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advice on new h/aids & phonak

Stuart Feldman gb at neosoft.com
Fri Jan 17 09:07:48 EST 1997

Well, I'm gonna make the jump to some new hearing aids, and would love
to hear some feedback on my choices. Please jump in...

I have been wearing Belltone Opera in-the-ear aids for 3 years. My
audiologist STRONGLY recommends I switch to a behind-the-ear (BTE)
aid. My loss is about 20% at low frequencies, and 80%+ at the higher
frequencies. My biggest problem is hearing people in situations with
any background noise. She feels I can get more gain in the frequencies
I need with a BTE aid.

OK, enough background. She recommends either the 3M Dual-Pro or the
Pics by Phonak AUDIO-ZOOM. She feels the Audio Zoom will give me a
better listening sensation due to its dual microphones. Price is not a
factor between the two choices.

(( if you're not familiar with the audio zoom, it has 2 mikes, and you
can selectively turn off the rear facing mike to really "zoom in" on
voices/people in front of you. supposedly it really gives some good
sound levels when there is a lot of background noise, by eliminating
sounds from the rear and concentrating on sounds in front of you. ))


1) Has anyone gone from an in-the-ear aid to a BTE aid? Does it make a

2) Has anyone used Phonak Zooms?

3) The Zoom has a remote (fairly large, if you ask me; size of a TV
remote). Anyone have experiences with a remote? How do they work in
real life? Useable, or more trouble than they're worth?

4) Both choices have dual programs; I suppose one could be programmed
for quiet surroundings, and the other for noise environments, with
appropriate frequency boosts for each situation. Again, anyone have
experience with dual program aids? Do you really use both programs? Is
it more trouble than it's worth, or does the benefit keep you "coming
back for more" <g> ?

5) Both choices, while programmable, are NOT digital. Is digital
better? Has anyone used a programmable aid, then switched to a digital
aid? Better, worse?

THANKS in advance to all who participate in this thread !!!


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