Are Rexton Bridge 12s right for me?


A first timer, I’ve been wearing a pair of Rexton Bridge 12 BTE Free since early June (2010). Gone through the four stages of cranking them up. I like that I can now hear the high-pitched kingbird’s song, and that I can tell from with direction a car is coming. I like that I feel no occlusion. But I’m wondering now if these particular hearing aids are right for me.

  1. I continue to have problems distinguishing “s” from “f” from “th”, especially if the speaker is on my right. The Rexton Bridge 12 BTE Open/Free has a fitting range of 70 dB at 3kHz, and 72 dB (vs. my right ear 100 dB) at 4kHz. Should this hearing aid be able to help me distinguish the 3rd formants for “s” and “f” and “th”?

  2. If someone murmurs a comment to me in a room full of people, I cannot hear it any more than before I got the Rexton Bridge 12s. I just see lips moving. Is this a setting adjustment?

  3. At their current final setting, the hearing aids are painfully loud when my wife has the television set where it’s comfortable for her. Am I damaging my ears?

Any comments greatefully received. Thanks in advance.

Nate Y.
0250Hz L-10 R-15
0500Hz L-10 R-15
1000Hz L-10 R-15
1500Hz L-15 R-35
2000Hz L-15 R-45
3000Hz L-55 R-70
4000Hz L-50 R-100 masked
6000Hz L-45 R-95 masked
8000Hz L-40 R-90 masked
SRT L=10, R=20
Word Recognition
L 88% +40 SL
R 96% +40 SL

Couple of points:

You may have what Audiologists describe as a ‘dead-spot’ in your right ear - no matter how much your audiologist turns up the sound you can’t decode it. Think of a piano actually missing half a dozen keys in one area just above or around top ‘C’.

No matter how hard the pianist (hearing aid) tries to hit the notes, you still don’t get the right sound. However in trying to hit the notes harder (a la Little Richard with his foot), he’s also hitting more and more of the surrounding notes which is causing a drop in the resolution of the signal. Furthermore playing a piano (your cochlear) with one’s feet causes the whole system to resonate and affect notes further down the scale (downward spread of masking) thereby degrading the signal clarity even further for the notes you were ‘getting’ before.

Remedies - Accept you’re never going to hear properly at 4Khz in your right ear. Turn the aid off in this area. Return the rest of the hearing aid to normal ‘comfortable’ gain settings and possibly edge-up the gain at frequencies a fraction lower and higher than the ‘dead-spot’ to preserve overall signal quality.

Also NB that the Rexton uses the Starkey feedback canceller that according to Dr Gus is the best thing since sliced bread: however if it jumps all over the HF gain where you need it, it’s not the best aid for you. Try an alternative if you feel that the adjustments above aren’t effective - especially since other aids may offer better channel resolution either side of your dead spot with fewer issues.

Um bongo,

Thank you for your suggestions. They make sense. I will suggest them to the audiologist.

These heading aids come from Costco, which I believe has a 90-day trial period. If so, and if the final answer is to choose another aid, alas my trial period has elapsed.

Um bongo,

Thank you very much for these insights. I am seeing my audiologist today. And gently, I will share with him the thoughts of a professional colleague.

He may have considered some of your suggestions already. He eliminated a feedback problem – whistling when I turned my head quickly – by adjusting the gain in my right ear.

I am also wearing Rexton Bridge Free 12’s since July. I joined Costco specifically to buy hearing aids based on reading so many positive experiences on this forum. I completely concur. The service and attention has been unmatched. Also based on this forum I went to Costco to buy Bernafon Veras. They set up a pair for me and put them on, There was significant “background” noise, harshness, sizzling bacon sounds. Maybe that could all have been adjusted away. But then they set up a pair of these Bridge Free’s, and the difference wasn’t subtle, it was night and day. No extraneous noise, just quietness except for the improvements. Very comfortable. I ordered them without hesitation.
After more than a month I am still quite happy, just had a minor tweak today. But I still wonder if it’s the right decision also, only because so many people on this forum have such high praise for the Bernafon’s. But if these are working so well and are so comfortable, why should we doubt it? Oh well still have more than a month on the 90 day trial. Ideally you could try each for the full 90 day, but I don’t think that’s really the way the trial is supposed to be used.
Keep posting about your experience. Hope this helps.

Post again with how you got on - with perhaps the initial impressions and then again once you’ve habituated to the changes.