HearingPlanet

Has anyone dealt with the HearingPlanet people? I’m pretty much set on getting a pair of Oticon Epoq hearing aids after all the positive comments that I’ve been hearing; particularly the bluetooth capabilities.

They will replace my pair of seimens aids which I’ve become very dissatisfied with.

Since I know what I’m looking for, I don’t mind dealing with an internet based firm.

Lee

I dealt with them a few months ago and was very satisfied. At first I was skeptical so I called the local audiologist they provided to make sure they didn’t mind dealing with this internet company. The audi assured me that I would be treated the same as one of their “regular” customers and I believe they did.

If you want to save some money, there’s an internet company mentioned in this site that will program the aids themselves after you send them your audiogram. You won’t be set up with a local audi and you’ll have to mail your aids back and forth if they need to be tweaked but you’ll save alot. There’s a very good chance I’ll use them for the next set.

I’m generally not a fan of Internet sales, and neither are most of the major manufacturers. But I will say this. The Hearing Planet model, where they get a local hearing professional involved, has to be the best way to go. If you want to buy online. You get that personal touch, and less hassle when it comes to adjustments.

The other model you mentioned sounds awful. You have to send your aids back every time they need an adjustment? That’s awfully tedious, and expensive. Moreover, many of the modern hearing aids need to be calibrated when they are in your ear. If you don’t do that they will never function up to manufacturers specifications. In essence, you saved a bunch of money, but maybe your hearing is 25% lower quality because your skipped some important in ear calibrations.

So the only way that can be avoided is if you are willing to program the aids yourself, and can get some good software and a programming box. I just bought a new box, and it cost me $599. But I believe there are some cheaper ones out there.

There was a person on here recently writing about self programming, he had some very interesting observations. Perhaps on a mid range instrument that would be a reasonable option. Although I remain skeptical when it comes to top of the line.

it is a good instrument… you are aware they will have (or have)
an instrument similar to the epoq call pure (i dont dispense siemens)
But I have heard it is quite similar…

I am not Internet Fan to get my hearing aids fix or get a new hearing aids from the Internet. I would go to my local audiologist who I trust and don’t mind to take a trip to see her to get my hearing aids fix.

daffy

I just had my visit with the referred audiologist and was very impressed. She was more thorough than my previous audiologist and seemed to sync with my own thinking about my hearing problem. I also found her tests to be more complete.

When I asked her about this business model, she seemed pretty positive about it. The major advantage for the local audiologist is that is removes the problem of keeping any sort of aid inventory; tho I thought aids would be ordered on an as needed basis. It should also give a wider range of instruments. My previous audiologist only works with Seimens. The down side is there is definitely a bit of high pressure on the client to buy now from the hearing planet side. Since I’m well aware of “sales techniques”, I was also well aware of the methodology of the hearing planet person to land the “close”. I will say that they give you a 45 day trial period with a 100% refund.

I’ll probably be dealing with these folks. They quoted me $6,000 for the phonak Exelia’s. I wanted Oticons Epoqs but the hearing planet person AND the local audiologist AND my previous audiologist all gave me pretty much the same story about Oticon. That is that Oticon is very good in coming out with new ideas but is less good at perfecting products before getting to market and the return rate is high for Oticon vs others. I now need to start my research on the phonak Excelias.

Just a word of caution regarding internet prices - they may not always be the lowest! I started out looking at different internet companies to purchase aids through with the idea that I would save quite a bit of money. I ended up printing out an internet price list and visiting a local hearing center with the intention of asking them if they could meet the price. When the audiologist recommended Epoq XW’s and I asked about the price I was surprised that it was a few hundred dollars less than the internet prices (that I never removed from my pocket). I saved money by avoiding the internet “deals” and have been very pleased with the service provided. (I’ve had the epoqs and streamer for about 4 weeks and love them.)

The bottom line is you may want to check local pricing before committing to an internet deal. If the local pricing doesn’t work for you, the internet deal will be there to fall back on. Also, if you’ve done your homework and are interested in a specific aid then visit a dealer that carries that brand (it was no coincidence that I visited an Oticon dealer).

Just my $.02 …

I have had an Oticon Synchro sold to me by a stand alone audi. I had a Syncro. Returned it. It was in the ear. that was 2004.

In 2007 went through hearing Planet. Couldn’t be happier. Local audi is terrific. Great service. Much better experience. Most importantly, my Phonak Eleva works well for me. Not perfect, but i have meniere’s and it is notoriously hard to get great results with menieres. But, 80% of the time, it’s a godsend.

Hearing Planet business model worked very well for me.

There are some on this board who seem to believe that Internet sales are going to bring about the end of local service. Some even seem to yearn for this time to come.

But with any luck, we’ll still be in business many years from now. Online sales are not a magic bullet. Despite the size and success of Amazon.com, you don’t see Best Buy or Barnes and Noble going out of business.

Remember the flirtation with buying a new car online? This was hailed as they great new idea a little while ago. But you hardly see that at all any more.

I think that there is a time and a place for Internet shopping. I do it all the time. But with hearing aids removing that local contact is generally a mistake. I believe that quality online companies will continue to use local hearing professionals in their business model. I remain skeptical with regards to those that send patients a set of hearing aids and their own adjustment software, or expect aids to be shipped back and forth for adjustment.

Yikes! :eek: The HA industry will continue to charge these outrageous prices until people stop paying them!

There are many practical alternatives. Do your homework.

Can you tell me where I can get the Phonak Excelias for less? Maybe I can take advantage of your homework!

r u far from mexico?

in some countries (latin america ) HI run for a lot less…

China and India prices are quite low—

Sorry, I was ordered to dinner. :eek: I would start by reading these forum threads, where you can learn a lot from other user’s comments. Use the Search button. You may find other units that can do as well for you and cost less than the Excelia. Many are discounted. Here are some starter threads: