The Best Fingertip Pulse Oximeters for 2018

By | May 2, 2018

A pulse oximeter measures the level of oxygen in your blood without being invasive. There are several types of pulse oximeter available, but fingertip pulse oximeters are more common. Which ones are the best? Here are our recommendations for 2018:

Santamedical Generation 2 OLED Fingertip Pulse Oximeter

The second-generation Santamedical OLED Fingertip Pulse Oximeter allows you to measure your blood oxygen and pulse rate in an accurate way without having to spend too much for the device. Selling for only $18.95, this pulse oximeter is very easy to use. It is easy to clamp around your finger and there is only one button to press. You can definitely do it yourself.

This pulse oximeter is very small, measuring only 2.36 inches by 1.18 inches by 1.38 inches, making it very easy to bring along wherever you go. It even comes with a wrist and neck strap so that you could easily take it with you when you move around. This means that you can carry the Santamedical Generation 2 OLED Fingertip Pulse Oximeter with you when you are playing sports, or perhaps when you are going mountain climbing.

Furthermore, the OLED display is very easy to read even under the intense glare of bright lights. When it comes to power, the device gives you at least 30 hours of continuous use before needing to change its two AAA batteries. The display shows you your SpO2 level and pulse rate. It also has a low battery alert that tells you when it’s time to replace the batteries

What you would like about the Santamedical Generation 2 OLED Fingertip Pulse Oximeter

First and foremost, this device is FDA-approved. It is also very reliable and accurate in measuring your SpO2 levels and pulse rate. The Santamedical Generation 2 OLED Fingertip Pulse Oximeter is perfect for those quick checks because it is very easy to use and all the information you need is displayed on the screen. It also comes in a variety of colors, including black, white, and pink.

What could be better

The Santamedical Generation 2 OLED Fingertip Pulse Oximeter is good for use at home while playing sports, or while enjoying a recreational activity. It is not meant to be a medical device.

FaceLake FL-300 Fingertip Pulse Oximeter and Blood Oxygen Monitor with Bluetooth

The FaceLake FL-300 gives users an accurate, affordable and easy way to measure the levels of concentration of oxygen in the blood, as well as the pulse rates. Pilots, athletes, patients, and even doctors and nurses can rely on the FaceLake FL-300 for fast and correct measurements.

The FaceLake FL-300 is small, measuring only 2.44 inches by 1.46 inches by 1.26 inches. The small size means that it is very portable, especially when you use the carrying case. All you need to do is to clamp the FaceLake FL-300 on to a finger and press a button. You can view the measurements on the device display, and it will show you your SpO2 levels, your pulse rate, your pulse rate in the waveform, and a bar graph. Not only will you know your current pulse rate and the concentration of oxygen in your blood, but you will also get an idea of your numbers over time.

With an included Bluetooth radio, you can view your measurements on your mobile device. The mobile app is able to save all of your measurements so that you can see how they fluctuate over time. You can also set the minimum and maximum levels for your SpO2 and pulse rate using the mobile app.

You will need two AAA batteries to power your FaceLake FL-300. The device uses very low power and will automatically turn itself off when not in use. The display also has a low battery alert, allowing you to know when it’s time to replace the batteries. You can also use the FaceLake FL-300 as an alarm clock, too.

What could be better

While there are doctors that use the FaceLake FL-300, you are still encouraged to see your physician or another healthcare provider if you want a treatment plan. You should not use the FaceLake FL-300 to self-diagnose.

Masimo MightySat Fingertip Pulse Oximeter

One of the biggest critiques people have with pulse oximeters is that it is rather limited. It can measure the oxygen concentration in your blood and your pulse rate, but that’s about it. And this is where the Masimo MightySat Fingertip Pulse Oximeter differs.

The Masimo MightySat Fingertip Pulse Oximeter measures more metrics than other oximeters mentioned here. These metrics include:

  • SpO2: The saturation level of oxygen in your blood
  • Pulse rate: The number of pulses per minute that your heart makes.
  • Perfusion index: How strong your blood flow to the finger is.
  • Respiration rate: The number of breaths you make for a minute.
  • Pleth variability index: How your perfusion index varies when you breathe.

All of these will help you get a complete picture of your health. That being said, the Masimo MightySat Fingertip Pulse Oximeter can help you know:

  • if there are problems with your lungs or heart
  • if you have enough oxygen in your body when there are changes to your body’s oxygen use or changes in altitude
  • how healthy your heart is and if you are overexerting it
  • if there are changes in blood circulation
  • how fast you can recover after exercising
  • if there are changes in perfusion, breathing effort, hydration, and others.

All of these data are sent via Bluetooth to your mobile phone, where you can view your current numbers, as well as a history of your measurements. You can also see trends in your metrics. The MightySat also syncs automatically with TrainingPeaks and Apple Health. The mobile app will also alert you when something is out of normal or healthy range.

The Masimo MightySat Fingertip Pulse Oximeter claims to be more accurate than the second-best hospital-grade oximeter available today.

Design. One of the things that you would love about the Masimo MightySat Fingertip Pulse Oximeter is that it looks great. First, it is made of high-grade materials that are also lightweight. It also has a high-resolution display that allows you to see all measurements on one screen.

The display also includes a plethysmographic waveform that allows you to have a visual view of your pleth.

The oximeter also includes a touchpad that allows you to access the other features or change the settings. What’s more, the clamp itself includes a flexible pad that makes it more comfortable for you.

What could be better

The Masimo MightySat Fingertip Pulse Oximeter costs $299, making it one of the most expensive pulse oximeters around.

Side-by-side comparison: Santamedical Generation 2, FaceLake FL-300, and Masimo MightySat

If you are looking for a simple pulse oximeter that is accurate and reliable, the Santamedical Generation 2 is the best choice. At less than $20, you can measure your blood oxygen levels and pulse rate. If you need a device that also allows you to store all of your readings and makes it easier for you to see your current data and historical data, then get the FaceLake FL-300. You can also see the trends over time. However, if you are dead serious about your health data, you should spend more for a Masimo MightySat Fingertip Pulse Oximeter, which also measures perfusion index, breaths per minute, and variation in the perfusion index.

To make it easier to choose, here are select features of these three fingertip pulse oximeters:

Model  Santamedical Generation 2 FaceLake FL-300  Masimo MightySat Fingertip Pulse Oximeter 
Price  $18.95  $45.00  $299.00 
Dimensions  2.36 x 1.18 x 1.38  2.44 x 1.46 x 1.26  2.9 x 1.6 x 1.2 
FDA Approved  Yes  Yes  Yes 
Battery  Yes  Yes  Yes 
Low battery level alert  Yes  Yes  Yes 
Easy to use  Yes  Yes  Yes 
Smart?  No  Via Bluetooth  Via Bluetooth 
Has companion mobile app?  No  Yes  Yes 
SpO2   Yes  Yes  Yes 
Pulse rate  Yes  Yes  Yes 
Perfusion index  No  No  Yes 
Breaths per minute  No  No  Yes 
Variation in Perfusion Index  No  No  Yes 

Runners-up

Aside from these three, we also considered the following pulse oximeters:

iHealth Air Pulse Oximeter

This pulse oximeter measures your pulse rate, perfusion index, and oxygen levels, and it comes with a companion mobile app that allows you to track and see trends over time. It works the same way as the cheaper pulse oximeters above, but it is priced at $69.99. However, you might be able to overlook the more expensive price if you put a premium on minimalist looks. Unlike the stunning and dazzling display of the top three pulse oximeters above, the iHealth Air‘s display looks like a Nest Thermostat E with its frosted and muted look.

Vive Finger Pulse Oximeter

The Vive Finger Pulse Oximeter is a Santamedical Generation 2 copycat. Like the latter, it also does not have Bluetooth connectivity and does not have a companion app. However, compared to the Santamedical Generation 2, the Vive is more expensive at $24.99. What’s more, when it comes to looks, the Vive Finger Pulse Oximeter pales in comparison to the Santamedical device.

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