When I was pregnant with Sandra, Spectra was all the rage, everyone claims that it is light, quiet and extracts milk much more efficiently. It was also much cheaper than Medela, so I decided to get one just in case my freestyle no longer works properly given that it is already 4 years old. With Sophia, after I had to switch to exclusively pumping when I went back to work, the freestyle worked very well. I never had blocked ducts and I could sustain enough supply to exclusively breastfeed her as long as I wanted so I have no complaints with Freestyle. When I checked out Spectras, I though the M1 was neither here nor there. It wash’t “hospital grade” but neither is it small enough to bring around conveniently (unlike freestyle which can easily be strapped on the waist. The 9+ seems compact enough to slip into a pocket and so is quite portable but I was told the suction is not strong and I worried whether it would work well. So I decided to get a hospital grade model, S2.
After switching between the freestyle and S2 for a month, I noticed no perceptible difference between yield or speed of extraction between the two. The S2 seems very slightly quieter but I’m not bothered by the Freestyle’s volume. I couldn’t figure out what were the many different cycles of the S2 for while the Medela has a clear cut stimulation and extraction phase that I could use easily. The Freestyle also allowed me much more mobility and so I ended up using it more. The S2’s light function is handy as a night light when feeding baby at night, but that’s just because of the configuration of my room and may not be as useful for everyone. For the purposes of seeking the screen in the dark, the Freestyle’s backlit screen is probably better as it does not reduce so much light as to bother sleeping partners/babies.
Overall, therefore, I have a slight preference for the Freestyle but there is a hugh price difference and taking that into consideration I may choose Spectra if I were to start over.