Newbie about to start trials

I went to a local audiologist and had my audiogram done. She recommended that I try Oticon Nera2 which I will do this coming week. Since Oticon is the only brand she carries, I also want to try Costco and possibly the KS6. Here are my thoughts so far, after reading numerous posts here.

My areas of emphasis in getting an HA are 1) hearing better in restaurants, 2) having the HA work directly with my TV’s audio, 3) understanding movie theater dialogue. I have no interest in interfacing with cell phones.

I don’t know whether the Nera2 offers a remote, but I think that would be handy to have. What do you feel about remotes?

Also, I would like to have an activated telecoil. I have looked at the Sennheiser SET840-S Wireless Assistive Listening System with Body Pack Receiver (neck loop) and this seems to be a well respected system for use with telecoil and reproducing excellent TV sound. Users claim it works with Costco hearing aids. Does anyone have any experience with the Sennheiser?

The Oticon is much more expensive than Costco’s KS6, so I would like to trial both. Any further thoughts or advice as to what to look for?

Bob

SRT
45 db R/30 db L
WR
R 100% at 75db/L 100% at 75db

Freq. 250 500 1K 2K 3k 4k 6k 8k
L 30 35 35 30 40 65 65 55
R 25 35 35 30 60 60 60 55

The KS6 doesn’t have telecoil. The Trax42 does. Not sure about the Bernefon which I think is close to the Nera2 as Octicon’s second brand. All of these are available at Costco. They also have Phonak but that model needs an update.

All of the models can have a TV streamer added. Not sure how the price of the Sennheiser’s compare. Most streamers from the manufacturer are $300 plus.

The Nera2 is Octicon’s mid-level line.

With the KS6, you can purchase the optional ReSound Unite TV Streamer 2 for $260 which will transmit audio directly to your hearing aids without the need for a neckloop device such as the SET840-S. Oticon’s TV solution requires their Streamer Pro and ConnectLine TV Adapter. For movie theaters, check with your particular venue to see what type of assistive listening system they offer. It could be FM receiver or loop.

The Phonak Brio at Costco is based on the Audeo Q90, but doesn’t have Echblock or Tinnitus Masker. You can get a package that includes the ComPilot, TV Link and Remote Mic for $299.99 for streaming. I use the TV Link every day. The Brio also has a telecoil.

The TV Streamer for the KS6 at Costco is $259.99, and works well. I used it just about every day wearing the KS6.

I’d also disagree with KenP that the Phonak needs an update. It’s based on the Audeo Q technology, and Phonak’s latest is the Audeo V, which has a faster processor, slightly longer battery life, and some software tweaks to the binaural sound flow features. The KS6 is based on the original ReSound Linx, and ReSound now has the Linx2 which offers similar “improvements” going from Linx to Linx2 as going from Audeo Q to Audeo V. Moving from the KS6 to Linx2 or Brio to Audeo V results in quite a jump in expense.

The KS6 is $1799.99 a pair plus $259.99 (plus tax) for the streamer.

The Brio is $1299.99 for each aid plus $299.99 (plus tax) for the ComPilot/TV Link/Remote Mic package.

Both are excellent aids, but I find the overall experience better with the Phonak, which I’ve been wearing for a month. I’ve worn ReSound aids for a decade, and the KS6 for a little more than 4 months before moving to the Brio.

Did you try Trax42?

What about the Brio do you like over the KS6.

I’ve got Costco appt 09/11…and KS6, Trax42, Phonak Brio on my list.

I did not try the Trax42. The Brio has a more natural sound, and the way these are programmed I only need the one program. With the KS6 I had 4 programs, Basic + Softswitching, Restaurant, Traffic, and Music. I would use the first two programs regularly, and sometimes bump the volume when listening to someone speaking softly.

With the Brio, I just have the Soundflow program, and it works well for just about everything I encounter. I even hear more of the music and the individual instruments, seemingly, than I did with the KS6 and the music program.

The Brio is also more comfortable for me in and behind the ear. I use large closed domes versus tulip domes on the KS6, and just like the overall feel better. It’s also easier to put on and take off my various pairs of glasses with the Brio, which is smaller but rides higher up the ear than the KS6 does for me.

Both are great aids, but I give the Brio a slight overall edge. I put them on in the morning, take them off at night, use the ComPilot and TV Link to stream, and generally find them to give me back hassle-free hearing.

The Sennheiser SET840-S is $279 on Amazon. Excellent reviews. I wonder how it compares to Trax42’s TV streamer.

all brands have a tv streamer device.

Thanks, doubledown. This is good information. From what I’ve read in these forums, Rexton Trax42 is a strong contender. I have already committed to a trial of the Oticon Nera2 with my local audiologist. I intend to go to Costco after that and try the Trax42. I’m wondering how effective is the TV streamer for the Trax42?

Well, I got my first HAs today – Nera2 Pros. Wow! I can hear highs I never heard before. Got to go back in a week for adjustments. I had some trouble putting them in. I hope that comes more easily as I proceed. I’m happy that I can still use my headphones for TV sound. Can even use my cheapo headset on the PC. Will be keeping a log to help the audiologist adjust them next time. One thing that bothers me: my ear canals itch. I hope this goes away with consistent use. Will also need to do something about rear microphones (?) as traffic coming from in back of me sounds like I’m about to get run over. Any observations on these things from all you experienced users?

Itch is common, and it’s something I sometimes experience, even though I’ve been a HA wearer for 11-12 years.

I might be wrong, but am thinking it might be something more common that can occur during warmer summer months. That sweat and moisture in the ear canal exasperates such.

When this happens to myself, I’ll remove the HA in the affected ear, and do a gentle swabbing of the outer canal with a soft q-tip. Leave them out for a few minute’s time, wipe off the mold with a soft tissue, and it then seems better, and resides.

There are products for itch: Eargene and Miracell. A drop of olive or baby oil on the domes also works for many.

Like most itches, it pretty much went away as I ignored it. I’ll keep in mind the remedies suggested – thanks, guys!

My first day with HAs was pretty much a success. Now I get to practice putting them in. I wasn’t too good at this the first couple of attempts. My first day’s reaction is that the sound is somewhat tinny and reverb-y. Is this normal or is this something the brain will adapt to and change?

Itches are pretty common when you first get HA’s. Your solution of ignoring it works pretty good and within a couple weeks to a months time it should be a thing of the past as you get used to having something in your ear.

When I first got HA’s it did sound tinny but I didn’t have any reverb. Within about four days everything sounded normal again, until I had the next adjustments and then it started all over again. I would keep a journal and list any problems you are having and show it to your audi on the next visit, it will help with the adjustments. Good luck!

I have Nera2 Pros. They should come with a program to filter out everything that isn’t occurring in front of you.

I had my audiologist set this to default because it’s the only program that works for me. It does work however.

Itch is an issue. I have found I can minimize the issue by not putting them in after taking a shower. Itch is due to moisture in my experience. Leave them out for about an hour after taking a shower. No matter how much you dry your ears there will still be residual moisture in there.

Another remedy for itching: I take mine out when I get in the car, let the canals dry a little, and I don’t need them there. Make sure you carry around the little case they came with to protect them.

Also get some Q-tips to take around without and use them to dry out your ear where it itches (obviously, don’t stick deep in or you will have more problems).

Also your ENT should be able to clean out wax regularly with a miniature “ice cream scoop”. Had that done and so far so good.

Thanks for all the great tips! I’ll be sure to mention that program at my first adjustment next week. I definitely need to minimize the rear mics as I can hear stuff behind me that shouldn’t be crowding the sounds in front of me so much.

The itching can be controlled with Eargene Lotion or Miracell Pro Ear. It should be available from your audi or Amazon. I have problems with determining the direction of sounds that I hear. I don’t have a cure for that.

this should be done daily.