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OEC 9600 C-Arm vs OEC 9400 C-Arm

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Two of the most famous C-arm machines of all time square off! In one corner we have the C-arm model that helped start it all... the high-powered, workhorse OEC 9400 C-arm. In the other corner we have the successor and big brother the OEC 9600 C-arm.

In this article we give you a side-by-side comparison, highlighting major components and differences for each system. Keep in mind that both of these models are getting up in years and availability/sustainability may become problematic sooner than later.

OEC 9400 and OEC 9600 Compared

Image Storage

The OEC 9400 has an onboard storage capacity of 60 images while the OEC 9600 has storage capability of up to 200 static images.

Resolution and Image Quality

The OEC 9600 has a higher resolution CCD camera and is going to give you a greater line pair resolution as a result. You are also going to see a higher degree of contrast in the 9600 vs. 9400. The 9400 uses a vidicon tube based video camera.  This means the machine is really a different generation of technology in terms of video.

Steering and Mobility

One of the major changes in the engineering of the latter model 9600 vs. the 9400 is the improved steering mechanism that allows you to drive it. The 9600 has an individual steering handle that controls wheel rotation. Check out this classic Block Imaging video that demonstrates new style steering vs old style steering on an OEC 9600. In addition, the "C" on the 9600 allows a greater degree of rotation.

Penetration Power

Comparing penetration power you’ll find the systems to be about dead even. The 9400 has a regular dose of 4r and both the 9400 and the 9600 have the capability to do boost mode. While the power is partitioned differently between regular and boost mode, at the end of the day you are going to be seeing approximately the same amount of total penetration power.


The 9600 was the first OEC model to introduce a true iris along with the tracking feature which allows physicians the ability to more accurately pinpoint. The 9400 does not have an iris but rather flipper blades that shade the image.


The OEC 9400 was manufactured from 1990-1994. 
The OEC 9600 was manufactured from 1994-1999.

Hardware Options

The OEC 9400 is only configured with a 9-inch image intensifier.
The OEC 9600 comes in 9-inch, 12-inch, and Super C 9-inch.

Software Options

OEC 9400 comes in General Surgical Package, Extended Surgical Package, and Vascular Package.
OEC 9600 comes in General Surgical Package, Extended Surgical Package, Vascular Package, Neurovascular Package, and Cardiac.


When this article was originally published, a buyer could anticipate saving 40-50% on an OEC 9400 vs. purchasing a refurbished OEC 9600. Now, however, a 9400 will be difficult to find and even harder to keep in spare parts. The 9600 can be had somewhere in the mid-twenty thousands, but isn't too many years away from facing the same problems as the 9400. Our honest recommendation is to look into a refurbished OEC 9800 with flexible financing.

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