Any thoughts on Unitron's Tandem

Hi,

Just wanted to know if someone had some thoughts to share on the Unitron’s new CROS/BICROS instrument - Tandem.

Thanks

That’s a very precise question for a first post.

Just curious :

  • are you a hearing aid professional?
  • or perhaps a market researcher?

By the way, the TANDEM is not due out until mid July.

He might be asking because he is deaf on one side, like me. But I did not know the name of the instrument and have been unable to find out much about it. And am not really interested anymore, having pretty much given up on BICROS - for now, at least.

Hi thanks for the replies, i am neither a researcher nor a professional, i was looking for some information on the new launch news from unitron so thought this could be a good place.

thanks

Hi Mehul,

No problem - as soon as I hear more, I’ll let you know.

The Tandem is the soon to be released wireless CROS/BiCROS from Unitron. It uses their proprietary E2E digital signalling to provide a clearer signal than the previous iteration of FM wireless CROS. Apparently it will sit on the Latitude platform but will be restricted to a #13 BTE due to the system requirements.

The UK launch apparently follows the Unite training event next weekend.

E2E is from Siemens. Someone is mistaken in this forum. Unitron cannot use the proprietary E2E from Siemens. They have their own but it’s not called E2E. Regardless, it doesn’t matter. Just another name for the same thing, or at least something similar.

It was used as short-hand for Ear to Ear, meaning the high bandwidth digital signalling needed to pass the Contra signal across the head.

Many thanks for the replies, any update form the UK launch over the weekend?

It’s this Friday.

UK Launch of the Tandem system is set for the 15th July.

The corporate stuff is available on their site: LINKY

I don’t know if this thread is dead or not. But I’ll chime in just in case it’s not.

I purchased the Unitron Tandem 16 CROS/Bi-CROS hearing aid a few weeks ago for $3645. This is my very first hearing aid. I’ve never owned one before. The initial results are very good. As someone who has lived with SSD (single sided deafness) all my life, it’s quite an experience hearing things now on my deaf side. I’ve done many double-takes recently, thinking I’m hearing something on my good side, only to realize it’s on my deaf side. I can actually boost the deaf side hearing so that it’s louder than my good side. But I usually don’t do this and instead try to keep them equal. My audiologist said some of his other patients are getting similarly good results from the Tandem 16. I still need to do some loud restaurant tests where half the gathering is on my deaf side to see how well it performs in this critical situation. But for normal day to day environments, it’s working out very well.

In a month or so, after I’ve done a number of restaurant tests and my audiologist has done a bit more fine tuning, I’ll post more comments.

I look forward to your comments. I just ordered the Unitron Tandem and expect delivery next week. I am concerned about not being able to differentiate the direction of sounds and will let everyone know of my experiences. I paid substantially more than Steve H for my “instruments”, cost was about $4,800 including sales tax.

Mike, I’ll be interested to hear about your experiences during your Tandem trial. Good luck.

If you’re hoping to get a better sense of direction, I suspect the Tandem won’t help. But you won’t really know until you try it. In my case, having lived with SSD all my life, I developed a minor ability to sense direction from the timbre of sound. Because I now hear my deaf side quite well on my good side, that old technique no longer works. Maybe over time, I’ll develop a new way to sense direction.

I believe phonak is comming with a similar product… check them out!

The more options we have, the better. More competition will improve the situation for people with SSD. :slight_smile:

Isn’t Phonak already here with their CROS/BICROS?:confused:

Stäfa, Switzerland (January 24, 2011) - Phonak CROS offers a flexible and powerful solution for people who are affected by unilateral hearing loss which cannot be overcome with a hearing aid. The innovative transmitters have been developed on the basis of state-of-the-art Spice technology and enable voices to be transmitted to the user’s better ear with the best possible sound quality using full bandwidth audio transmission. The new Phonak CROS solution is extremely easy to fit with the help of Phonak Target™ fitting software.
People with unilateral hearing loss have severe hearing loss in one ear which cannot be relieved by means of a hearing instrument. Sounds and speech can barely be perceived, if at all, on the side of the unaidable ear and it is not possible to filter out background noise. CROS (Contralateral Routing of Signals) solutions even out auditory perception by redirecting sound signals transmitted to the unaidable ear to the better ear. If the better ear is also affected by a loss of hearing, a hearing aid can pick up the sound signal and amplify these. This is referred to as a BiCROS solution.

With Phonak CROS, Phonak provides a powerful and esthetically attractive solution for people who have one unaidable ear, and either normal hearing or a loss of hearing in the other.

Wireless radio transmission
Based on the full bandwidth audio transmission and enhanced processing capacity of the Spice chipset, Phonak CROS enables sound signals to be transmitted wirelessly. The CROS transmitter redirects the audio signal at full bandwidth from the unaidable ear to the hearing instrument (receiver) in the other ear. The beauty of the new Phonak CROS technology is that the sound transmission does not require any additional internal or external components that take up unnecessary space and could break. This solution offers scope for a particularly flexible use.

Another advantage of the new Phonak CROS solution is that it is compatible with the full range of new wireless Spice hearing aids. This allows the user to benefit from innovative Phonak features such as SoundFlow, Real Ear Sound and UltraZoom with SNR-Boost, SoundRecover and FlexControl. As well as normal hearing, the new Phonak CROS solution can accommodate all levels of hearing loss in the better ear. It offers an individually adapted solution for every user - regardless of their degree of hearing loss, their budget or their lifestyle.

A unique range with an award-winning design
Phonak CROS is the smallest CROS solution on the market. The elegant BTE transmitter encased in the distinctive, award-winning Audéo S SMART housing is available in a range of seven attractive colors. The specially designed universal CROS retention offers a comfortable fit while ensuring that the auditory canal remains fully open. In addition, custom made CROS Tips (retention) are available for a particularly comfortable fit. The transmitter is thus virtually invisible behind the ear. Phonak CROS is also available in a discreet ITE version.

Easy to fit with Phonak Target™
Phonak CROS can be fitted in a few simple steps with the help of Phonak Target™ fitting software. This new software guides the user intuitively through the fitting process, following a procedure determined by the individual requirements of the hearing care professional and his customer. For BiCROS fittings, the volume control between the transmitter and the hearing instrument can also be adjusted according to the personal preferences of the user.

The Phonak CROS models are available now.

Steve,

I am trying Phonak Audeo Smart V (16 channel) CROS fitted as BiCROS. 3 weeks into it now. So far good. Today, I was a large conference room and a speaker on on deaf side behind me was speaking - I could hear so clearly. I am also trying to have telephone conversations with phone on deaf side. It works! Tried listening to music streamed from Pandora on blackberry using iCom. Works like a charm.

I asked my audi if Phonak is the best CROS/BiCROS out there. He said yes. I have heard about Tandem and specifically asked about it too. Apparently Unitron (Tandem’s company) is also owned by Phonak. Not sure about relative positioning of both.

I don’t mind paying top dollars to best solution…Love to hear other opinions and experience before I make a purchase.

Ark,

I was looking at the Phonak web site and I immediately noticed a few advantages the Phonak has over the Unitron option. (1) With Phonak, you can pair their transmitter with many of their regular hearing aids. With Unitron, the Tandem is the only option. (2) It appears that the Phonak allows the user to switch between CROS and BICROS mode just by flipping a switch. With the Tandem, I do have four programs (BICROS auto, BICROS music, CROS only, BICROS noisy directional) but each is set by the audiologist to either CROS or BICROS mode and I can’t change them. (3) The Phonak looks a little smaller. But without seeing them both up close, I can’t be certain of this.

The only CROS/BICROS hearing aids I tried were the older Unitron Unison 3 and the newer Tandem 16. And the Tandem 16 is far superior. I’d give it a 4 out of 5 rating. It’s only drawback is that sometimes the sounds are a little artificial. Since my hearing in my good ear is still pretty good, I know what good sound is. The sounds arriving in my good ear from my deaf side are not quite as natural and don’t have the full fidelity range. But sounds from the deaf side are definitely pumping into my good ear quite well. So the Tandem does have an excellent CROS ability.

I didn’t know about the Phonak option when I purchased the Tandem. Had I known, I might have opted for trying the Phonak first. But all in all, I’m very happy with the Tandem.

We’ll all want to know if you keep the Phonak and how it works out.