Dream 220 versus Unitron Latitude 16 MODA-II

I’ve tried reading through other threads, but I’m still confused. I’m trying to decide between two hearing aids (at two different hearing aid places). I have mild hearing loss with a “cookie bite” pattern. Basically I have trouble in meetings – especially conference calls (which I do quite often) or people how talk quietly and/or have heavy accents (again, quite common in my work). I do notice it at other times, for example, in a restaurant with the radio on, I can tell the radio is on and discern that they are talking versus playing music, but I don’t know what song is on or what they are saying – but my dining partner does. My audiology details are as follows:
250 25 15
<O:p500 25 20
750 45 40<O:p</O:p
1000 60 55
1500 45 45
2000 35 40
3000 35 45
4000 30 45
8000 10 35
SRT 40 35
Both ears get 100% discrimination at 35dB below (or is it above? – the dB number is bigger) SRT.<O:p</O:p

I’ve seen two hearing aid places (one recommend by my ENT and other where my dad goes – he has Meniere’s and I don’t, so our hearing loss is not the same) and both suggested different models. I’ve decided that I like the BTE option (partly because, as one of them pointed out, I do have normal hearing in some frequencies and plugging my ear with an in the ear model would snuff that out).

The two options are the Dream 220 D2-PA or the Unitron Latitude 16 MODA-II. The Dream looks like a value model while the MODA-II is more a middle to upper middle model. The big difference that I can see (and I’m not sure that I care) is that the MODA-II has a telecoil and the Dream doesn’t. I did read somewhere (not sure if it was here) a couple people say that they’d never buy a hearing aid without telecoil, but I’m not sure why (and if, given the level of my loss) it really matters for me. It also appears to have more programs. The MODA-II will cost be quite a bit more (about $700), but I’d rather pay more to get a better product (for the record, the Dream 330 is another about $350 more than the MODA-II).<O:p</O:p

Any advice would be greatly appreciated – I’m so new to this hearing aid thing.

Can you not trial them? Then you will know for sure.

You need to decide which would match your lifestyle? Some people buy the very basic hearing aid as its matches there lifestyle. Some people find the most expensive hearing aid matches there lifestyle.

Only you can really make the choice.

I’ve personally never heard of both of these aids.

Take the Widex Dream. It was just released a month ago. The Unitron Latitude is 3 or 4 years old. The current generation Unitrons are Quantum and Moxi.

Not sure why anyone would be offering the Latitude 16 as a new aid right now

If you are gong to try before you buy, make sure you are aware of the re-stocking fees (if any). Some charge up to $500 or more. You also might want to just stick with one place this way if you do end up trying a different hearing aid you will avoid the restocking fee as log as you buy something.

Both do have a 90 day return policy. I know that the place suggesting the Unitron has a $100 (per ear) restocking fee. I think that the other place doesn’t have a restocking fee (but I’ll confirm).

I will stick to one place once I make a choice, but I figure I’ll start with the place that suggested the hearing aid I like better (i.e. the one I’ll try out first).

Currently looks like the Widex is winning - given that my hearing loss is mild, I’m not sure the lack of a telecoil is really an issue.

Quite, it’s not even on the current software.

Can’t imagine who would still be offering stuff that was a couple of generations old.

Some of the Dream 220 have telecoils according to the Widex website. You might be able to find one that you like that has this option.

Also, as I look at the Widex features chart I notice that the Dream 330 has 10 channels versus the Dream 220’s 5 channels. With your cookie-bite you might appreciate the fine-tuning the additional channels would allow for speech recognition. That is a feature I will be looking at when I select my next hearing aid.

I’d avoid the latitude 16 Moda II if you want reliable controls. I’ve had many patients return them for repair because they were poorly designed. It’s a known design fault and was never fixed to my knowledge. If you’re using a remote control they’ll be fine.

In terms of technology, the latitude 16 Moda II has smartfocus and a lot more channels than the Dream 220 so if you’re getting it at a really low cost then it might be worth it, but it’d have to be around the same price as the Dream 220’s for it to be worthwhile.

I’d keep looking around to see what else is out there…

Thanks everyone.

Looks like it is back to the drawing board a bit. I do like the Dream 330 (due to the extra channels), but not sure the extra channels are worth the price for me. Back to talk with the hearing aid people to see their other options. Going to go with the ones who suggested the Dream 220 - knowing that the other was suggesting a really old technology (and not cheap) doesn’t give a good feeling about him. It was $700 more than the Dream.

It’s pretty simple to tell if you need it. If you can hear fine on the telephone using the hearing aid without t-coil and you are happy with it, then you don’t need t-coil. That simple. Some people sear by using t-coil, some don’t like it.

Don’t forget that the t-coil can be used to connect with loop systems and other assistive listening devices. Hearing does change and sometimes quicker than we anticipate. I, myself, would want the option. It’s like making sure your hearing aid has enough reserve power for down the road.

The Moda II uses a slim tube, which does roll off low frequencies. It can also be reconfigured as a standard BTE. While this could work, it will likely require new molds and a less discrete hearing aid. As well, I am not sure why they are still providing the Latitude. There has been at least 2 generations of hearing tech introduced since the Latitude.

The Dream seems to be of interest. This is the most up to date offering from Widex.

So if you are comparing the Dream to the Latitude, it would be the equivalent of comparing a 2013 model to a 2009 model. Both might do the job, but at the end of the day pick whichever works the best for you and your pocketbook.

Good point - forgot about that.

T coils are becoming less important these days from what I read due to the streamers, people can get with there hearing aids.

As a discounted option, that doesn’t sound like too bad a deal if they were only US$700 more than the Dream 220 for a pair. You can’t give things away for free and their feature set is not that much different in the important specifications to the current Unitron Quantum 16 products, albeit on an older chip. Other than the poor control design the technology inside is solid. At the same time, buying a product that has been obsolete for a couple of years comes with some risk as it won’t be supported as long as current generation products. I wouldn’t count it against the person you saw provided they were up front with you about the product being older being one of the reasons for the lower cost.