Selecting the Best Laboratory Balance: A Buyer’s Review of Price and Features

Selecting the best balance for your lab often means 'balancing' features, precision, and price.

Image of a Top loading balance sitting on a lab bench

Selecting the right laboratory balance is crucial for achieving precise and accurate measurements in scientific research. From analytical balances capable of measuring minute quantities to larger, industrial scales designed for heavier samples, a variety of laboratory balances are available to meet virtually any need. This guide provides an overview of the different types of balances, their features, and price points to help you make an informed decision for your lab.

Types of Laboratory Balances

1. Analytical Balances

  • Precision: Analytical balances are designed for high precision, typically measuring substances up to four decimal places (0.0001 g).

  • Usage: Ideal for laboratories where precision is paramount, such as pharmaceutical and chemical research.

  • Features: They often come with a draft shield to prevent air currents from affecting measurements and may include internal calibration features.

2. Precision Balances

  • Precision: Slightly less precise than analytical balances, precision balances measure to two decimal places (0.01 g).

  • Usage: Suitable for less sensitive experiments where high throughput is more critical than extreme precision.

  • Features: Generally more robust and can handle larger quantities than analytical balances, making them suitable for educational and quality control labs.

3. Top-loading Balances

  • Precision: These balances offer a good balance between precision and capacity, typically measuring to one decimal place (0.1 g).

  • Usage: Common in educational settings and for routine weighing tasks in various industrial applications.

  • Features: They are known for their durability and ease of use.

4. Microbalances

  • Precision: Microbalances provide the highest level of precision, capable of measuring tiny amounts as small as a microgram (0.000001 g).

  • Usage: Essential in labs that require extremely precise measurements of very small sample sizes, like in material science or toxicology.

  • Features: These balances often require a controlled environment to maintain accuracy.

5. Portable Balances

  • Precision: Generally less precise, these balances are perfect for fieldwork or applications where the balance needs to be moved frequently.

  • Usage: Used in field studies, classrooms, or places without a permanent lab setup.

  • Features: They are lightweight, compact, and typically battery-operated.

Features to Consider When Buying a Lab Balance

  • Calibration: Automatic internal calibration features can save time and ensure accuracy.

  • Material: The construction materials can affect durability and chemical resistance.

  • Data Connectivity: Options for data transfer to computers or printers for easy record-keeping.

  • Size and Capacity: Depending on your lab's space and the volume of material typically weighed, the size and capacity of the balance are important considerations.

Laboratory Balance Price Guide

  • Analytical Balances: Typically range from $2,000 to $10,000.

  • Precision Balances: Prices can vary between $500 and $3,000.

  • Top-loading Balances: Generally available from $100 to $1,000.

  • Microbalances: These are among the most expensive, with prices ranging from $10,000 to $25,000.

  • Portable Balances: Cost-effective options, ranging from $50 to $500.

Balance Pricing For Used and Refurbished Equipment on




Approximate Price

Mettler Toledo AB54


Analytical Balance

$899.00 USD


Mettler Toledo AX-204

Analytical Balance

$2,499.00 USD


Ohaus Explorer

Analytical Balance

$1,199.00 USD


Sartorius BP61S


Analytical Balance


$999.99 USD


Denver Instrument PI225


Analytical Balance


$2,495.00 USD


A&D Apollo GX-603A


Precision Balance


$2,206.00 USD


Mettler Toledo SB32001 


Top-loading Precision


$1,950 USD


Ohaus Pioneer PX163/E PX


Precision Balance Scale


$897.79 USD


Adam Equipment HCB 1502

Highland Portable

$299.00 USD

View all Lab Balance listings on

Choosing the right laboratory balance involves understanding the specific needs of your research or industrial application. By considering the types of balances, their features, and the available budget, you can select a balance that not only fits your laboratory requirements but also enhances the accuracy and efficiency of your work.

For more detailed specifications or to view models, visit to browse models, and gain additional insights to help in making the best choice for your lab's needs.