Online Hearing Aid Providers - Pros/Cons?

Hello everyone,

Can you guys, through your own experiences and in your eyes, help me determine some Pros and Cons of purchasing the following online:

  1. Hearing Aids
  2. Hearing Aid Accessories for your hearing aids (i.e. FM systems, Batteries, etc)
  3. Hearing Aid Accessories independent of your hearing aids (i.e. Pocket talker/vibrating alarm clock, etc)

Thanks!

Have a great day!

Cons:
No way to verify other than running speech mapping. no way to check for audibilty!

I get everything online.
Hearing aids: Americahears.com, LoveHearing.com (New Sound),
Accessories: Hearingplanet.com
Batteries: LocalBattery.com

Edit: Search this forum for these products. You will find lots of opinions

I found after a few tweaks I had my America Hears aids meeting my needs and for a year I have just worn them but will be ordering some new tubes as they harden with time.

It will be 2024 more or less I expect before online purchases will pass volume of traditional market channels.

It was the $3400 cost difference to buy the aids locally that drove me to purchase online plus local shops required in office visits for reprogramming.

lets see… the new instruments- wirelss from Unitron should put enough value
so that it would not justify buying on line…

LOL, X. That is the funniest Haloween joke I have heard today. :eek::smiley:

IMHO whether to buy on the Internet is a function of two things.

How severe is your loss and are there complications such as recruitment.

And what is your experience level with computers and aids.

If your loss is in the severe/profound region, for most people you need a competent
professional.

Same if this is your first aids or you are not computer literate.

Just my opinion based on 35 years experience with Aids. Ed

I went the on-line way after going to a ENT doctor and then an audiologist. The price of the aids drove me to find a different avenue.

I am a first time user of aids and with a little help I was able to set myself up to program my Phonak Savia’s. It is quite rewarding.

where do you get the device to program your phonak savia’s?

I spent hours reading this forum before moving in the direction of programming. I chose Phonak because it is a high rated hearing aid and I could also get their programming. From there I got on eBay and bought a Hi Pro. Then bought my aid to Hi Pro cables here http://store.yourhearing.net/ .

This is pretty much it.

Good luck.

Keep in mind to look in both directions before you cross the hearing aid road. :slight_smile:

What is the model designation of the Phonaks? What digital signal processor do they use? Could you please post a price list of what you spent to purchase them as well as to be able to program them? How easy / difficult is the programming process? Is there any software (bug-fix) support for the programmer?

The hearing aids are Savia 111 dSZ. The iPFG 2.5 Phonak program is a easy to use programming program. I can not say much because I am very new to all of this, both the programming part and aids part. I am on my fourth day with aids as a first time hearing aids user.

The Savia’s were bought off eBay as was the Hi Pro.

The Phonak Program.
https://eservices.phonakpro.com/phonak/com/b2b/en/professional_tools/fitting_equipment/software/downloads.html?Product=iPFG&ProductVersion=iPFG+2.5&Language=English&Country=USA&PrivateLabel

The aids to Hi Po cables were bought at http://store.yourhearing.net/.

Something very helpful about the Phonak program is its ability to show what aids are in your fitting range. By entering your audio gram data and then going to AIDS you will see which ones are correct for your hearing loss. This to me is key for starting a fitment.

Hope this answers most of your questions.

Raudrive,
Thanks for that information. I had no idea that Phonak had a commercially available DIY hearing aid programmer. Maybe the pros on this forum have been holding out on us…:eek: Here is a link to the fitting guide. Here is a link to the computer programming user guide

To the best of my knowledge Phonak does not support self programming. I think they are typical of this industry in that they want to provide their software only to their main paying customers…the professional Audiologists And Dispensers. This is part of the insular thinking so pervasive in this anachronistic industry.

The instructions on the above link look to me to be the typical baby talk instructions that the industry sends to their professional dealers and is aimed at the lowest professional education level for use world wide. Ed

Obviously phonak does not support self programming. The goofy part is that the tutorials linked from version 1.3 were before phonak decided it was to difficult for most fitters and came up with the wizard which requires you to almost only choose (next). I not sure exactly but I believe the wizard came with version 1.6.

I been a licensed dispenser for 20 years and have worn hearing aids a little longer that that. I’ve dispensed hearing aids in brick and mortar stores as well as online, currently do both.

IMHO the amount of hearing loss you have and how technically handy you are makes a big difference. For severe to profound losses that require a custom fit go to a brick and mortar store even if it is associated with online providers like Hearing Planet and Choice Hearing Aid Providers. The same if you can’t program a VCR.

For those that have mild to moderately severe hearing loss, especially high frequency hearing loss where an open fit is indicated online works well for most.

Going with a reputable online providers can save hundreds, even thousands of dollars. Look for online providers that have been around for a while, where you can talk with more than one person working there, and give a liberal return period with no restocking fee.

Cheers,

John

I know this is an old post, but I can’t seem to post a new question. Is Choice HEaring Aid Providers reputable? They are beating my audi by over 2000.00 right now on a pair of aids. That’s crazy. So I’m thinking about it. I really like my audi, and I dont mind “paying her” -truly, but 2000.00?! is not an acceptable difference. I went from Verso’s to Aleras and she told me it would be a200.00 difference. From 6200.00 to 6000.00? For 5 year older tech? Seemed high to begin with, but the Aleras seem higher. I’m in the NE where everything is pricey… but… I’d love some thoughts!

Where did you purchased the Phonack and what was the cost? The sites you listed do not list prices. I’m looking to buy hearing aids, but can’t afford the cost (like the rest of 99%). Thanks for the information.

Raymon, here is an option:

http://bit.ly/16cTKvm

I’m selling these because my hearing got worse, but the aids are still in perfect working order. I’m willing to negotiate price