Advice on available options in fitting Costco EP 20's

Hello everyone. I’m a new user here but not quite new to hearing aids in general. About 3 1/2 years ago I purchased Costco KS9’s, my first hearing aids. At that time I knew nothing about the fitting process, and just accepted what the rep suggested. The aids helped but were not a panacea. I just lost one of my KS9’s and am out of the replacement warranty, so I’m planning on buying a new pair from Costco. My primary focus is on speech recognition, especially in a noisy environment like a restaurant, so my focus was on Phillips versus Jabra, not Reston. After significant research online, I’ve chosen Jabra. I’m now waiting for my re-test appointment in a few weeks.
My selection of Jabra is based heavily on its ability to adjust the so-called cone of focus via the app. I understand this went away with the change to the Hear-in-Noise program, but I plan to ask the fitter for a 2nd Hear-in-Noise program with “Autoscope Adaptive Directionality” selected, which I understand gets me the adjustable cone back in the app. I would be interested in whether other Jabra users find the adjustable cone helpful in heavy background noise environments like restaurants. The Jabra’s longer battery life also helped sway the decision. The Phillips sounded marginally acceptable at 18 hours, but the Jabra’s 30 hours adds some extra margin. Any thoughts from others who went through a similar decision process would be welcome.
Assuming I don’t get swayed from my Jabra decision, I understand that the fitter can select options for the functionality of the buttons on the aids. What choices do I have? I would like to be able to both select the program and adjust the volume through the buttons, perhaps using short versus longer durations. If I were to find a copy of the Resound SmartFit tool, can I select the Costco hearing aids and see all the available options, without any hearing aids connected? If so that might be a help in finding all the options I ought to consider.

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I got the Jabra 20s from Costco a few weeks ago. These are the first aids I have used (mild to moderate loss especially high frequencies). So far they seem to be fine for me. After my second week I had the Costco tech change my Hear in Noise from default Front Focus to giving me some control through Autoscope setting. I have only used it once so far at a bar that featured a fairly loud live band in an adjoining room plus a lot of conversations going on. I think it helped as I had my back to the room with the band and my wife sitting across from me. I played around with adjusting the cone a bit and was generally able to have a conversation. It was a very challenging environment so I did not expect a miracle. Still had to lean in a bit and occasionally have things repeated. Overall I am happy with these hearing aids so far, but I do not have anything to compare them to. When I made my appointment at Costco for Autoscope setup, I specifically told them what I wanted. This gave the tech a chance to figure out how to set it up before my appointment which she did by looking up the video. I also brought a copy of the instructions with me which we ended up referring to at one point. The first tech I had when I initially got the aids had no clue about setting up Autoscope focus adjustability and did not seem to be interested in figuring it out.


Great post Frank!
My wife is the one getting hearing aids, but she is rather timid and I want her to have the best value she can. (I thought I had good hearing until I started taking some tests online. I will probably be getting them if an audiologist thinks I should.)
I also have done extensive research and am interested in the cone of focus on the Jabra at Costco. She has not gone back since the first visit because the tech wanted her to see an ENT because of a large shift in a low tone over three years. She did, the ENT said everything was good and my wife had another test with the audiologist (DR.) and the same low frequency was a db level better that the tech had tested. She is going back Tuesday to choose her hearing aid. We both want the Jabra. I want it for it’s features. My wife wants it because it’s small and light (from what we read) The tech didn’t even bring the Jabra out !! They seem to be pushing the Rexton, so I hope we don’t have a problem with that. We asked for another fitter because the said she was new…it showed. She didn’t even have her own business cards. It sounds as though you are familiar with the fitter on you tube (Hear in noise and Autoscope Directionality that you mentioned.) One other feature that I understand they locked out is the tinnitus killing feature. I was going to ask about that, but the you tube guy and others don’t believe any of that really works.
I would be very interested in your experience and I will post my wife’ and my experience also.

RJM, also a very good informative post. I think I was typing when you were! I’m glad to know the cone does work and worth asking them to do it! The second fitter sounds like a very cooperative fitter. I hope my wives second fitter is as well.

I have tinnitus. Seemed to develop early on after Covid started and I was working from home. This is what actually prompted my hearing test which showed my moderate loss (along with my wife telling me I seem to have hearing issues). So far, when I have my aids in (pretty much all day) my tinnitus is not very noticeable which seems to happen for some aid users. I do have a background noise feature that works with my hearing aids which I assume could be used for tinnitus, but I have not felt a need to use it with my hearing aids in. I just leave it turned off (controlled though my iPhone).

I’ve had my Jabra EP 20s with MARIE receivers for about three weeks and I just had my third visit to the fitter this afternoon. The Jabra 20s immediately performed better than my 4 year old Resound instruments which I also got at Costco. I’ve been making changes to get the best Hear In Noise program and to determine the best way to take advantage of the MARIE microphones. Here are some of my observations so far:

I prefer the Autoscope program for Hear In Noise over the default Front Focus and another one called Fixed Directionality. I’ve been leaving Autoscope set for the narrowest beam, but I’m going to try leaving it on AUTO for a while to see what that does the next time I’m in a restaurant.

For general use, the 360 All Around program really works pretty well, as it adapts to most environments. I’d say it even has some hear in noise capabilities. I can’t tell you if the 360 All Around uses the MARIE mics or not.

The fitting software offers an option called MARIE, so I had my fitter add that as a directional program a couple of weeks ago. Switching back and forth from that to 360 All Around didn’t make any difference that I could tell, so today I had him use that program position for the next item…

Someone, probably in this forum, said that the Outdoor program uses only the MARIE microphones, so I had that added as one of my options. I’ve only been using it for an hour, but it does sound quite natural. I like it so far and may keep it. BTW, when you bring up the Outdoor program in the fitting software, you still have to select a directionality option, that’s where you choose MARIE.

The YouTube video by the Costco fitter that showed the fitting software screen showed an option called Spatial Awareness. I wanted to try that one today, but it’s not present in the version of the fitting software that my fitter has. On the other hand, his version does have the MARIE option which I did not see in the YouTube video.

So currently, my four program options are 360 All Around, Autoscope, Outdoor/MARIE and something called Soft Switching which I haven’t tried yet. I’m also trying some different domes, which is a whole topic in itself that I won’t go into.

Anyway, I’m quite happy with my upgrade to the Jabra 20s. Costco prices are low enough that I don’t see any reason to try the OTC hearing aids. The services offered by the Costco fitters are well worth the small added cost in my opinion. That being said, the Costco fitters don’t know everything, so having a forum like this is extremely helpful.

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Welcome to the forum Frank.

No this is not the way to choose which HA is best for you, do not base your decision on something you read on the web!
You need to undertake a decent trial of each model you’d like, ReSound ( Jabra) are indeed good HAs, but no one knows which is better for you, Don’t rule out Signia (Rexton) as they also have very good noise reduction features if that’s all your really interested in.
Why not go for the disposable battery instead of rechargeable if your concerned about run time.

All HAs have directional ability, it’s not just ReSound (Jabra) Rexton (Signia) is pretty good in the App.

Depends really, I think you’ll be somewhat disappointed tho, hearing in these types of environments is the holy grail of hearing, unfortunately it’s just not here yet, sometimes it’s helpful where you actually position yourself in the restaurant or bar, but it’s not just those of us with hearing loss that find it difficult in these situations, people with normal hearing can also struggle.

Yep you most definitely can, and it’s a very good idea, get to know the software and you then get to know your HAs, sounds like you would be a good candigate for DIY projects!