Are they On?
He had been after me for a couple of year now, to try the new Rexton line of receiver in the canal products. But, as I had been really pleased with the results I’d been getting with Unitron’s lineup, he was having a pretty rough go of it. The implosion of their open platform, Flex program gave him the opportunity he’d been waiting for, and earlier this week he came by, and fit me with a new pair of their “Strata 2c 16s”.
My first impression was, “Are they on?”
Ben laughed and replied, “That was my first impression too. Rub your fingers over the microphones.”
I did, and it was instantly apparent that the aids were in fact on. I could very clearly hear my hair being rubbed against them. But, when I stopped, the only sounds I heard were those actually around me. There was none of the normal low level circuit noise, generally associated with directional microphones, nor any of the high frequency artifacts generally experienced with processing out to 10K Hz, as their specification sheets promised.
These are the quietest, most natural sounding hearing aids I’ve ever experienced!
How do they do that?
Ben advised, that this revolution was due to the normal evolution of the chips that ultimately drive the instruments. “As part of the Siemens family of companies, Rexton takes advantage of their new twin core processor chip. These instruments have more processing power on each ear than a nineties era Space Shuttle. The ability to perform so many calculations, so rapidly allows our software engineers to do some amazing things with the information from four microphones.”
The first thing we both noticed was their ability to keep the noise normally associated with directional microphones, well below your hearing thresholds. That’s why they sound so natural, even in a really quiet environment.
“But, where they really shine is in enhancing speech understanding.” and with that Ben left me in front of the big screen in the lab, and walked into the other room. Once behind the counter, where Natasha sits he began to ask me a series of question, in a voice just above what would be described as a whisper.
Amazingly, with my back turned, from the other room, and speaking just above a whisper, I was clearly understanding him.
“You couldn’t do that with the Moxis.” was the response from Natasha, before I could say anything else.
She was right. I’d been having difficulty of late hearing her from the lab. There is, and has been construction going on next door, and the extra noise load from that and the street out front, had made trying to understand her from the other room while in the lab well, work.
After thirty years in this business, I love it when I still get wowed. Just like the Moxis had wowed me a couple of years ago, with what they were replacing, these new Rexton Stratas were doing it again.
Just another example of Moore’s law at work for us all. Each iteration of chip just keeps getting smaller, yet exponentially more powerful. The benefits accrue to us all, in ever better hearing aids.
I was so impressed with these new, Strata 2cs, that I’ve made special arrangements with Ben and Rexton, to have demonstration units available, so that anyone who’s interested can experience just how great they are.
Drop by, or give us a call and we’ll arrange a quick fit demo, which will allow you to try these amazing new hearing instruments out for yourself, no risk, or obligations. Oh, and check back later, for more news about how they are working out for me in noisier, more complex environments and how easy they are to connect with my cellphone, ipad and computer.