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[Product Review] Upgrade/Review: Dreamstation to Dreamstation 2
#1
Upgrade/Review: Dreamstation to Dreamstation 2
My first CPAP device was the original DreamStation, and it served me well for nearly  six years.  It’s not broken, it still works great… but I felt it was time to retire it to backup duty now, rather than later.  When I went shopping for a new device, I had no idea the second generation had recently debuted.  Since I was an early adopter of the original, why not keep the trend going?

I used a F&P Simplus previously, but upgraded to the Vitera alongside the DS2.

My comments are aimed at original DreamStation users who might be considering the upgrade.  I have zero experience with ResMed or other manufacturers.  (When I asked my provider if I should consider a ResMed this time… she said if I was happy with my DS - and I was - that I would be less than happy with ResMed’s algorithms.  They sell both, of course.)

Design and interface:
Pictures make it clear that the unit is more compact than its predecessor.  As another reviewer noted, the darker finish helps it seem less intrusive.

There are only two controls, both on the top surface - the round start/stop button, and the capacitance touchscreen above it.  The button is softly illuminated when not in use, then goes dark within a minute of starting.  It’s surface is concave, making it easy to “feel” for in the dark.

The touchscreen is actually about the same size as the old display, but oriented vertically.  It has a black background with high contrast aqua-green characters.  It seems to use OLED technology, which is far sharper and more readable than the old display… though the lettering IS pretty small.

Based on this tech, Philips did away with sensor-based brightness.  The display no longer fluctuates between almost-too-dim-to-read and oh-my-gosh-that’s-so-bright.  The single brightness is sufficient in any situation, and extinguishes in less than a minute of starting therapy at night.  While the display is active, it projects a soft diffuse glow on the ceiling of a darkened room, rather like a night light.

Given the size of the display and the font size, it does require some accuracy to operate.  I suffered a few missed presses and swipes early on, but after three weeks, I’ve gotten the hang of it.

The filter and SD card are now accessible only by removing the humidifier vessel.  Which brings us to…

Humidifier redesign:
Compactness was also extended to the humidifier… it seems to hold less water than the old version, and it’s a little clunkier to service.  Its snap-on lid cleverly incorporates a spring-loaded lever to free it from the main housing.  The vessel slides backward on a bottom rail that houses the heater, so make sure you have enough clearance for this in your space.

Philips touted the first-gen water tray as dishwasher safe.  This time, there’s an silicone seal integrated into the tray itself, rather than the snap-on lid.  I rather doubt this version should go into a dishwasher, but then again, I never did that with my old one.

I do miss that I can no longer preheat the humidifier, as I got used to that initial “hit”of warmth.  There’s no doubt the humidifier’s working, as I have to refill it nightly, rather than every 2-3 nights before.  But I still have a slightly drier mouth by morning.  It’s not terrible, just noticeable.  Yesterday I picked up my first heated tube, to see if that would bring me any closer to my old experience.

In daily use:
I’ve had my new device for 2-1/2 weeks now, used nightly.  My auto range is 8-10, my flex and humidity are set to maximum, and no ramp.  These are the same settings as my old device.

Auto-On cannot be bypassed, and it’s far more sensitive than the previous model.  Early on, it came on before I’d fully seated my mask!  A good thing we humans are so adaptable; I’ve already “taught” myself to avoid this by paying closer attention to my breathing until my mask is settled.

I must respectfully disagree that the new model is louder.  It is definitely quieter than my Gen 1.  My spouse can’t hear it at all, whereas the old one (ramping up and down with each breath) was something she had to get used to.  For myself, less fan noise is physically transmitted via the tube than before, a big plus.

This device’s algorithm is so easy on me as to be almost imperceptible.  Don’t get me wrong, the old model wasn’t bad, but I love sleeping with this device, that’s all there is to it.  It makes it easy to live with the minor quirks I’ve noted here.

Final verdict: Buy it for the improved algorithm and quietness.  The minor quirks are not deal-breakers for me.
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#2
RE: Upgrade/Review: Dreamstation to Dreamstation 2
I notice you don't use OSCAR software. Any concerns that this new machine is not supported?
Sleeprider
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#3
RE: Upgrade/Review: Dreamstation to Dreamstation 2
(05-30-2021, 07:39 AM)Sleeprider Wrote: I notice you don't use OSCAR software. Any concerns that this new machine is not supported?

This is one of those “I’ll get around to it” items at some point.  I played around with downloading my original DS data early on, then it fell off my radar.

I’m likely due for a new sleep study later this year; once my baseline has been reset, I’ll care more about this.  I mean, working in IT, I’m confident that it’s just a matter of time until someone reverse-engineers it.  Are you guys still looking for “data donations”?

I’m fully in Apple’s ecosystem, BTW, so I gather that’s another way I’m an outlier here…  Bigwink
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