Spectra M1 Breast Pump Review – A Little Pump Packed With Power

12 min read

This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see my disclosures here.

Product Information

The Spectra M1 Breast Pump
The M1

Product: Spectra M1 Breast Pump
Country of Origin: South Korea
My Rating: 9.5 out of 10
Best Places to Buy
Locally in Singapore: Lazada Singapore
Global: Spectra Australia (They do shipping worldwide) OR Spectra Baby USA on Amazon
Technical Specification:
Technical Specification of The M1

Finding a breast pump back in 2015 was quite a challenge for me. I had zero knowledge then. There was quite a few brands and a few models out there then. It still felt overwhelming even though the models were as not as much as it is currently. I had to get started somewhere, because I need to get ONE breast pump out of all these pumps out in the market then.

My Research Phase Began

In the local Facebook breastfeeding group I was in back then, they had a section regarding breast pumps in their photo albums.

I took note of the brands and models. I Googled and read up on these breast pumps. I read up on their specifications. I still couldn’t really fathom everything, as there was much too many information all over. Soon I realized I needed to make a manual comparison between them.

I began to see what could be my deciding criteria to consider.

I Have Decided

Soon enough, I compiled the list of pros and cons and made a manual comparison of the different breast pumps, and finally decided on the Spectra M1 based on my final Deciding Factors.

Here are my final Deciding Factors:

Deciding Factor 1: Price

Price was the deal breaker for me. Back then, the prices of the other more famous brands were pretty expensive. The reputable ones could cost close up to a thousand. The Spectra M1 cost less than half the price of the most reputable ones.

Deciding Factor 2: Highly Raved Reviews

In the local Facebook breastfeeding group which I was in back then, there was a good number of mothers who were raving about this new brand on the block in the breast pump section. They were crooning on how comparable it is with Medela with regards to its suction power and the output volume of breast milk pumped, and how value for money it was as compared to a Medela model which boasts similar suction power and output volume. This was what intrigued me to Google more about the brand, and reading the limited reviews of the brand and model then, the reviews looks legitly believable.

Deciding Factor 3: Size & Portability

The M1 is considerably small as compared to major brands with similar functions. The small size of only 12x12x7 cm or 4x4x3 inches (WxLxH) means that the pump can be carried in a small bag. It’s weight of only 239 grams or 8.5 ounces means it is light and portable to be carried around unlike the bulky pumps I was reading about. A huge pump, and babywearing my baby then to send and fetch him from his infant care on public transportation will not be easy on me, and so the size and portability won me over as well.

Deciding Factor 4: Rechargeable

Having a portable and light pump will mean nothing much without a rechargeable function. It means I could charge it at home and bring it out without the need to find a power socket outside especially that power sockets are not so easily found, or should I forgot to bring the charger and at least if I have charged it overnight, it should not be a problem for me to keep on pumping.

Deciding Factor 5: My Own Gut Instincts

While I love looking at technicalities before making decisions, I pretty much trust my gut instincts on what suits my personal needs nicely. I gather what I liked about the pumps based on my Deciding Factors, and made my decision on which pump that I feel could work the best for me.

Other Factors I Took Into Consideration:
  1. Suction Power & Output Factor
    Even though suction power & output factor should have been two of the crucial deciding factor with my purchase as I what I see with many mothers, I observed that different pumps worked differently on different mothers. Thus, suction power & output factor was striked out from my deciding criteria as I will not know how the pump will work on me since different pumps worked differently on different mothers. However, I did not disregard the reviews other mothers had on the suction power & output factor, as they have made their own comparison between their older pump and their Spectra M1 pump.
  2. Single and Double Pump
    Reading reviews, I realize getting a pump that could do double pumping (on both breasts) is better. Should we need do single pumping (example, while baby is latching, we can pump the other side), we will be able to modify using parts and accessories like the using T-connector to make this into a single pump and vice versa.
  3. Able to play well with other pump parts and accessories (generally will be the choice of milk collector)
    While reviews then were limited, I have found out that it does work with a milk collection system that I was interested in.
  4. Able to Work as a Closed System
    What is this? A closed system means there are backflow protectors to protect the pump should the milk accidentally gets into the tubings. Logically, a pump will most probably get spoiled if liquid or the milk gets into contact with the engines, and I doubt I want that to happen.
  5. Noise
    There were reviews from mothers stating how loud their Medela Pisa is or their Medela Freestyle as compared to the Spectra M1. I wouldn’t want people to hear me pump, especially that time I was planning to pump at my work desk.
  6. Sturdy
    Since I only need to pump while I am at work and perhaps ocassionally when I am outside, I figured that I do not need a heavy duty and hospital grade pump like the S1. So considering the price range of the Spectra baby is more affordable, I compared reviews from mothers on the Facebook group and online reviews between both their portable models of M1 and the S9+, From the reviews, it seems that the S9 lacked the sturdiness and durability of the M1.

Living with The Spectra M1

Finally deciding on the M1, I planned to get my M1 only a month before I go back to work. Unfortunately, the sudden surprise that I got from the crazy engorgement pushed me to buy it a few days after I gave birth.

Contents

This was what I got in the box:

Configuration

In all that frenzy that happened after my labour in 2015, it was tough for me to figure out how to use them in conjunction with the milk collector of my choice. I managed to figure out the parts in the end.

This is my current 2017 set-up of my own Spectra M1.

MimieAG's TheAurumFlow Spectra M1 Pumping Configuration
My Current Spectra M1 Pumping Configuration

T-Connector

During my early days, I was using the old T-connector. As you can see, I am currently using the new T-connector, which is easier to convert to single pump. You can get a new T-connector as a spare part at Spectra Australia.

The Old T-Connector and The New T-Connector
The Old T-Connector and The New T-Connector on the M1

BackFlow Protector

This is an important and crucial part of the closed system of the Spectra M1. You can get a new Backflow Protector as a spare part at Spectra Australia.

Difference Between the Old & New Backflow Protector, Partially Opened Up
Difference Between the Old & New Backflow Protector, Partially Opened Up
The New Backflow Protector, All Opened Up
The New Backflow Protector, All Opened Up

My Review

After using it for 2 years now, here are my review based on my Deciding Factors above:

Review Based on Deciding Factor 1: Price

Indeed, the price is worth the buy for my personal usage. After 2 years, it has definitely break-even.

Review Based on Deciding Factor 2: Highly Raved Reviews

These personal reviews from other mothers have helped me a lot and I am glad I took into their considerations. So if you read a lot of good personal reviews on the breast pump, the breast pump is good.

Review Based on Deciding Factor 3: Size & Portability

The light weight and small size of the pump, together with the accessories and pump parts, makes it so portable and allows me to carry it in a pretty small bagpack, which is useful as I have to send my first-born to infant care in 2015 and baby wear him. I also have to bring the daily necessities that is used in his infant care, so that will be two bags for me. I am also doing the same for my current breastfeeding journey with my second-born.

Review Based on Deciding Factor 4: Rechargeable

I also pump and latch my first-born at the nearby shopping centre’s nursing room after fetching my him from infant care in 2015. If I was lucky, I get a nursing room that have a power socket for me to use. If not, this was when the rechargeable function comes in super handy.

Review Based on Deciding Factor 5: My Own Gut Instincts

We all know our own needs and how our lifestyles are going to be, or rather, how we can predict it will be. Trust your gut instincts.

Review Based on Other Factors I Took Into Consideration:
  1. Suction Power & Output Factor
    I love how the M1 has the 5 levels of massage mode and 5 levels of pump mode.The massage modes are gentler than the pump modes. Tip #1: It is not recommended to use the massage mode for the whole pumping duration, especially for long-term, as it is not healthy for the engine of the pump. The massage mode was a life saver as it was gentler on sensitive nipples during the early days after labour. The pump modes were more painful for the sensitive nipples, but as the days go by and nipples gets more and more accustomed to baby’s latch and pumping, I manage to figure out which is the best pump level out of the 5 levels of pump mode that optimizes the output. I normally have it on pump mode Level 3, and currently rarely used the massage mode. Tip #2: It is a myth that the higher the level of pump mode, the more milk you produce. It will take a while, but adjust the pump modes until you find the best configuration for yourself.
  2. Single and Double Pump
    I was able to do both single and double pumping easily.
  3. Able to play well with other pump parts and accessories (generally will be the choice of milk collector)
    Indeed, I was able to connect my Spectra to my milk collector.
  4. Able to Work as a Closed System
    The backflow protectors are a life saver. There are many times that milk do spray out from the milk collector and into the system, but the backflow protectors save the day, and my M1.
  5. Noise
    I am unable to give a review of the noise level of the M1 in comparison with the other pumps, but generally, a louder level of music from the iPhone is able to drown out the noise. So far, my colleagues have not come to me to ask what is the noise coming from my desk, so I believe it is quiet enough for usage in an open concept air-con office.
  6. Sturdy
    I am unable to give a review of the sturdiness of the M1 in comparison with the S9, but having the M1 with me for 2 years and going is one that I can comment to affirm that the pump is a pretty sturdy pump. It also stands a few drops here and there.
  7. Other factors that I loved
    I do love the fact that it will automatically stop pumping at 30 minutes, as some days, I do get distracted by the timing and overpumping will hurt the nipples.

My Note

This being my very first pump, and only pump since 2015 until I bought my second pump roughly a month after I had given birth to my second-born in July 2017, I generally have no cons for me to review as I never had other pumps to compare my own output with the same environmental settings for a fair comparison. My review is based solely on my personal experiences with the pump and I never had any complaints about it so far as it suits my personal needs nicely. That said, it does not mean the pump does not have any cons, it may just have different cons for different people. Do check out other reviews to study their pros & cons before buying a breast pump, as a breast pump is generally meant to be with a pumping breastfeeding mother for her whole journey.

To Buy or Not To Buy?

Ultimately, the choice is yours. Do consider what are your deciding factors which are important to YOU, and you can make the comparison from there.

If you do decide to buy, here are the places you can purchase the M1 from.

Do leave a comment below if you need any help to decide if this little power packed pump will be good for your personal use or share with me in the comments what were your deciding factors and how is your review on the M1, and I will get back to you as soon as I can.

Stay tuned for the next review!

Mini Instagram Review 1 - #MotivationMonday@06Feb18

2 Comments

    1. Hi Christina! Appreciate your comment. Oh yeah, you mommas of older children definitely had it tougher back then. I really salute all you old timer mommas who manage to breastfeed and pump during those days when innovations like this small pump have still not existed. I am unable to imagine going through what you guys have gone through those days! =D

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