Newbie Question on Home Adjustment; Widex Clear 440 vs. Oticon Agil Pro

I’m new here, and glad I found this forum.

I’m in process of deciding on my first pair of aids. I think I’ve narrowed choice between Oticon Agil and Widex Clear 440. All of the fitters I’ve spoken with tell me that I’m not allowed to have the software that permits home tweaking after the initial fitting. But there’s software called “Compass,” (link: oops forum won’t let me give it; google “widex compass”) which purports to be tweaking software for the Widex pair.

Could someone confirm that you can actually tweak at home the presets on the Widex Clear 440? Is it possible to do so on the Oticon Agil?

The reason I ask is that I’m a desktop music hobbiest. Additionally, listening to music in general is important to me. My loss is a high frequency rolloff, moderate in left ear, moderate to severe in right ear.

I’m finding this a frustrating process. It’s hard to compare features across brands, because they each use different terminology and they’re stingy on actual technical specifications. Additionally different fitters seem tied to different companies. Even many online reviews seem to derive from biased sources. The audiologist I saw yesterday has no particular allegiance, because her exam is part of a teaching program at a local university. She suggested the two models I’m considering, but she wouldn’t be as available for followups as a retail fitter. (Even she seemed unaware of this Compass software, which I just discovered this morning.) Because her exam is part of a teaching program, there’s a discount on the aids. But I’m not sure the tradeoff of price for quality followup time is worth it. It might be, though, if I could tweak the presets myself at home. Hence this post.

Thank you for any tips, links, advice.


Originally posted this in wrong forum. Apologies for duplication.

I am of the traditional mind of not allowing my patient to self-program their hearing aids. There is simply too much to know about the software and hearing aids to make a mess of. That said, I can understand why you are asking for it. I will give you the information you need to find what you have asked for.

Technical specifications can tell you a little about the hearing aids, however both the Oticon and Widex are excellent hearing aids. Your ears should decide which sounds better. Hearing aids come with trial periods. Try each.

As for technical specifications, everything is available online from each manufacturer. Simply look at their websites, and find the button that says for professionals. You should be able to find what information you need.

Widex software is indeed called Compass, and Oticon software is called Genie. To program a hearing aid you will need a computer, the programming software, a programming interface (typically called a hipro), and the necessary cables to make the connection to the hearing aids.

My most valuable advice to you is to find someone in your area that knows either hearing aid well. Someone who is not entirely familiar with the hearing aids you choose will not be able to provide you with satisfaction.

I hope this helps.

Could you also direct us to any sites which allow for comparisons of such models? Also a first time hearing aid shopper an considering on audiologist advice Opticon Agil and Widex 330. Most of the information out t here seems linked to manufacturers who also appear to have influenced Google searches to find their sites first, so it is hard to really compare features and purposes.

Thank you for your help.

I don’t really think there is anything out there that can independently verify model X versus model Y, simply because hearing loss is massively subjective. What works for you, may not work for somebody else and what is clinically ‘correct’ for you may actually sound wrong.

In addition, any professional who has been in the industry long enough to have a decent opinion is likely to have developed an opinion of the brands they are exposed from their empirical experience. This sometimes can be applied to the next patient, but not always.

Both the Agil and the Clear series are high-end instruments from decent manufacturers but they use slightly different methods for delivering their sound. IMHO, the Widex just edges it, but you will get a different opinion elsewhere. If there’s a deal-maker, it’s the Dex, which is the best remote/bluetooth unit out there (not fitted the Compilot yet).

Um bongo says it best. There is no such thing as a website that compares x to y. Read all you can about the product features and understand what they are and how they may be able to help you… BUT at the end of the day, when you have the hearing aid in your ears, it is your perception of the sound quality that should govern your decision.

Let’s simplify what I am talking about for the masses… If you were to go to a shoe store, you have an idea in your mind as to what type of shoe you want. You browse the shelves and even get the sales person to size your feet to get the best fit possible. You pick out a particular style of shoe and you put it on your feet and walk about the store and feel how they fit on your feet. Sooner or later after trying on a few pairs of shoes, you will decide on the one that feels the best on your feet.

It really doesn’t get much more simple than that. Don’t complicate your decision with specs and the such… do your basic research and get out there and try them on!

Thanks to all responders.

HearingAidHelper - Yes, your post helps! I appreciate the advice and respect your opinion. Since my first post, I’ve been lurking and reading and realize I’ve a lot more to learn.

When one plays with a digital audio workstation (DAW), even as a hobbiest, one becomes familiar with multiband compressors, equalizers, limiters, gates, latency, and the like. Not to mention the intricacies of software controlled parameterization (and the need to protect ones ears from a misstep. Yeah, I know, my specs indicate I didn’t fare well in that dept. :slight_smile: ). So yes, that’s one reason I think I’d be relatively comfortable programming my own aids. But I do understand how this line of thinking can, shall we say, go against the grain for professional providers.

Having said that, I’d much prefer the ideal audi experience to home programming ie. where s/he’s sufficiently available, experienced, amiable, and conveniently accessible for multiple tweaking. My explorations so far are not terribly encouraging, but, indeed, I’m still searching for the right provider.

BTW, I think the documentation for the Oticon and Widex software will be quite valuable, not because I intend to use the software right away, but because it will help familiarize me with what the provider will be doing, hence better able to judge how experienced s/he is with that particular brand. So special thanks for pointing toward the “pro” sites.

And general thanks again for a balanced, informative response on what I’m learning is a controversial issue.


You can buy the Widex USB Link from this German site:

Just a note that America Hears sells hearing aids online and you can get the software. That said, I am upgrading from their tech to something on par with the Agil Pro’s and in my opinion the America Hears tech is a generation old when it comes to realistic sound and what I’ll call the “surround effect”. The are “flat” so to speak.

my opnion is agil pro minirite power best