My journey from Widex Unique 330 CIC to Oticon More 1 RIC

Background:
29 years old, engineer, and since childhood wears a one-sided hearing aid (right ear).
My word recognition in silent mode is 98%, while in noisy mode it moves around 50%.

My work environment is open spaces, with around 12 people in one space.

Until this year I did not know the world of hearing aids, every time I bought my hearing aid according to the recommendation of the audiologist (who was more of a saleswoman than understanding and translating my needs into an optimal device).

In the last year, with the covid around and the masks, my ability to function has been significantly impaired, so I decided to study the subject and look for the best device for me.

My main understanding is that a CIC device no longer provides an optimal solution for me, so I decided to switch to a RIC device (each company and the name it takes). This is a big step for me (like declaring to the whole world that I am deaf), but I have reached a stage in my life that prefers optimal hearing over shame.

I focused on 2 main companies:

  1. Phonak
  2. Oticon

After a private conversation with Volusiano (thanks a lot for all the help), I decided to purchase a hearing aid of the oticon more type, when the audiologist told me that a ‘cross’ configuration should be released for this device this summer.

Volusiano warned me in advance that I had to get used to all the “wealth” of information, wearing the new device. However I did not feel a significant change in sound volume compared to my previous hearing aid.

Anyway in this post I will try to summarize the change, from my point of view.

Widex hearing aids have a very “clean / natural” tone of sound, and there is no doubt that you feel a change compared to the sound more 1, however after a day / two I got used to the sounds and no longer bothered myself too much.

After performing -REM and initial adjustment, I felt that I lacked volume in the volume of the sounds, in the app on the phone there is a bar to increase the volume of sounds, only after I increased a little from 0 to 2 I felt that the volume of the sound feels familiar.

Favorable notes:

  1. Ability to understand speech in a noisy environment - I was in a social gathering, and I also noticed that I understand more and are more involved in the conversation, nor did I feel so tired from the effort of listening to everyone.
  2. Hearing ability in a quiet environment - I worked several hours in the office alone, and I also felt comfortable listening, the silence did not bother me.
  3. Understanding ability to speak with masks - There is a significant improvement in the understanding of people who wear masks in the common space.

Bad comments (currently after initial adjustment)

  1. Ability to speak on the phone - Unable to hear anyone through the “ear” on the phone, the sound sounds very weak.
  2. Listening to sound that comes from electrical devices (TV / radio / computer speakers) - unfortunately the sound sounds metallic, not clean, and very difficult to understand. I can sit at a distance of 1 meter from the sound source, and not understand the speech.
  3. Background noises (wind, rain on the window), sound very loud, and can swallow speech / conversation sounds.
  4. Understanding a conversation When there are several circles of conversations (cafeteria for example), if I want to listen to someone who is at a table next to me, but there is someone talking at my desk, it is not possible.

In the future I plan to be DIY (thanks to Volusiano who instructed me what to buy and install), then I will be able to tune the hearing aid even further to my needs.

Thanks for reading,
I will update on the process, hoping for better hearing

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Looking at your audiogram you need two hearing aids.

Your favorable notes are really good.
Your bad comments could just be needing time to acclimate to the new aids.

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Not to create dissent, however: I’ve been wearing my More3s for 16 hours a day since March 2, and have experienced none of the bad things you’ve mentioned.

@Raudrive Rick is definitely better-versed in hearing loss types and habituation than I am, but - to my less-informed mind - your bad things sound like fitting deficiencies, and are not related to habituation, in my candied opinion.

An example is the phone volume you mentioned. My More3s give le plenty of volume and clarity in streamed calls. They are also set up to use the built-in telecoil, (for use with conventional handsets) which gives me crystal clear incoming audio. My HAs don’t pick up my voice in telecoil mode, which is a bit strange, but the sound quality and my comprehension are excellent.

As said: I’m not trying to be contentious: I simply don’t feel that your devices have been fitted to your best advantage.

YMMV

  1. On the ability to speak on the phone, I concur with @SpudGunner, using the telecoil feature in your More 1 is the proper way to do it. I’m not sure what you mean by “through the ear”, are you referring to just put the phone on your ear and hoping that the More mic will pick up the sound from the phone? This is a non-optimal way to do this. Another option is to use direct streaming via MFI if you have an iPhone. If you have an Android phone, you can get a ConnectClip to facilitate the stream in. It runs for around $250 on Amazon.

  2. As for listening to sounds from TV/radio/computers, it’s hard to say because those speakers are usually not very high quality in the first place, so it’s normal for them to sound tinny/metallic because they’re tiny speakers. Even for people with normal hearing, they’re not the greatest sound to hear. If they have Bluetooth, then direct streaming from the ConnectClip would help. Or the TV Adaptor 3.0 can accept SPDIF or analog audio or coaxial digital in for direct streaming as well if your device doesn’t have Bluetooth.

  3. On the loud background noise, hopefully with time you can adjust and your brain can learn to tune it out. If the background sound is indeed actually very loud, even normal hearing can have difficulties in them. But if they’re not really actually very loud, but it’s only your perception that they seem loud, then there’s hope that eventually your brain can learn to tune them out better.

  4. Your case is difficult because you’re only wearing 1 aid, so you don’t have the binaural experience to help you out in this regard. The binaural cues are crucial to help pick out a conversation from a distance at an angle to you, and zero in to focus on it. The binaural cues helps you differentiate between all the conversations going on in all different directions, so your brain can isolate the non-relevant conversations from certain directions and focus on the relevant conversation from the specific direction. Without this binaural cue, they are all mono-directional and can easily swamp out each other and very hard to differentiate. Maybe later if you go for a CROS version, that may help improve this situation for you.

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Thanks first of all,
Although it seems I need another device, but unfortunately, my left ear manages to benefit from the hearing aid (previously tested).
I will of course give most of the time for experience and getting used to.

Although I only did an initial adjustment, I guess after more adjustments I will have a better result.

On my current device (P20 pro), there is currently no option for Teceoil, so in order to make a phone call I need to pin the device to my ear, and at the moment I am not successful at it.
Maybe if I use ConnectClip it will solve my whole problem (instead of replacing a phone, and hopefully for LE technology soon).

I will of course return to the store, in order to make further directions.
Thanks

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Thanks for the comments,
Regarding your comments

  1. Right now the best option is ConnectClip for me, I will order it for myself. Too bad it’s so expensive :frowning:
  2. True this is a known problem, but I make a comparison on my laptop, where the difference is my current device (More 1), and the old hearing aid (Unique cic). The sound is just completely different, which shows that the tuning was not done optimally for me.
  3. Undoubtedly it is a matter of getting used to change. I give myself the chance.
  4. The unfortunate case of the truth, hope Oticon will soon release a new Cross version. So that I can solve / alleviate the problem
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Hm, you have a fairly flat frequency hearing loss on your better ear (right ear) up until 4KHz. I wonder perhaps you’re being fitted with a more open fitting (like an open dome) on the More compared to how you were fitted on the Widex (like maybe a closed dome with vents). If that’s the case, and open dome would leak out more lower frequencies, causing the sound to be more tinny/metallic than a closed dome that can hold in more lows. You may want to try out a more closed fitting dome if that’s the case. A custom mold is even better if possible.

If it’s very similar closed dome on both hearing aids already, then some fine tuning to increase the low frequencies’ gains may help.

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After a few days of experience with the new hearing aid,
Updating impressions:

The device works and works well in a quiet environment, even if there are several people talking, it is easy for me to follow, understand the conversation taking place.
I checked it in a number of ways: home / work (small space), visiting friends (no background music / outside noise)
My problem starts when there is a drop of noise around, or going out into an open space (without “walls” domains)
It’s enough that the TV is on in the background at medium volume, and my ability to understand, the people next to me, tends to be at 0.
I hear full of “speech” noise but the noise coming from a louder noise source (in this case a TV, but can also be cars outside or wind), makes it very difficult for me to have a basic understanding of the conversation.
I was in an open market with the girlfriend, and even though she was next to me (less than a meter from me), I could not hear her voice, all the noise of the market was louder.
I’m going to do another tuning to the device tomorrow, and I’ll audiologically point out the problems I’ve had.
As for programs (P1-P4), I tried to play with it, in parallel with playing with the “booster” mode in difficult listening modes, and I felt no improvement.
Even the P2 program (for me, it’s listening to TV), did not help me better understand what was said on the screen (even in a quiet environment, however the distance from me to the TV is around 5 meters).

Despite all my complaints, I emphasize the fact that I could hear and understand well in a closed and quiet space (which is the only reason I upgraded my current hearing aid) is worth a fortune for me, but without treating the hearing problem with outdoor noise / noisy environment, it will impair my personal experience.

Thanks,
The dome I have at the moment is an open dome, in widex I had a hard acrylic mold (not a dome).
I will ask to replace the dome tomorrow, in case the other issues I mentioned in a previous post will not be addressed.

I would suggest that when you do another tuning tomorrow, ask your audi to show you the MoreSound Intelligence settings on Genie 2 to see what they’re set at.

Below is a screenshot example of that page. Make sure you have “Neural Automatic” in your Directional Settings in the lower right corner of the page.

To help with your understanding speech better in a difficult environment, you may want to “define” the difficult to cover the Moderate situation, or even more aggressive if you want and expand it to the Simple situation if you want. You can always back off and readjust this in another future section, but for now maybe make it aggressive to see if there’s improvement.

Also make sure the Neural Noise Suppression for the Easy Environment set to the max 4 dB, and 10 dB for the Difficult Environment.

For the Virtual Outer Ear setting for the Easy Environment, since you don’t seem to have much issue there, you can leave it to Balanced. But if you want to tune out more things, you can change it to Focused.

For the Sound Enhancer in the Difficult Environment, change it to Comfort to give more weight to speech over other sounds around you.

The visual cues on this menu page, with the speech icons and the dots surrounding the speeches (representing non-speech sounds) will change as you change the settings to give you a visual idea of how the balance between the sounds would be altered.

Hopefully with these more aggressive changes, you’ll find them more helpful for you in difficult situations. If they help, after a while (maybe a month or so), as your brain becomes more and more adjusted to the Oticon open paradigm, you can back track of some of these settings so that the sound scenes become more opened up for you to allow more sounds to be heard.

Wow thank you very much

Do you make the changes you specify for all programs (P1-P4), or only in the default program?

I will try tomorrow and update the results.

It depends on what the other programs you have are. I’ll show you an examples of the 4 programs I have below. Note that I don’t really have the More 1. I only have the OPN 1. But I made a virtual profile of the More 1 for myself just to see what the options are for it, without needing to actually own it.

The first screen shot I have is the default P1 program. You can see which the default values they’re supposed to be by noticing the little “power” icon next to the value in each setting. As you can see, I changed my values there to the most aggressive value in all the settings, with Moderate as part of my Difficult Environment.

In the second screenshot below for P2, it is basically a copy of P1 originally, except I changed it to NAL-NL2 fitting rationale instead of the Oticon VAC+ rationale. But you can see that I left all the values at the default values, which are a bit less aggressive compared to how I changed my values to most aggressive in P1.

In the third screenshot for P3, I selected the built-in program for Speech in Noise. As you can see, the defaults for Speech in Noise is a little more aggressive compared to the defaults for the normal program. But still not the most aggressive possible.

In the fourth screenshot for P4, I selected the built-in program for Music. As you can see, the Neural Noise Suppression is disabled altogether, the Directionality Settings is Fixed Omni, and only the Virtual Outer Ear is selected for Aware. This is to minimize almost everything related to processing and not even using the deep neural network stuff anymore to open everything up.

So my recommendation is to make your default P1 program the most aggressive like how I have it, and leave alone the other built-in programs as they are set by Oticon. This way you can compare, for example, between the P1 default to the P3 Speech in Noise, to see whether you like the moderately aggressive settings in P3 Speech in Noise, or the most aggressive settings in your modified default P1 program.

For P2, you can try another standard fitting rationale like the NAL-N2 or the DSL v5 Adult to see how you like it compared to the proprietary Oticon VAC+ fitting rationale. Or you can just leave it as VAC+, but leave the values to the default suggestions, so you can compare P1 and P2 to see how the most aggressively set P1 is compared to the least to moderately aggressively set P2.




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Peace,
After a visit to the audiologist.
I asked her to implement most of your comments, she claimed she thought it was a very aggressive noise suppression, but flowed with me.

P1 + P2 + P4, set in the same way as you sent in a previous post, P3 I decided to execute a program with minimal noise suppression so I could hear everything in my workplace.

I will try to examine the changes in a number of different places, in order to feel the change.

Thanks

Nothing is set in stone. It is worth trying out the most aggressive settings in order to see how they work compared to the default settings. You can always back down if you don’t like it. Even if it works well for you, you can gradually back down from it as you eventually get more and more adjusted and can handle more and more sound details and your brain hearing gets better at learning to tune out and focus on sounds.

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Another thing to add is that you bought the More 1, not the More 2 or More 3. Below is the comparison between the 3 levels. As you can see, the More 1 has up to maximum of 10 dB for Difficult Environment and max of 4 dB for Easy Environment. So if you don’t set those values to the max, but only set them to the suggested default of 0 dB/6 dB for Easy/Difficult respectively, then you might as well save your money and buy the More 3 because the More 3 has those values for its max. Meaning that setting your More 1 to only the default suggested value basically will cripple your (much more capable) More 1 to a (much less capable) More 3. Why would you want to do that?

The other thing that your audi obviously doesn’t realize is that the Neural Noise Suppression values (in either Easy or Difficult Environments) are MAX only value. See the second screenshot below where the Genie 2 Help says clearly that “The selected level is the MAXIMUM level of applied noise suppression. In situations with less background noise, less noise suppression will be applied”. This implies that the More is smart enough to judiciously apply only as much neural noise suppression as necessary, and what you’re selecting is only the max limit. So unlike what your audi is afraid of (that you’re being too aggressive with noise suppression), the More will NOT ALWAYS aggressively applies this max neural noise suppression value in ALL situations. So my recommendations is to always set this Neural Noise Suppression (max) value to the highest value that the More class you buy allows. Otherwise you’re just crippling your More to a lower class (cheaper) version. It will not hurt anything to do this because the More will judiciously be more or less aggressive based on its own judgement of the amount of background noise it detects.

:cry:So, then … m-m-my More3s are less capable, crippled up junk, then?

But I :sparkling_heart: my More3s! Geez, V

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

@Volusiano: Just funnin’ of course. The 0dB max noise suppression in Easy environments is okay by me, since I want to be able to hear the clatter announcing that our cat has knocked something off the kitchen counter so that his partner in crime, our female Newfoundland dog, can carry it around and “decoratively emboss” whatever it is with her teeth!

I still haven’t been in what I would classify as a “difficult” listening situation in the over one month since I took delivery of my pore ol’ More3s, so I don’t know what the impact of the lower maxima for Difficult situations would be.

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It all depends on your personal needs, and likes.

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It’s interesting to note that the max neural noise suppression value for Difficult Environment is the same at 6 dB for the More 2 and the More 3. I wonder if it may be a typo on the spec sheet and that the More 2 max is actually 8 dB. But if I’m wrong and it’s all the same 6 dB for the More 2 and 3, then that’s a plus for the More 3, or a minus for the More 2, how ever you look at it, glass half full or half empty type of thing. :slight_smile:

Judging on other items in the spec sheet though, the More 2 and More 3 differences seem to be very slight that, depending on the pricing, it may be a better value to get the More 3 than the More 2 instead.

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🥲Well … that makes us feel a bit better!