The Evoke 440s Are Here!


#1

Left the Audiologist at 11 o’clock so when I say first impressions they are only that.

  1. Very first impression is how quiet they are. Though I learned to ignore it, EIN in the Alta2 Pro was something I found very annoying. There is no sign of it with the Evoke. They are virtually silent. I am EXTREMELY pleased about that. They are almost worth the change for that alone.
  2. A lot has been said about how natural sounding the Widex are. Do they sound natural? How the hell would I know? Natural is what hearing was like when I had normal hearing and I haven’t had normal hearing in ages. Do they sound pleasant? Yes with some things I have to get used to. They are very clear; individual words are distinct with no loss of vowels on the front and back end and it’s accomplished without being overly bright. I am actually surprised by the clarity of fricatives which I often lost, especially at the end of sentences when people’s voices usually tail off in reduced volume. The ‘S’ was particularly noticeable, as if the speaker held it a bit too long, (yess, lasst, pluralss). But I seem to have adapted to that already as it has almost disappeared.
  3. On the other hand (and this is not a bad thing) they definitely have a different sound than the Alta2. Having worn them for three years they are my ‘normal’ and the change will take some getting used to. Not just the difference in sound but I am now hearing things which were gone or at least far less pronounced. It’s not quite like the first time I ever wore aids but the effect is similar. Typing on the keyboard, the fan on the laptop, the normal house sounds of fridge and furnace, plates set on the counter, doors opening and closing etc, are far more noticeable. And my own voice is quite loud with the slight fish bowl effect that I had three years ago when I put my first pair on. I’ll have to adjust to that again but it’s already less pronounced. My wife noticed that I am talking much quieter. I told her she sounded loud and I was told that’s what it took to make sure I heard her.
  4. The App. The app is very nice. It connected immediately and it doesn’t disconnect. The Oticon app was prone to disconnect when other blue tooth devices the iPhone was paired with were there. It was almost useless in the car. Anyway it installed without a hitch and immediately did a firmware update on the hearing aids. Took about 15 min. I have only the universal program and the music program set up presently. The doc asked, other than for music, that I stay in the universal program and settle in to the aids for two weeks. After that she’ll add whatever I want and I can play around as much as I want.
  5. Streaming in stereo is nice. Not like a set of Sennheiser’s but nice. I won’t stream music a lot as I’d rather hear it live or from the stereo.
  6. Which brings me to the reason I was attracted to the Widex in the first place, music. And all I can say is it’s fantastic. I am hearing cymbals, triangles and all those things in the upper registers that weren’t there. I can pick out the instruments of the orchestra. There is no distortion. There is no feedback. But what I find most surprising is the bass response. I can hear the bass violas and bassoons and tubas in a way that was missing from the Alta2. There is a fullness and warmth that has been missing for three years. And I made it better by using the SoundSense program in the app. I opened the equalizer and compared the settings I had chosen with the standard setting in the music program and found I had boosted the bass and upper registers and reduced the midrange. I spent almost two hours listening. I listened to some Christmas music by the Robert Shaw Singers (an acapella choir) the third movement in Rachmaninov’s 2nd symphony, a group of Strauss waltzes, and a few from the Nut Cracker Suite. Then I cranked the volume up and did some Hendrix and Cream and they passed my “no distortion” test.

Anyway enough for now. Things will change over the next few days as I notice more I’m sure but that’s where I am now. They’re a winner so far.


#2

Nice to hear.

How does your current ear coupling compare to what you had on the altas? Closed domes on both?


#3

I have the single vent tulip on the left and the round dual vent right on the Evoke. Medium on both sides. Both ears were the single bass vent on the Altas. 8mm left and 10mm right.


#4

I said tulip on the left but it is the single vent double dome.


#5

When I tried the Starkeys, I was taken aback by the same experience. The first time I put in a set of aids, I knew all about the learning curve and was prepared for it. I wasn’t prepared this time around. I didn’t know the experience would be so similar. My audi says I’m at 80% with my current aids. I was aware that things had gotten worse, but again, I didn’t expect the brain training experience to be so profound.

I believe you have commited to giving the Marvels a try, is that correct? I’d be really interested in knowing how they compare in this respect.


#6

I did say that and I suppose I will depending on how well these perform in complex noise environments. If they do as well for me as some have reported and speech in noise works well I may just stick with these. I am happy so far–but then it’s only the second day and I know first impressions can change. But the two things noted above won’t change. The aids are incredibly quiet and music is stellar in comparison to the Alta2 Pro. I’ll know in 29 days. :wink:


#7

I have the 400’s also, being a first time wearer I also have no clue what “normal” is supposed to be. I am not exactly sure what I am supposed to be hearing, but I do notice new sounds. Music is as you described, newly heard items in music I never knew were there. Mine are not cranked up to full prescription yet, but in noisy environments (restaurants, stores) I hear better BUT there are times when I still “miss” words from people. I have been leaving the settings on “Universal” or “Music” simply because I forget to switch in the app to “Social” or “Urban” There are only 2 complaints(?) When streaming phone to the aids and moving in to an environment which is loud the “noise canceling” lowers the volume of the streamed phone call too. I think that’s what it’s doing anyway or it is user error on my part. The only other (complaint) issue with streaming calls is my co-workers think I have lost it and am talking to myself. :rofl:


#8

Talk to your audi about the phone. He /She might be able to help you out with it. I’m too new with these to know what is and isn’t possible.


#9

Do you readjust annually?


#10

That’s an interesting question. I had visits every 4 months or so, but I never went in the sound booth or anything. He would often pull the datalogs and study them, but I don’t recall any adjustments being made. We spent most of our time troubleshooting my EasyTek issues.
I became somewhat disenchanted about a year ago, and stopped going. I’m working with a new guy now.


#11

Last night I was able to do something I haven’t done in a very long time. I could hear the TV at a level that was comfortable for my wife without streaming. And it was nice being able to hear her without having to unplug the streamer hanging around my neck.


#12

This morning, just a few minutes ago I was talking to my wife about how much louder and clearer the new aids were. So, she said, you can hear the bird setting on the porch rail chirping away? I could not. So I flipped over to the music program and sure enough there it was. It is very quiet right now and I started go back and forth between the universal and music programs and the difference is quite striking. In the music program there is a bit of EIN going on and the ambient noises of the home are much more pronounced. And my wife’s words are much brighter. I turned on the stereo and listened to the Boston Pops flipping back and forth between the two programs and the differences were more pronounced. In the music program the bass becomes fuller and the upper level instruments far more pronounced some of which, the tiny cymbals for example, can’t be heard at all in the universal program.


#13

If the Widex has frequency lowering, and I’m sure it does, it may be something worth tinkering with. Your hearing loss on the right ear can probably still benefit from frequency lowering technology. You’ll be able to hear bird chirping and all the little digital beeps from appliances that you never heard before.


#14

It seems to me, and I’ve only had these for two days, that Widex is opting for a level of comfort in their universal program with an emphasis on speech. Because when I go over to the music program I hear everything. My audiologists asked me to stay away from messing around with SoundSense Learn and stay in the universal program and settle in for the first two weeks. I have an appointment in two weeks to go over performance and preferences and I’ll add programs then and start playing with the app. Too new to come to any final conclusions.


#15

I’ve been thinking about your comments about cymbals and triangles, and the concept of brain training. It got me wondering, will Boston Pops sound different to you a month from now than it does today?


#16

I don’t think so. The brain filters out or rather ignores (if it can) extraneous and irrelevant sounds. Music on the other hand is a point of focus.


#17

Today was my first experience with the 440s in an obnoxiously loud environment. Cracker Barrel on a Sunday aft. Metal ceilings, tile floors, no booths with tables in close proximity to each other and a packed house. I chose it for that reason. So how did they perform? They were ok but not stellar. In fairness to the aids I do not have a speech in noise program installed yet so this was all in universal. First I’ll say that they are better in universal than the Alta2 Pro was in speech in noise mode. But to get there I had to go into the app and narrow the focus to front. Once that was done I could hear my wife sitting across the table fairly well. I didn’t miss anything as long as she didn’t look off in another direction while talking. Now I’ll add that my wife is very self conscious and so is a quiet talker in public places. But as long as she was talking at me, (and I don’t mean I have to be looking at her, I just need her speech to be directed at me) I did OK. How it will work when there are other people at the table with us and what will change when I get the speech in noise installed I don’t know. The jury is out right now.

I don’t like the Widex double dome. In the Oticon I used an 8mm dome on my left side. The Widex comes in XS, S, M and L. The small was too small and the medium was a bit large. Large enough so that it was hard to put in and it irritated the canal and left me totally occluded. So I put an 8mm Oticon power dome on it and all seems good. It is closed enough to prevent any feedback issues–there are none–and yet I no longer feel like I rammed cotton down the canal all the way to my ear drum. The round dome in my right is fine.

Appointment next Thurs for my first adjustment where we’ll tweak the universal program and I’ll have several programs installed that I want to try in conjunction with the SoundSense learn.


#18

At your next appointment, might be worth asking to change audibility in Universal from balanced, toward ‘more audibility’. The first time for me was all a wild mess of new noises and then a few months later a lot of the new noises had been tuned out mentally. Impact is also a good option but give it a little while before meddling :slightly_smiling_face:

Have you completed the firmware update for your Evoke’s yet? It may be an entirely superficial feeling but, sound is much clearer to me with the newer firmware on my Evoke 440s.


#19

One additional note for you - you had mentioned in another thread that that your audiologist stated that while the Evoke 440s are IP68, adding the rechargeable option with ZPower changed that level of dust/water protection. I hadn’t heard that before (although it made sense to me) and called Widex this morning to verify. They had to check but told me that the IP68 rating is both with and without ZPower.

I don’t know if you would want to move to rechargeable (I don’t think that I do) but thought that I would mention what I had found out just in case it might be helpful.

Thanks for sharing your experience with us. I also have been trying the Evoke 440s and am extremely happy both with their automatic abilities but also to have the SoundSense learn program to adjust sound to my liking when needed.

Chris


#20

Thanks for jumping in. Yes as soon as they connected the first time they did the update. I’ll talk to the AU about the aud setting.