Nftwoed & Sunfish,
Thank you for your replies! I am still testing Resound - this time with an RIE that has bigger holes in it and is smaller overall.
Ironically, it is making part of my outer ear sore - crazy!
Sunfish - I have 'regressed' to older Resound units just to try the fit (mainly of the RIE). Now i think i have the Dot Resound, with automatic features, no programs.
I will say that the 17 channels on the Alera were the very BEST, and less feedback with clearer sound.
This would be the only model in that category now available, so i would have to buy that one, and i liked the sound the best.
It also has a program for the telephone, but i gave up that a long time ago, so no matter. I can use that 'program' as a music program if i want to!
The smaller receiver with the bigger holes is definitely better, too.
Nftwoed - My regular audiologist at UVA suggested a Phonak, so still might try one. I finally found someone in my town who sells them.
I now appreciate how important it is to have your audiologist nearby. Even for the 'company' discount, i would have to travel 25+ miles.
Don't think it is worth it now, with the price of gas. And i have a regular day job, so taking off a 1/2 day of work every time does not seem practical.
Thank you both for your advice! My brother went to one audiologist, was fit with Resound and loves them.
I am still shopping, comparing sounds and willing to take the time to get the fit right.
PS I am just not one of those people who care to have a 'fancy' cell phone - just the basics are fine. But i can see that having the latest features on the hearing aide can be an advantage.