Friday, September 24, 2010

AB Kinder Clip

I received a call from Carver's Audiologist this week asking me if I would like to upgrade Carver's AB body worn CI processor to the AB Kinder Clip processor. She said that it was a free upgrade - I just had to exchange the AB body worn processor for the AB Kinder Clip processor. I really didn't know anything about the Kinder Clip. Since you can't just get a new processor anytime you want one, I really wasn't looking to see what was available.

I quickly sent an email off to the CICIRCLE yahoo group that I belong to. I asked the group (CI users or parents of a CI user from all over the world) if any of them had tried the AB Kinder Clip, and if so, what did they think of it. I got mixed answers. Some really didn't like it at all and didn't think it would work well for Carver. Others loved it, said it had better sound quality, and they thought it would be perfect for Carver. Since I got mixed answers, I asked Carver's Audiologist if we could try the Kinder Clip for a couple of weeks. This would give us a chance to "try it before we buy it".

The picture above shows the difference in the AB body worn and the AB Kinder Clip. One of the biggest differences is size. The AB body worn is on the left. The AB Kinder Clip is on the right. In addition to the size, the AB Kinder Clip weighs a fraction of the AB body worn. We haven't really had any problems with the AB body worn. The cable is long enough to run down the back of Carver's shirt - allowing us to tuck the processor in his cargo short's pocket. The processor takes up the entire pocket. When both CI's are in use, the processors get so heavy that sometimes his shorts fall off. The AB Kinder Clip has a very short cable. However, there is a plastic clip attached that allows you to attach the processor to the collar of his shirt.

The above picture shows the AB Kinder Clip attached to Carver's collar. At first, I was concerned that the clip would easily fall off, or it would dig into Carver's neck or shoulder when he rolled around on the floor. I put it on Carver tonight for about 4 hours. It didn't fall off a single time, and it doesn't appear to bother him when he is rolling around. I also think that he was hearing better with it. The AB body worn has the sound piece directly on the magnet which attaches to his head. Since he wears a hat to hold it in place, we lose some of the sound due to the hat. The AB Kinder Clip has the sound piece on the processor, so it will always be exposed - not covered up.

The above is just another picture that shows the entire device. In this picture, I attached the Kinder Clip to the back of Carver's shirt. The picture makes the processor look huge. However, it's no bigger then his ear.

There are a few cons that I noticed so far:

1.) We will not receive a "beep" if the magnet comes off his head. Instead, we will have to watch for a red light.

2.) We will not receive a "beep" when the battery is low or dead. Instead, we will have to watch for an orange light (battery low) or no light at all (battery dead).

3.) The battery life is shorter then the AB body worn. The AB Kinder Clip will only last about 8-9 hours. The AB body worn lasted 12+ hours.

We're going to try the new AB Kinder Clip for a couple of weeks before making our decision to upgrade or not. So far, I'm loving it!

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