of hand rubbing. You will then have to rub your hands together for 10 seconds about 2 inches in front of your face. Adjust the volume using the slider to match the volume of your hands rubbing with the audio played by the device. 

Test

The device will present tones of different frequencies. You will be instructed to press the button labeled “I hear that” every time you hear a sound. 

After the test, you’ll be asked to complete a screening questionnaire about your hearing issues. The app will ask about common signs that you may be experiencing hearing loss, such as difficulty hearing high-pitched sounds, trouble understanding conversations and talking too loudly.

Finally, you can use the hearing simulator to experience how you will hear using hearing aids in everyday scenarios, such as spending time out outdoors, watching TV, and sitting in a busy restaurant. This is especially useful for individuals contemplating whether or not to gesoundcheckt hearing aids.

Results

To get your hearing test results, fill in your name, email, and phone number. Your ability will be rated on a scale of one to five. One corresponds to normal hearing, and five signifies severe hearing loss. The company recommends Eargo hearing aids for individuals with scores from two to four. 

Rating

  • User-friendliness: 5/5
  • Report quality: 4/5
  • Overall: 5/5

Audicus

Audicus offers a free online hearing test designed by neuroscientists. The test takes about five to 10 minutes and gives instant results via email along with a free consultation. Before the test, you need to fill in your details on a form. You will be instructed to find a quiet place, connect your headphones, and set the volume to 50 percent. This is followed by a sound check.

Test

You’ll hear a series of tones at different pitches and loudness will be presented. Hit the spacebar when you hear the tone. If you don’t hear it, you’ll tap the button labeled “Not Heard.” Once the test is over, you’ll complete a questionnaire about your hearing history, health insurance, and interest in buying hearing aids. 

Results

Your hearing is rated on a scale from one to five. One is the worst, and five means normal hearing. The test also provides ear-specific information on how well you can perceive tones in each frequency range, which is helpful for hearing aid programming. Finally, the results suggest a hearing aid model. 

Rating

  • User-friendliness: 4/5
  • Report quality: 4/5
  • Overall: 4/5

hearWHO

The hearWHOsoundcheck screening test app was developed by the World Health Organization and the hearX Group.

The hearWHO app isn’t a tone test. Unlike most other tests, it uses digits-in-noise technology.

The app is available on both iOS and Android. The test begins with sound calibration, noise measurement, and headphone check.

Testing

The hearWHO hearing test presents 23 sets of digits in the presence of background noise to determine your signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) and evaluate how well you hear in noisy environments. 

Results

The noise test presents your hearing as a score from 0 to 100. A score below 50 indicates some degree of hearing loss, a score between 50 and 75 suggests that you should check your hearing regularly, and a score of 75+ indicates normal hearing. The hearWho application is user-friendly, and the test takes just 5-10 minutes. 

Rating

  • User-friendliness: 5/5
  • Report quality: 4/5
  • Overall: 4.5/5

ReSound

ReSound is a subsidiary of GN Group, a leading hearing aid manufacturer. You can find a free online hearing test on the ReSound website. 

Test

This three-minute test presents a set of words and numbers in the presence of background noise. When the test taker hears the sound, they select the corresponding picture or number. If you’re using headphones, the ReSound test check will check the right and left ears individually. 

Results

Once the test is complete, you will be required to submit your name and email to view the results. The test result is displayed on a semi-circle scale ranging from “no hearing loss” to “possible hearing loss.” Below the scale, you will see an estimate of your hearing loss severity. 

Rating

  • User-friendliness: 4/5
  • Report quality: 4/5
  • Overall: 4/5

HearingTest.online

The HearingTest.online hearing test is designed by Stéphane Pigeon, an audio engineer and professional sound designer. Stéphane emphasizes the importance of sound calibration to increase the accuracy of online hearing tests. 

To calibrate your sound, listen to the calibration audio file using headphones. Take off your headphones and rub your hands together. Adjust the volume to match the loudness of your hands rubbing with the audio file. 

Test

The next section is the hearing test. You will see 12 rows and six columns divided into four sections: almost silent, quiet, louder, very loud. Starting at the top, tap on the green card and move down until you hear a tone. Repeat this in every column. This will estimate your hearing thresholds across different frequencies.

Results 

Once the test is complete, you can view your hearing thresholds at certain frequencies on an audiogram. Frequency-specific information can help a specialist program your hearing aids. However, the test does not provide information on the overall severity of your hearing loss. 

Tap on “Overlay” to see whether your hearing thresholds fall beyond the level needed to comprehend speech. You can also try the advanced tests to precisely check for hearing loss at low and high frequencies. 

Rating

  • User-friendliness: 3.5/5
  • Report quality: 4/5
  • Overall: 4/5

Starkey 

Starkey is one of the largest hearing aid manufacturers in the world. They offer a free five-minute online hearing test on their website. Before you begin, the test asks about scenarios where you have difficulty hearing, such as on the phone or when surrounded by background noise. Once you complete this, choose whether you will use speakers or headphones and set the volume to 50 percent.

Test

The first part of the test presents various environmental sounds. In this simple test, you have to adjust the volume using the slider to find the quietest sounds you can hear. After you complete each section, a note about the kinds of sounds you can hear will appear on the screen.

The second portion tests your speech comprehension at various levels. After a word is presented, you choose the word you heard. Once the test is complete, the screen will display a description of your hearing ability. However, the test does not estimate the severity of hearing loss. 

Rating

  • User-friendliness: 5/5
  • Report quality: 3/5
  • Overall: 3.5/5

Signia

Signia is another leading hearing aid manufacturer. They offer a free online hearing screening test for people aged 18 and above. 

The test begins with a questionnaire about your hearing loss. Once you complete the questionnaire, adjust the volume to 100% and connect your earphones.  

Test

This online hearing test is divided into six parts. First, you are asked to adjust the volume to the loudest level you can listen to without discomfort. Next, you turn the volume down until the speaker is just loud enough to understand. The last four steps involve setting the volume to the lowest level you can hear.

Signia’s online hearing test is brief but effective. It tests one ear at a time to gain ear-specific information on whether you have significant hearing loss. However, the test does not grade the severity of the hearing loss.  

Rating

  • User-friendliness: 4/5
  • Report quality: 3/5
  • Overall: 3.5/5

Did you know that you can get a free hearing test at Costco if you’re a member?

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are Online Hearing Tests?

Online hearing tests are web or mobile device applications that give people with suspected hearing problems the information they need to decide if they should seek help. Hearing aid manufacturers offer online hearing tests, so people can buy devices online without visiting hearing centers. 

How Do Online Hearing Tests Work?

Most online hearing tests are tone tests similar to an audiological exam you would get from a hearing care professional. You’ll hear tones at various frequencies and volumes played through headphones or your computer speakers. Others use speech sounds or a combination thereof,

Woman performing a comprehensive hearing evaluation to a patient in a sound treated room.

Can I Take an Online Test Instead of an Audiological Exam?

Online tests can reliably tell you if you would benefit from hearing aids, but they cannot provide a medical diagnosis.

Hearing clinics have specialized equipment, and an audiologist also has the advanced training to diagnose rare medical causes of hearing loss. 

Are Online Hearing Tests Accurate?

The accuracy of online hearing tests depends on factors like background noise, sound calibration, and the quality of headphones used. Professional hearing tests are performed by licensed hearing professionals in soundproof rooms using advanced audio equipment. Since this is not possible with online hearing tests, the results may not be accurate or reliable. 

When Should I Get a Hearing Test?

Consult a licensed hearing care professional if you notice any typical signs of hearing loss, including the inability to understand phone conversations, loud talking, and listening to devices at excess volume. You should also get tested every one to three years if you are at high risk of hearing loss due to age or noise exposure.

Conclusion

A free hearing test is a great first step if you suspect hearing loss. They are quick, easy, and provide relatively accurate results. You have more options than ever, and each online hearing test has a distinctive approach. There’s no commitment, so try a few to find the best online hearing test for your needs. 

If your hearing test results show signs of significant impairment, book an appointment with a hearing profession for early detection and intervention. They can advise you on treatment options like hearing aids or refer you to a physician for medical treatment if necessary.