I had to buy a membership prior to buying the KS 8 HA. The Membership Manager talked me into an upscale membership telling me I’d get 2% back on the HA’s which turned out to be a cashback of $32. They told me I could get the extra $60 cost for upgraded membership back any time if I felt I were not getting my money’s worth from the upscale membership. The initial membership is $60 and the upscale 2x that.
After filling out the information to purchase the HA’s I met with India Searcy (I include her name because I thought she did a very credible job and I recommend her if you go to the Mobile, Al Costco). She’s a Hearing Aid Specialist there. She checked my ears. I had cleaned my canals with a bulb syringe because I have long narrow canals and sometimes the dispenser cannot see my ear drums. Indeed, even though they were clear this time, the dispenser called in the on-site Audiologist to double check.
I started my test. It was one of the best tests I’ve ever had not to mention the fitting. We did the raise your hand if you can hear this, then word recognition tests. The cochlear test. There was also a “tell me when the noise level is too much for you” which, I believe, was used to find the top end for tuning my new HA’s.
During the fitting, India took her time.
She put me in front of a speaker with my HA’s on and a needle probe in my ears. I’ve seen this option with my Starkey Inspire Software, but I’m lacking the device. She played a foreign language speaker and adjusted the HA’s using the feedback she got on a computer screen. She was able to bump up or down the whole spectrum my HA chart.
I don’t believe she did much custom adjustment beyond what I’m describing, but she did give me choices of modes. I think I put her on-guard a bit when I told her I didn’t want to return for adjustment and wanted the software to program these at home as I have been doing with my Starkey WI110’s.
I ended up changing my mind about re-adjusting on my own, in part because she had that probe which I do not have at home. And, quite simply, she was better at the software and adjusting then I am. By the way, she wouldn’t give me a copy of the software. I don’t relish the 1 ½ hour drive to re-adjust, but I’ll have to bite the bullet as needed. She invited my family into the fitting room to test the HA’s out on them. Then she allowed me to roam the store with my family to check the HA’s out.
The fitter helped me to set up Iphone access to the KS 8’s. I tested that prior to leaving. I can now stream phone calls on my Iphone 5 to my HA’s. She showed me that I can stream sound from other sources through the Iphone, but it will pick up background noises as I do so. I have yet to use this function and wonder if it will be OK for TV streaming?
The total cost for the 2 HA’s was $1600 plus the Mobile, AL 10% tax of $160. So $1760. I have a 2 year warranty which includes a 1x replacement should I lose one or both HA’s. There is also a 180 Day Trial Period for return of devices for “any reason”.
I am much more pleased with the results of these new KS 8’s than my WI110’s, but it is an unfair comparison. I’ve been programming my Starkey WI110’s with a much outdated test.
Bottom line is that I’m very pleased with the price and the quality not to mention the service.