What is the difference between the Spectra Dew 350 and the Spectra S2?

What is the difference between the Spectra Dew 350 and the Spectra S2?
The Spectra S2 and the Spectra Dew 350 are both great hospital grade breast pumps made by Spectra, but many women are confused about the difference between the Spectra S2 and the Dew 350. The Dew 350 was one of Spectra's first breast pumps. The S2 is much more recent and has a lot more sophisticated options and features. The Dew 350 is still a great breast for some women though! We get lots of questions from women trying to figure out which breast pump is right for them, and confused about the difference between the Spectra S2 and Dew 350. Read on to learn more about it. Note - the Spectra S1 is identical to the S2, except that it has an inbuilt rechargeable battery so doesn't need to be plugged into power.

Both S2 and Dew 350 are hospital grade pumps

Both the S2 and the Dew 350 are hospital grade pumps, meaning that they have a larger motor that allow for rapid changes between settings and strong suction. Although portable pumps like the S9+ also have a similar maximum suction level when tested with a vacuum gauge, a portable pump will never be able to perform as well when actually in use, i.e. when double pumping using a high suction level. It's kind of like the difference between a V8 and a hatchback. Like all Spectra pumps, the S2 and the Dew 350 are closed system pumps, which means that there is a physical barrier between milk and motor, and the pumps are safe for multiple users. You can read more about hospital grade pumps here. As hospital grade pumps, both pumps are capable of establishing and maintaining milk supply, though the Dew 350 may not work as well for some women as it has no letdown feature (more on this later).

Both pumps come with a complete double pumping kit & can be used for double pumping.

Both of these pumps can be used to express from both breasts at the same time, and come with everything you need to double pump including two sets of breastshields, tubing, valves & bottles. Nothing more is needed to buy to double pump.

Both pumps are about the same size and require being plugged into power

Both the Dew 350 and the Spectra S2 are about 2kg, about 20cm across the full width of the base and do need to be plugged into power. If you're wanting portability, choose the Spectra S1 (identical to the S2 but has an inbuilt rechargeable battery). You can also choose a Spectra 9+ or M1 if you want even more portability, but be aware these are portable pumps, with a smaller motor and less variable settings.

The Dew 350 has a very different mechanism to the Spectra S2

If you open up the Dew 350 and the S2, you see very different mechanisms inside. The Dew 350 has a simple pumping mechanism and generates suction through a large piston arm which rotates inside. This mechanism is very very quiet - it sounds similar to someone breathing actually! - but because there is no circuit board or software there is no ability to modify how the piston works. You can't speed the pump down, you can only make the suction higher or lower. Because there is no way to change the speed of the piston, the Dew 350 also cannot have a letdown mode. The Spectra S2 has is more sophisticated. The motor is connected to software that can control not just the strength of suction, but the speed as well. Because the S2 has a large, strong motor, the pump can move very quickly between different settings. There is a letdown mode (a light, fast mode that simulates how a baby triggers letdown) and the Spectra S2 is unlike any other breast pump on the market in the flexibility that it allows for the pump settings. This allows women to really experiment and find what works best for your body.

The Spectra S2 has a letdown mode, adjustable cycle speed, & other features like night light and timer

The Spectra S2 also has lots of extra features in addition the letdown mode mentioned above. Women who struggle to pump or who have older babies will really benefit from the variation in programming that the Spectra S2 offers. Pumping is an individual thing, and being able to adjust the pump to what suits your body best can make a dramatic difference. The Spectra S2 also has some extra features like nightlight and timer.

The Dew 350 can work well for women with newborns who need a strong pump to establish supply

The Dew 350 is still a robust, decent pump that performs well and has a great price. When your baby is very new, your breasts tend to not need the letdown mode as much, so the Dew 350 often works really well in situations where a mother has to rely on a strong pump to establish and maintain supply asap. Read reviews

The Spectra S2 is the best pump for women looking to pump long-term or who just want the best pump

For women who've had previous trouble pumping, who have older babies or who expect to be pumping long-term, we really recommend the S2. Having all those different settings will really help you have the best chance of pumping successfully and increasing milk output when things get tough. Read reviews

Here's a video with a rundown:

If you're still wondering which pump is right for you, get in touch! We get dozens of questions just like yours every day and we can definitely help out.

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