Both benchtop and portable spectrophotometers have vital biopharmaceutical applications. These devices facilitate manufacturing color quality testing and many other industrial processes. Depending on your industry and operational needs, you may need to use each device for different field sites. You’ll need to consider whether convenience or repeatability is your top priority for specific applications.

If you’re weighing the benefits of benchtop versus portable spectrophotometers, let us walk you through a comparative guide. We’ll cover the advantages and disadvantages of these types of spectrophotometers, so you can choose the best option for your applications.

Benchtop Spectrophotometers

Benchtop spectrophotometers offer extremely high precision and consistency for stringent quality control measurements. Professionals across industries rely on these devices to address critical quality color measurements.

With benchtop spectrophotometers, you can gain these key advantages:

  • Small defect identification: A benchtop spectrophotometer is ideal for detecting tiny product defects, such as small tears or stains, because it can capture even these flaws accurately.
  • Built-in backing: The benchtop device provides backing for objects that aren’t fully opaque. This backing can ensure more accurate and consistent results.
  • High repeatability: Because benchtop spectrophotometers remain in a fixed location with in-depth measurement capabilities, they offer optimized repeatability.

When you’re creating quality standards or trying to ensure consistency across multiple locations, a benchtop device may be best for the job. However, outside of these applications, benchtop spectrophotometers come with disadvantages such as lack of portability and lost productivity, as you must transport items to the benchtop spectrophotometer’s location.

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Portable Spectrophotometers

Portable spectrophotometers offer the same capabilities as benchtop devices and provide highly accurate results for on-the-spot quality checks. A portable device can be a significant asset in industries that require professionals to work in the field and storage areas.

Some of the benefits portable spectrophotometers offer for your operations include:

  • Convenient use: Portable spectrophotometers can go anywhere you need to take measurements, giving you the ability to check products away from the lab.
  • Rapid measurement: Portable spectrophotometers can take rapid measurements to address your requirements.
  • Minimized waste: Portable spectrophotometers cut down on transit time taking items to the lab and back, which allows for maximized productivity.

Many portable devices come with specialized features for UV calibration and other critical measurement accuracy capabilities to help provide the same level of accuracy as benchtop options. However, benchtop spectrophotometers do tend to have more capabilities to ensure accurate, repeatable measurements. The disadvantage of portable devices is that they cannot maintain the same consistent measuring conditions, which affects accuracy. Overall, this option is best for use in the field, on-the-spot quality control or checks at supplier sites.

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Ask About Our Spectrophotometer Equipment for Your Applications

If you need trusted resources to address your color measurement requirements, HunterLab can help. We provide an extensive inventory of specialized equipment to meet stringent industry standards, and we can help you find the best spectrophotometer for your applications. To learn more about our solutions, please contact us today.