Is this entrainment?

I had never heard the term entrainment until I joined this board. Could any/all/some of you give me some feedback (ha, ha) about these two incidents.

I just went back to playing the piano. Haven’t touched it in many years. When I played the same notes, one an octave higher than the other, it sounded as if there were two notes coming out of the higher one which then made the note sound off key compared to the one played an octave lower. I also was aware of how tinny the piano sounded. All of these complaints disappeared once I took my aids out. Entrainment? Any adjustments for it? Any hearing aids better for it?

This is a stranger story. Every once in a while I hear a high pitched whine. Sometimes there’s just one, sometimes the noise repeats itself. Sometimes I hear it a few times a day, sometimes once a week or so. At first I thought it came from a/c or my fan. However, I’ve heard it when one was off and the other on and visa versa. The other day I heard it when I was with a friend at her house.(She may have had a fan going, not sure.) She heard nothing! It’s a little crazy making. Needless to say, rather than call myself crazy, I figured that maybe it’s my aids. I’ve just started to test that notion but haven’t heard a long enough “whine” for me to pull my aids out and listen. This noise began after I started my Futures trial.

Any thoughts would be appreciated (though don’t send the men in the white coats to come and get me!)


Trialing ReSound Futures

I had this same issue when I was trialing the Futures. Seemingly out of the blue beeps. Was told it was the anti-feedback kicking in with a supposedly out of phase tone to counter what it thought (falsely) was feedback. It drove me nuts and the audi was never able to get rid of it. It happened with music but also other weird times. It was one of the reasons I returned the Futures and went on to Starkey Wi’s which never have this issue period. I believe what you’re experiencing is indeed entrainment.

Thanks Citation. I haven’t been able to figure what, if anything, triggers the whines. But at least I don’t feel as weird.

I had some good old fashioned feedback at first but we tried the tulip domes and re-did the feedback thing and now, no feedback. I have not heard anything like you described.

I don’t get any feedback in the usual sense. But if I remember correctly, doesn’t entrainment occur when the feedback system over-reacts and puts a sound where one shouldn’t be? The difference in the sound of my piano with my aids and without is stark. As for the other weird noise, I only wonder what triggers it. I’ve heard way less of it since I’ve turned off my overhead fan.

I don’t know if your HA have a music program but it might help when you play the piano. The 1st time I heard the piano after getting HA it sounded very tinny but once I switched to the music program it sounded much better.


I’ve fit several musicians, and unfortunately there are no REALLY good options for them. It seems like any and all musical sounds get distorted to a certain degree. One thing that I have had success with (and I don’t know your loss, but perhaps it’s worth a try) is essentially making the hearing aid completely “linear”. Sometimes the compression features and MPO (maximum potential output) can inhibit the natural sound of the music and sort of alter it so it sounds horrible. I’ve found that (in general) with music, it is sometimes best to just “open the hearing aid up” so a lot of the automatic adjustment features aren’t working, and then just suffer with a few notes, as opposed to having ALL of them sounding weird. Usually you can have just one setting in your aids be “opened up” and adjusted for playing/listening to music. It’s a difficult situation though, I agree. Good luck.

It sounds like an adjustment issue but I have no idea what it could be. Piano sounds good on my program 1 and even better on the music program, much better than without the aids. But, I have the compression lowered on all frequencies than what the computer first came up with. All my compression numbers were in the mid-twos (2.4, 2.6, etc.) and she lowered them to mid-high ones (1.4, 1.7, etc.). Things sounded clearer after that, and loud (but a good loud). We also lowered the MPO to something like 117 from 126.

Sounds like two things are distorting the piano notes.

One is the clipping of MPO. Severe clipping will introduce all kinds of stuff like distortion and false notes. Cure decrease the MPO setting on the music program.
Two (as posted above) Reduce the compression and raise the Knee Point.

And don’t forget, severe losses almost always indicate that the hearing system itself will add distortion.

And a sustained note from the piano will kick off the aid’s anti-feedback system.

Every professional is aware of these problems and their solution and should know how to handle. Ed

Thanks. I’ll bring your info in to my next adjustment session. Right now all my music program seems to do is adjust for surround sound. But I hadn’t started playing yet.

Anyone have any thoughts about the random infrequent whines? I’m wondering what if any background noise may have triggered it, like my a/c fan, or my ceiling fan or my friends ceiling fan. If those did it, why not always?

Most modern hearing aids are scanning for potential feedback, so they can adjust automatically and not whistle. Unfortunately, less sophisticated systems can misinterpret various noises as feedback, and in an effort to stop the suspected feedback, ironically they end up making a noise which is almost as annoying. This is entrainment.

Thankfully, more sophisticated feedback suppression (for example the ones in a Starkey aid) don’t easily get tricked into making these annoying noises. But if you don’t want to switch to another type of aid, see if they can make you a music program and have them switch off feedback management in that program. The aids will be more susceptible to feedback in that mode, but shouldn’t give you the entrainment.

Thanks for further explaining entrainment, ZCT. Question: Do you feel that the Future is less sophisticated? I have about a month left in my trial and love Costco’s policies and services. However, the aids are not covering my tinnitus which my Oticons did and I do have the entrainment issue. I’d really love to demo a few hearing aids even in the audi’s office. Any thoughts about how to go about this? Could I just call up and offer to pay for the time it would take to program the aids and let me walk around with them?

It’s been a few years since I have fitted import hearing aids. I only dispense Starkey at this time. While I accept that some of the European brands have some nice individual features sometimes, I think the overall package Starkey offers is great. And in this economy supporting an American company is also a good plan.

I regularly see patients who have purchased import hearing aids, and aids from small time operators like Sebotek, and the common denominator is how unimpressive they are on the whole. Problems like feedback and entrainment was taken care of by Starkey in around 2006. So when I read posts about people having feedback or entrainment issues, my mind starts to wonder what else is old fashioned about the hearing aids.

Part of my job includes demonstrating cutting edge hearing aids to patients. I routinely put open fit RIC hearing aids into the ears of patients with 50-60dB hearing losses, without feedback issues. Using a medium power aid with a foam test tip, I can demo to people with an 75dB loss. I have the new 138/80 gain hearing aids on order, which will cover just about any loss I can find.

With this Starkey technology I am seeing reactions in patients I haven’t seen at any point in my career, it is really astonishing.

In the past there was some salesmanship involved in selling hearing aids. This year I put some of the latest Starkey aids in a patients ear, and they pull out their check book! Okay so I am exaggerating, but seriously the Starkey technology sounds great.

Binaural spacial mapping is very cool for background noise suppression. Starkey have taken their industry leading Voice IQ system which helps suppress background noise, and have taken it to the next level with their version 2.0, which they are openly offering to existing patients, meaning that people who bought a year ago can now have a new breakthrough feature added to their aids at no cost. Who else does that?

Then there is Spectral IQ, a break though in helping people with severe high tone loss. Unlike all other frequency transposition technologies, this one achieves the effect in a way never done before in the industry, and achieves very impressive test scores with patients as a result.

Feedback suppression is still number one in the industry meaning more added stable gain, less distortion, and a proven ability to reduce listening effort.

There’s more, but I got a plane to catch. Bottom line, I think Starkey make a great hearing aid for these reasons and others, and that’s why I choose to dispense their aids, and enjoy working with them.

Oh, and it’s not just about the technology. Check out and see how they give back.

<end Starkey commercial :rolleyes:>

Looks like an import to me if you are manufacturing elsewhere, not just Mexico…

As for the plant in China.

Establishment Registration Number: 130076
Address: C2 BLOCK, 128, HONGYE RD SIP (Map)
Address 2:
Zip / Postal Code: 215006
Country: CH
Establishment Operation Code(s): MM - Manufacturer
Establishment Status Code: P - Pending registration (awaiting assignment of number)

Looks like the All-American deal to me: just with the bits made where they don’t pay proper wages or have a spectacular human rights record.

Exploiting poor people and outsourcing jobs is as American as apple pie.

I am tired of you using me as your whipping boy for Starkey. If you don’t like them, don’t deal with them. I don’t own Starkey, I don’t work for Starkey, I am not privy to all their business dealings. What I am sick of is your condescending and hostile attitude towards me on this forum, even trolling posts I wrote in 2008 just to make a ‘point.’ It’s quite pathetic, and not in keeping with the spirit of this forum.

I’ve helped hundreds of people to hear well with Starkey products, they give me the tools to make my patients very happy. All my dealings with them have been very positive, and their charity wing has changed the lives of thousands of people around the world. Starkey has even used their charity wing to help a lot of my poorer patients obtain their hearing aids for free.

If you don’t have something intelligent, positive or useful to say that helps others, maybe just don’t post.

I solemnly promise to stop posting responses as long as soon as you promise to stop advertising for Starkey.

I have no axe to grind, they make some excellent products in various world locations and they have a fantastic market segregation model in the USA. If you get on well with their products and have helped lots of people with them, even better. This definitely isn’t personal either, as you clearly have masses of relevant experience in relation to hearing care and your role; training dispensers.

All I would ask is that you employ a little objectivity in posting and avoid using jingoistic and sometimes misleading terms like foreign and imports to justify your arguments. Further, the use of a straw-man like ‘The Starkey Foundation’ in the context of a hearing aid recommendation is diversionary, especially when the work of other companies (IDA foundation) seems to go by the wayside.

As professional Hearing Aid Audiologists we both signed up to a code, one term of which was to engage in ethical conduct at all times. I can’t square the circle of being myopic about the products of one manufacturer while acting ethically in a customers’ best interest.

And one other thing, the wonderful invention of this message board allows an opinion that isn’t directly derived from the source of the most money. In a way it’s delivered an unparalleled level of ‘Free-Speech’. Now, that might be a huge thorn in the side of Corporate USA, but surely that’s a better thing, isn’t it? Keeping the corporations honest?

So you’ll be less hostile and rude, as long as I agree to not voice my opinion. Gotya. Thanks.

As I’ve explained before I have worked for independents, I have dispensed most European brands over many years, and I have concluded which company gives me the best overall shot at helping my patients.

A lot of the problems I’ve seen posted on here, and problems I see in my patients who have non-Starkey products are problems that Starkey addressed years ago. I am amazed to see people posting about entrainment issues, since I’d almost forgotten about that issue since it was solved about five years or so ago with Starkey.

I’m not saying Starkey is the only viable solution for a patient who has a hearing loss, but I do not believe that there is another company with such a wide range of well rounded solutions to most hearing loss. But of course you already know all this, having trolled through years of my past posts just to take a cheap shot at me.

Further, I live in America, where people fly American flags and put bumper stickers on their cars about American pride and the troops. These same people should consider the largest American hearing aid company, before they give their money to a European company. Especially when said American company has so much to offer.

And finally the hearing foundation is a big deal. I am proud to volunteer my time so that the poor and needy can seek help for their hearing loss. I am proud that when I fit a Starkey hearing aid, they donate a percentage of that sale to their foundation ‘so the world may hear.’ There’s a reason why so many prominent figures including President Bill Clinton showed up at the gala this year and raised $7.2m for the foundation. They are making a real difference around the world, and my support of Starkey in a very small way helps this great cause.

So your often hostile attitude on this forum will not silence me, nor change my opinions. Our forum visitors can read what was written, and draw their own conclusions.

Thanks again for your contribution.

I guess we’ll just have to agree to differ.

I hope all of you who responded earlier are still around. My piano entrainment issue is almost solved, by turning off the feedback manager as ZCT suggested. HOWEVER, I still get this very intermittent whine. I cannot trace it to a particular noise. But nonetheless, it’s there. I’ve been trialing the Agil Pros this week and have not heard the noise at all. So I have to think it’s something about the settings on the Futures.

If any of you audis have any ideas, pleeease let me know. I like the Agil Pros a lot, but not 3K more than the Futures.


It’s hard to say, the intermittent whine could be the beginning of feedback maybe, or something else. While turning off a feedback management system has the benefit of stopping entrainment, it does of course make the aids more vulnerable to feedback.

Once again, the notion of having to battle this issue is very old fashioned. If you are trailing modern aids, find ones made by companies who have already resolved this issue, such as Starkey.