Does anyone know what differences in audio characteristics to expect from the same hearing aid but configured as:
- RIC using a mold with the power receiver in the mold.
- BTE using a mold with the tube.
I’m considering hearing quality, not aesthetics. It seems the tube (2) would introduce more distortion. However, with (1) there are seperate components which might also introduce distortion. Maybe its negligible? Maybe it depends on hearing loss?
I’d like to understand what the ‘best’ HA’s are for my loss and life style. My hearing has already forced two job changes (same company). I’m always looking for ways to optimize my hearing at work. Better HA’s are always an option - I tend to upgrade every 2 to 3 years. My current Bernafon Verite 9s are barely 2 years old, they are ok. I have configuration 1 and moisture builds up on the power receiver in the ear and every few months (1-4) one goes out. I use a dryer each night. Generally I have some intermittant operation for a brief period, which gives my HA specialist time to get a new receiver in. Not a concern, except for the degradation of sound quality before I eventually get new receivers.
Back in 2010, before the Bernafons, I trialed Starkey S Series 7. I couldn’t discriminate a difference in speech understanding at work between the Starkeys, Bernafons, or really my previous Resound Metrix (although the features on the new aids are much nicer). Acuquest (Starkey) recently wanted me to come in because of a visit back in 2010. After hearing about Spectral IQ, I decided to go. They spent a good hour with me, evaluating the performance of my current hearing aids. In short, they were doing a (surprising to them) good job. The Spectral IQ sounds very interesting - but the demo on the Starkey website was … not as convincing as the marketing.
My current specialist is recommending (and I’m considering) getting the Chronos 9 BTE using configuration 2 (like my previous Resound Metrix). She says, based on our experience, she would never again recommend I get an RIC configuration. With the BTE she believes I won’t have the HA problems I’m having (so do I) and that I’ll hear better with the Chronos (not convinced). The specialist at Acquest said they would absolutely use the RIC and that there’s no reason for me to use a BTE. She said the screen would stop moisture. The other specialist says it won’t.
Bernafon Verite 9
Freq. LL – RR
WR 44% - 60% (2010)
250 55 - 70
500 60 - 70
1000 60 - 75
2000 60 - 85
4000 90 – 95
8000 100 – 110