What's the difference between the Phonak Brio and the Brio 2?

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Julie Norin, AuD - Doctor of Audiology in Baltimore
01 November 2016 - 7315 Views

The Phonak Brio and Brio 2 are products that are specially made for and only sold at Costco warehouses. I only work with the main Phonak products that are available to audiologists market-wide, so I am not all that familiar with the specifics of the Brio/Brio 2 products; However, I do know that they are not the exact same product as the current Phonak V-platform products, and do not have the same exact features as the regular line sold market-wide by myself and other audiologists in clinics, medical practices, and private hearing practices.  Costco typically carries these made-for-big-box lines made by the major manufacturers that can only be programmed by Costco and most of these products are not the latest models or technology made by the manufacturer (which is why they may be less expensive).  

If I had to guess, the Brio line may have been the older programming platform equivalent to the mass-market Quest product portfolio with regard to programming; however, remember, there are still differences between those Phonak Quest products and the Brio products that are specifically made for Costco - meaning, they are limited with regard to many features and programming nuances that would otherwise be available in the "mainstream" product line. The newest platform available market-wide is the Belong portfolio, but I am guessing the Brio 2 is probably more aligned with the previous platform - the Venture line. Again, I don't work with Brio products, so I can say for certain, but I do know that the Costco products are one or two generations behind the mass-market products, and the Quest and Venture products are the older lines. 

Good luck with your search for a suitable hearing solution. I recommend you seek the in-person guidance of a trained audiologist who can help you to find the best products to fit your hearing needs, as well as your budget. There are many, many products out there, as well as many excellent providers! Good luck!

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Member Paul Milner - about 1 year ago
Paul's 2014 picture

Julie is correct that only Costco stores carry the Phonak Brio models. However, unlike the Kirkland private label brand hearing aids, previously made by ReSound and the newest ones, made by Sivantos (Siemens), they are not locked. If you have the latest version of Phonak's Target software, I have been told by our rep. that you can program them even though they are not listed in the product selection screen. I have two Costco stores, each about 12 miles from my office, I have not seen anyone with Brio models at my office.

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Member Member - 5 months ago
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This is nonsense. The Brio and Brio 2 are both listed in the latest Phonak Target software, The Brio is essentially the same as the Audeo Smart IX that I bought from an audiologist about 5 years ago, for more than twice the price. The audiologist at Costco seems about as good as my previous one, no better, but no worse. Costco charges for batteries, but wax traps, domes, and replacement receivers are no cost. Costco is changing the business model of hearing aids, and it's been a long time coming.

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Janette Call, ACA, BC-HIS - Hearing Healthcare Provider in Perryville
01 November 2016 - 7316 Views

Phonak Brio is either not sold in the United States or is an old model of Phonak hearing instruments.  There is no model currently available in the Phonak line by this name.

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Member Julie Norin - about 1 year ago
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It's a Costco dedicated model of Phonak products.

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Member Paul Milner - about 1 year ago
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Julie is correct about the Brio aids. They are only available at Costco stores. Unlike the Kirkland private label branded aids, they are not locked from programming if you have the latest version of Phonak Target software. They will not be listed in the product selection screen, but they will be recognized when you connect.

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Member Member - about 1 year ago
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Thank you for the clarification, It helps a lot.

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Member Julie Norin - about 1 year ago
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That's helpful to know. I have had some patients come in with hearing aids previously purchased from a Costco and was unable to connect, so I assumed this was the case with all Costco products.

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Member Wong F. - 4 months ago
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I recently bought a Brio 2 ($1400) for my mum. After some research, Brio 2 is roughly equivalent to Phonak V90 in fuctionality (retail $2000++). According to a Costco audiologist, the chipset for Brio 2 is 30% faster than Brio. I would say Brio 2 is quite updated in terms of technology and is definitely not an "old model". Costco also provide consultations and all follow-ups for free, the only cost your are paying would be the headsets. Hope this helps!

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Member Member - 3 months ago
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I just went into Costco this week, brio 2 was 2600. Out the door. Where did you purchase for 1400.?

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Member Member - 3 months ago
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Im sure the $1400 price is for one side.

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