Rexton "Finesse 18/2c" Hearing Aids From Costco

by Brent Hamilton
(Texas USA)

Before making such a large investment to improve my hearing, I first tried to greatly improve my chances of making a well-informed decision by spending a few weeks doing in-depth research on the many different brands, types, technology levels, guarantees, dealers and pricing (if provided) currently available in both the local and online markets.


The first thing I learned was that an inexperienced and uninformed newbie searching for good hearing aids is truly a fat chicken surrounded by a pack of hungry coyotes. After doing much research and reading hundreds of customer product reviews, I had pretty much decided that my active lifestyle and moderately severe hearing loss in both ears would be best served by a Rexton “Finesse 18/2c” BTE hearing aids (which uses the same top-tier Siemens “Life Micon” technology with 90% of the same desirable features at a lower cost).

I made an appointment with a nearby Siemens/Rexton dealership and had a hearing test/evaluation performed by their licensed audiologist; however, I was quickly frightened away by a price quote of $2,700 each. I found the same hearing aids offered by an online “discount provider” for $1,800 each, and I was scheduled for another hearing test by the licensed audiologist at a different hearing aid dealership that was affiliated with the online retailer to provide fitting and adjustment after the sale.

While trying to decide whether to go for the online “discount” deal or compromise with a cheaper model, I was delighted to read (on an internet hearing aid forum) that Costco offered the exact same Rexton “Finesse 18/2c” model for $1,299 each (complete with a 90-day trial period, 3-year unlimited repair warranty, 1-time loss/damage replacement for each hearing aid, and unlimited adjustment service).

Granted, I would have to pay the annual $55 Costco membership fee to purchase the hearing aids, but subtracting that from the $1,000 up-front savings over the cheapest online “discount” provider (for the exact same product) still left me with an unbeatable deal by far.

In spite of a few bad Costco reviews I've read on this site, the hearing examination I received at the Ft. Worth Costco store was more thorough and multi-faceted than either of the previous tests I received at the exclusive hearing aid dealerships.

Additionally, the previous two “licensed/certified audiologists” seemed more focused on pushing me toward more expensive models or technology levels by hyping minor differences and unnecessary or impractical features while the Costco “fitting technician” provided me with considerably more detailed, practical and comprehensive counseling on different brands/types of hearing aids offered by Costco, the pros/cons of each type and brand, the significant (and insignificant) differences in technology levels as they would apply to my described lifestyle, and what to realistically expect in the actual hearing improvement I should experience.

It is obvious that anyone will find a variance in both knowledge levels and programming skills among individual “audiologists” and “technicians” alike; but since most hearing aid “programmers” are not mind-reading psychics, their ability to fine tune any hearing instrument is going to be mostly contingent upon the user’s ability to precisely describe an existing problem, annoyance or deficiency.

All hearing aid programmers have highly detailed charts or software to help them identify and isolate the particular narrow band of audio frequencies (specific equalizer channel) that can usually be adjusted to correct or greatly improve almost any described noise problem, sound quality, amplitude level, or issues with particular word or letter identification that may exist or intermittently occur.

Therefore, the best chance for getting a good fine tune or problem resolution from Costco or anywhere else will be to present the programmer with a detailed written description of the problem(s) – and not by simply saying “they sound awful”.

No, my hearing aids (or any others) don’t let me hear everything in theater quality surround-sound like some manufacturers imply because there will always be a few very noticeable deficiencies and unnatural artifacts that arise when any normal, naturally complex analog sound envelope is intercepted by a pin-head size microphone, electronically digitized, split into numerous equalizer channels, each channel being individually amplified to extremely different levels, passed through numerous electronic filters and conditioners, converted back to a highly exaggerated analog signal package, and then dumped into a very defective ear by a microscopic speaker.

While I still have problems understanding a few words during a normal conversation with some people a little more often than those with “normal” hearing do, my decision to keep the hearing aids was a no-brainer because they do provide a very significant increase in my speech comprehension, have brought me back to considerably more enjoyable and comfortable conversation, allow me to again hear upper music ranges and other desirable high frequency sounds that I haven’t heard in years, and greatly decrease the instances of asking people to repeat themselves (or simply nod my head and pretend I understood what was said).

The best professional advice I received was to remember that I was purchasing a pair of hearing “aids” and not a hearing “cure” because $2,500 (or even $10,000) could never restore my hearing to the quality it was at 20-years of age any more than twice that amount spent on cosmetic surgery would restore my weathered old face to its former 20-year old appearance.

I am very pleased with the service I’ve received from Costco and the Rexton “Finesse 18/2c” hearing aids I purchased there at a considerable savings over all other available sources that I was able to find.

The hearing aids I purchased were more toward the top-tier in technology features that are preferable for anyone with an active lifestyle and remains employed in a position that requires frequent personal conversation in different environments and conditions; however, Costco also has lesser expensive sets that would work very well for those who don’t need quite as many lights and bells features.

I would highly recommend anyone contemplating the purchase of quality hearing aids to start at Costco instead of ending up there as I did. I would also trust a large reputable chain like Costco to maintain good, long-term customer service more than I would count on the same from some of the local hearing aid centers that I have seen come and go over the past few years.

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Sep 21, 2016
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REXTON QuadCore Hearing Aids
by: Anonymous

Rexton QuadCore Hearing Aids
WONDERFULL...it took me almost 6-weeks to come to this conclusion. I faithfully wear the Rexton QuadCore hearing aids every day from 10 to 14 hours. Yes, at first the sounds I heard over the "hearing aid amplifier" were very loud and not very pleasant which included my own voice...but my brain is finally adapting to this "amplifier-sound". Also when necessary with the help of the remote (a must have device) I am able to adjust the hearing aids to a more comfortable volume (louder or softer) including lowering the background sounds. It is so wonderful to be able to hear much more clearly again...I have been told that my own speaking voice is now softer and I am again "learning-how-to- listen".
My Rexton QuadCore hearing aids were purchased at Costco, Cranberry Twp, PA. I am very pleased with their two very well trained audiologists and the up-to-date equipment. I never once felt pressured, the audiologist thoroughly explained the tests that were given, etc. On the first of my three appointments, I was allowed to walk around Costco’s to test the hearing aids before purchasing them. My daughter tested me as she walked beside, behind, and in front of me speaking normally and softly. I could hear what she was saying...yes the other sounds in the store were very loud and annoying but I could hear and understand my daughter. On the second appointment I received my hearing aids…the audiologist programmed and tested them, also she patiently answered my questions. After wearing the hearing aids for approximately two more weeks (my third visit) the necessary adjustments were made to my hearing aids.
I am so thankful that my family insisted on me getting hearing aids…and making the appointment at Costco’s in Cranberry Twp, PA. After my third visit to Costco’s I mailed the copies of my Rexton QuadCore Hearing Aid purchase along with the Insurance Companies Form to my insurance company and to my surprise and delight I received a check for $2,500…less than $200 from my full purchase price (including the remote and charger).

Jul 30, 2016
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Great helpful Comments !
by: Dale

Great, Helpful Comments! I JUST purchased Costco Rexton CIC hearing aids and so far they're working GREAT!

Mar 05, 2015
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Quintro Versus Finesse
by: Dave

In answer to Brent I was just given a Rexton hearing aid brochure by Costco and it looks to me that the Quintro is a step above the Finesse in the Costco/Rexton line although both have the same features.

I am considering the Quintro hearing aid for myself and want to improve my hearing of both speech and music and thank the review writers in this thread for their valuable information. My experience at Costco so far has been excellent and pressure free and so far better than private sources.

Jan 24, 2015
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Reply to Brent Hamilton
by: LarryK

Brent's comments are the most articulate and literate that I have read in a HA forum, which leads me to this reply. I began experimenting with HAs in July 2014, trying Siemens Mi7 Pure for almost 90 days and subsequently Oticon Altra Pro for about two weeks. After those experiences, which cost me only my time and a great deal of frustration, I decided to wait and continue my research for the best quality devices at the least cost--thus Costco. To be honest, Costco's warehouse "environment" repulsed me, but the expectation of much lower prices overcame my revulsion (perhaps these descriptors are a bit too strong). I have an appointment next week at their one Manhattan (NY) location.

Based on my previous two experiences, the most important aspect of fittings is the interplay between me and the audiologist. As others have noted, no hearing aid will restore my hearing to relative perfection, but small equalization adjustments make a large audible difference in their sound quality, especially for music listening. I attend many classical music events and frequently listen to recorded classical music (via CDs, streaming radio, or Spotify), so high frequency performance (above 2KHz) is paramount. I had eight adjustments of the Siemens Mi7 Pure to tame their 3KHz band boost to my requirements for music, and yet I was not fully satisfied. After several visits, I sorely wanted access to Siemens' software so I could adjust their response at home, but that is not possible in my world.

Hence the importance of describing in writing as accurately as possible one's listening impressions both with and without hearing aids. This is not an easy task. Even if the technician doesn't read them initially, my written impressions can help clarify my verbal expressions. There remain unknown the audiologist's interpretation of my hearing impressions and his or her abilities to translate them into satisfactory results. Hopefully a good rapport develops and reasonable results evolve from the (multiple) adjustment sessions.

I do not want to entertain the concept of streaming recorded music via Bluetooth to my HAs. I want to maintain and improve upon the experience of music listening at home over high quality loudspeakers. Siemens and Oticon, and I assume Rexton, Phonak, ReSound and other firms, have "music" programs that selectively reduce or eliminate compression, adjust noise cancelling, tailor frequency response and select microphone arrays for music environments as opposed to speech environments. I welcome any comments particularly on the topic of hearing aid sound quality for music listening in either "live" or recorded situations.

Nov 03, 2014
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Costco Rexton
by: Anonymous

I purchased by first hearing aids from Costco 7 years ago. They were Rexton for somewhere below $3000. They served me well. Hearing aids only last 3 to 5 years, so I wasn't looking forward to spending more again. Costco had been bugging me to get new ones even though mine were still working because the new models had been vastly improved. The good thing about Costco is their hearing aid people are paid by the hour, so there is pressure to buy anything because they aren't paid on commission.

Recently a friend of mine who is a veteran like myself got hearing aids. He got them free through the VA. So, what I did was go to the VA myself and get new ones at no cost. They even supply free batteries. Every 2 or 3 years I will get new hearing aids. I got the top of the line Oticon Alta Pro with blue tooth. They are much better than the old Rexton aids.

The major thing I learned is there is a astronomical mark up in aids. Most of it is profit to the hearing aid centers. The following is a quote:

"The typical cost to produce a hearing aid [is] anywhere between $50 to up to $200," Freuler said in an interview from his office in New York.

He said the price depends on how many features are within the hearing aid, whether or not it has Bluetooth capability, or multiple channels and microphones.

"It can go all the way down to the tens of dollars. But if you want to take an average cost, it is $150," said Freuler.

The manufacturer sells the hearing aid for $400 to $600 to a retailer or audiologist, who then sells the device for about $2,000."

Mar 05, 2014
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ReSound Verso 9 Hearing Instruments
by: Ron Allander NBC-HIS

Hal,

I fit the ReSound Verso hearing aid line in my practice. I also work with seven other hearing aid manufacturers. I use all the major companies like ReSound, Siemens, Starkey, Oticon, Unitron, Phonak, and some other smaller companies.

The Verso hearing instrument is about the clearest sounding hearing aid on the market right now. However I typically do not recommend the premium or top tier hearing instruments from ReSound. I fit many Verso 7 and Alera 7 hearing instruments. Both instruments are 17 channels like the Verso 9 but considerably less expensive.

One thing to keep in mind when comparing the retail brands like Costco, Beltone, and Miracle Ear is that they never get the best level of technology. The parent companies like ReSound and Siemens keep a few extra bells and whistles for their main lines. Many people may not need or even notice the difference between the two because their hearing is so poor or they are less active and don't need it. But others do need the better technology.

You may also want to consider the new LiNX hearing aid by ReSound. It's brand new but getting great reviews so far and syncs wirelessly with Apple iPhones and other Apple products.

I have not fit any yet but ordered by first pair this week for a patient that has a lot of difficulty hearing on the phone.

I would give the LiNX or Verso 7 a try!

Dedicated to improving your hearing,

Ron Allander
Complete Hearing Aid Reviews

Mar 04, 2014
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Rextron Quintra vs Resound Verso 9
by: Hal

I am researching this market for my first set of aids and an independent is pushing the Verso and Costco the Quintra. The Verso's are considerably more expensive and I am wondering if anyone can shed light on whether they are worth the additional cost.

Feb 21, 2014
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Considering Rexton
by: Steve W

Hey Brent (if your still looking at this forum?),
I was told at by my Costco tech. (who by the way left the audiologist that I'd gone to for some time)basically after the computer told him, that the Rexton would be better for my hearing loss and particularly for speech, than the Resound KS (Kirland branded).

I'm wondering if at this time if the Finesse's that you have are the same as what they are calling Quantrus? Two are about $2600 where as the Resound KS are about $1900. Either way much better price than an audiologist shop. Did you compare to your Rextons to the Resounds?

The guy, without giving me a 2 hour mini course, said Rexton has a different way of handling the sound that is not simply amplifying (he may have said compression)but does a better job to some degree....how noticeable to defective ears to pay an additional $700 I don't know....but I guess that's what the 90 day return policy is for. Any response would be much appreciated!

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