My KS 9.0 Review

Hello everyone! I was just recently fit by my audiologist at the local Costco with the Kirkland Signature 9.0 hearing aids today and thought I’d drop a bit of a review with my overall experience.

When I arrived at Costco, I was greeted by the receptionist at the front desk and seen shortly by the audiologist who was ready to fit me. We went over the basics such as cleaning, identifying which hearing aid is left and right, how to replace the batteries, making sure to peel the tab off the batteries and wait for a minute before using them, and so on. Just basic maintenance. Afterwards, I sat in front of the Aurical Freefit, had probes inserted into my ears and was told to sit very still for what seemed like an eternity. The audiologist then began playing the ISTS while making quick adjustments here and there for my hearing aids. Overall, it took about 5-10 minutes of tweaking before he was done.

When he finished programming, we went over the programming, and he explained the app. He did set me up with the Easy Line Remote (ELR) app, but I ended up just going ahead and using the MyPhonak app after I left. Turns out it works perfectly fine, the exact same way ELR does, but with more colour, lol.

As soon as I got home, I went right ahead and paired the PartnerMic, and the TV Connector to my hearing aids. Let me tell you - I was absolutely astonished by the quality of sound that both the PartnerMic and TV Connector have. It is certainly a GREAT quality of life purchase, and I thoroughly enjoy it. However… I will have to ask my audiologist to set the connection for the TV Connector to manual, as it seems to always auto-connect when I’m in range of the TV. The PartnerMic on the other hand… I had my parents put it on and was amazed by how even with their soft spoken voices, I was able to understand the majority of what they were saying.

I did take a little trip to the local Wal-Mart to pick up some stuff and really try to perceive how well my hearing is with hearing aids, and I was absolutely amazed. I went to a drive thru and was able to completely understand what the order taker was saying to me, which speaks volumes! It was great.

Back to the KS9.0, I got a little carried away! When paired to my iPhone, listening to music or watching youtube videos blew me away. The transparency mode in the MyPhonak app amazed me. It amazed me so much that I was able to tell my hearing aids just how much I wanted to hear from either my hearing aids / audio. I should note that I do have C-Shells, and this is merely due to needing to trap the lower frequencies in my ears for me to hear! :sweat_smile:

Making phone calls was also amazing. Never before have I experienced such clarity in a situation like that. Being able to answer the phone and just talk normally is such a weird experience to me because there’s no intermediary device, it’s just the hearing aids doing their thing.

Overall, I am thoroughly impressed. The quality provided by the audiologist at my Costco, and the actual devices themselves were amazing.

Of course I want this to be a balanced review but I only have one negative. However, I can’t even qualify this as a negative with the KS9 as opposed to a negative with my fitting experience perhaps.

I have used C-Shells in the past, but the Costco audi decided against venting me this time around. I’m not sure what this does for my hearing loss or if it is required - Someone with more experience can take a look at my audiogram and let me know what you think. Do I need a vent or not? The only reason I ask is that sometimes when i talk, it feels like my right ear is perceiving most of the sound compared to my left ear, and my left ear feels sort of plugged. I don’t remember having this sort of sensation before and I’m wondering if I’m dealing with occlusion.

As always, if you have any questions in specific about the devices, please feel free to ask! I want to provide as much information on a cost effective solution as I have been given!


JJ, Your experience reminds me of a revelation I had in my final year of practice as a nephrologist.
One of my patients, a young man with Alport’s Disease who’d had a kidney transplant was in my office for a routine appointment. This was in my practice’s first year with the dreaded “Epic” Electronic Health Record, either loved or despised (or both) by patients and practitioners alike. The patients most often complained about their doctors hiding behind their monitor screens.

Anyway, I was doing just that, typing while talking and listening, and suddenly I realized that “Jack” (not his real name) and I were carrying on a conversation even though he was denied the assistance of lip reading by my 4K monitor! My own hearing was deteriorating (not from his curse of a genetic aural-renal disorder, but probably from too many Grateful Dead concerts in decades past. I jumped up from my chair and the two of us spent the rest of his visit discussing his new BT ReSound hearing aids!

That led me to an audiologist, then disappointment in the ReSounds I tried first, then recapture of the sonic world with 2014 vintage Phonaks (which I still use). I’m now retired, on a limited income, and aware that the KS-9s are in many ways similar to the Phonak Audeo Marvels. I’m happy to read of your experiences, but I can’t comment on whether your in-ear pieces should be vented. I am curious, however, as to whether, as a Costco patron, you have any idea whether a “KS-10” Phonak Paradise derivative is in the works.

Thanks so much,

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Jim, I’m so glad you appreciated my review!

To answer your question about a possible KS-10, I didn’t inquire yet. However, I’m going to see the Costco Audi for a follow up on the 29th of January. They also happen to be the manager of that department, so maybe they’ll have some insight into the future.

Good report. I’m not familiar with the transparency setting. Can you tell me more?

My reading here makes me think Costco is usually about a year to a year and a half behind in getting the latest models, IE the KS-10 / Paradise.

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Hi Rev!

I can absolutely tell you more! So basically transparency is what allows you to decide just how much of your surroundings you want to allow into your hearing aids versus music, or the TV if you have a TV Connector for instance. In the image below, I was listening to music, but I was also having a conversation with my parents. It amazed me that I was able to hear them while also listening to my music! This is available through the MyPhonak app.


Thanks so much! We are managing to keep our Costco expeditions down to 1 per month or so. I’ve found them not to be exactly forthcoming about things they don’t carry at just this millisecond, but otherwise I’m very impressed by their customer service (for example, when my grandson knocked a new pair of spectacles to the floor from a table and then unintentionally stepped on them (this 120 miles from home in Big Sky country, the nearest Costco was magically just across the street from my hotel. I went in to their optical department (this was the day after Christmas last year with only one associate in the department). My hope was that she could at least straighten them enough so that I could wear them while awaiting new ones. She warned me that attempting that could BREAK them, but managed to produce a result satisfactory to me. However, it was NOT good enough for her, so she found a display case pair of the same frames in my size and just GAVE them to me! THAT, more than the incredible bargains of Costco pricing for the KS 9.0s is why i’m hoping for a KS 10 that also comes under a disguised name from the Phonak production line (that and the fact that for many years, my only idea of what “Phonak” did was sponsor my hometown cycling hero Levi Leipheimer).

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Having a quick Google I found they introduced the Marvels in October '18 and then Costco brought out the KS-9 in July '19 - so more like 8 months in between. The Paradises came out in August '20 so we might be lucky for the KS-10’s this summer!

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I have KS9s with custom c-shell molds. They vented the left one much smaller than the right one and I can tell a difference. I’ve had them a year and tweaked them to satisfactory, but the left one still feels plugged and I have to pull it slightly out of the ear to hear better. Seems that the vent needs to be larger, regardless what their algorithm tells them.

Between COVID and the 1-1/2 hour drive to Costco, I just haven’t had the opportunity for them to address it yet.

My Costco voyages in Montana are about the same length. Each time, I stop at the hearing aid department and inquire about “KS10s”). They tell me they’ll know probably 3 days before I find out myself from reading this forum, or visiting the store.

(2-year resident of Ames in the early 1990s, back when 100 year floods floated houses down the Iowa River, deprived Des Moines of potable water for much of the summer, and the Army Corps of Engineers saved a large number of dialysis patients by delivering huge flexible bladders to the dialysis centers to store water purified for dialysis).

My long trips are now to the Missoula Costco, but even those are dwarfed by the 250 mile trips for routine “show your baby some love” service appointments at the Audi Dealer in Bozeman or Spokane, and where there’s not even ONE Apple Retail Store in the entire state!

I didn’t get my HA’s at Costco; I worked with a very fine Audiologist in Santa Rosa, CA. However, custom c-shell molds never entered our discussion. Would you mind offering a few words regarding for whom and why they’re helpful?

Thanks so much,

I’m thankful that I live close to 3 Costco’s. If things didn’t work out at one, I could always go to the next one and give it a try. I’m thinking to save and get back to having a hearing care specialist and see what other technology exists outside of Costco nowadays, but this forum is a great start for sure. I think my trips are between… 15-20KM depending on which Costco I go to, but we do have plenty of independent practices around here.

So the thing with custom C-Shell molds is that I’ve always had one since I got my Phonak Audeo B’s back in… 2015 I think it was? I was told that because of my hearing loss, and lack of perception in the lower frequencies, I would be a prime candidate for a C-Shell on my RIC hearing aid, rather than any of the domes. The domes as I was told, would leak out too much of the lower frequencies that I need for my loss, and that I wouldn’t benefit from them at all.

For me, they’re extremely helpful because I can hear much deeper sounds, perceive a truer bass sound when listening to music either thru Bluetooth or my studio monitors, and understand much more deeper sounding individuals. I told my audiologist that I struggled with having conversations with people with deeper sounding voices, and that’s where the C-Shells came into play. They basically trap the deeper sound right into my ear canal much better than the non-vented domes because they’re molded specifically to keep that sound in.

Anywho, I hope that answers your question. :slight_smile:

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