Need to order 1st aids, would appreciate your thoughts about the audi recommendation

Had my 2 year follow up appt yesterday to get my hearing checked again. Two years ago the audi really didn’t think investing in aids was appropriate at that time. I was impressed he wouldn’t sell me something that I didn’t need.
Same audi this time, and based on hearing changes thinks I would benefit from aids now.

I have a lot of trouble understanding my spouse, and I’m a birdwatcher and have a very difficult time hearing bird songs, especially high pitched ones.

Audi is recommending Phonak Audeo M70R. Initially the price for the pair was $3,750, however after some negotiating he will meet the Tru Hearing price of $3,390. I would purchase through him directly, not Tru Hearing. He said he would also include a free TV connect device (which I haven’t researched what that is exactly).
He includes a 45 day trial and 1 year of visits to make adjustments to the programming.

I mentioned in passing that my cousins all got their aids from Costco which cost less. Audi says they have good products, however there are no audiologists there. He has some patients who have been very happy and others that were not. I don’t think Costco has the rechargeable aids so I’d have to add expenses on for batteries.

I updated my hearing audiogram on the site, hopefully it displays correctly.

Right now I’m leaning towards going through the audi vs. trying Costco.

Very interested in what the more experienced people here think.
Thanks in advance

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If you like the audiologist and the money is not an issue, this is a reasonable approach. Just so you get an idea of how much you’re paying for the privilege, I’ll include what you’d get from Costco. For $1499 you’d get a very similar pair of hearing aids. You’d get a 180 day trial and unlimited visits. You’d have a 3 year warranty–2 years for loss or damage. Batteries are $8.49 for 48 so conservatively you should get 13 weeks out of a pack or about $34 a year, perhaps less. You could get a TV connector for an extra $100. Be sure you understand what kind of warranty you get and if you can send the aids back near the end of the warranty for a new rechargeable battery. Either aid should serve you well.
Note: I edited my mistaken math. Thanks for pointing it out.

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Welcome to the forum.
You have come to a great place to learn about your hearing loss and hearing aids.

I agree, hearing aids would help you. I have attached the speech banana. If you place your audiogram across the banana you will see why you are having a tuff time.

I am a fan of Costco if insurance doesn’t cover your aids or finances are an issue. The KS9 aids are based on the Phonak Audeo M90 aids that are a really serious bang for the buck. They are lacking a few options but very nice. MDB has explained this well.

Good luck with new aids. All the new modern aids would help you hear better. I tend to be a fan of Oticon, Resound and Phonak but others are fine too. Don’t get pushed into aids too quickly. Take your time, it’s an important investment.

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Thanks MDB for the great info. The warranty does include sending them back near the end of the warranty for a new rechargeable battery.

That’s quite a price difference between Costco and the professional. Money always factors into the decision.

I also forgot to mention that I have mild tinnitus. Not sure if any of the aids that I’m considering will help with that.

Thanks very much for the info.

Sometimes just getting amplification can help with tinnitus. From my experience the key to dealing with tinnitus is to learn to ignore it. Most hearing aids that claim to have tinnitus features just use some sort of white noise to cover up the tinnitus. The M70 will have that feature. The KS9 will not, however, it can be duplicated by putting a white noise app on one’s smartphone and stream to the hearing aids.

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Given the price difference and the fact that the KS9 will process speech / Speech in noise closer to the 90 level Marvel rather than the 70 I would at least sit down with a costco clinician to have a chat about their services. You would be sacrificing the rechargeability and tinnitus masking (although it is not a feature I commonly set up anyway on hearing aids) but with a fiarly signigifant price difference you might decide this is worth it as Costcos prices are very hard to beat… If it doesn’t feel right to you then go with your original clinician, as they sound like they’ve treated you well to this point.

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Thank you Raudrive. I have not seen this graph before. Really explains why I have so much trouble understanding “s” vs “f”. Even on the phone I struggle with that.

Which brings up another point. I haven’t thought about how these will work using a phone. I use both an iPhone and a regular digital house type phone. I remember my Dad had trouble with feedback when trying to use a house phone but admittedly that was 10 years ago and I’m sure the technology is light-years ahead now.

Thanks

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The infrequent times I have to use a land line phone are a real struggle for me. I have to try to position the phone so that the receiver is next to my hearing aid. That is unnatural and cumbersome. My Oticon Opn 1’s stream directly to my iPhone. You might want to consider making a switch to cell phone only when you start wearing HAs.

I meant to say the HAs stream phone calls directly from my iPhone to my HAs.

With your loss, I wouldn’t think you’d have any issue with landline while using hearing aids. With your iphone, you can stream calls directly.

Thanks MFAUD. I will give Costco a call. I heard that for a while they had closed down the hearing aid section of the store due to Covid concerns (I live in NY), but it may be back open now.

My wife has tinnitus worse than me (does not have hearing aids) but has apparently looked into the white noise solution and says “it’s not for me”.

You mentioned you don’t normally turn the tinnitus feature on anyway - can you elaborate on the pros and cons of the feature?

Thanks

I am very much a Costco fan. I’m wearing my second Costco HA pair, KS8s. I’ve had totally professional setup and adjustments since using Costco. MDB gave solid information and advice. My battery experience is different. My batteries typically last one week to the day. Costco batteries at $8.50/48=.18/battery. At 2 per week over 52 weeks = $18.72/year. I often hear people say the audi gave a free year of batteries with the $6000 aids.

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I called Costco today based on everyone’s recommendation. They have been closed since mid-March and just opened again 3 days ago. I’m on a waiting list for an appointment so not sure how long that will take. No rush, so I will do more research on this site to understand the Kirkland features, etc.

Thx for the info so far.

The tinnitus feature across the different manufacturers is generally a masking ‘noise’ which can vary anywhere from a white noise to different tones which the aids generate either on top of the amplification or as a sound on its own.They can help to divert the attention away from the tinnitus and in some instances can be very beneficial. However, I find that in a lot of cases, just having amplification of the sounds around you through the hearing aids will mask tinnitus just as well . So when a manufacturer does not offer it, the reality is this will probably only affect a small percentage of end users as most will simoly not use it.

Also - I’m pretty sure Costco do employ audiologists, not just hearing aid specialists. That being said, in my experience it is really dependent on the person and their approach to your hearing care, not their qualification - I have seen some brilliant hearing aid specialists and some terrible audiologists!

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My math was way off. Sorry. I estimated 4 days with the KS9 because if they’re streamed a lot, battery life can be pretty low. But even at 4 days, it’s like $36 a year.

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No worries on the math. At any rate, an extra $36 a year is trivial compared to paying an extra $1,600 up front for the rechargeable model aid.

Keep the info coming - I’m soaking it in…
Thx

Thanks for the info on Costco. We only have one store here. For years they weren’t in NY at all - I’ve seen many of them in Ohio and the midwest. Hoping they can get me off the waiting list soon and in for an appt. They are really backed up after the Covid shutdown apparently.

Thx

How long are your typical days? If they’re 12-13 hours of wear time, then rechargeables shouldn’t be an issue. Unless you like to spend weekends places where you won’t be able to charge. Me personally, I wear 16+ hours a day and I don’t like to be tethered so rechargeable wasn’t a consideration for me.

Phobos, really great point on hours. I’m a 15-16 hour person also.

I wasn’t aware and hadn’t thought about how long the rechargeable battery would last.

Thanks very much for that info.

I wear Phonak Audeo M90 RT aids. One time I got a low alarm after a 15-16 hour day with loads of streaming. Battery usage is also tied to the persons hearing loss. The aids have to work harder on a bad hearing loss.
If you are in any form of a trial period with new aids, you should find out real quick if the rechargeable batteries hold up. Some brands are better than others.