Gilson Pipetman M : Review

Apologies on the long overdue review, but I’ve been a bit distracted with science and life over the last few weeks.

I was loaned a P200 from the Gilson Pipetman M range by my Fisher Scientific rep a few weeks back. If you’re used to the manual Gilsons (they were all I had during my undergraduate years), the Pipetman M will look very familiar. The form of the pipette is essentially the same, with the plunger replaced by a big button. The display is also different, instead of being numbers like on a car speedo, there’s a sharp digital display on the top of the pipette. Apart from the big button, there’s a smaller button for changing modes, and that’s about it. The tip ejector is the same, and the pipette feels as light as the manual Gilsons dotted around the lab.

The pipette offers a regular and reverse pipetting options. Just tap the big button to aspirate and tap again to dispense. You need your wits about you for this as the display isn’t overly clear when it’s sucked up or not, and you dont have your thumb held in the appropriate position (or you can look at your tip), but it’s pretty straightforward really. To change the volumes, you give a quick spin on the button, it asks you to confirm you want to change the volume by tapping, then twist the button (it’s really like the old school ones isn’t it), a quick click, and off you go.

TopScreenGilson

Shiny display, big button, all very easy to use (the ejector button in hidden under my thumb)

It also offers dispense and mix modes (aspirate required volume/dispense required volume/suck up and down a few times), and a dispense mode (which is fantastic). The mix mode is handy, it seems a bit tedious when you’re used to jabbing your thumb up and down quickly, but it’s not so bad. The dispense mode is great (aspirate a number of times the required volume/dispense required volume over and over and over), I think EVERYONE needs to be issued with an e-pipette as the dispense mode makes setting up repetitive plates a doddle.

I was fairly happy with the hand position on the pipette overall (it’s far superior to the VWR one, though I do prefer the Eppendorf one (details to follow)). It comes in the same range of volumes as the standard Gilsons, and they don’t stand out in the lab (so people are less likely to come poking at your fancy equipment). Oh, and very importantly, they have a universal cone, so you can buy cheap tips from your preferred supplier for those days when filters and DNAse/RNAse doesnt matter so much to you.

It’s a small bit chunkier than other Gilsons, but it’s still pretty comfortable to hold and use.

Price wise they’re not too bad either (for an e-pipette), with each pipette working out about the €250 mark (based on quotes from Fisher), you can opt to buy the most useful ones and make do with the others from the ones already lying about in the lab.

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