Portable ultrasound has come a long way from the days when all portable ultrasound machines were entry level in performance, never meant to match up with the top of the line or even mid-range console units. Now there are clear top-of-the-line, and mid-range and also entry level portable ultrasound systems. Portable ultrasound is not only useful in emergency situations, but mobile scanning services, as well as in small offices and for doctors that must travel from clinic to clinic. The most advanced portable cardiac ultrasound system currently on the market is the Philips CX50 which offers GI and 2D/3D OB/GYN applications as well as it’s unique X7-2t 4D TEE probe which is a uniquely high-end option. The GE Vivid-q offers similar performance to the CX50 in cardiac and vascular applications but no 4D TEE or OB/GYN applications. The GE Vivid q is the more powerful version of the well known and well respected Vivid-i. Workflow on both machines is excellent and which is better depends on if you are familiar with Philips’ style or that of GE. KPI considers both the Philips CX50 and the GE Vivid-q as the Best high-end portable ultrasound machines now on the market.
The “better” or mid-range level of ultrasound machines offer a lower price but many high end options similar to top of the line portables. The GE Voluson-i is the best 4D OB/GYN portable ultrasound currently on the market, but has a mid-range price and so fits in this category. The Voluson-i offers better image quality and a wider array of 4D transducers than any other 3D / 4D system and for this reason are kpi’s top recommendation for a mid-range that will be used for OB/GYN, General Imaging or even Vascular functions. However if you will also need cardiac functionality then you should consider the Samsung Medison MySono U6 which offers both good 4D and excellent cardiac scanning. The workflow on the Voluson-i is better, but the Samsung U6 especially should be considered if you are going to use it for shared service. KPI recommends both the GE Voluson-i, and the Samsung Mysono U6 as currently offering the best bang for the buck among mid-range portable ultrasound systems.
There are literally hundreds of entry ultrasound machines available on the market. Unfortunately you get what you pay for with most of them. KPI has found that reliability is often what is most often sacrificed to bring down costs. The result is a portable ultrasound machine that looks great on paper, with almost mid-range specs and an impossibly low price. If however you want a durable, reliable low cost portable ultrasound, then kpi recommends both the GE Logiq-e and the Sonosite M-turbo. Both have been around for years and have been updated multiple times. Both in workflow and build-quality these entry level portables are solid and dependable with very good imaging for the price. The GE Logiq-e is incredibly versatile offering every application but 4D. In MSK image quality in particular the Logiq-e could be considered a mid-range or high-end portable. The Logiq-e is more versatile, but if light weight and ruggedness is more important than the Sonosite M-turbo may be a better bet. Like the Logiq-e it offers every application but 4D. In the collective opinion of the experts at kpi both the GE Logiq-e and the Sonosite M-turbo currently offer the best price to performance ratio in the”GOOD” or entry-level segment of portable ultrasound machines.