Best affordable Stethoscope? - page 2

Hi, I just got accepted to Nursing School this coming Fall. I'm VeRy Excited and am trying to get ready. Currently in search of a good stethoscope that works well and is affordable. Did a bit of... Read More

  1. by   Jen2 has one similar to mine for $9.99. I have had it for seven years and it is just fine, it is also what I learned with. If you don't have alot of $$$ to spend go for this. I have borrowed a Littman Select (which is the cheapest Littman about $40.00) and couldn't hear a thing. However, I have not tried the more expensive Littmans, but as far as the cheapest one goes, IMO anyway I think it's the name you are paying for.
  2. by   cometothecradle
  3. by   AMV
    I have been through several types of stethoscopes. In nursing school I started out with one of those low end, under $15 stethoscopes - I can't even remember the name. I noticed I was having trouble hearing with it, so I bought one of those heavy duty double tubing Sprague types. This worked a little better. A few years later, I bought a Littman lightweight, a definate improvement, although I still had problems hearing breath sounds and heart sounds in large people really well. I kept this stethoscope for quite a long time, but about a year ago, I decided it was time to buy a new one. I had a budget of around $100 and decided it would be a good idea to do some research online first. I read several postings here as well as some online reviews. I had heard a lot about the Ultra scope and thought it looked pretty cool. I also heard a lot of good reviews on the Littman and this has always been the brand that is "tried and true" - so I decided I would compare the two. I called around and found a store that carried both of these brands and brought my hubbie along to be the guinea pig. He is a big guy and I wanted to see how well I could "assess" him! LOL!! So in the middle of Scrubs and Beyond, my 6 foot 2 hubbie is standing there in the middle of the store while I repeatedly "assess" him with the store clerks and shoppers watching I REALLY wanted the Ultrascope to the be the best choice, because I thought it was so cool and different looking and there were so many choices for tubing color and head design. But as it turned out there was a noticible difference in the Littman that cost the same as the Ultrascope (I think around $80 to $90) and that was the Littman Master Classic II. It really worked better. I was hesitant about it because it has just a one sided head, but I had read that with the way the head was it would work like bell or diaphram depending on the pressure you put on it. So - I also experimented with hubbie and lo and behold - there was a difference in sounds you heard depending on pressure you used while listening! So I went with the Littman and really can hear very well with it. In fact, I have a friend (also a nurse) with hearing loss and she borrowed mine and was able to assess with it. If you are willing to spend even more money, Littman has even higher end scopes. I also could have saved money if I had bought it online, but didn't want to wait. I think I remember that has pretty good prices.

    I have read a lot of online reviews and other people think the Ultrascope is better. I would suggest that you do what I did and go try it for yourself. The people at the store just cleaned the earpieces when I was done and were fine with me trying it. I think we all hear tones differently and what works best for me, might not be the best for you. I love my Littman and the $$ I spent was worth it in that I feel I am properly assessing my patients. One side note.... the first time a doctor came up and "borrowed" my nice expensive (to me anyway!) stethoscope from around my neck was enough for me to buy one of those stethoscope covers. If it doesn't at least DIS-saude one of those docs from walking into a patients room with a funky-looking stethoscope, at least it will make mine stand out! And you can't take the cover off without removing the head piece - not an easy task to do!
  4. by   VivaLasViejas
    I love my Ultrascope and wouldn't trade it for anything.....not even the $250 Littman I bought myself as a graduation present and can't hear squat with. I can't imagine using anything else.
  5. by   healingtouchRN
    I have had a Littman Cardiology II for 15+ years & it has been retooled once by the company. It was $140 then but I am sure they are cheaper now. You get what you pay for. It has a short length since I do hearts for a living. Couldn't aske for better quality.
  6. by   C'wing
    WOW, you guys are TERRIFIC! Thanks for the advice. I really Appreciated! It Helps me limit down the vast choices out there~ I'm just gonna go check them out in the store tomorrow n' see (Hear) how they are. ThankS agaiN~
  7. by   C'wing
    Hi, does anyone know of a store that sells various nursing equipment around the Bay Area? I've researched for quite a while, but found many of them as online stores only. V_V
    Would like to find one around home. Thanks in advance.
  8. by   Sekar
    Litmann Lightweights rule! I've been using Littman for 20 years and they simply the best on the market, bar none IMHO.
  9. by   AMV

    Ultrascopes site is at
    If you go to that will take you to the page on Ultrascopes site that has an 800# to find a dealer near you. That is how I found one near me!

    I will copy and paste the important info...
    800-677-2673 between 8-5 E.S.T.
    Please include your zipcode and nearest city.

    Littman's web site is
    and if you go to
    you will find info on how to find a retailer near you. Looks like that number is 1-800-228-3957

    Good Luck!!! Anne
  10. by   KailuaNurse
    I have a Litman Cardiology III. It as a pediatric side (you can change it to a regular adult bell if needed) and adult side with the floating diaphragms. Being in pediatrics I can get newborns all the way to teenagers. Its great because I don't need two stethoscopes. I find there is a great difference in sound quality. We have disposable stethoscopes for kids in isolation, and I can never hear anything with those!

    All in all find a stethoscope that works for you.
  11. by   moonshadeau
    I wouldn't buy a good scope until you get out of nursing school and know which area you will be going into. Scopes get lost, stolen and some people decide that nursing isn't for them in which they have either lost money on an expensive scope. Plus if you wait until you know which speciality you want to be in, you can get the scope that is right for your practice. In nursing school I had a Sprague. It was heavy but the acoustics were reasonable. When I graduated, as a gift to myself, I bought a Master Cardiology.

    Good luck with nursing school and finding the right scope for you.

    P.S. Engrave your name in whatever scope you get!