Trying Out Starkey Destiny 1600 and 1200: Questions and Thoughts?

Hi all, newbie here. :smiley:

I have a severe to profound hearing loss in both ears that I’ve had since birth (I’m 31 now). Up until 2003 I’ve been wearing analog aids, and that year I decided to try for digitals. My first digital aids were Phonak’s Supero 413 AZ models. These aids were extremely powerful, but they only had two settings: Crappy, and Really Crappy.

My audiologist wasn’t much help either. She was too busy hitting me up for money to be bothered programming these aids to their optimal settings. But that’s a story for another day.

As soon as my insurance renewed its voucher towards paying for new hearing aids I ran for my life and went back to my old audiologist, who dealt almost exclusively with Starkey. He fitted me with Starkey’s Destiny 1600, and ordered the Destiny 1200 Power Plus aids on backup in case the 1600 weren’t powerful enough.

My initial impression with the 1600 was that I was finally on to something here. He still had to juice it almost to the max, but wanted me to try it for a week. I had to get used to the dampening effect the 1600 sometimes caused, which could get pretty disorienting at times. I also had two major gripes: the autocoil was awful with the phone. I would put the phone to my ear, it would switch to telecoil, and then switch back inexplicably as I tried to engage the caller. Absolutely maddening. It worked best when I wore my headset, where I didn’t have to worry about handshake causing the autocoil to switch off, and when listening to music the sounds were rich, and I could hear almost the entire soundstage. The only thing is for some reason both the 1200 and 1600’s telecoils give off this annoying pulsating sound (sounds like a heartbeat) every few seconds or so, and I have no idea why. Anyone else ever experience this? It’s aggravating enough that I might have to consider another brand altogether, or just give up using telecoil.

After a week, my audio was unhappy with the lack of power of the 1600, ad wanted to give the 1200 a try. With these aids I noticed the processor seemed to a bit slower, ad the dampening effect was far more pronounced as well. I also noticed dampened sounds sounded metallic in nature, almost like AM mono quality radio, which I hadn’t noticed with the 1600. The background noise sounded unpleasant and didn’t have the smooth ambiance as with the 1600. I’m really hoping this could be attributed to the programming though. Otherwise I think I might be screwed. :frowning:

Both the 1600 and 1200 absolutely squelched the music I listened to, almost to absurd levels. I’m listening to my car stereo, and I can’t hear the full soundstage, so I crank it up. The aids crank it down. I crank it up more. The aids crank it down more. :stuck_out_tongue: AHHHHHHHHHH

As a trick just to see how I would hear the music without the damned nFusion processor mucking it up, I would shut off my 1200 while a song was playing and then quickly turn it back on. For a brief few seconds I could hear the full soundstage and wow does it sound GOOD! And then of course the processor kicks in and torpedoes it all to hades. :mad:

So that’s been my experience so far. Has anyone else who wears Starkey experienced this pulsating sound that occurs when the hearing aid is set to telecoil? Can anything be done about adjusting the quality of the dampened sounds I hear so they don’t sound so unnatural on the 1200 series? Finally, how good are the musical programs for the Destiny aids, or would simply disabling the processor for one memory setting be good enough?

Considering what I said, is there anything I could tell the audie next time I see him that I haven’t considered? he’s pretty knowledgeable, but he’s also an old timer, so I don’t know how good he actually is in digitally programming Starkey’s Destiny aids. :eek:

Thanks for reading. :smiley:

In my x# years of fitting hearing aids, I had never heard anyone complain
of the Phonak instruments. While I dont dispense phonak, supero are suppose to be one of the best power instruments out there. I’m @ awe…

have you try to find someone elso who could fine tune those instruments right… Traditionally Phonak and Oticon had great power instruments…


Some of my issues with the Phonak was that while they provided power, there was little clarity to the sounds. I could hear people’s voices, but there seemed to be little depth to them, making it harder to discriminate speech. Sounds sometimes seemed a little brassy too, rather than natural. With my old analog hearing aids, sounds had more richness and volume to them.

One thing I did like was that the telecoil was very powerful, BUT, it kept breaking… OFTEN. In the 4 years I used the Phonaks, the telecoil in both ears easily broke over a dozen times. Sending them out for repair was one of the worst experiences I’ve ever had. Phonak even sent them back once UNTOUCHED, so they had to be sent out again before they finally got around to fixing it. There were stretches where I had to wait almost a month to get my aids back fixed, all in the meantime wearing clunky old analog aids that were broken themselves in several ways, leaving me pretty miserable. Their warranty also was only for two years. I had to use a third party warranty that I paid out of pocket for, and my audiologist then still charged me for reprogramming, and anything else she could think of ($50 for tubing, $80 for this, $75 for that).

I will never use Phonak again. I’m back to Starkey, which provides me a 4 year warranty via my current dispenser, and the warranty is extended for every year afterward by my audiologist as long as I commit to getting annual hearing tests, paid for by insurance. I’ll never have to pay a dime for repairs again, thank God.

If you haven’t met with any complaints yet, it might be because I’m unique in that I am of the minority of clients who have profound hearing losses and are also part of a much younger demographic. We tend to be harder to satisfy than most, and we’re much angrier too. :smiley:

I would suggest to ask your audi to set up a music program…
there was an article posted on audiology on line which “music as input for hearing aid” which basicly suggest how to fine tune a music program (for instance disable feedback canceler, set up linear, etc etc) There are some aids, which have pre set a music program. I would tend to think that
starkey do have such programs in their aid


That’s what I’ll be doing, but I’m hoping there will be a way to adjust the way these aids dampen sounds. I noticed with the 1600 sounds are simply dampened and the environment I’m in will just seem quieter. With the 1200 everything has a metallic, unnatural sound to it, and while it dampens sounds, it sometimes leaves a high pitch squeal in its wake. Its very unpleasant. :mad:

i believe the article even suggest to set the aids a linear,
if u are into music consider an instrument with extended bandwith…

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" also had two major gripes: the autocoil was awful with the phone. I would put the phone to my ear, it would switch to telecoil, and then switch back inexplicably as I tried to engage the caller. Absolutely maddening."…

Out of curioisity if someone could answer about auto switching modes:

With my loaned Syncro switched to telephone in the subway the other
other day I heard all kinds of interference as the train went by electrical
transformers (underground in NY).

Does that mean Starkey Destiny will automatically keep switching to telephone mode as one goes past high sources of EM (ie…fuse box, transformer, power lines)??? That would be maddening indeed.

Thats what I’m planning to have done. The dampening effect these hearing aids have is far too aggravating to keep on all the time.

My understanding is no, those are only residual signals that the telecoil won’t switch on to. Heck, it won’t even switch on when I use the cell phone, no matter what I do. When I use my headphones, it will switch on in my left hearing aid, but it won’t switch on with my right. Really, give me a f–king break already. :mad: I know these autocoil features are relatively new, but shouldn’t these problems have already presented themselves during clinical trials, or did they simply ignore all the complaints? :rolleyes:

I had some nightmares with the autophone,
some manufactures supply the HA with a magnet (to have it glue into the phone receiver), to avoid the on and off problem of the tcoil.
My only problem is that it is small and it could be a problem around with small children.

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Are you kidding me??? All that technology and a magnet is the only thing they can think of? AHHHHHHHHHH!!!

You have to see how I have to hold the handset just to get the autocoil to switch AND stay on. It’s practically perpendicular to my ear, so while I may not have trouble hearing the person on the other end, they do have trouble hearing me because the receiver is so far away from my mouth. Good Grief.

The only time I can see the automatic telecoil being a benefit is when I wear my headset at home to listen to music and watch TV. It switches on fine on my left ear but not my right (for some reason I have to move the right earpiece of my headset WAY back before the autocoil kicks in and stays on. It’s very awkward. If my audiologist can adjust them somehow so both switch on in the same spot it would be great, and then for the phone I would just use telecoil manually. It wont switch on at all when I use my cell phone either.

It’s times like this when I want to walk into the nearest hearing aid manufacturer’s corporate office and start slapping people.

Do the Destinys have a button/switch on them so they can be programmed
to allow a manual switch to telephone mode (like most older hearing aids do).

Or does it have to autoswitch to different programs (including Tmode)…you
can’t disable the autoswitch?

Personally I only occasionly use the tmode perferring to take the aid out and
talk on the phone and cell phone. This stems from the fact that old computer monitors (before LCDs) used to put out
so much EMF that made my tmode useless around computers. An auto tmode sounds cool if it worked.

Yep the Destinys have a button that will switch between 4 different program settings. One of those settings can be used to load the manual telecoil. Currently I’m using both manual and automatic telecoil for testing purposes, but the automatic telecoil can be disabled by the audiologist if you find it simply doesnt work well for you.