Ericomp Thermal Cyclers

Dan Rohwer-Nutter DAN at
Fri Jan 17 10:42:09 EST 1992

	My two cents on the Ericomp issue . . . 

	We cuurently have a variety of thermal cyclers in use here 
including two Ericomp twin-blocks, a forced-air unit from ISS, and an older 
Perkin-Elmer.  I have compared them all against each other using a variety 
of template/primer combinations and have made the following observations:

	1.  The Perkin-Elmer is a very nice machine, but the price is way 
out of line for what it does.  All my reactions turned out very well in 
this unit with good yields in every well.

	2.  The ISS forced-air oven was _very_ fast compared to the other 
two units.  It is also the only solution to performing PCR on slides or in 
capillary tubes.  For this it works great, but it has given us consistantly 
lower yields than the other machines.  We have worked with the company 
trying to resolve this problem via altering the reaction conditions, temps, 
and times, but so far no luck.  I still suspect that this is do to pilot 
error rather than hardware failure.

	3.  The Ericomp has always out performed the other units.  It is 
slower then the ISS, but gives much higher yields, and it is faster than 
the Perkin-Elmer when run with an good, fast water supply.  The new 
software (Which Ericomp gave us free) also improved our machine's 
performance by about 15%.

	Over all, I gotta go with the Ericomp.  We do use the second block 
frequently so it has an added advantage there.  The price is certainly in 
the correct part of the ballfield also.

	Good Luck!

						Dan Rohwer-Nutter
						dan at

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