New Phonak Audeo SMART III's

Went to the audi yesterday and had a pretty comprehensive hearing test; based on my results, he recommended the Audeo SMART III’s. I asked him about the additional benefits of the SMART V or IX versus the additional cost, and he said that based on my hearing loss, the additional features (which are mainly to improve one’s ability to hear better in noisy situations) would not be of any benefit to me.

I have to admit that I was a bit impressed; he could have said that one of the higher priced models would be better and I would have never known the difference.

He recommended that the hearing aid be used with a cShell earmold, so it will be about a week before I get the new aids. (I’m currently using a pair of Siemen’s ITE aids that are literally falling apart after about 4 years of use). Have to admit that I’m pretty anxious to get the SMART III’s and see how they work out. :slight_smile:

I forgot to take a copy of the audiogram; I’ll post the results later.

I picked up my new Phonak Audeo SMART III’s this afternoon. While it’s obviously too early to give a comprehensive evaluation of them, I thought I’d mention a few first impressions. To begin with, they are so small and light that I just about forget them I have them; no doubt this is also due to them being properly fitted and the earpiece (cShell) being made just right.

When there is no ambient noise, they are incredibly quiet. So far, the sounds that I’ve heard are very clear; there is no tinny sound, no hollow or rain barrel sound and no noise. Speech appears to be clearer than it was with my old hearing aids, Sieman’s ITE’s that were about 4 or 5 years old.

Interestingly, the audi set them for 75% of the amplification that my audigram called for; he said that the brain takes a while to adjust to all the sounds that I will now be hearing and that if he set them for full amplification to start with it would most likely sound too loud. I have an appointment for a week from now for him to add more amplification and/or adjust them as necessary based on my experience with them. I wonder if this is a common practice?

I’ll have to add my audigram to my signature, but for now I’ll show it here:

Freq L R
250 20 20
500 40 35
1000 75 50
2000 80 75
4000 95 90
6000 110 90
8000 110 90

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Visited audi for the second time, after having my III’s for a week programmed for 75% of the correction I require according to the hearing test results. It seemed to me that sounds in my right ear (the ‘good’ one) were not as loud as they were in my left ear; he checked the aids out good in his lab and reviewed the performance data that they store internally and said it was just a matter of changing some of the programming.

He then increased the amplification to 100% of the correction that I require so I could experience what the world sounded like at that level; I have another appointment in a week to review the results and make further refinements if required, unless I find that some sounds are uncomfortably loud before then.

I am thus far very impressed with the SMART III’s for several reasons: the small size for a BTE devices makes them very comfortable to wear … I just about forget that they are there, unlike older BTE aids that I had previously; the amplification that they provide is phenominal for devices of that size and the clarity is unlike any other hearing aid that I have had before. I know that they cannot restore my hearing to “normal” but the state of the art of hearing aid design has taken quantum leap in the past few years.

Hello Jim,

As I had mentioned, my Audi started me out at 100% volume because he believes that I should start my brain adjusting to what he feels the volume should be set at. I saw another member mention if there was some programming that can be done to help eliminate the “lisping”. I have sensed the same on my Smart IIIs. I also hear some added “white noise” when I put them in my ear. Almost like a small amount of static. My right one was sporadically shutting down today. I noticed some wax in the receiver and gently “picked” it out. Don’t know what I did but it has been working without a glitch all day??? Not complaining because when it was shutting off I was very dissapointed! Some sounds are still very loud and “clanky”. especially the wrinkling of paper and packaging. All in all I am encouraged and will give them a go for two weeks before I go back to the Audi. He wants me to keep track of different experiences.

If I could only get rid of the tinnitus and i know that ain’t gonna happen!

Do you still get the use of the directional mics with the Smart IIIs ?

Yes. The Smart has directional mics. This is off of their website:
Features and benefits

  • [NoiseBlock Processing](http://www.phonak.com/us/b2c/en/multiused_content/hearing_solutions/hearing_instruments/features/noiseblock_processing/noiseblock_processing_detail_page.lightbox.700.html) - Premium comfort in background noise
  • [SoundFlow Standard](http://www.phonak.com/us/b2c/en/multiused_content/hearing_solutions/hearing_instruments/features/soundflow/soundflow_detail_page.lightbox.700.html) - Continuous and instant optimization to all environments
  • [SoundRecover](http://www.phonak.com/us/b2c/en/multiused_content/hearing_solutions/hearing_instruments/features/soundrecover/soundrecover_detail_page.lightbox.700.html) - Non linear frequency compression
  • [WhistleBlock Technology](http://www.phonak.com/us/b2c/en/multiused_content/hearing_solutions/hearing_instruments/features/whistleblock_technology/whistleblock_technology_detail_page.lightbox.700.html) - Feedback free hearing
  • [Acoustically Optimized Venting (AOV)](http://www.phonak.com/us/b2c/en/multiused_content/hearing_solutions/hearing_instruments/features/acoustically_optimizedventing/aov_detail_page.lightbox.700.html) - Minimum occlusion
  • [QuickSync ](http://www.phonak.com/us/b2c/en/multiused_content/hearing_solutions/hearing_instruments/features/quicksync/quicksync_detail_page.lightbox.700.html)- Control both instruments with one touch
  • Digital AudioZoom - Dual microphone system

Thanks. It does seem interesting that the Smart III is a lot cheaper than the Smart IX, but it still has a lot of features of premium aids.

It’s the ole good, better, best marketing strategy. I wouldn’t be surprised if the III had the same electronics as the IX but that the features are disabled.

Very pleased with my IIIs. It would be interesting to trial IXs to see what $2000 gets you.

I wouldn’t be surprised if the III had the same electronics as the IX but that the features are disabled.

I bet your right and a hacker could probably reprogram them to be 9’s
very easily.

I Beleive the difference is in the clarity of sounds as phonak audi said.

The III has 6 channels I guees, but the IX has 20.

I have the Smart IXs and I’m not convinced that 20 channels actually gets you much more than 6. I think you reach a point of overkill. In fact, I’m finding that my aids are continually adjusting to the point where it’s bothersome. I’m on a quest to “dumb down” the devices, to take away some of the functionality so it’s not constantly adjusting. I’ve already had the sensitivity setting set to the lowest level and have had the Noise block setting reduced. Still trying to figure out what to do with these things, and I’ve been to 3 audis. Lately I’ve been wearing my old Oticon Synchros, which aren’t bad, not sure why I got going with this to begin with (Smart IXs are more cosmetic and I thought speech in loud environments would be better). The Synchros are simpler and, to be honest, seem more natural and effective.

I have had my Phinak Smart IIIs for a couple of months now. Played around with different programming and been very aware of the minor differences I have tried. I need them the most in my work enviromnment which is basically meetings with a group of people all within 10-15 feet. I had the audi leave one program auto, one louder (than what it was originnally programmed at) for speech only, and one with speech and noise.

I tried to get a fourth but the program would not allow it. I believe the Audi told me that one was a mute program?? I had the speech one programmed because I was going to a trade show and wanted to make sure I had enough volume. It definitely pumped up the volume along with everything else!! I use that now for when I have to listen to soft spoken people. The problem is that this mode makes everthing very “tinny” sounding including my voice.

The speech and noise program performs almost identical to the automatic default factory program. I have made a decision to have the Audi remove all of the programs and program them to the automatic mode with volume controls. I find it very easy to press the buttons when I will have to have added volume. I don’t have the cash to buy the remote and I would probably loose it anyway. Tried a lot of different programming and still revert back to the “automatic” program from the factory. I plan on having them changed in a couple of days.

I have read some threads where people have said to lower down the voice recover by 50% but with the IIIs, I think the best is going automatic with volume control option for the buttons. They are so comfortable I forget I have them on. There have been times I had an itch and poked my finger in the ear to realize they were in.

Good HAs are the bestinvestment anyone with hearing lose can make.
Someone asked me If I would recommend the Smart IIIs and I told them I got such a great deal because of insurance. They would have been $2800 without insurance and I ended up paying $380. I believe I would have bought the Bernafon Verite from Costco if I didn’t have the insurance. You would have to slightly sacrifice on voice quality with the Verite compared to the Phonak Smart- but not much. A good programmer can them very close.

I did have to get one of the receivers replaced at first but have not had any problems since. I try to be careful when I take them out not to twist the wires.

Hi,

He said if we back off the sound recover, it will cut some of the high end off. I have a really hard time making out what people are saying and I believe that the audi has the volume set too low. On the voice only mode which has the volume turned up, the voices are very distinct but that mode is not good with anything else but just voices. Everything else in the background is way too loud and “mixes” too much with voices. During the Homily at Church it is great!

I like the level of that volume so I am just going to get them programmed to automatic and the buttons being volume controls (I wish there was base, midrange and treble I could adjust). I will see how I like that. The Audi is really great and he likes to hear my feedback after he makes changes. I believe he said he is data logging to sse what I have been doing.

See you all and happy hearing.

I’m a newbie to this forum and to hearing aids. Interesting experience with trying out HA at 2 different places. First went to the medical school audiology clinic in my town and had a very detailed hearing test (the audiologist was an MD) and also saw the ENT there. I was told the open fit HA would work for me. The audiologist only had me try one type of aid-the 20 channel one for $5800! When I heard that it had to be paid for when dispensed I started asking her about the other 2 price ranges.
She didn’t have those for me to try(??) and kept saying the 20 channel one would be the best. Oh, and then there was the $500 dispensing fee that is not refundable if I didn’t keep them. She also had the demo pair turned up to the level she thought I needed which was uncomfortable to me. We were in her quiet office so there was no noise in the background.
The next day I went to a HA dispenser in town where 2 people I knew purchased HAs. Night and day difference-after looking at my audiogram I brought with me he said I’d do fine with the YesIII model b/c my speech discrim score was 100%. He took a pair out of the box and let me try them out as we had a conversation. He also started me out at a lower setting so I could adjust to them. $2800 for the pair and he does NOT keep any fees if I choose to return them in the next 2 months.
I’m really disappointed that the ENT would only push the $$$ ones.
Now a question-the sound of paper rattling (newspaper esp) is annoying, as is the ceiling light over my cubicle. Are these sounds that the HA fitter can fine tune for me?
I’ve learned a lot in this forum. Sorry for the long post.

Be patient, these are new sounds again for your brain. with adjustments (normal) and time (a week +/-) everything will settle down.