Hi Neville, I understand your point here but think it may oversimplify things a bit. Yes, manufacturer first fits all vary. Real Ear Measurement or other adjustments can make their sound more similar in the provider’s office. Once the patient leaves, though, each manufacturer’s proprietary sound processing algorithms kick in, and the sound the patient hears will vary again brand to brand. As an example, Widex is constantly classifying environmental sounds into one of its “sound classes” (Quiet/Quiet With Speech, Classic/Contemporary Music, Urban, Party, Social, etc.) and then making adjustments to what the user hears. Brands like Oticon do this, too, trying to preserve speech intelligibility AND still provide a lot of the environmental cues. Others tend to kick noise reduction programs in more aggressively. Each of these different approaches starts to change the overall quality of sound that the user hears from brand to brand.
When I was listening to all the various brands devices, I used Real Ear Measurement to try and best normalize the sound so that I started with the best apples-to-apples comparison. There are differences, and each person will likely have a best brand for their brain and the way they want/need to hear. All the brands do a very good job, and I would venture that each is likely better for most patients who need amplification than nothing!