Originally Posted by mskaty
I have a friend with an AB and I know of folks with Cochlear as well. Please be warned that both of these have been riddled with recalls. Also, AB (& Cochlear) is claiming to be waterproof, yet, it is my understanding that there is absolutely nothing in their warranty that protects/insures the device against water/moisture. When you think about it....how can a device like this be waterproof?
Don't sacrifice the big picture (sound) for a claim. I hope some folks, that are active in sports, comment here but I do know that the vast majority use Ear Gear with fantastic results. On top of the fact that AB & Cochlear devices are HUGE!!!
I personally chose the Med El for obvious reasons although I have to admit I was initially swayed by AB's marketing & claims, as well. I left the homework & decision up to my husband who comes from a very long line of engineers. I would have been absolutely miserable if I had gone with AB (Cochlear wasn't even in the running). You are really on the ball with your choice based on cochlear coverage...good for you. This was a deciding factor for us, as well, and the results are proven every single day.
What your surgeon has stated about AB being behind is what I have been hearing (literally...
), as well. That's another reason my husband chose Med El & I can tell you that I hear things that he doesn't!!
I hope this helps and stay in touch. I'd love to hear of your progress & what you ultimately decide.
What claims and marketing by AB are you referring to? First, the Neptune IS waterproof. It is not a marketing claim. It's a design fact. You can handle and examine the processor and realize that the unit is completely sealed with the control module removed (which doesn't need to be attached once you've set your volume, program and sensitivity.) The battery compartment, which is outside the sealed area of the processor, has a rubber seal around where the cap goes over it. There are two headpieces.. one for everyday use and one that is waterproof. On top of all of that, the warranty specifically covers any possible water damage. They can do that having the confidence that it is very unlikely to happen.
Where have you been hearing that AB is behind? Any engineer making that claim did not do their homework at all or fails to understand implant technology. You have no idea if you would be miserable with AB because you have no idea how the implant works, what it is capable of, or how it sounds. You have no clue what it is like to go from 16 channels to 120 channels (which is only the limit set by the currently available strategy.) You may possibly get something similar down the road because you do have multiple current sources (AB has 16 individual power sources and Cochlear has one) which is why I've always said that if it wasn't going to be AB, it would be Med El.
Multiple current sources are a good thing to have to be future ready and the results have been and continue to churn out as AB is constantly developing new strategies. Did you ever stop to take a look at the options for strategies available? No? It probably isn't something that occurs to you to do since you just have FSP available to you. You have no real way currently to try different programs to experience what happens when you use different strategies. Having these choices ensures that if one program isn't working out so great for an individual, another will.
Fidelity 120 is not a marketing claim. Post-linguals universally remark on the huge jump in sound quality and resolution when they go from Hi-Res (which, just like yours, will sound good and normal after it settles in) using 16 channels to Fidelity 120 using 120 channels. Sound takes on an immediate natural quality. The implant is capable of producing far more channels.
ClearVoice, which requires 120 channels, has very obvious benefit immediately when turned on. It's probably difficult for you to understand since you don't have the technology available to use something like it. Some folks get confused and think it is similar to the type of hearing in noise technology you find in hearing aids. It is not. It's done at the strategy level, similar to your brain hearing road noise while in a car and deciding to filter that noise out while letting speech in.
Multiple power sources enable current steering. That means they can direct current to any part of the cochlea. This is what factors in for music by increasing the pitch resolution. They can also direct that current deep into the cochlea, exceeding the electrode's reach. Figure out what that means.
As for focusing on the processors..... Cochlear is the current winner in the size war among BTE processors. AB's Neptune is smaller than it appears to be in photos, not to mention it's possible to go almost completely incognito with it if you wear a hat. The problem with focusing on processors is they come and go. In the end, you will wind up with the largest BTE processor of the big three due to AB currently producing the next BTE processor in conjunction with their parent company partner, Phonak. You are only kidding yourself if you don't factor in the technology going in to that processor based on Phonak's known technology. It's never a good idea to make a decision based on the processor unless that is the most important factor to you.
I understand you are happy with your implant and you should be. You made your choice and you are loving your results. I hope that for anybody who gets an implant. The difference between you and me is you actually don't understand the other implants and are going about making false comments. I actually do understand the other implants and how they work. I've stood up for Med El right here on these forums. They are currently the only other implant manufacturer that is attempting to keep the internal technology moving forward. Hopefully they are developing a strategy that makes use of the multiple power sources so you can experience that difference for yourself.