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Review: AlcoMate Revo Digital Breathalyzer

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Now here is something that took us a little while to double check, triple check and then start all over with. All in the name of science. Thankfully, none of us are DUI offenders, but who doesn’t want to play with a breathalyzer to determine how that one glass truly affects you?

The AlcoMate Revo, is a personal digital breathalyzer that can easily store just about anywhere. It will fit in a glove compartment, a purse or a belt case/holder on the side of an officer’s trousers. It is also one of the most simplest solutions we have seen (given, the only other one that has come across our office here is the WearSmith unit, which hasn’t made it to the market yet).

It comes with everything you need to get started, including batteries, and takes only a few moments (literally seconds, depending on how fast you are) to set up. You begin by popping off the back cover of the unit using your fingernail (or anything small and flat) and inserting the two AAA batteries (the cartridge should already be inserted). Then, turn it on by pressing and holding the one button (the only button) on the front of the device. Initially, it goes through a quick warm up, and eventually displays “blow” on the screen. Now, insert a plastic mouthpiece and blow until it makes a “click” noise. It will then display your BAC reading on the screen. That’s it! Mouthpiece, power, wait a second, blow, wait a second, score.

The device will automatically shut off within 15 seconds after you have used it. Which means battery life should be pretty darn good. Accuracy (thankfully), seems to be pretty good as well. BAC levels fell within the expected range we were looking for after consuming individual beers or hard liquor. We would wait 30 mins to an hour and test again, and the results reflected the alcohol leaving our system. We would then drink more, to find it keeping up with us all the same. Each time, testing around 15-22 minutes after each drink on average, to make sure the drink has made its way around our system. That, is pretty darn awesome.

It comes with 5 mouthpieces so you aren’t sharing a piece with others. You can order them as well (they sent us a bunch of spares in addition to the unit, to test with). The cartridge inside does need replacing eventually, but it is supposed to last around a year (or 1,000 tests), as long as it isn’t stored around moisture.

The Revo is about as small as a small candybar-style phone. In fact, it is smaller than the iPhone 5S (although just a little thicker). It is also around the same weight as the iPhone 5S (which is mostly the two AAA batteries).

It features an all-plastic design, with a single button on the front. Above the button is an easy to read LCD display. On the right side of the unit is where the mouthpieces insert, and opposite of that side is where the air comes back out when you blow. A very simply design.

The Revo would be perfect for all types of users and it is targeted for sale, all the same. Professionals, such as police officers and possibly even security, could easily find use in this device. However, as to how the accuracy compares to what they normally use and what is considered admissible in court, I couldn’t say for sure. Workplace environments could also find Revo useful, as they could perform on-site tests with employees that demonstrate a reasonable suspicion of being intoxicated (of course, most companies reserve the right to test at random as well). Even better, if you feel that your teenage daughter or son has been sneaking out at night (or other times they are expected to be at home), it can be used to tell if they have been drinking in addition to this offense. Of course, it can also be used for your own personal conscience, so you know it is safe to drive after you have had a few drinks (in case it comes into question a lot). You can also use it to tests friends that are frequently breaking the rules.

Inside the box (besides the unit itself), there are the 5 mouthpieces previously mentioned, 2x AAA batteries, a soft neoprene case to store it in, as well as simple instructions to get you started. All of this stores into a hardshell case, similar to a small first aid kit.

Our Conclusion

It is small (although not as small as the WearSmith), and fits just about anywhere for storage. It seems to be pretty accurate to us, when you base it on BAC averages per various beverages. It is simple, lightweight and gets the job done. It is a little pricey though, at around $220 retail. I don’t know how accurate the rest of their competition is, but that does seem a little high being that it features parts that need replacing. In the end though, we found it to be quite a fun experience to test against these averages and learn how little it really takes to hit a result that would be unlawful to drive with.

Buy from Amazon

Our Rating

8 / 10 stars           

Average Price*

$220

*Average price is based on the time this article was published

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Specifications:

  • ALCOHOL SENSOR: Fuel-Cell with PRISM Technology
  • SIZE / DIMENSIONS: 4.0 x 2.0 x 0.6 in
  • WEIGHT: 1.0000 oz
  • MATERIAL: ABS Molding
  • USERS: Corporate, Law Enforcement, Medical, Military, Pro-consumers
  • POWER: 2 x Standard 1.5V AAA (Included)
  • DETECTION RANGE: 0.000 – 0.400% BAC (G/DL)
  • DISPLAY: 4-Digit LCD
  • WARRANTY: 1 Year

Are you a manufacturer or distributor that would like us to test something out for review? Contact us and we can let you know where to send the product and we will try it out.

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About Author

James

Designer, Editor and Reviewer for Poc Network, ProAudio and Mobile Nations. James enjoys spending most of his time as an audio engineer and technician for the live music industry when he isn't running around the office here juggling an intense workload. He can also be found frequently in the nearby mountainous ranges, scrambling rocks and rappelling down large sections.

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