Suggestion: Trust the dictionary. If the dictionary shows different pronunciations, then the words are actually pronounced differently and a native speaker will hear the difference.
Don't ask if the pronunciations are different (the dictionary answers that question). If you don't hear the difference (many dictionaries will pronounce the words), then just state that you don't hear a difference and ask for a native speaker to record the words (spoken slowly and with moderate exaggeration of the sounds).
In reality, a few pronunciation lessons will make a big difference to you. A trained pronunciation teacher will (1) work on your listening discrimination of the sounds (phonemes) of English, and (2) work on your pronunciation of the sounds of English. Not hearing the differences (not recognizing the individual sounds of English) makes it very hard to pronounce correctly because the speaker doesn't have an accurate model of the pronunciation.