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Costco versus Embrace Hearing

If you are shopping around, you might have considered COSTCO for your hearing aids. This review of COSTCO vs Embrace Hearing is from a recent Embrace Hearing Customer, James E. from Round Rock Texas. 

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I’ve now had the X-Series hearing aid for about 2 months now. My point of reference for this review is a previous encounter with a hearing aid through Costco. After a hearing test, they fitted me with a high end Resound model which I wore for about 5 months and ultimately returned it for a number of reasons.

I have Meniere’s Disease and lost all hearing in my left ear during treatment for that disease. My right ear has moderate hearing loss. I used the Costco aid in the right ear and now the X-Series.

I chose the X-Series (battery powered) after much research I had done both recently and previously. On paper, it has excellent specifications. The model I believe is the higher end Unitron brand. It does have Bluetooth streaming for both music and telephone. I’ve only had a few calls with it and the clarity is very good and I can roam away from my phone for perhaps 30 feet before reception starts to drop off. I do watch a number of videos on Facebook and YouTube and occasional music from my phone and the audio automatically streams to the hearing aid once the video is engaged full page. I’m not sure how much extra power this consumes if one uses this a lot for calls, music and videos. I have a Samsung S9+ which does a great job of connecting to the phone and staying connected via the smart app.

My Costco aid lasted about 4-5 days before battery changes. Monitoring the X-Series so far I’ve seen a minimum of 55 hours and a more normal 66 hours between changes. Doing the math, and depending how many hours a day you wear the aid, you can get a week or more of use from one battery which I think very good. That works out to about 6 cents per day or about $20 per year. I would say that’s a great investment. I should mention that once the hearing aid gave me a low battery signal at about 45 hours. I ignored that just to see how long it would last and I got another 18 hours before the low battery signal kicked in again.

With the Costco aid, I spent a number of times back at the store getting it readjusted and an occasional new program to help in certain situations. So far with the X-Series no adjustments have been needed. There are 4 programs settings in the app – automatic, several low and high noise settings. While I occasionally use the high noise/conversation setting, I generally leave the aid in its automatic mode – it does do some adjusting on its own which is helpful, for example, when you go from a low noise to high noise environment. As a “tinkerer” I do wish there was a way to make environment changes and save them on the app. I found that while the noise/conversation settings on the X-Series are helpful, they are not perfect in masking all noise (no hearing aid can do that). However, I do notice that if I’m in a noisy area like a restaurant, not only is the noise/conversation setting helpful but I’ve learned to also lower the volume in those settings which also helps mask background noise.

The X-Series is very lightweight compared to the Resound and it stays in my ear safely where I had trouble keeping the Resound one in despite several refitments. I hardly know the aid is in my ear compared to the Resound one. The sound quality has been very good compared to the Resound and I’ve experienced absolutely no feedback or squealing since wearing it – that’s a common problem with many aids.

Dealing with the company is a breeze and the buying process is very smooth. Shipping was fast – there is plenty of good instruction and online videos to help you even though the aid is really very simple to use. Tim in Customer Care was very helpful on the front end as was the follow up by staff with emails and calls to ensure my aid was working and I had any questions. The whole experience was easy, non-stressful and the product has been superb thus far. I buy a lot of things on line but I should say I was hesitant to buy a hearing aid online given the issues I experienced with Costco. But Embrace made this all simple and easy. AND, the cost/benefit is excellent. The X-Series actually cost a bit less than the Resound at Costco.

I highly recommend both Embrace Hearing and the X-Series.

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To speak with Embrace Hearing about your hearing needs. call us anytime at (888) 929-9555.

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The X-Series Models

Vs
  • Compare to:

  • Our price per ear/pair:

  • ? This is the number of frequency bands we use to program your hearing aids to the results of your hearing test. The hearing aid then uses these bands to re-build sound to meet the needs of your hearing loss. The greater the number of bands, the better the sound quality delivered to you.
    Programable bands/channels

  • ? Our comprehensive warranty covers any manufacturer defects including free replacement of rechargeable batteries and receivers as well as half price one-time loss and irreparable damage replacement. In addition, during the warranty, there is no charge for reprogramming or adjustments.
    Warranty (and Loss Insurance)

  • ? Connects directly to your smartphone (or other Android or Apple device). Two way streaming enables completely hands free calls. Add our TV Connector for direct streaming from your TV so you can adjust your TV volume without affecting the sound for others.
    Bluetooth for completeley hands-free calls

  • ? Although the software on these hearings makes adjustments seldom necessary, it is possible to change the volume and some manual settings using either the free smartphone App or the buttons on the aids. An optional hand held remote is also available.
    Volume and Program Control

  • ? We offer a choice of disposable 312 battery or lithium ion rechargeable battery on some models. The rechargeable battery will perform for up to 24 hours after a 3 hour charge. The disposable batteries will last 3-7 days depending on hours of use, level of hearing loss and amount of Bluetooth streaming. A year’s supply of size 312 batteries currently costs about $30/year/aid.
    Power Source

  • ? The hearing aid's software automatically identifies and adjusts to changes in your sound environment (e.g. From a quiet car to a noisy restaurant) so no manual adjustments are needed.
    Automatically adjusts to your environment

  • ? This is the best technology for group situations. It provides optimal speech understanding from all directions by dynamically scanning your environment to focus on the active speaker in your immediate vicinity.
    LiveSpeechFocus

  • ? While most people find that the restoration of high frequency hearing through the use of properly programmed hearing aids significantly improves tinnitus symptoms, there is more we can do. All of our hearing aids come with a tinnitus management program. This is not a cure but it can further help alleviate tinnitus symptoms through the use of a self-adjustable 'white noise' sound in the background.
    Tinnitus Manager Program

  • ? BiCROS hearing aid progamming is for people who have unaidable hearing loss in one ear but have some level of hearing in the other. You would wear hearing aids on both ears. We program them so a microphone picks up sounds from the weak ear and transmits them to wirelessly to the ear with better hearing.
    BiCROS programming

  • ? REMOTE PROGRAMMING - With the X-550 and X-950 models, we can make adjustments to you hearing aids remotely. You would explain the issue to our Audiologists and the new program would be uploaded to your hearing aids automatically (via Bluetooth).
    Remote Programming

  • ? TELECOIL - The telecoil is also known as a T-coil, or T-switch. When activated, the telecoil permits the transmission of sound from a "Hearing Loop" sometimes found in public spaces and theaters. If you require this feature, please call us for details at (888) 929-9555.
    Telecoil

  • Colors

The C-Series Models

Vs
  • Compare to:

  • Our price per ear/pair:

  • ? This is the number of frequency bands we use to program your hearing aids to the results of your hearing test. The hearing aid then uses these bands to re-build sound to meet the needs of your hearing loss. The greater the number of bands, the more natural the sound and the better the performance in more challenging situations, like restaurants.
    Programable bands/channels

  • ? Our comprehensive warranty covers any manufacturer defects including free replacement of rechargeable batteries and receivers as well as half price one-time loss and irreparable damage replacement. In addition, during the warranty, there is no charge for reprogramming or adjustments.
    Warranty (and Loss Insurance)

  • ? Although the software on these hearings makes adjustments seldom necessary, it is possible to change the volume and some manual settings using the Android/Apple smartphone App or optional hand held remote.
    Volume and Program Control

  • ? The disposable size 10 batteries on these hearing aids will last about 4-6 days depending on hours of use and level of hearing loss. A year’s supply of size 10 batteries currently costs about $30/year/aid.
    Power Source

  • ? The hearing aid's software automatically identifies and adjusts to changes in your sound environment (e.g. From a quiet car to a noisy restaurant) so no manual adjustments are needed.
    Automatically adjusts to your environment

  • ? This is the best technology for group situations. It provides optimal speech understanding from all directions by dynamically scanning your environment to focus on the active speaker in your immediate vicinity.
    LiveSpeechFocus

  • ? While most people find that the restoration of high frequency hearing through the use of properly programmed hearing aids significantly improves tinnitus symptoms, there is more we can do. All of our hearing aids come with a tinnitus management program. This is not a cure but it can further help alleviate tinnitus symptoms through the use of a self-adjustable 'white noise' sound in the background.
    Tinnitus Manager Program

  • ? BiCROS hearing aids are designed for people who have unaidable hearing loss in one ear but have some level of hearing in the other. You would wear hearing aids on both ears. A microphone picks up sounds from the weak ear and transmits it to wirelessly to the ear with better hearing
    BiCROS programming

  • ? With the C-540 and C-940 models, we can make adjustments to you hearing aids remotely. You would explain the issue to our Audiologists and the new program would be uploaded to your hearing aids automatically.
    Remote programming and adjustments

  • Telecoil

  • Colors

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