Is there finally a true competitor to the GE Voluson i?

Often imitated, never duplicated, the GE Voluson i is the “King of the Hill” in portable 4D obstetric ultrasound systems.

Or is it?

After a recent upgrade to the Chison Q9 and positive feedback from our customers, I figured this would be a good time to have a comparison between these two 4D portable ultrasound machines.

There are plenty of differences between these two systems, but what really matters is whether it can get a good 4D image… and from there, what are the bonus features.

Today’s video discusses the differences, advantages, and disadvantages between the Voluson i and Q9 ultrasound equipment.

Q9 and Voluson i Feature Comparison

As discussed in the video, these systems appear to be similar on paper. In fact, it would appear to give the Chison a slight edge with its Virtual HD feature.

But in reality, the Voluson i is better for overall image quality and usability. That’s really not a surprise, however. The Voluson i has been around for more than 10 years, and it uses technology that has been developed and improved upon for about 20 years.

The Q9 holds its own however. In fact, we have some customers who prefer the Q9 to their previous Voluson 730 or Voluson i system (see the recent Chison Q9 review for more information).

But I’m not ready to say the Q9 is better.

It’s true: in some situations, the Q9 will outperform the Voluson i and Voluson 730 systems. This is especially true when the VirtualHD feature is enabled on a good 4D image. The image on the left shows a 32-week baby with the VirtualHD feature enabled.

Again, I’m not ready to say the Q9 is better. The greater differences lie in the optimization tools available when you have a difficult-to-image patient. This is when the Voluson i’s advantages become more prevalent.

The Voluson also has more tools that make the overall scanning experience better, more fun, and more efficient. While this lack of tools on the Q9 has simple workarounds, Voluson users will miss these tools. (Although future Q9 updates will continue to add these features).

So what’s best for you?

In reality, the “best 4D ultrasound” comes down to your budget and overall preferences. The advantages to the Chison Q9 are that it’s new with warranty, has a great price, and features Virtual HD. The Voluson’s advantages include its overall image performance, 4D optimization tools, and some general 4D imaging features.

The prices are similar on these machines. However, this price presents a choice is between a new Chison with extended warranty or a refurbished Voluson with a shorter standard warranty.

My Recommendation:

I recommend the Voluson i for those performing mostly 4D imaging. It’s better (for now), although by 2017 this may no longer be the case.

I recommend the Chison Q9 for those looking for a good diagnostic ultrasound and will be doing part-time 4D imaging… this is due to what you get for the price on the Q9.

From here, contact us to speak with one of our expert sales representatives and get a free price quote.