Oticon OPN1 vs Costco ReSound Forte

Hi there, new to the forum and new to hearing aids. I have just been tested at my local ListenUp Canada hearing centre and Costco and both recommended hearing aids. I have moderate mid and high frequency loss in my left ear and moderate mid and more severe high frequency loss in my right ear.

I am in my mid 40’s and lead an active life . Work in the office, phone calls, conference rooms and occasional large dinner meetings with customers and colleagues . I am also a relatively serious recreational cyclist in the warmer months, so ideally want something that can deal with wind noise and perspiration.
I am also an iPhone user.

Listen Up recommended the Oticon OPN 1 or 2. The OPN 1 appears to be very well reviewed based on what I have read about it. After any discounts and government subsidy cost to me is $5620 (including 3 yr warranty, 2 yr loss/damage, 3 yr free batteries etc). OPN2 is $4332 for the same package.

Costco is offering the ReSound Forte at $3200, less $1000 government rebate, so $2200 (3 yr warranty, 2yr damage/loss).

I can find out from Costco exactly what model the forte is, cant tell if it is the 6 or 8. They said it is new.

I want to get the best model to allow me to use it in all situations and dont mind spending a little more for a quality product. The OPN 1 seems to be highly regarded, but is it worth $3400 more than the Forte? How much real world difference with public spaces, streaming TV/audio, sports use?

I am assuming the Forte would be on a similar performance level to the OPN2?

I would really appreciate any feedback or advice?

Thanks.

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The OPN1 have slightly more features. According to some here, there isn’t a big difference from the OPN2.

With aids you really have to try them to determine which you like best. It is a personal choice. Nobody can tell another user which one is best.

The Forte is from Resound and a current version of the latest aid. It has all the features except tinnitus feature and remote programming by the clinician.

Either is a valid choice. Give the one you first trial at least 30-45 days to get use to. Getting use to aids is a struggle for new users.

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Yeah I have to purchase one to try it at either location. With Costco I can return for full refund in 90 days if I dont like it. ListenUp there is a $225 fee if I don’t buy a different HA from them.

I must admit I am leaning towards the Costco unit. The price difference is pretty big.

Thanks

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The Resound Forte is obviously the best value for you. I would think it should be good enough for your hearing loss. The OPN (either 1 or 2 or 3) operates on a different paradigm (“open” paradigm), so you can’t really say that the OPN 2 is equivalent to the Forte. The Forte has similar features to the Resound Linx 3D if I understand it correctly. Both the Forte and the OPN are Made for iPhone.

If wind noise management is very important to you, unfortunately the OPN is lacking in the wind noise management performance although it’s supposed to have a wind noise management feature. I have no idea how well the Forte does with wind noise management. The OPN has an IP68 rating, and based on my personal opinion, fares very well with perspiration.

The $5620 for the OPN 1 is pretty steep, considering that it’s after gov’t subsidy and discounts. The OPN 2 pricing seems much better. But if you’re willing to explore the online route, you can find a much cheaper price for either one of them through an online US channel. A few that comes to mind are Audiometrix, BuyHear and FactoryDirectHearing. The first one on the list vows to beat any other online price from what I hear.

The OPN 2 should perform pretty close to the OPN 1. If you don’t deal often with very noisy situations like at restaurants, the OPN 2 should perform almost as well as the OPN 1 in most other situations. Even in noisy situations, the OPN 2 still should perform well, although the OPN 1 has an edge over it in this type of listening environment. Search this forum for a review of the OPN 3 to get an idea for yourself if you want.

The “open” paradigm of the OPN lends itself to let you hear more of everything around you, noise included. But if there’s speech involved, it’ll help clean up the noise from the speech to help with speech clarity. The Forte probably follows the traditional approach of using directionality to help reduce the noise. You’ll hear less noise and get more focus on the front, although at the expense of hearing less sounds around you due to the focus on the sound to the front only.

No one approach is better than the other. You’ll just have decide which approach you like better. Some people want to hear less noise except to the front where the speech comes from when they’re in a noisy environment. Other people want to hear more of everything they can hear even in noisy environment, especially if there are multiple speakers all around them.

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He implied he’s in Canada. Selections and options are different/limited. Getting things from the US incurs currency conversions as well.
Prices are not always equivalent either. The Costco KS7 in the US are $1700. At about $1.30 CDN that’s about $2200. The same thing in Costco Canada is $2000.

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I think trying the Resound Forte makes sense. It should deal better with wind noise than the Oticon. If you decide you don’t like the Resound Forte for whatever reason, then you could spend the money and try the Oticon.

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Yes I am in Canada and all prices are Canadian dollars.

Thanks for all the feedback.

The different technology of the OPN intrigues me, but I think I’m leaning towards getting the Forte. Even though the employee at Costco didn’t seem to know which specific Forte model number they offered, when I look at the paperwork provided it says recommended “ReSound Forte 9 RITE”. Not sure if that makes any huge difference over the Forte 6 or 8 options that I have seen mentioned in relation to Costco in the US. I’ll have to do some more research.

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Assuming it’s RIC (Receiver in Canal) which is most popular style, they only offer the Forte 8. The Forte 8 specs seem similar to Linx 3D 9 specs. They should be good aids. Only way to know for sure is to give them a try. I believe some of the other styles (BTE–behind the ear) are also offered in the 6 level.

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I think I will try the Costco Fortes. I haven’t seen any negative reviews or comments about them so far. If they don’t work out in the 90 days I can return them free of charge, although not sure how that impacts the government rebate. I guess the issue is I have nothing to compare them to during the trial, but to save myself over $3000 I guess I’ll run that risk. With the way technology is advancing these days I might want to replace them in a few years anyway, easier to do that if I only have a couple of thousand invested in them rather than $5600.

Thanks again.

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