Starkey Vs Unitron...which is better?

So I’m about to get hearing aids that cost several thousands of dollars, and the audiologist thinks I’m being a pain because I asking so many questions. My choice is between the brand new (just release 1/9/12)Starkey Wi CIC and Unitron’s top of the line, what ever that is.

As great as that sounds, reading review after review only makes the decision harder. It’s hard to tell if the review is actually a review or a well written and cleverly disguised advertisment for a particular brand.

I’m looking for the simple Pros & Cons of Starkey and Unitron. Such as “Great tone quailty:)” “Lots of feedback:(” “Battery life sucks !:mad:” type of honest review of these two products.

Your thoughts and comments are greatly appreciated.:rolleyes: You have NO IDEA how much they are appreciated !

I guess this is where I’m supposed to say what my hearing loss is…well it’s at 40% with constant tinnitus for the past 5 years.

It’s going to be hard to get a straight answer on that question. It’s like going online and posting on car forum; what’s better a Chevy or a Ford? I mean you are going to get a ton of answers, and some will be quite heated.

I’ll say this, as a hearing professional who has fitted a significant number of Wi hearing aids, I’ve been blown away by the quality that comes from the binaural spacial mapping. It’s a special and unique way that the aids communicate with each other that creates a ‘surround sound’ kind of situation. By exchanging vital information the aids can work together to produce the best hearing in any situation. By contrast most other wireless aids cannot perform anywhere near the same amount of tandem processing. They can simply synchronize volume or activate the directional mic or something. Starkey is able to stream data between ears at a higher rate than any other hearing system, and this helps cut through background noise better than anything else, in my opinion.

I have taken people out of their high end aids, showed them the Wi, and they have been blown away. While I am not a user myself, I can certainly draw conclusions based on witnessing their reactions.

Now as of right now I have yet to fit a Wi CIC, all the Wi systems I have worked with so far have been RIC. The core technology is the same, but I didn’t want to pretend I’ve fitted a ton of the new CICs.

I think, in reading the consumer website for Unitron, that their top of the line system may have some nice wireless connectivity, which could be useful for Bluetooth and streaming. Starkey is a bit limited in the Bluetooth area as of right now.

Since you have narrowed it down to two systems that your hearing professional likes, it shouldn’t be too hard to try both. 30 days with each, and then make the call. Aids are shipped to a hearing professional on a 90 day sale or return basis. This gives you time to try both sets for 30 days each and then return the one you don’t like. Your hearing professional may charge a small fee for this, but at least then you get to compare.

If you do get to try both, I’d love to read some feedback about it. Last time I fitted Unitron was as a BTE power aid many years ago. Have not really looked at them recently, and I’d be curious to see how they fare heads up with Starkey’s flagship CIC.

Oh and one final thing. If your hearing professional gets annoyed at you asking questions, remind him that that is why he is employed! Geez. As much as they charge for hearing aids, the least they can do is actually answer your questions. It’s not like you are buying a 99c hot dog!

thinks I’m being a pain because I asking so many questions

walk away… what a lot of these folks fail to understand is I’m buying and they are selling which means they work for me. if they want my money they need to work for it.

what a lot of these folks fail to understand is I’m buying and they are selling which means they work for me. if they want my money they need to work for it.

A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.
Oscar Wilde

So, EnglishDispenser, are you agreeing with Mike Shu? It is unusual for you to submit such a short posting here.

seems a lot of the professionals think they are doing us a favor by taking our money.

Tact is the ability to obtain what one wants without pizzing people off.

There is such a situation when doing business called a win-win scenario … It doesn’t just happen, one has to strive to achieve it.

The advantages are priceless. The whole is greater than the sum of the parts.

OTOH, there are people that insist a transaction be conducted as a chess match, win, lose or stalemate. These are the people who are either getting screwed or screwing other people. I try to avoid them like the plague … Nobody really wins in those transactions. All gains are transitory … you want to live in that space, be my guest … I got better things to do and better places to be.

+1 Agree completely.

This is an outstanding post.

I have fit some Unitron products and had quite a bit of success with them.

DocAudio should be able to answer any questions you have about Oticon aids.

Did the professional you’re working with give their preference between the two brands? It’s good for marketing to say you work with all brands or to offer a choice, but the reality is most professionals will have one or two brands they’re most familiar with. Since you’re able to name the top Starkey model and unsure of the details of the Unitron model, I’m thinking your professional works primarily with Starkey and occasionally with Unitron (but I could be wrong). Since a large part of your experience will be so heavily tied to your specialist’s ability (or lack thereof) to unleash the full potential of the hearing aids I’d go with the brand they’re most comfortable with.

To go a little further with ZCT’s car analogy: If your mechanic is a god when it comes to fixing and maintaining Fords don’t be surprised if he stumbles a little bit when working on your new Toyota!

OTOH, there are people that insist a transaction be conducted as a chess match, win, lose or stalemate.

Or as a fist fight … where your opponent is handcuffed to a chair.

The Starkey WII CIC’s are an excellent product, however if by you asking a lot of questions makes you a pain, run for the door. Once you start wearing the aids you will have more questions, and when he has your money will he be as nice? Go to someone who has more patients with you.

But don’t you have access to this special wireless command that makes the HA’s squeal so loud you want to rip your ears off?

My audi did that once by accident while programming them … holy crap! That really hurt!

First of all I don’t recommend CIC’s to any of my patients. They break down far more often than any other style of hearing aid and use the smallest battery so you change them twice as often. CIC’s as a general rule require more servicing outside of the warranty period. If you are concerned about appearance some of the small behind the ear RIC devices are quite appealling.

On the key question of Starkey vs. Unitron that is a tough call. I think from a performance and sound quality point of view with CIC’s they both do a great job. Of course a properly fit Unitron will sound better than a poorly fit Starkey and vice versa. It could help us if you posted your complete audiogram.