16 vs 22 electrodes

BlackLabDad

New Member
We are in the process of choosing a brand of CI for our daughter who is about to turn 3. Both Cochlear and Advanced Bionics seem to be good. But can anyone explain the key difference in having 16 vs 22 electrodes. AB has 16 and Cochlear has 22, but AB says that it has 120 virtual points. Any info on this is much appreciated. Thanks.
 

LoveBlue

Well-Known Member
@LoveBlue , can you please throw some light?
Hmm, I'm not really good at the technical part but I can give you some resources (for Advanced Bionics - AB) where you can find more info.

hearingjourney.com - this is a user community and some of the participants are very knowledgeable about the technical side of our implants. You do have to sign up on the site. Many people have come onto the site to help them decide if AB is right for them. You can also find an AB mentor on the site.

If you do not already know who the CICS (Cochlear Implant Consumer Specialist) is in your area, you can contact AB or a mentor and they'll have your CICS contact you.

It is my understanding that the virtual 120 provide the ability for AB to continue to do much more with their processors in providing optimal sound. They just came out with a new processor, the Marvel, that users who have upgraded are very happy with. They're reporting that voices sound crisper and clearer...not that voices don't sound good already (I have the previous version and won't be eligible for an upgrade till next year).

Remember that sound quality / speech understanding is the important part of choosing an implant, not the bells and whistles that come with the processors. :)

@cdmeggers, can you add anything to this? Thanks.
 

x1heavy

Active Member
I try to keep things simple, minimizing the amount of heavy lifting on virtual things. There is sound. Move that sound to the person's Mind. Done.

Anything else extra becomes a bit of a bells and whistles problem that one needs to carefully examine with professionals who are going to help you decide which unit to get.

For example Ive been offered hearing aids that are capable of wireless connection to my smart phone and I could do anything to the hearing aids from that. I told them no. I want basic strong digitals that move sound from there to me. And a lot of it. Nothing else. No wireless, no doodads, no fancy stuff. Its over complicated as it is.
 

Jane B.

Well-Known Member
I try to keep things simple, minimizing the amount of heavy lifting on virtual things. There is sound. Move that sound to the person's Mind. Done.

Anything else extra becomes a bit of a bells and whistles problem that one needs to carefully examine with professionals who are going to help you decide which unit to get.

For example Ive been offered hearing aids that are capable of wireless connection to my smart phone and I could do anything to the hearing aids from that. I told them no. I want basic strong digitals that move sound from there to me. And a lot of it. Nothing else. No wireless, no doodads, no fancy stuff. Its over complicated as it is.
Sorry but you are off topic. To me it is clear you are talking about hearing aids when the thread is about brand choice for a cochlear Implant
 

x1heavy

Active Member
Sorry but you are off topic. To me it is clear you are talking about hearing aids when the thread is about brand choice for a cochlear Implant
Not necessarily. I used my old hearing aids as a example. The Audiologist offered me virtual services via my smart phone with newer aids either in ear or cochlear. I was even asked if I wanted Cochlear as well. I said no.

The topic talks about using a smart phone to adjust or refine whatever processing is going on in the cochlear or hearing aid. Under the word "Virtual"

When the surgeon makes the connections between the implanted cochlear to the person's mind via that person's inner ear structure there is a awful lot of precision going on already. No need to confuse or befuddle the person any further.
 

LoveBlue

Well-Known Member
@x1heavy, actually the topic has nothing to do with smart phones, etc. The virtual the OP is talking about is how the 16 electrodes can produce virtually 120 spectral bands (five times more sound resolution).


 

TexasEngineer

New Member
BlackLabDad, you may already have seen this: https://cochlearimplanthelp.com/cochlear-implant-comparison-chart/

I am a lifetime wearer of bilateral hearing aids, and finally had a CI done 5 years ago with AB. As you no doubt have heard, they say that there isn't much difference in hearing perception between the three main CI brands. My sister-in-law has a Cochlear CI and she loves it.
What won me over to Advanced Bionics was:
1. While a newer company than Cochlear, they have had more new innovative developments and patents in the last few years.
2. While Cochlear has more electrodes/channels (22) than AB (16), Cochlear can only stimulate one electrode at a time where AB can stimulate 4 electrodes simultaneously (currently, and with future software updates can potentially stimulate up to all 16 electrodes simultaneously). The ability to stimulate multiple electrodes is why AB is able to claim "120 channel" capability instead of 16. The claim is that 120 channels results in a more natural reproduction of sound and better appreciation of music.
3. While you can upgrade your CI processor every few years as the technology improves, you are stuck with the implant you use, i.e. the electrodes that are implanted in your inner ear. My perception is that AB has better "upgradability" with their electrode array (see item #2 above).
4. Phonak owns AB (both brands are now under the name Sonova Holdings). As a long-time wearer of Phonak hearing aids (I still wear one in my non-CI ear) I've been impressed with Phonak's innovation and overall quality of hearing.
 
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