Starkey S Series IQ - CIC for profound loss

I have profound hearing loss and am interested in the CIC Starkey S Series IQ. Per their website, they show the range coverage as up to 100db for 6000Hz - 8000Hz. My tests shows my level drops from to 80db - 1000Hz and decreases to 110db at 6000 and 8000. Does anyone know or gotten this Starkey model for hearing loss at over their advertised 100db range? I have read other blogs on here that they can make it more powerful but just doesn’t advertise it.


Here is the fitting chart from their professional site.

It shows that they cover up to 110dB, depending on where your loss is located.

I have heard from various lab geeks at Starkey that they can fit more powerful amplifiers than what they advertise. They just don’t want hearing professionals offering more than they are comfortable doing on a regular basis.

Fact is they have some incredibly powerful CICs with best in class feedback cancellation; an important consideration for a power user.

Now you have a pretty serious loss as I’m sure you know, and a CIC that powerful is going to get through some batteries. But it is probably your best shot at a quality CIC that can reach your loss.

hockey4life- I am in the same boat. My loss is similar and my audi recommended the S 11 CIC though I have my doubts since I have always worn BTEs. Based on the fitting profile posted by prodigy place I may be cutting it close at the 1K range, let me know if it works out for you.

If you were my patient I’d do my best to talk you out of CICs. With that said, if you were determined that was what you wanted Starkey is the only manufacturer I’d consider for CICs at that power level!

They’ll most likely have to make your CICs a little larger (due to the more powerful receiver taking up more space), but unless you have narrow ear canals they should still be able to fit deep enough in your canals to remain discreet.

Also, for your loss it’s important to look beyond the fitting curve and consider things like your MCL and UCL. I’d look at whether or not you suffer from recruitment and if so to what extent you’re sensitive to loud sounds. I’ve seen a loss similar to yours successfully fit with Starkey CICs, but the gentleman in question had some of the largest ear canals I’ve ever seen and was a celebrity who was fit at Starkey’s Center for Excellence.

Thanks Minnesotahis. I have an appt with a different audi who works primarily with starkey next week. Hopefully my ears can be fitted. I’m a pretty petite female so I’m worried my ear canal will be too small. I will have to do some research about the MCL / UCL and recruitment that you mentioned. One thing that is strange. I went and got my tests from 3 years ago and it is worse than the test 2 weeks ago. For each level past 80db; it was 10 to 20 worst. I do have really bad ringing in my ear as well…sometimes 2 to 3 different tones so it is really difficult in the test as I may be ignoring some tones as I hv learned to live with the ringing.

You really should look at newer BTEs before CICs. Unless you have very short hair they should be just as hidden as the CICs would be! Most people imagine power-BTEs being huge gawky things, but in the last few years they’ve really come down in size.

With a CIC every component in the hearing aid must fit in a tiny shell inside your ear canal. With a RIC hearing aid with custom molds (I’m thinking of Starkey RICs with 71-dB or beyond receivers) only the receiver itself needs to fit inside your ear (everything else is in the small behind-the-ear portion). This likely allows the manufacturer to use a larger/more powerful receiver since it doesn’t need to complete with other components for space inside your ear, allowing you to hear much better than you would with an underpowered receiver.

My audi recommended Starkey’s brand Microtech Axio ST 24 CIC which is equivalent to their IQ S Series 9. It’s coming out as $2700/each = $5400 but my insurance covers $2500 of it. The ear canal mold was done today (Monday) and she said it takes about a week to get in. I’m excited to get it as I was afraid my ear canal would be too small. She repeated what some have said on this site, that Starkey/Microtech can add more power to the CIC. She did say that a CIC for my reading would be favored over the RIC for my directional and would give less feedback/whistling versus the RIC. I’ll let you know how it goes.

        L      R

250 20 20
500 40 45
750 55 70
1000 75 95
1500 105 85
2000 110 105
3000 115 105
4000 115 110

Not wanting to cast any problems on this, but that statement is factually inaccurate in terms of the physics of hearing aid design. For the same circuit and amplification, the risk of feedback is reduced by increasing the distance and physical connectivity between the microphones and the speaker unit. In a CIC you have the minimum distance between the two.

All that said, if you can get enough seal on the aid, your smaller ear canals may work in your favour as a deep fitted aid might be able to provide more gain where there is less residual canal volume for the sound to pass through.

Best of luck with the fitting.

I concur with UmBongo. The feedback risk is lower with the RIC than with the CIC. The custom mold in which the RIC receiver is encased can be made just as deep as the CIC shell. You may be perfectly comfortable with the CICs, but don’t be afraid to inquire about a RIC product if feel you could benefit from directionality. Good luck!

You can also get custom tips or full shells for open fit aids. That would eliminate the issue of having to replace failing RIC receivers.

It appears that from this forum & my professional’s experience, RIC/RITE aids tend to fal more that other styles, usually receiver issues. That may not be a problem during warranty, but it can cost after that.

Note that although the Starkey Wi has a 3 year warranty, the receivers are only warranted for 2 years. That indicates that the manufacturers expect more failures too.

Hi! Im a new member. My hearing loss is similar to Hockey4life. I have been using Starkey Rhapsody CIC’s for years and have been very happy with them. As I have no top frequency worth amplifying the aids are programmed with the high bands turned off otherwise the aids distort any high sounds because they are trying to over do the job.

As I understand, its a waste of time trying to amplify anything over 90db loss. (I expect smarty-pants Xbulder to comment on that statement!).

I’m now needing more speech understanding so have started shopping around for better aids. I have just returned a pair of Phonak Cassia 312 wireless HS P aids. They were pretty useless compared to my old Starkeys which give me very natural hearing.
My next try are Starkey S series 7 wireless half shell. I will keep you informed. My dispenser is going to arrange their rep to see me before she orders them.

how did hockey4life get on with her Starkey aids??

Hi Tony,

So I got the Starkey brand Microtech Axio CIC. The audi thinks it is a bit bigger than it should be as the fitting did not go in as easy as it should. I am trying it out for a few days to see if my ear canal starts hurting too much or gets swollen. As for the sound, of course it isn’t set up to what my prescription would be allowing me to get use to a hearing aid little by little but the sound of most words are clearer and there is only a little bit of echo on the right side. Some words and the radio in the car can sound like a bad vinyl record being played though so that will need to be fixed. However, my car has a loud engine and rattles and I noticed that the aid does adjust those sounds out so I do hear the radio better. I’m adjusting to all the new sounds and also getting used to having something in my ear canal. Hopefully I won’t even notice it there in a few days but I am leaning towards my audi’s suggestion of getting it resized as she does feel that it is too snuggly and my ear does feel a bit of a relief when I take it out. I told her I wanted to try it out for a few days and there is a trial period so no big deal to wait another week to get a new one.

Thanks for getting back hockey4life.
If the ends of the aids you have are too long they will ‘bottom’ on your canal as it narrows. This can cause a lot of pain. Also, this can lead to an infection. I am very careful not to handle my aids with ‘dirty’ hands when changing the batteries.
I had a fungus in my right ear a few months ago. It looked like a piece of mushroom when I washed it out. The doc prescribed me some special drops to kill off the fungus.

Apparently its quite easy to develop the problem if you wear aids.

I hope you get used to your new aids. It isn’t easy is it?
I get browned off with it all sometimes.

I am still waiting to hear from my audio lady as to what she will decide to prescribe me. I had a full refund for the Phonaks that were unsuitable.How are you getting on with the high frequencies with your aids? As I said previously, trying to correct too high a loss is a waste of time and will cause distortion from your aids when they suss out a high sound.
PS getting a quieter car might be cheaper than a pair of hearing aids. LOL

I have the Micro Tech Axio ST 32 CIC aids. The aids shoudl not hutr if they are properly molded for your canals. My professional ordered the aids without the program button so the faceplate on the aid could be smaller.

My aids came preprogrammed for my loss from the factory. Your professional should have run the feedback adjustment program (in a quiet setting) and they should have run the real ear adjustment. For the CIC aids, this involvs removing the microphone caps and running a small tube from the microphone through the vent in the aid. This should help with echo. Here is a Starkey video showing how to insert the tube. With my aids, my professional ran these adjustments and then, since I have previously worn aids, we raised the overall sound level of the programs.

If your audi thinks it fits too snugly, I think you should get the aid re-molded. Getting it re-molded should restart the trial period.

Cochlear dead regions become increasingly likely as the loss enters profound range. The OP can be fully amplified at 500Hz and 750Hz and partially at 1000Hz. Her hearing above 1000Hz is too poor for CIC and if it’s a dead zone, only transposition will be of any help. I have the gain/spl turned to the minimum at 750Hz and above since at 110db, my hearing is too poor to see an increase in speech and it only causes more discomfort trying to amplify a 110db+ loss.

Thanks deaf123. The stem cell blogs are certainly interesting. Compared to you I have almost normal hearing!!. Lets hope the research progresses quickly. Let us all know how you get on if you do have stem cell implant.

250- 45, 45
500- 50,50
750- 65,65
1k- 70,70
2k on 100,100

Well shocker, I am going to disagree with you again.

One of the advantages of dealing with Starkey is they have the best feedback cancellation system in the world. This system is electronic, and provides over 25dB of added stable gain. I’ve never seen anyone else do more than 15dB.

This amazing system really has made worrying about feedback a thing of the past, and I routinely try demo hearing aids on severe hearing loss and am amazed at how little feedback is even a consideration any more. Prior to 2006, I’d have to really worry about that, but not any more.

So Starkey don’t have to build up their aids, squeeze them tight into the ear, worry about a perfect acoustic seal, and make their vents smaller just to combat feedback.

There is also the argument that the closer you get to the ear drum, the less gain you need anyway.

Finally the Starkey Spectral IQ system can be a huge benefit to someone with substantial high frequency losses. So in conclusion, if this patient wanted to try CIC, I’d have no serious concerns. Let them try that first, and if they did run into issues look at something else.

The fitting range Starkey post on their web site is VERY conservative, they do not over hype their fitting ranges at all. They are always willing to push the envelope on an individual basis and take a shot.

My audio lady is arranging the Starkey Rep. to see me to get suggestions as to which aid might be best for me. I’m hoping CIC’s will be adequate although I fancy trying wireless aids which will mean they will have to be half-shell.