How much does an MRI machine cost? The Facts!

And what is the price difference for a new and used MRI scanner? This will be answered during this blog. MRI systems are in a wide range of prices between 30,000 and 500,000 euros.

If you are still having trouble picking the right MRI machine and equipment for your client just head over Imaging Diversified for help picking the right MRI machine.

However, you should examine your needs before making a decision. Some of the cheaper ones are only suitable for limb exams and the more expensive MRIs are suitable for cutting-edge exams that may not be necessary.

One of the cheapest MRI systems is Esaote C-Scan, a final scanner and an excellent option for orthopedists. Since this system does not require more shielding, it can be installed in a small clinic.

At the other end of the scale, there are systems with higher Tesla measurements, systems with zero boiling magnets and high slopes.

In addition, the prices of MRI machines are influenced by many other factors: year of manufacture (YOM), field strength, gradient intensity, response speed and channels.

The higher the number of these, the higher the price. We will elaborate on this later. For a quick overview of the prices of the systems used, see the price table below.

Prices of new and refurbished MRI scanners

In the table above, you can see the prices of magnetic resonance systems based on their force field (Teslas – T) and the year of manufacture, which are two of the most important price indicators.

However, these prices are for used systems. So what are the prices of new or restored MRI compared to this?

The general rule is:

The prices of used systems are generally 50-80% lower than the prices of new machines. And the prices of refurbished OEM systems are generally 30-40% lower than the prices of new systems.

Therefore, if you decide to buy a used or refurbished system instead of a new one, you can get a more advanced and powerful MRI model or the same model at a cheaper price.

Furthermore, the development of MRI scanners is rather slow. This is an advantage when buying used, as it will save money, without compromising the quality and speed of the image.

Prices of low field magnetic resonance imaging machines: 0.2 T – 0.4 T

Low-field MRI scanners include 0.2 T, 0.3 T and 0.4 T magnetic resonance imaging. They are usually open MRI.

Therefore, the image quality is relatively low and requires longer scan times.

However, they are a good alternative for claustrophobic or restless patients. In addition, they are much cheaper.

0.2T MRIs are the cheapest in the market. There are two price categories: systems that only cost 30,000 – 80,000 euros for the extremes, for example, Esaote E (photo) and C-scan 0.2T.

And integral magnetic resonance in the price range of 80,000 – 120,000 euros. An example is the Siemens Magnetom concert.

However, there are exceptions. Although Esaote G-Scan is used for the purposes, its price ranges between 80,000 and 120,000 euros.

This system stands out with a moving magnet that allows you to scan patients while standing. This releases pressure on the spine of their patients, which results in clearer images. The magnetic resonances used from 0.3 T to 0.4 T cost almost double compared to 0.2 T systems.

The current price range is between 200 and 300,000 euros. These MRIs are used for full body exams. Models in this category include the Siemens Magnetom C 0.35T (image) and the Hitachi Open 0.4T.

Prices of 1.5T magnetic resonance imaging machines

High field MRI systems are commonly classified as closed MRI scanners. These systems are very powerful.

Prices of 1.5T magnetic resonance imaging machines High field MRI systems are commonly classified as closed MRI scanners. These systems are very powerful.

A stronger Tesla force also means a stronger magnetic field and, therefore, clearer images of the deep tissues.

Your disadvantages?

Since these MRIs are closed, some patients may feel claustrophobic. In addition, the purchase prices of the latest models can be high, as well as their maintenance costs, since they are cooled by helium.

Since these MRIs are closed, some patients may feel claustrophobic. In addition, the purchase prices of the latest models can be high, as well as their maintenance costs, since they are cooled by helium.

Today, the standard for magnetic resonance imaging in a clinical setting is 1.5T magnetic resonance imaging. They are faster than low resistance magnetic resonance imaging and are ideal for abdominal and thoracic magnetic resonance imaging.

Your price range? These are a little more complicated since YOM plays a bigger role here. Magnetic resonances of 1.5 T with a year of production 2000-2006 cost around 150,000 euros.

For example, Siemens Symphony and Philips integer. However, the prices of the systems produced between 2008 and 2012 vary between 250,000 and 350,000 euros.

Examples of the 1.5T magnetic resonance produced after 2008 are the Siemens Magnetom Avanto and the Toshiba Vantage Titan.

Prices of 3T magnetic resonance imaging machines

These machines generate a magnetic field that is twice the power of 1.5 T magnetic resonance machines and 10-15 times the strength of the open field and low field magnetic resonance scanners.

One of the main advantages of the 3T magnetic resonance imaging machine is its ability to reduce image noise. In this way, 3T magnetic resonances are perfect for seeing very fine details, such as cerebral and cardiac vessels.

Again, the price of the systems used depends on the year of manufacture. 3T magnetic resonances produced before 2006 cost around € 200,000.

Examples are Philips Achieva and whole Philips. However, if you are looking for newer machines than in 2008, you will have to pay twice as much, since they usually cost between 400,000 and 500,000 euros. In this category you will find Philips Ingenia, Siemens Prisma and Siemens Verio.

Additional factors that affect the cost of an MRI machine

As mentioned at the beginning, YOM and Teslas are not the only factors that influence the prices of magnetic resonance systems.

More are detailed below:

Gradient of strength and response speed

Together, the strength of the gradient and the speed of response are the motors that bring your MRI machine to maximum performance.

The gradient force is measured in millitelas per meter (mT / m) while the response speed is measured in a similar way, but in milliseconds (mT / m / ms) and the stronger they are, the better the sharpness of the image.

However, it is important to consider the type of studies and exams you will perform. For example, neurocardiac applications require higher gradation than orthopedic or general applications.

Therefore, magnetic resonances with higher gradient and higher response rates are more expensive, since the price reflects the ability of the magnetic resonance system.

If you need help planning the details of your center you should talk to a great MRI consultant.


Coil type

Another determining factor in the price is the type of MRI coil. The more channels the coil has, the more expensive it becomes.

The most expensive coils belong to the 16 to 32 channel category, while the 4 to 8 channel coils are less expensive.

So, the more channels the coil has, the more it will pay for the MRI system.  

Large hole magnetic resonance image We have already mentioned the open and closed-hole MRI, but what if you are looking for an MRI with a large hole?

Wide hole MRI is more comfortable for patients since the diameter of its opening is 70 cm instead of 60 cm. This gives patients the feeling that the MRI is very wide.

The demand for large-diameter magnetic resonance imaging is increasing, therefore, prices have increased.

Permanent magnet or helium cooled magnet

And how does the type of magnet influence the price of an MRI machine?

Magnetic resonances up to 0.4 T have permanent magnets, there are only a few 0.4 T magnetic resonances on the market with helium-cooled magnets and these are also more expensive than MRIs with permanent magnets.

When buying a helium-cooled MRI, remember that it is more expensive to buy and maintain because it has higher operating costs.

For example, you should buy additional helium regularly to keep it running.

Additional costs associated with an MRI purchase

Really more?

Yes, but almost there. Keep in mind that additional costs can only come from the price of the MRI scanner.

For example: installation and warranty.

Please note that most medical imaging retailers do not offer a warranty if you install it yourself.

What else?

Staff training: if you have never worked with a similar system before. Magnetic resonance imaging systems must be managed by professionals and, therefore, it is very important to provide their professionals with the proper education.

And if you decide to buy an MRI cooled with helium, you should, as mentioned, have additional costs for helium, because it is expensive.

In addition, over time it may have spare parts. If you want to make sure you get high quality parts at a fair price, contact our parts department.

How to determine which system you should obtain? Finance often sets the limit on the MRI system that you can buy, but the first thing you should do is identify your needs.

The following questions may be useful in this regard: What kind of exams are you going to take?

Do you have competitors nearby?

What service is needed for the system?

What services do you have?

How many patients do you expect?

What is the average cost of an exam?

When you have answered these questions, it is easier to find the right system for you. Let us know if you need more help.

Conclusion: how much does an MRI machine cost?

As you can see, there are many MRI systems available in the market for used medical equipment and their prices vary.

Some of them have expensive features that you may not even need. When you buy an MRI, be clear about your needs: not everyone needs a 3T magnet, not everyone needs 16 or 32 channel coils. Also, remember that it not only costs you the system, but also the maintenance it entails.

Hopefully this blog post has answered the question: how much does an MRI machine cost? – In case of doubt, do not hesitate to contact us for more information.

Want to know more about magnetic resonance imaging? Read our blog post: the characteristics and benefits of magnetic resonance systems.