View Full Version : New to Hearing Aids
10-29-2008, 12:50 PM
I went to a local MD (ENT) for my physical ear exam and my hearing test so I could fax them to America Hears to get my FreedomAD LOF aids. Before he reviewed my hearing test he wanted to fit me with a pair of the Starkey 1200aids. I guess he wanted to make sure I heard his LOUD sales pitch. :)
I had in the 1200 aids and he was pitching the Zon 5. The Destinity sounded nice after he tweaked the software. The Zon 5 was smaller with no volume control (for what they are worth I do not know) and is water proof to 30 feet so you can hear a shark swimming up behind you I guess.
The doctor short circuited when I told him I was going to buy aids that came with the adjusting hardware/software combo but he did appolozie after he realized I thought he was making a donkey out of himself.
Bottom line the Starkeys let me hear better for the 30 minutes sales pitch but they are based on the old compression technology instead of the ADRO digital technology used by America Hears and other more advanced brands.
If some is not into adjusting your aids from the office or home by letting America Hears do it remotely over the internet or just doing it yourself on your PC.
Starkey is a huge company and are known to stand behind their technology even if it is not cutting edge. Actually many might never hear the difference.
The MD wanted $5100 for either model you mentioned and I think that was one year if you lost them etc. The aids I am to receive from America Hears tomorrow now run about $2350 if you get the $149 hardware/software package to adjust the hearing aids yourself or log into their web site and let them tweak them online with you hearing and approving any changes before they save the changes in the aids as you wear them like the office can so trying to sell you on the Starkey brand.
I just did not have an extra $3000 to donate to the MD but even if the America Hears FreedomAD LOF were the same price as the Starkey brand I could have gone with them over Starkey to get newer technology and not have to drive (good distance in my case) back to the DR office to get adjustments.
Mitchell it is confusing out there but Starkey seems to be a rock solid company so you should be pleased with that brand. Mail order is not everyone's cup of tea I understand. Keep us updated and best of luck. I waited about 15 years longer than I should have to get aided.
10-30-2008, 07:10 AM
Also, is $5,500 a reasonable price for these Hearing Aids with a full three year warranty.
From what I found in my shopping, $5,500 for a pair of high-end hearing aids is "in the ballpark" for a full-service local audiologist/dispenser. They claim that there is a lot of service provided, which is covered in that amount.
In my case, I have a very hard time parting with that kind of money. I don't believe anybody's hearing aids should cost that much, no matter how good they are. I went with America Hears, for less than half the cost. I've had my FreedomAD LOF's for a week now, and I'm well satisfied with them. :) There is a trade-off. I am doing my own adjustments/fine tuning, after the initial setup by AH, with the software they provide. In doing so, I have communicated with an audiologist at AH by phone and by e-mail. She has been very helpful.
I'm not saying that the route Gale and I chose is right for you. Only you can decide that. If you look around in this forum, you will find a lot of discussion about America Hears, as well as some good information on the other brands.
11-24-2008, 03:11 PM
The Audiologist is recommending Starkey Hearing Aids. She said she would give me either the Zon.5 or ....
Mitchell, I also have just recieved my first set of aids about 1 week ago. They are ZON.7 - you are in the ball park with the cost. Mine were $5400 total. I also am new to this discussion forum.
Initial setup was with just two of the four modes programed - 'normal' or omnidirectional and 'Directional' for conversation in a noisy environment. I have spent the last week experimenting with the different modes. I remember noticing on the computer during the initail setup that there are several more modes available. Does anyone have experience with or can recommend any of the other modes?
I read in another post about initial tininess - my experience also. The audiologist set up some 'compression' - I am wondering if less compresson would equal a more full sound....
Anyway, I am interested in all of your feedback.
Have a Great Day! :)
11-24-2008, 03:41 PM
Comments: ADRO is not supplanting WDRC (Wide Dynamic Range Compression). It is just a different method of handling the typical hard of hearing persons truncated dynamic range. The vast majority of aids on the market are WDRC including the latest from the major factories..
ADRO is a fine system for people with mild to moderate loss. For those with severe or worse loss, the WDRC may work better because it operates much faster to control loud sounds. An ADRO aid typically takes almost 1 to 2 seconds to reduce loud volume....WDRC operates in a few milliseconds. This is crucial for those with severe loss and the usual accompanying recruitment.
In a nutshell: ADRO is OK for those with little or no recruitment but the majority of the professionals prefer WDRC aids for most of their patients.
Recruitment= Normal hearing persons are able to reduce loud sounds to comfortable levels automatically in the cochlea (and to a small extent in the ossicles). With recruitment hard of hearing persons hear loud sounds at levels that can approach painful. Ed
11-24-2008, 08:12 PM
I just got my Audiogram and that probably explains why I have had some difficulties. :(
250 20R - 20L
500 25R - 25L
1000 35R - 30L
2000 45R - 40L
4000 60R - 55L
6000 60R - 55L
8000 50R - 45L
The Audiologist is recommending Starkey Hearing Aids. She said she would give me either the Zon.5 or Destiny 1200 for the same price, $5,500 with three year warranty. She told me there is no difference between the two. I like the looks of the Zon.5 and I am told it is newer, but when I go to the Starkey website, it looks like the Destiny 1200 has some of the features of the Zon.7. Are they really both the same, or is their a reason why I would take one of the other at the same price. Also, is $5,500 a reasonable price for these Hearing Aids with a full three year warranty.Absolutely not. Especially, not for you. You have mild to moderate hearing loss that does not require much assistance at all from a hearing aid.
If I had your hearing loss profile I would first try an inexpensive, good quality pocket amplifier such as the Pocketalker Ultra (~$125) or the Comfort Audio Duett (~$160). Both of these units have more than adequate amplification for you and simple tone controls that could boost the high frequencies you are lacking. My hearing is also mild to moderate and I found that even simple amplification is quite effective for improving speech recognition.
Later on, as you and I age, our hearing will probably get worse and by then, hearing aids will be priced less expensively - in-line with other electronic products.
11-24-2008, 09:54 PM
I think that is too much. I am quite alot of different hearing situations and I wanted more powerful aids..my loss is progressive as well so i wanted the better aids..i am soon getting the phonak exelias which is a top of the line aid and for 2 exelias with service plan and one new mold it was gonna cost me $4800 and you are paying almost double that. the exelias come with a 3 year warranty as well as full service with the service plan ($150) and a new ear mold (85) ....i think u should shop around...i would buy from america hears but i'm in canada!
11-25-2008, 05:17 PM
I have been shopping around and I met with a second Audiologist who was a referal from Hearing Planet. He is recommending a Pure 500 with the tek for bluetooth compatiblity. The reason he is recommending that is I use a blackberry a lot, with a bluetooth headphone on my ear. It seems that the Pure 500 is about equal to the Zone 5, and with the tech it will be about $1,000 less. Does anybody have any comments on using the Pure 500 with the Tek, or expirience with Hearing Planet. I do like the local Audiologist they refered me to. As I understand it I get the hearing aid from hearing planet but all of my local support from the local audiologist.If you really insist on buying a hearing aid and don't want to go with AmericaHears.com, try Costco, which has audiologists and they sell very good digital units (quality as good as the units you are looking at) for $3000 /pair.
11-26-2008, 09:38 AM
I have been shopping around and I met with a second Audiologist who was a referal from Hearing Planet. He is recommending a Pure 500 with the tek for bluetooth compatiblity. The reason he is recommending that is I use a blackberry a lot, with a bluetooth headphone on my ear. It seems that the Pure 500 is about equal to the Zone 5, and with the tech it will be about $1,000 less. Does anybody have any comments on using the Pure 500 with the Tek, or expirience with Hearing Planet. I do like the local Audiologist they refered me to. As I understand it I get the hearing aid from hearing planet but all of my local support from the local audiologist.
Another Option you have re; BT & Cell phone, other than Pure/Tek, Oticon/Streamer & Phonak/iCom, is to choose an HA that includes a T-Coil. There are 3rd Party Bluetooth neckloops that will work with almost any HA w/ a T-Coil. It is not as automated as the built-in Systems & does not function as the HA remote control, but many people use them. This is only one example http://www.localbattery.com/bluetooth-neckloop.html (not real cheap. but less $$ than the Tek, Streamer & iCom)
11-26-2008, 10:25 AM
That is a very intersting device for Bluetooth support. How does it actually work. I thought for t-coil the transmitter (phone) had to be right next to the HA. How does the bluetooth device around your neck, comminicate with the HA.In the case of the Artone you connect the phone to the Artone using Bluetooth, but it's the Artone neckloop that's radiating to the telecoil.
11-26-2008, 01:14 PM
How true it is I do not know. I am wearing a pair of MicroTech 12 Radius, I know they are a part of Sharkeys. I have been told they are the same Sharkeys 1200, if price is a concern I would check them out the internet price for Micro Tech is around $2300 each. :)
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