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Portable Oxygen Concentrator Resource Center

The Top 4 Pulse Flow Portable Oxygen Concentrators

Posted by Duke on May 18, 2017 12:20:15 PM

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Portable oxygen concentrators with pulse flow deliver oxygen intermittently based on your breathing rate. Essentially, every time you inhale the concentrator detects your inhalation it triggers a bolus dose of oxygen to be delivered.

Pulse flow portables are the small and lightweight units you see on TV in commercials. They typically weigh less than 10 pounds and a lot of them are capable of running 24/7/365.

When choosing a portable oxygen concentrator there are a few different things to consider:

  • Unit weight
  • Ease of use
  • Expected battery life
  • Oxygen output
  • Accessories available
  • Unit features

In this post we are going to review some of the top pulse flow portable oxygen concentrators currently on the market. These units are listed in no particular order.


Inogen One G3

Inogen One G3 Open-Box.png

The Inogen One G3 has been one of our best sellers since the day it was released. Now we know that best seller might not mean that much… How many times have you been disappointed by award winning movies or books? What about an award winning product?

Well, the Inogen One G3 isn’t just one of our best sellers, it’s hands down one of the best concentrators on the market in terms of performance, reliability, and warranty repairs.

Here’s a brief overview of the Inogen One G3!


Inogen One G3 Features

Despite being one of the “older” units on this list, the Inogen One G3 is equipped with all of the bells and whistles!  Here’s a quick look at the different features the Inogen One G3 has to offer:


High Oxygen Output

In all honesty, the oxygen output is one of the most important features on a portable oxygen concentrator… If the unit doesn’t meet your oxygen requirements it’s not going to work for you.

At 4.8 pounds the Inogen One G3 is the smallest and lightest portable oxygen concentrator to offer pulse flow settings 1-5. This feature allows the Inogen One G3 to accommodate more patients and it prevents the need to buy a new concentrator if your flow rate goes up.

Another benefit of having a high oxygen output is that you can increase the flow rate to recover from exercising or if your doctor says it’s okay to increase your flow rate when you are short of breath or your oxygen levels are low.


Multiple Battery Options

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The Inogen One G3 has two different battery options available; the 8-cell battery and the 16-cell battery. This feature alone gives you the ability to customize your Inogen One G3 depending on your plans.

The 8-cell battery keeps the Inogen One G3 at it’s listed weight of 4.8 pounds. However, it only gets half of the battery life that the 16-cell battery offers. On a setting of 2, the 8-cell battery will get up to 4 hours of use on a single charge. This makes the 8-cell battery perfect for things like quick errands, doing chores around your house, and exercising.

The 16-cell battery adds about a pound to the weight of your concentrator bringing it up to 5.8 pounds. However, the 16-cell battery offers double the battery life of the 8-cell. On a setting of 2, the 16-cell battery will provide you with up to 8.5 hours of use on a single charge!

Here is a chart with the Inogen One G3 expected battery life for the 8-cell and 16-cell batteries:


Flow Rate

8-Cell Battery

16-Cell Battery

1

Up to 4.5 Hours

Up to 9.5 Hours

2

Up to 4.0 Hours

Up to 8.5 Hours

3

Up to 3.0 Hours

Up to 6.0 Hours

4

Up to 2.0 Hours

Up to 4.0 Hours

5

Up to 1.7 Hours

Up to 3.3 Hours



Intelligent Delivery Technology

The Inogen One G3 comes equipped with Intelligent Delivery Technology which increases the machine’s sensitivity to detect your breath. In fact, the Intelligent Delivery Technology ensures that your oxygen is delivered within the first 400 milliseconds after the machine detects your breath.

So what does this mean for you?

Well, for starters this means that you will have peace of mind knowing that you are getting your oxygen when you inhale. With other oxygen concentrators, there may be a lag effect from when you inhale to when the oxygen is actually delivered so it’s less effective and you don’t get the entire bolus dose of oxygen.

Along with delivering oxygen within the first 400 milliseconds the Intelligent Delivery Technology also responds to your breath rate which allows you to sleep with your Inogen One G3, despite the fact that it does not offer continuous flow.

While you sleep, your breath rate typically decreases. Because the Intelligent Delivery Technology responds to your breath rate, your Inogen One G3 will increase or decrease the size of your bolus dose depending on your breath rate.

For example, if you have a breath rate of 10 breaths per minute the Inogen One G3 will double the size of the bolus dose compared to if you were breathing at 20 breaths per minute. This is to ensure you are getting your required oxygen.

Normally a pulse flow portable oxygen concentrator will only detect a breath if you inhale through your nose. With the Intelligent Delivery Technology, the Inogen One G3 will detect shallow mouth breaths at night!

So, as long as you don’t use a CPAP or BiPAP machine at night the Inogen One G3 should work for your nighttime oxygen delivery system at home or while you are on vacation!


Easy to Maintain

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The Inogen One G3 has very little regular maintenance that you need to worry about. The only thing you need to worry about on a weekly basis is cleaning or replacing your filters.

Then every year or two depending on where you live and how often you use your Inogen One G3, you will need to replace your sieve beds. 

With other portable oxyegn concentraotrs you are required to send your unit in to get the sieve beds replaced. The G3 has changeable sieve beds that you will be able to swap out in a matter of minutes!

Here are some instructions showing you the proper way to wash your filters:

Depending on how much you use your Inogen One G3, you will need to clean your filters every week or two. Don’t worry, washing your filters is an easy process that takes less than 5 minutes:

  1. Turn your G3 off and remove the two filters
  2. Wash your filters with warm water and mild soap
  3. Let the filters air dry
  4. Put them back in the concentrator and you are good to go

What is Included with the Inogen One G3?

  • Inogen One G3 Portable Oxygen Concentrator
  • 8-Cell Battery
  • AC Power Supply
  • DC Power Supply
  • Travel Cart
  • Accessory Bag
  • Filter
  • Tubing
  • Manual
  • 3 Year Warranty

Accessories Available for the Inogen One G3

  • 8-Cell Battery
  • 16-Cell Battery
  • AC Power Supply
  • DC Power Supply
  • External Battery Charger
  • Custom Carrying Case
  • Backpack
  • Filters

 

Inogen One G3 Specs:

Weight

8-Cell: 4.8 Pounds; 16-Cell: 5.8 Pounds

Dimensions

7.25” Wide x 3” Deep x 8.75” High

Flow Rate

Pulse Flow Settings 1-5

Battery Life

8-Cell: Up to 4 Hours; 16-Cell: Up to 8 Hours

Power

100-240 VAC, 50/60 Hz; 11-16 VDC

FAA Approved

Yes

Warranty

3 Years



Why the Inogen One G3 Makes This List

Inogen makes fantastic products and the Inogen One G3 is no exception to the rule. It’s arguably the best portable oxygen concentrator on the market, but here’s a few reasons why it made this list:

  • It’s one of the most reliable units you can get
  • It gets amazing battery life (up to 8 hours per charge)
  • You have multiple battery options to choose from
  • You can change the sieve beds yourself to save on repair costs


Inogen One G4

Inogen One G4

The Inogen One G4 is the newest product to be released from Inogen. And just like it’s predecessor it is an all-around great unit! It’s the smallest unit on the market to offer pulse flow settings 1-3 and it is equipped with a lot of the same features as the Inogen One G3.

Here is a brief overview of the Inogen One G4.

 

Inogen One G4 Features

As the smallest and lightest unit in its class, the Inogen One G4 is quickly becoming one of our best selling portable oxygen concentrators. Unlike other portable concentrators this small, Inogen didn’t sacrifice functionality and they didn’t have to leave out any features.


Extremely Small and Portable

Inogen One G4 Size Comparison

The Inogen One G4 is the epitome of a portable oxygen concentrator. Standing just 7.2” H x 5.91” L x 2.68” wide and weighing 2.8 pounds, you won’t find another portable oxygen concentrator that is this small and efficient.

Even with the larger battery the Inogen One G4 only weighs 3.3 pounds… It’s light enough for nearly everyone to carry without getting fatigued.

The custom carrying case makes transporting your Inogen One G4 simple and easy. It’s equipped with a padded shoulder strap to make carrying your G4 as comfortable as possible.

And despite the Inogen One G4 being the smallest unit in its class, it offers the most features and it has the highest oxygen output in its class!


Highest Oxygen Output in its Class

The Inogen One G4 is almost in a class of its own. Weighing less than 3 pounds, the only other concentrator in the same class is the AirSep Focus. However, the Inogen One G4 offers a range of oxygen settings.

The G4 can operate on pulse flow settings 1-3 and it is equipped with Intelligent Delivery Technology just like the Inogen One G3.

By offering pulse flow settings 1-3 and Intelligent Delivery Technology, the Inogen One G4 can accommodate more oxygen patients and it will allow the majority patients to use it for their nighttime oxygen delivery system.


Unmatched Battery Life

Inogen One G4 Battery Options

Just like its predecessors, the Inogen One G4 has two different battery options:

When you have the single battery installed in the G4, your concentrator will weigh 2.8 pounds and you will get up to 2.25 hours of use on a single charge.

When you have the double battery installed in the G4, your concentrator will weigh a mere 3.3 pounds and you will get up to 4.5 hours of use on a single charge.

Compare that to the AirSep Focus which only gets 1.5 hours of use on a single charge…

Here is a chart showing you the expected battery life for the Inogen One G4:


Flow Rate

Expected Battery Life for Single Battery

Expected Battery Life for Double Battery

1

Up to 2.7 Hours

Up to 5.0 Hours

2

Up to 2.25 Hours

Up to 4.5 Hours

3

Up to 1.33 Hours

Up to 2.5 Hours



Perfect for Everyday Use

Whether you’re looking to live an active life, take the vacation of your dreams, or you want a portable concentrator that will be reliable day in and day out the Inogen One G4 should be at the top of your list.

Its tiny design makes it easy to carry anywhere you go. You can take a quick trip to the store, spend the day on the beach, or go for a hike without the Inogen One G4 weighing you down.

Having the option to use the single battery or the double battery makes your life a lot easier. You can use the single battery to do things around your house, make quick trips to the store, exercising, and more!

For longer trips away from your house, traveling, going to sporting events the double battery only adds half of a pound to the overall weight of your G4 and it gets double the battery life!

This lets you customize your Inogen One G4 to your needs on a daily basis.


What is Included with the Inogen One G4?

  • Inogen One G4 Portable Oxygen Concentrator
  • Single Battery
  • AC Power Supply
  • DC Power Supply
  • Custom Carrying Case
  • Padded Shoulder Strap
  • Tubing
  • Filter
  • Manual
  • 3 Year Warranty

 

Accessories Available for the G4

  • Single Battery
  • Double Battery
  • AC Power Supply
  • DC Power Supply
  • External Battery Charger
  • Custom Carrying Case
  • Shoulder Strap
  • Particle Filter

Inogen One G4 Specifications:

Weight

Single Battery: 2.8 Pounds

Double Battery: 3.3 Pounds

Dimensions

7.2” H x 2.68” W x 5.91” L

Flow Rate

Pulse Flow Settings 1-3

Battery Life

Single Battery: Up to 2 Hours

Double Battery: Up to 4.5 Hours

Power

100-240 VAC, 50/60 Hz; 11-16 VDC

FAA Approved

Yes

Warranty

3 Years


Why the Inogen One G4 Makes This List

Despite being the newest pulse flow portable on the market, the Inogen One G4 is easily one of the best portable oxygen concentrators on the market. Here are a few reasons why the G4 made this list:

  • Only weighs 2.8 pounds
  • Has 2 battery options available
  • Offers pulse flow settings 1-3
  • Approved for 24/7 use
  • Extremely user-friendly

LifeChoice Activox 4L

LifeChoice Activox 4L

The LifeChoice Activox 4L is a great all around unit! It weighs less than 5 pounds, has an internal battery built into the machine, and it has a high oxygen output to accommodate a large number of oxygen patients.

Here is a brief overview of the LifeChoice Activox 4L:


LifeChoice Activox 4L Features

Although the Activox 4L weighs less than 5 pounds, it is packed full of beneficial features! In fact, these features make the 4L one of the most user-friendly concentrators on the market.


Long Lasting Battery Life

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Compared to the other units on this list, the LifeChoice Activox 4L has a unique battery advantage. For starters, it is the only unit on this list that is equipped with an internal battery. And the internal battery is POWERFUL! On a setting of 2, you can get up to 8.25 hours of use on a single charge!

However, you aren’t limited to just the internal battery. The 4L has an optional external battery available that will give you up to 3.75 hours of additional battery life. That gives you a total of 12 hours of battery life on a setting of 2!

So, if you have any long flights in your future the Activox 4L will be able to easily accommodate your needs!

Here is a chart showing your the expected battery life for the LifeChoice Activox 4L:

Flow Rate

Internal Battery Life

External Battery Life

Combined Battery Life

1

Up to 10.25 Hours

Up to 4.75 Hours

Up to 15 Hours

2

Up to 8.25 Hours

Up to 3.75 Hours

Up to 12 Hours

3

Up to 5 Hours

Up to 2.75 Hours

Up to 7.75 Hours

4

Up to 4 Hours

Up to 2.25 Hours

Up to 6.25 Hours



Versatile Custom Carrying Case

Aside from the long lasting battery life, our patients have told us over and over again that one of their favorite features on the LifeChoice Activox 4L is the custom carrying case strap system.

Most portable concentrators come with a shoulder strap and a handle strap and those do the job just fine… But the Activox 4L has a 4-way strap system that allows you to carry your concentrator in the way that is most comfortable for you.

Here are the 4 different ways you can carry your LifeChoice Activox 4L:

  • Over your shoulder
  • Like a backpack
  • Around your waist
  • Like a briefcase

Having these 4 different carrying options gives you the ability to carry your concentrator in the way that best suits your needs and your situation.

Two of the carrying options even give you the ability to have hands-free operation when you are using your Activox 4L. If you opt to wear your 4L around your waist or if you choose to wear it like a backpack, you will have both hands free to do whatever you’d like!


Designed for 24/7 Use

The LifeChoice Activox 4L is designed to operate 24/7! It’s long lasting battery gives you the freedom you need during the day and it offers sleep mode technology so you can use your 4L for nighttime oxygen delivery. Not to mention its compressor is rated to run for 20,000 hours!

Even though the 4L is a pulse flow portable oxygen concentrator, its sleep mode technology gives you the ability to use it for nighttime oxygen while you sleep. When activated, the sleep mode technology will increase the machine’s sensitivity to detect your breath by 10 times! This ensures that the machine will detect every breath you take, even if it’s a shallow mouth breath.

Now, not everyone can use the Activox 4L for their oxygen at night. If you require a CPAP or a BiPAP machine to sleep, the Activox 4L is not compatible sleep apnea devices because it does not offer continuous flow.


What's in the LifeChoice Activox 4L Package:

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  • LifeChoice Activox 4L Portable Concentrator
  • AC Power Supply - Charging at Home
  • DC Power Supply - Charging in the Car
  • 4-Way Carrying Case
  • Accessory Bag
  • Tubing - Standard 7-Foot Nasal Cannula
  • Manual
  • 3 Year Limited Warranty

 

LifeChoice Activox 4L Accessories Available:

  • External Battery
  • Adjustable Straps
  • AC Power Supply
  • DC Power Supply
  • Accessory Bag
  • Nasal Cannula
  • 4-Way Carrying Case

 

LifeChoice Activox 4L Specifications:

Weight

4.8 Pounds

Dimensions

9.05” Wide x 4.38” Deep x 7.875” High

Flow Rate

Pulse Flow Setting 1-4

Battery Life

Internal: Up to 8.25 Hours; External: Up to 3.75 Hours

Power

100-240 VAC, 50/60 Hz; 11-16 VDC

FAA Approved

Yes

Warranty

3 Years


 

Why the LifeChoice Activox 4L Makes This List

The LifeChoice Activox 4L is one of our top sellers and patients seem to love how versatile this machine is. Here are a few reasons why it made this list:

  • It weighs just 4.8 pounds
  • It gets up  to 8.25 hours of battery life without needing an external battery
  • Its simple operation is easy for anyone to use
  • You can use it 24/7
  • The 4-way strap system lets you customize the machine to your needs

Respironics SimplyGo Mini

Respironics SimplyGo Mini Portable Oxygen Concentrator

The Respironics SimplyGo Mini is the newest portable oxygen concentrator from Respironics. It replaced the Respironics EverGo and quite frankly it’s vastly improved compared to its predecessor. Not to mention, Respironics is one of the most recognizable names in the industry! Here is a quick run down on the Respironics SimplyGo Mini


Respironics SimplyGo Mini Features

As mentioned above, the SimplyGo Mini is a major improvement compared to the EverGo. Respironics managed to make the SimplyGo Mini half the size with better battery life and more features! Plus, you really can’t go wrong with a Respironics machine, they are some of the most durable and reliable units on the market! Here are some of the best features the SimplyGo Mini has to offer:


Sleek and Stylish Design

SimplyGo Mini in Case

The SimplyGo Mini is arguably one of the most visually appealing portable oxygen concentrators on the market… Weighing in at 5 pounds with the single battery and standing just 9.4” H x 8.3” W x 3.6” D it’s small, lightweight, and won’t weigh you down!

It’s modern design was a nice change from the EverGo that looked like a camcorder. Outside of the case your SimplyGo Mini is stunning. The all white shell paired with the green accents and color touch screen just looks phenomenal. In the case, the SimplyGo Mini is just as stylish. You won’t ever feel like you are carrying an “ugly” concentrator around!


Touch Screen Control Panel

Using the SimplyGo Mini is easy once you get used to the touch screen control panel. That shouldn’t take you very long to get used to, maybe a couple of uses if you aren’t using your SimplyGo Mini everyday.

Unlike other concentrators that have push buttons with LCD displays, the SimplyGo Mini has a color touch screen that is easy to see in direct sunlight or at night. You will be able to increase or decrease the oxygen output, check your remaining battery life, turn your concentrator on/off, and more!



Unrestricted Battery Life

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The Respironics SimplyGo Mini can operate using two different batteries. You can choose between the lighter single battery or the longer lasting extended battery.

Using the single battery, your SimplyGo Mini will weigh just 5 pounds and you will get up to 4.5 hours of use on a single charge.

Using the extended battery, your SimplyGo Mini will weight 6 pounds and you will get up to 9 hours of use on a single charge.

Both batteries can provide you with enough time for your everyday life. Whether you have a day full of errands and doctor’s appointments or you are relaxing and taking it easy, the SimplyGo Mini will have you covered.

Here is a chart with the Respironics SimplyGo Mini expected battery life on all 5 flow settings:


Flow Rate

Single Battery Expected Battery Life

Extended Battery Expected Battery Life

1

Up to 4.5 Hours

Up to 9.0 Hours

2

Up to 3.5 Hours

Up to 7.0 Hours

3

Up to 2.5 Hours

Up to 5.0 Hours

4

Up to 2 Hours

Up to 4.0 Hours

5

Up to 1.5 Hours

Up to 3.0 Hours


Comfortable Carrying Options

Being comfortable when you are carrying and using your oxygen is a must. If you aren’t comfortable carrying your concentrator you more than likely won’t be as active… Well, with the Respironics SimplyGo Mini you will be comfortable carrying it through the airport, on walks around your neighborhood, or while you’re doing things at home.

Your SimplyGo Mini comes with a durable and lightweight custom carrying case. The case is equipped with padded shoulder and a padded handle strap for maximum comfort. You can carry the case over your shoulder, across your body, or like a briefcase.

If you’re looking for hands-free operation, the SimplyGo Mini has an optional backpack available in two different colors; black or brown! The backpack is specifically designed to hold your SimplyGo Mini and some of your accessories. It’s equipped with padded shoulder straps so you will be comfortable carrying it anywhere you go.


What Comes With Your SimplyGo Mini?

  • Respironics SimplyGo Mini Portable Oxygen Concentrator
  • Single Battery
  • AC Power Supply
  • DC Power Supply
  • Custom Carrying Case
  • Padded Shoulder Strap
  • Padded Handle Strap
  • Tubing
  • Manual
  • 3 Year Warranty

 

Accessories Available for the SimplyGo Mini:

  • Single Battery
  • Extended Battery
  • AC Power Supply
  • DC Power Supply
  • External Battery Charger
  • Custom Carrying Case
  • Custom Backpack
  • Accessory Bag

 

Respironics SimplyGo Mini Specs:

Weight

5 Pounds

Dimensions

9.4” H x 8.3” W x 3.6” D

Flow Rate

Pulse Flow Settings 1-5

Battery Life

Up to 9 Hours

Power

100-240 VAC, 50/60 Hz; 19 VDC

FAA Approved

Yes

Warranty

3 Years


Why the SimplyGo Mini Makes This List

The Respironics SimplyGo Mini is one of the top pulse flow portable oxygen concentrators on the market. It made the list for a number of different reasons:

  • It weighs just 5 pounds
  • It’s one of the most visually appealing units on the market
  • It offers pulse flow settings 1-5
  • It’s extremely durable and reliable

Conclusion

These are the top pulse flow portable oxygen concentrators on the market right now. As more units get released we will continue to update this list so you might want to bookmark this post! Keep in mind, this list is in no particular order.

Click here if you want to view the Top 4 Continuous Flow Portable Oxygen Concentrators!

Or, you can view the best portable oxygen concentrators of 2016-2017 here!

If you’re shopping around and want to determine which unit will work best for you, download our free portable oxygen concentrator comparison cheat sheet!

POC Comparison Sheet Download

Topics: portable oxygen concentrators, pulse flow portable oxygen concentrators

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