How do you decide - phonak audeo or costco

I currently have phonak versata (about 6 years old) and received a flyer from my audi about the new audeo v’s. the v90’s would be about $6300 and the v70’s $5200. I have insurance that will pay 80% up to $5000. but I’m hearing all of this good stuff about Costco and wondering has anyone done any real compares between what Costco offers and the new phonaks. are they that much better than what Costco offers that it’s worth the extra money. when I bought my last pair there was a $300 non refundable fee if I trialed and returned.

It would mostly depend on what $1300 would do/mean to your life and lifestyle. You would also have to file the claim as Costco doesn’t do insurance.

The V-series has better battery life and some added features. It is rumored that Costco will have a V-series aid in October. Guesstimate on that is around $2800/pair.

If you look for a Connect Hearing, they price match and you’d likely get the V90 and accessories for the $5000.

thanks ken, actually I was wondering if I should hold off a little and see if Costco did get a newer version of their phonak ones as I believe the brio has been out for awhile.

Also, keep in mind that even when Costco gets the V series they will most likely not be able to add features such as Tinnitus Masking. That is one of the few advantages that an independent Audi has over Costco. They have access to all features where Costco does not. If you don’t need any additional features then Costco should be fine. My understanding is that there is a pretty noticeable difference between the Q series Costco currently sells and the V series regarding battery life as well. Just some thoughts…

I had 5 year old phonaks before I went to Costco to look at HA’s. Purchased the Rexton Trax 42, rather than the Phonak Brio (Audeo Q equal). So far, very happy with my choice. If you’ve never had a vendor other than Phonak, try something different, you may like what you get and save yourself a lot of money in the process.

Never hurts to try…you can always return and go to the Audeo V’s after a trial.


I wore ReSound aids for most of the last decade, and about a month ago decided to try the Phonak Brio. I’m liking them a lot. They seem to have a more natural sound to them, and so far the Soundflow program has handled 98% of my listening needs superbly. I put them on in the morning, take them off at night, use the ComPilot with the computer, cell phone and TV, and really enjoy hassle-free hearing.

No more switching programs to handle a certain situation, then forgetting to switch back. The Brios just do it.

I just completed a trial of the KS6 and returned them. I am now trialing the Widex 330.

The KS6 was a very good HA but when I compared it to the Widex, for me, and everyone is different, the Widex sounded a bit clearer and improved speech recognition.

I absolutely like and support what Costco is doing with HAs, making them more affordable to the masses of people who need hearing aids.

Like you I have very good insurance coverage. For those who don’t have good insurance coverage, the quality and cost savings that Costco brings is a real deal maker. But that said, if you have very good insurance coverage I think it be wise to make use of that and look at additional brands/models that Costco doesn’t carry. There may be a very small improvement or none or large, but it makes sense to try. And even a little improvement with good insurance coverage gives you a big bang for the buck. Why not take advantage of the full insurance coverage offering??

BTW - even with good coverage, it makes sense to look around. I have had great success with TruHearing - their prices being very reasonable.


thanks, I looked up TruHearing and gave them a call. there prices looked great, but how do you tell if the audi they hook you up with is any good. that’s the general problem I see with any. at Costco you get 100% refund, but at my prior audi there was a $300 restocking fee and talking to truhearing they said there would be a $250 fee to the dispenser if I chose someone else to buy from. so everything I’m reading seems to point to the dispenser as being as critical as the aid itself, but it would get pretty expensive to shop around at different audiologists.

In my case with TruHearing there is a free 4 day trial. No charge if return except in my case I would have to eat the cost for custom molds. I’m ok with that. In fact one mold is being redone for free.

The person treating me is an Audiologist, unlike the HIS at Costco. That said, I made sure I knew all of the features of the Widex 330 so I could discuss with the Aud. The HA still need tweaking so when I go I suggest how about this or that which the Aud is very receptive. It will take some time to get as best as can be but no charge for adjustments.

Best of luck Tell us how it goes. Take your time, let brain adjust to HA, and be truthful to yourself which is best.


you can hear in the high frequency

For fitting aids the difference between a HIS and the Au.D is blurred. There are at least two HIS on this forum I would rush to. Even here you are getting personal opinions more than solid facts. That is because brand selection is a very individual activity.

As to 30 day trials, it takes that time to just starting to get use to hearing aids. The cost is pretty industry standard. Maybe Connect Hearing would price match Costco on a free trial. I don’t know for sure. A 90-day free trial is a huge plus. You may have a bad fitter and crappy aids but you’ve time to work through that and make a fully informed decision.

So, selecting the spot to buy is difficult but not impossible. The fitter should listen to you. If you get one who’s view are what they wrote on stone tablets, run. They should be explaining why you might be wrong rather than just telling you they are always right.

what is “binaural beamforming tech” and how is that different than what say phonak is using.

thanks, I appreciate all the help

This explains it.

In answer to the original question: costco’s Brio is of course the older technology and Phonak’s Venture circuit is quite a step up. The Brio has a circuit with around 16 million transistors and the newer Venture circuit has over 46 million transistors. The greater processing capability of the Venture is proving to be much better. If the older technology is OK for the price difference, go for it. But if you want to hear the best possible, go for the Venture by Phonak. Phonak is the largest hearing aid manufacturer in the world and has some great products.

The rumor mill has the venture platform coming to Costco in October. You could trial the Brio and upgrade when available.

thanks again to both of you, good information

Rexton is still the superior aid.

I understand your passion for certain aids. I didn’t find the Trax superior and went back to the KS6. For me, it was better in all respects. The high frequencies aren’t part of speech understanding. They may be a help to music but the audiophiles here don’t seem to agree on a particular brand. UmBono has said that 12-16 channels is more than adequate for understanding.

It seems like the feature/data claims by all the manufacturers is more marketing hype than a breakthrough benefit. Every year they try to come up with something to add market hype.

I don’t think you understand what is meant by the information you are providing.

Well, I trialed the Trax42. Went to a luncheon that had a choir group preform. I couldn’t even tell what the song was with them – went through every program. With the KS6 I can even join the sing along. Seems the superior product may be always superior. The KS6 also gives me superior speech understanding. Had a heck of a time with the Trax doing TV. So, it appears results vary.