My Venture Experience

When we first launched our Venture platform in October I chose to wear the aids myself for a little over a month. I wanted to experience the overall sound quality, function of the new AutoSense OS as well as evaluate the new music program.

My first exposure to Venture was my boss (Tom) sharing his reactions when he was first fit. Tom was raving about the overall sound quality and “natural sound”. The most telling part regarding his Venture experience is the number of hours his aids are being worn every day. His last hearing aids would have had a very low number (I had seen 1-2 hours in the past) in the “hours per day” column of data-logging in the fitting software. He is now averaging 10 hours a day. You can imagine how happy that makes his family as well as his work family! He reports that this is specifically due to the natural sound quality and quiet chip in these products. He can put them in and forget he is wearing them.

I had a tendency of wearing new hearing aids in the past when I was working as a clinical audiologist. I liked to experience them myself for a while in order to be able to counsel effectively (and remember those little details – once you hear the low battery beep you have like 20 minutes to get a new battery in there). I function with a mild high frequency hearing loss in each ear named after the musicians who helped me acquire the pesky little notches. I find aids programmed to a flat 30dB threshold are most comfortable so that is where I set the Venture aids. The longest I wore different hearing aids before these was Spice+ for over a month. Other products (Quest, Core) and other manufacturers I tried out in my previous setting I would generally aim for a week or so for their try out.

My takeaways:

sleeping with hearing aids

I have never in all of that time of trying out hearing aids ever fallen asleep forgetting to take the hearing aids out. That happened to me several times with Venture. To really understand what we mean by “natural sound quality” you almost have to listen to them. Within minutes I literally forgot they were there because of the sound and quiet nature of the hearing aids. Tom had the same experience of falling asleep and getting into the shower and forgetting to take them off.

You can comfortably expect around 4-5 days of battery life in the V-10 model. If you’re not familiar with the Quest or Spice 10 battery model RIC, this is an improvement over 2-3 days. I averaged 4.5 days per battery spending 12% of the time streaming through my ComPilot II. A significant improvement in my opinion. Tom reported about 7 days of battery life with the 312 model.

The transitions in AutoSense really are seamless. Also, these hearing aids were wonderful in the car. Speech in Car was a great addition to AutoSense providing enough reduction in road noise to be comfortable while keeping clarity for speech (coming from people in the car or talk radio). The transitions for noisy environments were also seamless and effective. I often didn’t notice the change itself, just the effect.

I am an avid lover of music and try to see as much live music as possible in my downtime. The most dramatic difference in these hearing aids for me personally was the sound quality of my favorite music. The mandolins sounded like sharp crisp mandolins without artifact, the banjos twanged in all the right places and the depths of the vocals from my favorite singers resonated just as they would without the hearing aids in. The timbre, the harmonics, the soul of the music came in through the hearing aids. I can honestly say I had never experienced that level of music appreciation through hearing aids ever before. I was able to see two live shows with these in as well (I know, I know I should have been wearing earplugs) and the same experience ensued in those venues. For fun, I also tried to see what these hearing aids determined were music. There seemed to be no issue with them recognizing rock, classical, pop, bluegrass music, etc. They seemed to even understand electronic music was music. Whether created with stringed instruments, electric guitars or bleeps on a computer, the Venture aids will accommodate any music tastes!

3 thoughts on “My Venture Experience”

  1. I am glad you are happy with the venture HA’s I was considering them at one point but decided against them being that I have the Q90’s. I was told by my Audiologist that there was not enough difference between the two to make the jump and wait till the next platform comes out. I believe her statement to be true after reading this article, I could swear up and down that your talking about my Q90’s! the only problem with phonak is that they still have the issue with moisture related problems causing the hearing aids to shut down. This might be one reason I might have to go with another manufacture when I purchase my next set. I need to be able to wear mine at all times, the lady that sold me the Q90’s assured me that I would be able but this is not so. Maybe phonak can put a stop to the research of all the new technology hype and focus on a hearing aid that can be worn in any given situation. I know they claim the Q90’s can be worn in a rain storm or even through your work out at the gym but it’s not so. I figure it will probably be three years before the next platform is reviled so we will see where they are at as far as this problem exists and see if I will be a continued phonak purchaser or not. I am tired of having to take my hearing aids off and storing them away because they cannot handle the persperation when they need to be on my ears. Best of luck to phonak to tackle this issue because I do like their products but I have to go with one that can handle the situation and that will make my final decision.

  2. Phillip: I actually trialled the Q90s and was super happy with them. But honestly, when I tried Venture I found it was really a step beyond what Q(uest) did. My experience was that there was a huge noticeable difference. (I linked to the two posts I wrote at the time.)

    Maybe it’s also a function of different hearing loss profiles — I don’t know what yours is like. As for sports and moisture, I keep my hearing aids on for judo warm-up and light work, so I do sweat a bit with them, and I haven’t had any trouble so far (fingers crossed). I hadn’t heard about hearing aids shutting down because of moisture before — are you really sure that’s what’s going on? (I’ll enquire on my end…)

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