Page 1 of 9 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 87

Thread: Resound Alera vs. Future

  1. Default Resound Alera vs. Future

    I understand that Resound Alera comes in three models - 5, 7 and 9 and that the Resound Future sold at COSTCO is similar to Alera. First, does anyone know the difference between the 3 Alera models, and second, which of the three models is the Future like? Thanks for any help.

  2. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Alec View Post
    I understand that Resound Alera comes in three models - 5, 7 and 9 and that the Resound Future sold at COSTCO is similar to Alera. First, does anyone know the difference between the 3 Alera models, and second, which of the three models is the Future like? Thanks for any help.
    The Future is reputed to be identical to the Alera 9 except for the shape of the battery door. The wireless Future carries a model number of 861 while the Alera 9 is 961 and the Alera 7 is 761. This implies that the Future is positioned between the 9 and the 7. I trialed the Alera 9's and currently own the Futures and I see no difference in features between them, and that applies to the accessories (tv streamer, remote) as well.
    Starkey Series 3 i110's and Wi i110's

    Freq L R
    250 25 25
    500 30 30
    1K 45 40
    2K 55 45
    3K 60 50
    4K 75 60
    6K 80 75
    8K 80 70

  3. Default

    Alera 9s and 7s each have 17 channels, while the 5s have 9. All three levels come with 5 programs. Based on those numbers, I believe the Future is most closely related to the Alera 5.

    I've also heard the Future is slightly thicker, which may have something to do with the battery door issue.

    Check out HearingRevolution's blog about comparing private label hearing aids to the name brands.

  4. Default

    How do I find HearingRevolution's blog? Thanks.

  5. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by johnk9779 View Post
    Alera 9s and 7s each have 17 channels, while the 5s have 9. All three levels come with 5 programs. Based on those numbers, I believe the Future is most closely related to the Alera 5.
    I don't follow your logic at all. I witnessed the Resound rep telling the Costco audiologist that the only difference in the Alera 9 and the Future is the shape of the battery door.
    I've also heard the Future is slightly thicker, which may have something to do with the battery door issue.
    In addition, I was trialing both the Alera 9 and Future simultaneously and held both in my hand. The thickness is identical. The battery door is pointed in the Future, that's the only difference. In addition to the above, I have studied the features available in both products and they are absolutely identical. There are no features available in the Aventa software for the Alera 9 that isn't also available for the Futures.

    Check out HearingRevolution's blog about comparing private label hearing aids to the name brands.
    I checked out the blog and it says absolutely nothing definitive.
    Starkey Series 3 i110's and Wi i110's

    Freq L R
    250 25 25
    500 30 30
    1K 45 40
    2K 55 45
    3K 60 50
    4K 75 60
    6K 80 75
    8K 80 70

  6. #6

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Citation4444 View Post
    I don't follow your logic at all. I witnessed the Resound rep telling the Costco audiologist that the only difference in the Alera 9 and the Future is the shape of the battery door. In addition, I was trialing both the Alera 9 and Future simultaneously and held both in my hand. The thickness is identical. The battery door is pointed in the Future, that's the only difference. In addition to the above, I have studied the features available in both products and they are absolutely identical. There are no features available in the Aventa software for the Alera 9 that isn't also available for the Futures.

    I checked out the blog and it says absolutely nothing definitive.

    Funny, because MY Resound rep stated that the Future is equivalent to the Alera 5.

    dr. amy

  7. #7

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Alec View Post
    First, does anyone know the difference between the 3 Alera models...
    Feature difference chart from GNResound's webpage:
    http://www.resound.com/int/Download%20Document%20Library/Resound%20Alera/17377900rBs4%20GB.pdf
    Note that there are really six Alera models available: a 5, 7, and a 9 with wireless features, and a 5, 7, and 9 without wireless features (look above the chart, where the model numbers are listed). Within the wireless Aleras, each step up the model chart adds about $800 to consumer cost, though this can vary depending on the audiologist. My audiologist's impression was that in hardware, the three wireless models are identical except for a slightly upgraded microphone in the 9. The major differences were in software programming and in warranty coverage (not listed in the chart, but longer in the 9 than in the 7, longer in the 7 than in the 5).

    This chart kind of minimizes the differences and is not as clearly written as it should be to help consumers understand exactly what features get added as they step up the line.

    For example, one key difference between the 5, the 7, and the 9 is the number of custom programs that can be added to the main program, changeable on the fly by the user with the button on each aid or with the optional add-on remote. These programs are shaped by the audiologist often using templates provided in the Aventa software and then programmed into the aid at the audiologist's office. (Aventa is not legally available for consumer use.) An example of a common program offered for the Alera (and many other aids, of course) is a Restaurant mode, which brings up voices in relation to noisy backgrounds. The effect is subtle but real. (It's still hard to hear quiet conversation in noisy restaurants, but not as hard as it would be without a Restaurant mode.)

    The 7 allows two extra programs in addition to the main one. (I know that mainly because it was my main reason for upgrading from the 5 to the 7.) The 9 can do more, but I forget whether it's three or four extra programs, and the chart just says "up to 4 programs"--does that include the main program, or not? The 5 only allows one extra program, or none; I'm not sure, but I think it's one. The chart indicates that each step up the model line allows for more programs but doesn't specify exactly how many for each model. They should have made that chart clearer for that feature difference and others.

    GNResound is likely to be very coy and vague about differences between Aleras and Futures because they want some doubt there in the public mind--they want to keep both private audiologists and Costco happy. Since GNR is vague, each side can market what it does best without having their marketing message undercut by the manufacturer and leave it up to consumers to choose.
    Last edited by hamjor; 03-10-2011 at 11:41 AM.
    2013 Audiogram
    Hz250.....0500...1000…...1500…..2000....3000....40 00...6000....8000
    L...20.......15........30........40........40..... ..45.......40.......55........65
    R...15.......20........30........40........40..... ..30.......55.......55........65

    Speech disc:
    L: 100% at 60 dB
    R: 100% at 60 dB

  8. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by dr.amy View Post
    Funny, because MY Resound rep stated that the Future is equivalent to the Alera 5.

    dr. amy
    This is quite easily demonstrated to be wrong. There are several features that are present only on the Alera 9 and not the Alera 7 or Alera 5. Any Future owner can verify that these features are present in the Future. For example, one such feature is "Natural Directionality II" . I have this present in my Future and it is enabled in memory location 1. If my Future were an Alera 5 (or a 7) this would not be possible.

    Some of the other features present only on the Alera 9 are "Adjustable directional mix", "environmental optimizer II", "environmental noise reduction", and "AutoScope adaptive directionality". These are all available in the Future. Just look over your audi's shoulder during your next fitting, and have him/her demonstrate that these features are present, selectable, and can be enabled in your Futures.
    Starkey Series 3 i110's and Wi i110's

    Freq L R
    250 25 25
    500 30 30
    1K 45 40
    2K 55 45
    3K 60 50
    4K 75 60
    6K 80 75
    8K 80 70

  9. Default

    My $0.02 is that Resound is purposefully obfuscating the facts regarding the Costco Future hearing aids. I base this on the following experiences: I was in my audi’s office and she called her Resound representative and asked how they compare. She was nice enough to put the call on the speakerphone so I was right there as the representative was “bad mouthing” the Futures and saying they were Alera 5s. I later stopped by Costco and was asking about features only to find out that (just as Citation4444 stated above) they have options found only in models higher than the 5. Thus, I called Resound myself and although they didn’t want to talk to me directly, they did answer some basic questions. At first I was told they were Alera 5s, but when I asked about the additional options, the story changed and I was told that the Futures are “a totally difference aid and difficult to compare, but would fall somewhere between an Alera 5 and a 7”. However, on another visit to Costco I happen to notice lots of commotion in the hearing aid center. I walked up and overheard that they were discussing Resound aids. Just so happens that my timing was great as two of them worked for Resound and were there to train on the new Futures. They were nice enough to answer my questions, telling me that the electronics were identical to an Alera (just as Citation4444 indicated) and the only physical difference was the shape battery door (btw, I too have compared it to my Alera 9 and other than the shape of the battery door they do appear identical). However, they also told me there were a couple of differences. One is in regard to the firmware which they claimed (please understand that I’m ONLY relating what I was told, I don’t have any experience with the Futures other than holding one) had options that fell between the Alera 7 and 9. The other is the warranty which is a 3Yr/3Yr (broken/lost) warranty with the Alera 9 and a 3Yr/2Yr with the Costco Future.

    Since I already owned my Alera 9, I didn’t pay too much attention to (what they claimed) were slightly different features in the different firmware versions. I seem to recall they had something to do with some of the options (like expansion, noise tracker II, directional mix, and possibly even DFS Ultra) having an extra option, or two, available when programming the Alera 9s that isn’t available with the Costco Futures. In other words, in many cases the option is there (unlike in the Alera 5s or Alera 7s) but has one or two less selectable menu choices. Again, it’s important to note that I’m only repeating what was told to me by the Resound reps there to train on the Futures!

    I also agree with Citation4444 when he says that a difference in options can easily be proved or disproved. All that would be necessary would be to speak with someone very knowledgeable with the Costco software, or a Costco audi that would allow someone to watch as they used the programming software. My audi is very nice and I’m sure she won’t have any problem telling me the available options (I’ll work on posting them) for the Alera 9s, so the only difficult part will be accurately determining the available options in the Resound programming software used at Costco.

  10. Default

    I sent the following email to Resound Costco support. The reply was general that I should do trials to figure out the differences for myself or work it out with my professional.

    To: Resound Costco Support (Bloomington)
    I am trying to compare Costco’s Futures (F861-DRW) with the Alera 9’s (AL961-DRW). It looks like both have the 9 gain handles, but one spec sheet I got from Costsco had the F861’s as having 12 Warp compression bands while the Alera 9’s [and Alera 7’s] have 17. Is that right?
    Looking through the technical, it also looked like the Futures didn’t have the Alera 9’s “Adjustable direction mix,” “Personalized noise reduction,” or “Environmental Optimizer II.”
    Also, I couldn’t tell if the Futures “DFS Ultra” and “NoiseTracker II” programming were the same as the Alera 9’s “Ultimate”, or more like the Alera 7’s “Advanced” or the Alera 5’s “Standard”.

    Thanks to everyone for their posts. I am new to this process.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •