MC Dental: Know your Handpieces – Do you get what you pay for?

In our last post we discussed whether budget handpieces had a place in your surgery, today we ask, do you get what you pay for at the top end of the market?

I don’t think you would be surprised to learn that yes, you do get what you pay for. That’s not to say that budget handpieces don’t have their place, as we explained in our previous post. Many dentists use budget handpieces as their workhorse and save the high-end equipment for more intricate and bespoke work.

But, when you part with more money, what are you actually paying for? Firstly, you’re paying for the name. While this may not seem like something positive to be parting with extra money for, with dental equipment, it is a very good this to be paying for. Names and brands have to be constantly protected, improved and reinforced. This means a good brand will want to produce good handpieces. By buying into a well-known and established name, you are guaranteeing that parts will be available with nearly every repair house in the country for the foreseeable future. It can be a far more difficult task sourcing parts for a relatively unknown or cheaper handpiece.


Next up is quality. From design, materials, manufacture, testing and suitability for purpose, a more costly handpiece from an established brand will have more thought and effort put in from conception through to sale. They often last longer, due to a combination of hardier materials, better initial design and more rigorous testing. The higher standards throughout produce a higher level of performance, compared to cheaper counterparts. And, when repaired with good quality components, they can often be returned to a near new condition, making them a much more financially sound investment in the long term.

There are some great quality handpieces out there at surprisingly low prices. Finding one is usually down to asking someone who has experience with as many handpieces as possible – someone who knows exactly what you’re getting for your money, like our engineers. They have the experience of using and disassembling virtually every handpiece on the market. And as we’re able to look at the handpiece market from an unbiased viewpoint, it enables us to form a rather accurate opinion of what each handpiece can offer you, both inside and out. However, the choice is ultimately down to you.

When making your choice, there are many factors to consider. Are you solely concerned with getting high power from a highspeed at any price? Is ergonomic compatibility the most important factor? Are future repair costs your main concern?

Whatever your demands, they are most likely going to be met by discussing your choice with someone who is informed on handpiece design and quality. Always ask for a range of quotes for similar handpieces from different manufacturers. Don’t be afraid to ask the question: “Why is there a difference in price?”

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