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Omron BP Wrist Monitors Compared
Model HEM-608 vs. Model HEM-650 vs. Model BP652
by
Vaughn Aubuchon

Here is a review of my new Omron BP-652 wrist BP monitor. I compare it to my old Omron HEM-650 and HEM-608 BP monitor, which has been very reliable for 6 years.


1. HEM-608 vs. HEM-650 vs. BP-652 COMPARISON CHART
2. Old Monitor vs. New Monitors READING COMPARISON
3. Wrist Monitor PLACEMENT Tests
4.
Omron Wrist BP Monitors FEATURE Chart
5.
AMAZON REVIEWS Summary

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Omron BP Wrist Monitor vs. My New Omron BP Wrist Monitor
COMPARISON CHART
Old (2004)
Omron HEM-608
Wrist Monitor
(2010)
Omron HEM-650
Wrist Monitor
.
New (2011)
Omron BP652
(HEM-6052-Z)
Wrist Monitor
Device Photo
Omron HEM-608 Wrist BP Monitor
Omron HEM-650 Wrist BP Monitor

Omron BP652 Wrist BP Monitor

Monitor Positioning

For 6 years, I have placed a large dictionary on my desk, which raises my wrist and monitor to my heart level, EXACTLY as instructed. Because of this location, readings from my old 608 are ALWAYS higher than the readings from my new 650, located at my throat.
This is to be expected. The lower one places a wrist monitor, the higher the BP reading will be. See chart below.

This monitor is equipped with "APS" - an Advanced Positioning Sensor. This SOUNDS like a good idea.

However, it will NOT function, if you follow the directions. To get my 650 to work, I must place my wrist and monitor UP AGAINST MY CHIN. This Omron unit thinks my heart is located in my throat.

Because of this positioning difference, the 650 always provides BP readings lower than the 608, when the 608 is used at heart level, PER THE INSTRUCTIONS.

This monitor is equipped with "APS" - an Advanced Positioning Sensor. This SOUNDS like a good idea.

It IS a good idea, when it works.
Mine worked perfectly.

Notice the BLUE light on the top of the device? That means that the device is at the proper level (unlike the beeps of the 650), and the measurment begins. That same light is ORANGE, when the device is NOT at the proper level.

Due to this difference in positioning, it appears that all the readings that I have taken over the last 6 years, have been high by perhaps 10 points. I will refine this difference over the next few weeks, as I gather more data.

Comments from Amazon -
1. "It would only work when placed in my crotch".
2. "It would only work with my wrist "in the sky".
3. "It would only work up against my throat."
4. "I know FAR BETTER where my heart is, than it does."
(Amen! That's a fact!)

Motor Operation

The HEM-608 motor runs really fast, then stops, and the device takes a reading, by slowly releasing air, much like an automatic upper arm sphygmomanometer.

The Systolic measurement is taken first.

The HEM-650 motor runs steadily THROUGHOUT the entire measurement, and stops only when the measurement is finished. This is quite different than the older HEM-608.

The Diastolic measurement is taken first.

The BP-652 motor runs steadily THROUGHOUT the entire measurement, and stops only when the measurement is finished.

The Diastolic measurement is taken first.

New Reading Start

1. Turn on the On switch.
2. Press the Start button
3. Immediately position device
To take a second reading, push the start button again.

1. Turning the device on starts the measurement.
2. Immediately position the device
To take a second reading, turn the device off, then turn it on again.

1. Turning the device on starts the measurement.
2. Immediately position the device
To take a second reading, turn the device off, then turn it on again.

Irregular Heartbeat Detection

Not applicable

The arrhythmia symbol on the LCD ALWAYS comes on, as well it should, since I have been in Permanent Atrial Fibrillation since 2004. I am thankful that it does NOT make an audio sound, since that would become rather annoying over time.

The arrhythmia symbol on the LCD ALWAYS comes on, as well it should, since I have been in Permanent Atrial Fibrillation since 2004. I am thankful that it does NOT make an audio sound, since that would become rather annoying over time.

Reliability

My Omron HEM-608 has failed three times over the last 6 years. The cause was always the same. Green copper grunge had accumulated beneath the On/Off switch, causing it to become "sticky" and malfunction. I disassembled the device, cleaned off the green deposits with Kleenex and a small screwdriver, and reassembled it. It was as good as new.

After 6 years, I consider the HEM-608 to be extremely reliable, except for the recurring switch contamination.

Not enough data - time will tell

(I hope I don't cause copper deposition into the Start/Stop switch - the switch is of a different type.)

Not enough data - brand new

Annoyances

It is somewhat annoying having to wait for the display to "cycle", and display the pulse rate.

In other words -
The blink rate of the 2 alternating display screens is way too slow.

1. You must turn the unit Off and On (Start/ Stop) again, to take successive readings.
2. Every time the battery is removed, one must reset the year, month, date, hour and minute. The battery must be changed frequently, if you use it several times each day, as I do.

1. You must turn the unit Off and On (Start/ Stop) again, to take successive readings.
2. Every time the battery is removed, one must reset the year, month, date, hour and minute. The battery must be changed frequently, if you use it several times each day, as I do.

Conclusions

1. The addition of the arrhythmia sensor is great for some, but useless for me.
2. The HEM-650 is extremely finicky about positioning - sometimes, I must reposition it over and over again to get it to start working. Sometimes, if you start off in a slightly wrong position, it almost seems that the unit punishes you, by immediately making it much harder to get the "go" beeps. Or maybe it is just me. I will know later.

The positioning sensor works perfectly on this unit. I believe they have worked out the difficulties found on earlier units.

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2. OLD MONITOR vs. NEW MONITOR - BP READING COMPARISON
Test #

Omron
Model #
1st Reading
2nd Reading
3rd Reading
4th Reading
.
Averages
SP
DP
P
SP
DP
P
SP
DP
P
SP
DP
P
SP
DP
.
P
1
(before pills)
1
HEM-650 (c)
131
64
74
129
81
80
133
72
69
120
67
60
128
71
71
2
BP-652 (h)
126
80
62
139
75
61
129
70
55
137
83
62
133
77
60
3
HEM-608 (c)
107
91
68
109
98
60
152
90
67
116
83
72
121
91
67
4
HEM-608 (h)
140
83
61
140
98
62
148
90
64
148
75
57
144
87
61

2
(after pills)
1
HEM-650 (c)
106
59
49
109
62
56
113
66
65
113
59
54
108
62
56
2
BP-652 (h)
114
68
61
119
63
54
110
59
56
110
66
51
113
64
56
3
HEM-608 (c)
118
69
63
115
68
53
109
73
49
109
63
56
114
68
55
4
HEM-608 (h)
129
74
53
106
92
65
133
66
59
133
81
60
122
78
59

Notes:
1. SP= Systolic pressure, DP= Diastolic pressure, P= Pulse rate
2. For each test, all four readings were taken using each monitor, within a 10-minute period.
3. The HEM-608 (c) was placed up against my chin (same as the 650), the HEM-608 (h), was placed at heart level.
4. Other tests were made to determine if there is any variation due to which monitor is used first - no difference.
5. Note that the primary reason for my BP variation is my atrial fibrillation. Before I had AF, the readings were almost identical.

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3. WRIST MONITOR PLACEMENT - BP Readings Compared
Monitor
Test
Location
Model
#
1st Reading
2nd Reading
3rd Reading
4th Reading
.
Averages
SP
DP
P
SP
DP
P
SP
DP
P
SP
DP
P
SP
DP
.
P
wrist on top of head
HEM-608
71
56
56
100
48
61
95
49
58
92
49
63
90
51
60
HEM-650

doesn't work

-

BP 652

doesn't work

-

wrist at heart level
HEM-608
118
75
57
94
68
53
119
74
66
124
74
62
114
73
60
HEM-650

doesn't work

-

BP 652

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

wrist in lap
HEM-608
148
79
62
132
79
54
143
86
53
130
81
50
138
81
55
HEM-650

doesn't work

-

BP 652

doesn't work

-

Notes:
1. For each test, all four readings were taken using the HEM-608 monitor, within a 10-minute period.
2. The HEM-650 will work, ONLY when placed up against my chin. The APS feature prevents the 650 from working.
3. As you can see, the placement of the wrist monitor is critical, to achieve accurate readings.

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4. Omron Wrist BP Monitors FEATURE Comparison Chart
Omron
Model #
Face Color
# of Buttons
APS ?
Irregular
Heartbeat
Detector ?
Mgmt.
Software ?
.
Price Online
Omron
List
Price

HEM-608 

White
3
NO
NO
NO

na

-

HEM-629*

Blue
3
NO
NO
NO

$ 75 - Amazon

$  80

HEM-637 

Grey
6
YES
NO
NO

$ 88 - Amazon

-

HEM-650*

Silver
3
YES
YES
NO

$ 80 - Amazon

$ 100

HEM-670-IT*

Light Blue
6
YES
YES
YES

$ 73 - Amazon

$ 120

BP652

Silver
3
YES
YES
NO

$ 54 - Amazon

-

*

= Currently listed on Omron website, Sept. 2010, and on Feb. 7, 2011
Green row = reviewed here.

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5. Omron Wrist BP Monitors AMAZON REVIEWS Chart
Omron
Model #
Total
Amazon
Reviews
5 Stars
(%)
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star (%)
Note

HEM-608 

-
-
-
-
-
-

Too old

HEM-629*

49
31 (63%)
9
3
2
4 (8%)

Good ranking

HEM-637 

106
63 (59%)
19
7
6
11 (10%)

-

HEM-650*

334
189 (57%)
68
15
17
45 (13%)

Poor ranking - reads low

HEM-670-IT*

139
85 (61%)
26
9
5
14 (10%)

-

BP652

40
32 (80%)
6
0
2
0

Best ranking

*

= Currently listed on Omron website, Sept. 2010, and on Feb. 7, 2011
The most common Amazon complaint about the HEM-650 is that it ALWAYS reads too low - much lower than a standard arm cuff device. Differences can be as much as 25 points systolic, and 15 points diastolic

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90

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6. Vaughn's Other
Blood Pressure Related
Pages

* Blood Pressure Chart

Blood Pressure Chart.PDF

*
Blood Pressure Monitor

*
Cholesterol Range

* Lowering Blood Pressure

* Omron BP Wrist Monitor

*
Systolic-Diastolic Pairs

*
Wiki BP Index




Disclaimer
The author is not a doctor.
NO MEDICAL ADVICE IS OFFERED OR IMPLIED.
Statements on this page may NOT be correct.
These are just my personal thoughts.

I hope that you have found this Omron BP wrist monitor page helpful.
Thank you very much for your time.

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Vaughn Aubuchon
Vaughn's Summaries
©2010-2011  Vaughn Aubuchon
www.vaughns-1-pagers.com
All Rights Reserved
This Vaughns Summaries Omron Wrist BP Monitor Comparison
was last updated 2014-07-12.