Phonak Naida Q90-UP: Can it be turned down far enough for moderate/high end mild user

#1

I am interested in the Naida Q90-UP BTE in part for the wind filter.

Can it be turned down far enough for moderate/high end mild hearing loss?

  1. I have a hearing loss that is advancing rapidly and varies A LOT.
  2. I have severe tinnitus.
  3. Wind. I experience lots of wind. I experience wind in areas where my safety depends on hearing.
    Phonak has a good wind filter.
  4. I have 30 years of experience with hearing impaired family members. I want BTE.
  5. I rarely wear an aid – it is only recently that I have advanced to the point where I must.
    I can read lips enough to meet my needs … while being a complete pain to strangers.
    When you don’t practice this … you lose the skill. Deaths of five family members has
    meant that I get much less practice.
  6. I have reviewed the technical information on aids. I am an engineer. Seems unlikely that
    the Phonaks can be adapted to me. But I thought I would ask.

Any thoughts? I can get my hands on a barely used set easily and then pay to get them programmed. Gives me room for the future as well as wind filters that are not available
on lesser aids.

I would be ever so grateful for suggestions

========= Ignorable Rant Follows ============
I am tired to death of the audioligist sales dance.

Spent many weeks worth of days in the provider offices and well into the five figures on aids for family members I cared for. One at least became a friend.

I suspect I am getting crotchety on the issue. Just lack of patience and trust in providers.

At the last office visit where I was trying to purchase an aid for a 89 year old parent I experienced:

  1. I prepaid for an audiogram. I prepaid for molds to use for her. The technician spilled mold material all over her clothes and sent us home to clean the clothes ourselves.

  2. The technician lined up $3000 aids (top of the line), told me they could be expected to last 3 years … at about $5 per day. I had asked how long they would be able to get service for that model.

  3. When she provided technical info … it was for a different aid manufacturer. When I pointed this out she said they were out of information for that aid and that is was the same.

  4. Could not provide any sales/tech literature to review (in the office from an office maintained catalog) and could not find the same aid for me to look at (to see if a 89 year old could deal with it without damage in clumsy hands – many many many of the current aids are excessively fragile).

 I had made the appointment for that aid intending to try the aids with existing molds.
    
5) The technician could not discuss with any confidence the aid.  Her solution is to try them and of course we would take responsibility for them   .... yes --  thats what you do when you 'trial' an aid.
   
     Do you know how hard it is to take a frail person to a doctor?  How dangerous?

6) The mold impressions were damaged after we left .... so we would have to make another trip before even  trying the aids.  

     This was at the most prestigous physician office and largest supplier in Omaha Nebraska. 
     He advertises constantly on the radio.  
     He had misdiagnosed a family members condition very bruskly some years before ... I ended 
         up taking them to the Mayo Clinic to get this corrected.
     He fit a 4,000 aid set of ITC for a sister -- did not even make three years.

Anyway, I picked up the phone and ordered aids from a mail order place in Minneapolis
(HI Hearing) — which worked very well at a small fracton of the cost. They never failed
and never needed service. I tried them myself. My out of pocket was $800 after her medicare.
I would have been happy to pay for the Phonaks locally.

They system has scam on the hearing impaired.

End of rant.

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#2

My friend is a self programmer and wears Phonak UP aids for a moderate loss. Her loss is progressive as well.

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#3

So do you have a Q90-UP that you’re hoping to use, or are you considering buying one? Are you planning on DIY programming? If you’re going to be buying, why not consider a Bolero B90? You’d get a more advanced chipset and be in a more appropriate power range. Or if you’re using BTE more loosely, a Marvel? The problem I think you might have with the UP is floor noise.

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#4

With a RIC style you can cheaply pick the power you need now, and if you need more power later you can get it then.

I would recommend wearing them all day, every day. This will allow your brain to adjust and get more benefit from them and preserve your word recognition.

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#5

I would worry about choosing a hearing aid based on wind noise reduction. I have RIC type HA’s (KS8/Rexton/Signia) that claim to have intelligent wind noise (iWN) reduction based on using input from both ears and optimizing the microphones to reduce noise depending on where the wind is coming from. These are my first hearing aids so I don’t really have anything to compare them to. However, I would rate the performance of the iWN feature as underwhelming at best. What does work really effectively when I get into an outdoor situation with annoying wind, is to simply use the long hold on the adjustment button to get a full mute. I just leave them muted until I get out of the wind or need to talk to someone.

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#6

Have not purchased the aids. Found a used set – but only lightly.

Would only do DIY programming if I had to.

I have not known anyone with the Bolero – did not even know about them. Phonak Boleros for $5000 per pair. Ten times what I can get the Naida pair for. Might need to try for something like the Boleros. Not sure about the wind noise on the Boleros. I have two positive reports of wind noise reduction on the Naida.

Your best point is floor noise (the noise produced by internal electronics of an amplifier.)
That is probably what is indicated by Phonak’s Naidia Q90 technical sheets. It is not clear from the material they provide. Would have to go to provider for the answer — and still not sure I would get a knowledgeable answer. A provider is going to have to tell me what the manufacturer recommends … even if it is not strictly true.

Thank you!

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#7

Sierra,
For safety I would like hearing aids that can filter out wind noise without shutting down. I would like to hear machinery noise while I am in the wind.

Thank you for your feedback on the KS8/Rexton/Signia.

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#8

I wear Phonaks and love my Speech in Wind program. It works extremely well.

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#9

Don,

Not impressed with durability of RIC aids. Sound quality seems to fall off rapidly as the aids age.
Seem to be expensive to maintain. Just my perception.

Do you know of a RIC aid with good wind filters? My experience is not wide enough.

You are correct that my word recognition is falling off from not
wearing aids. I can speak from experience. And it is not just word recognition.
The mind begins to invent sounds. I often hear the sound of robin’s singing when I know that is not possible. Sad day of when I was outside and realized I was not hearing the bird song around me.

Thank you

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#10

Zebras,
The question I would have is which exact model (including number) of Phonak aids.

Thank you.

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#11

I’ve got Phonak Brio P-UP which are re branded Phonak Nadia Q90 UP.

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#12

Judging hearing aids by personal anecdote is risky, especially with people of a different level of hearing loss. The Naida Qs being good with wind noise might possibly reflect that their hearing is so poor that they cannot hear the wind noise. So if you’re not planning on DIY, but planning on getting used hearing aids, who’s going to program them? Some sellers of used hearing aids will do the initial programming, but most people will want some changes made. Finding an audiologist or hearing aid specialist who will program used hearing aids can be a challenge. Although I have RICs, I do think you’re right that BTEs have better reliability. Assuming you’re from US, Costco could provide you with BTEs from Phonak, Resound, Rexton or Phillips for roughly $2600 and provide full warranty and service for 3 years.

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#13

Zebras,
Thank you on the note of Phonak Q90 UP.
Can I ask what sounds you can hear without any aid on?

Can you hear machine noise while in a windy environment?

I am leaning on trying the Phonak Naidia Q90-Up. I won’t lose much money if it fails.
But I have just realized that I may have a problem even getting a provider to try programming these aids for my current hearing level.

I cared for a parent with profound loss wearing aids from 1965 to 2018. When we took extra care to keep the level just slightly below what she wanted – her loss stopped progressing. Although it seems to have been related to wheat gluten … which we also stopped twenty years ago.

I am not real excited about having to do programming without feedback from an experienced provider.

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#14

MDB,

Thank you for making me think more about the floor noise … the base level of noise an aid generates. I started doing research. I have not had time yet to go to a medical library. However, I discovered the following article:

This article contains the first actual chart I have seen of floor noise related to adaptive features. The information is pretty limited, but I thought it was interesting. I pulled out a family members thirty year old set of top of the line Beltone analog aids (profound) and was surprised at how little floor noise there is. Amplification goes smoothly down to zero. Now if I only had a normal hearing person to listen to the same old set of aids. :wink: Impossible in the wind.

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