Which: RIC, CIC, OR IIC?

I’m currently wearing RIC’s. I first started about 4 or 5 years ago, and at that time there were far fewer IIC’s than now. Since I’ve started looking again recently, the landscape of aids now is pretty unfamiliar to me because it has changed so much. When I first started looking, I insisted on aids that I could completely forget about except for putting them on and off and changing the batteries, and got fairly close to that with the least expensive Widex Passion RIC’s (115’s I believe). My current aids are also RIC’s, but they have buttons on them that I have to fiddle with to make them acceptable in loud places such as restaurants. I don’t like that. It seems like I would probably be happier with one of the IIC’s because they are not adjustable when they are in the ear. I really liked my Widex Passions and don’t much like my Oticon Inos. I’ve also started taking lessons in playing the cello and have seen the opinion expressed that musicians prefer Widex aids because they distort the music less than the others do.

I would welcome anyone’s advice on this.

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I will always recommend CIC in every case in which your loss will support such an aid. Make use of your natural ear shape, and keep the aid better protected. Plus if you wear glasses or sunglasses, it is more comfortable.

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I really think you would get better results if you learn a little more about them and accept that sometimes a user adjustment is needed. Otherwise, they will be set up with some compromises.

For example, my program 1 is set up for general use, and has a little background noise lowering, and I get along fine with it most of the time. But, I have a party/Restaurant program that maxes out background lowering and helps me pick out voices in front of me when there is loud background noise. If I only had program 1, the general program, I would struggle in loud restaurants.

The other thing I have is the bluetooth phone device that also acts as a remote control. I wear it on a lanyard around my neck, underneath my shirt. When I encounter a low talker I can bump up the volume a click or two, and within 2 seconds I can hear the low talker.

I’m tempted to try an IIC that can do frequency lowering, but in general I really like the RIC style.

A CIC style, with your rather good hearing on the low end, would have occlusion unless you have a huge vent, and then, since the speaker and microphone are so close, feedback might be an issue. What I didn’t like about CICs is that with the occlusion my voice seemed so much louder than everything else that I couldn’t hear anything while I was talking. If someone made a brief comment while I was saying a word, I didn’t get it. It was like talking over a two-way radio (“over”). CICs work better for people with low end hearing loss.

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