Evoke 440 BiCros

#1

Long time lurker, first time poster here. I just received Evoke 440 BiCros last Tuesday. For the record, as recommended by many of you, I saw 4 audiologists and ended up selecting a local university’s Speech and Hearing Center. I am quite happy with the audiologist.

I do have SSD, and was previously using a single Starkey (Halo, I think) for the past 7 years. I was unsure about bicros but decided to give it a go anyway. I am pretty passionate about listening to music and wanted to see if I could start using headphones again. Previously I would only listen to mono recordings (only vinyl) through headphones. I originally was looking at Widex Evoke 440 and Phonak Marvel but the Marvel are not available in bicros yet. So I went with Widex.

Two main reasons for new HA’s: 1) Ability to hear from my deaf (right) side, and 2) Better hearing of reproduced music.

Streaming music directly to the HA’s and taking phone calls through them is not important

  1. Bicros System - I am more than pleased with the sound of their bicros 440’s. I can hear reasonably clearly from my right (deaf) side. I can even talk on my phone from the right side. I can easily hear my wife talking to me in the car now. Speech is far more clear than my old Starkey. I haven’t tried them in a crowded room yet. There is absolutely NO wind noise on the golf course and the club/ball/turf impact is quite pleasant. I couldn’t wear the Starkey’s when I played because the sound was uncomfortably “clicky”. So far I’m very pleased with the sounds I get from the 440’s bicros.

  2. Music - Recorded Music is much fuller with the bicros system in Universal. So far I’ve only listened to some Steely Dan, Mark Knopfler, Linda Ronstadt, Dave Brubeck, Brahms, Rachmaninoff, Fourplay. I’ll need to take some time and do some more evaluation on these. But first impressions are quite good. Electric Guitars are more crystal clear but not ear piercing. Acoustic guitars have warm woody tone. Kick drums are have a nice punch. Still need to listen to more electric bass and upright bass. I can also hear brushes on cymbals which I was previously missing. This all in Universal mode.

My acoustic guitars (I play - poorly) sound more shimmery. I have to do more listening on this also, but I really like the sound I am hearing.

  1. The Apps - Okay, here’s the downside. The “Evoke” App will not pair with a single 440. Apparently, it requires both of them. The Audi called Widex and their Audi told her that the Evoke app couldn’t be used because of the bicros connection with mic in the deaf ear. So Soundsense can not be used.

The Tonelink app works only when the mic in the deaf ear is turned off. I can only switch programs when the right ear mic is off. And when I turn the mic back on, the program defaults back to Universal.

I go back for a follow up visit next Tuesday, and I’ll post more comments then, hopefully with with better detail. In the meantime, if anyone would like offer any input or comments, I’d appreciate them. Or if anyone has any questions I’ll do my best to answer them. Thanks to all of you for your posts in aiding me in this decision! Forrest.

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#2

Forrest - Seems we have a lot in common. I too am early stages of trying my first pair of HA’s and am pretty passionate about listening to music. Because the quality of my home audio system is very high I didn’t think I would actually be able to enjoy “artificially enhanced” sound of HA’s through my system and expected to listen with them removed. Was very pleasantly surprised to find the Widex Evoke 440’s sound extremely natural through the Universal setting. The Music setting on the other hand seems tilted too far in the high frequencies and is less balanced (lacking warmth and weight) compared to Universal setting. I’m experimenting with the Soundsense Learn function to fine tune settings for “Music at Home” but I always end up preferring the Universal setting. I’ll keep trying however. Love the HA’s so far and since these are my first, I don’t have anything to compare with. Chet

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#3

Odd as I find the universal program inferior when it comes to music. I don’t know what genre you listen to but I enjoy classical and find the highest frequencies such as the tiny cymbals and such to be missing completely and and the soft bass instruments much easier to discern in the music program. Universal is fine for rock and so forth. That said I’ve used SoundSense (starting with the music program) to tune things to my preference and improve the sound. I suffer quite a bit of distortion in my left ear at volume and the app allows me to dial back on that side.

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#4

First, I am still adjusting to my HA’s so my feedback is preliminary at best. Also, comparing our audiograms may explain our different perceptions of the Music setting. I have the cookie bite profile so really don’t need help with the higher frequencies that seem emphasized with the Music setting. I listen to a broad range of music but admittedly, classical is pretty infrequent. Still, high frequency detail is very important to me so I don’t think preference for music types is the reason for our differing perceptions. This forum is great for sharing experiences and perceptions.

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#5

Thanks for your input. I didn’t mention that I’ve been deaf in my right ear since I was 3 years old. Got my first hearing aid at 60 for my “good” left ear which was losing hearing. Probably due to rock band abuse and a radial arm saw. And God knows what else.

@Mark_Chambers - Thanks for your valuable input. I’ve not yet listened to the Music program with the left HA only. When the Bicros is connected, it defaults to Universal. So my only conclusion so far is that the Bicros system set to Universal sounds better than the single Starkey. I’ll have to do some listening this week with the Music program which goes to only my right ear and compare that to the Universal to both ears. I’ll likely throw in the Starkey just to get another data point.

Chet - Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I, too, am so far really enjoying the Evoke 440’s. It’s somewhat of an adjustment with the Bicros as sounds from my right side are directed to the receiver in my left ear. I’ve not had to perform an “exorcist” head turn or change seats with anyone this week. LOL! I am looking forward to taking some quiet time to listen to music this week and see what sounds best to me. At 68, I no longer do much “critical” listening but just enjoy the musicality, timbres, and great guitar riffs - from jazz to blues to rock. (And yes, I still listen to The Beatles.) I have an adequate classical collection, but not too extensive. It’s 90% vinyl. Like you, I enjoy good high frequency detail, but for me, I have to have clean mid-range. The bass just has to be tight - no boominess. (I’m sure you’ve discovered, as I have, that much of the reproduced sound is room dependent.) Because of the SSD, my good ear just isn’t able to place instruments or the vocalist. You can PM me and we can discuss stereo systems.

One addition - I was in the gym yesterday and today and the background noise is quieter and “cleaner”. The background drone of the ellipticals and treadmills was less than that that I hear with the Starkey’s. I was also able to hear the music in the gym’s sound system nicely.

I’ll post a bit more after my visit with my audi on Tuesday. If anyone has any comments or questions regarding SSD HA’s, just let me know. Good weekends to all. Forrest

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#6

I have a single Evoke 440 but not a BiCros. I am able to connect it to the app and use SoundSense but perhaps it’s the CROS aspect that is the problem for you.

FWIW, I don’t find the app particularly useful.

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