Littmann cardiology 3

Littmann cardiology 3 DEFAULT

Burgundy Littmann Cardiology IIIThe Littmann Cardiology III is probably my favorite stethoscope on the market, and my go-to for everyday clinical use. I can easily divide my time at the bedside into two time periods: before cardiology (BC) and after cardiology (AC). Switching from a basic stethoscope to an advanced stethoscope like the Littmann Cardiology III was one of the events that took my assessment and diagnostic skills to the next level. I constantly struggled with missing sounds that my colleagues with better stethoscopes were hearing. If I listed to a set of lungs and they were clear, the respiratory therapist told me that they heard crackles in the bases. If I thought I heard a murmur, by colleague with a better stethoscope couldn’t find it. It was very frustrating, especially when they clinical picture matched what someone else was hearing. My upgrade to the Cardiology III wasn’t taken lightly. It was a pricey purchase. Approximately around $180 when I bought mine.

Product Name:Cardiology III
Chestpiece Type:Double Sided
Diaphragm Type:Tunable
Length:27 inch
Weight:13.6 ounces
Metal Finish Color Options:Black, Brass, Stainless Steel, Rainbow, Smoke
Tube Color Options:Black, Burgundy, Caribbean Blue, Ceil Blue, Chocolate, Coral, Dark Olive Green, Grey, Hunter Green, Lavender, Lemon Lime, Navy Blue, Plum, Raspberry, Red, Sand, Turquoise
Warranty:5 year

As with all Littmann products the stethoscope came in a nice box. Key items included with the stethoscope was a spare pair of earpieces, a name tag, and non-chill sleeves. The stethoscope has some weight to it, but I do not find it bulky. I can wear it comfortably for a 12 hour shift without feeling weighed down. As a tall person I always want more length in my stethoscope tubing, but I manage with this model by bringing the patient closer to help save my back. I equate the weight of the chestpiece and tubing more to the quality of the materials than to excessive material use. The tubing is made of a smooth synthetic material that cleans easily. Hanging around my neck for long periods of time can really gum up a stethoscope from skin oils, I don’t see this as much with the material that Littmann uses. When it does start to feel grimy it cleans very easily.

The comfort of the stethoscope continues once in the ears. The tension on the binaural headset is easily adjusted. I have managed to find the perfect balance between preventing my head from feeling squeezed to death and the stethoscope falling out of my ears. Littmann clearly has their user in mind when they provided the nice rubber earpieces for this model. As a male, and someone with a large head I have found other earpieces have trouble creating a good deal, or alternatively dig too deep into my ear canal. This model doesn’t allow that to happen.

Littmann Cardiology III Chestpiece

The craftsmanship in the chestpiece is apparent

On the patient side of this wonderful tool is a wonderfully balanced chestpiece. The diaphragms are made from an excellent resin composite that doesn’t freeze your patient to death. I’m a skeptic at times of the efficacy of tunable diaphragms on some models, but Littmann doesn’t overdo the tunable design. You can easily regulate the pressure to vary the frequencies you can detect. I find this very helpful in large or severely obese patients where effectively auscultating heart sounds can be very challenging.   While I don’t work in pediatrics I have used this scope of my nieces and the pediatric side (also usable as an open bell) works flawlessly. Having worked with numerous vascular surgery patients I frequently find myself utilizing that side of the scope to listen to carotids which allow for excellent detection of carotid bruit.

Key features-

Littmann Cardiology III earpieces

  • Dual-sided chestpiece for use with both adult and pediatric patients
  • Two tunable diaphragms respond with a simple pressure change to capture low and high-frequency sounds
  • Pediatric side convertible into open bell design
  • Two-in-one tube design
  • Anatomically designed ergonomic headset
  • Soft sealing rubber earpieces
  • Epoxy/Fiberglass Diaphragms
  • Stainless Steel Chestpiece


Littmann Cardiology III Diaphragm

Tunable diaphragm functions flawlessly

  • Superior acoustic performance- you can hear the faintest sounds
  • Single tube design- cuts out background noise
  • Tunable diaphragms, and ability to use open bell
  • Good balance of weight and length
  • Ability to use for wide range of patient populations
  • Ergonomic and very comfortable


  • It is spendy $$$- high initial cost
  • Can be over-featured depending on what you need to do

Final Thoughts

Littmann LogoI lend this stethoscope to people on a regular basis, and time and time again I have people tell me how much they can appreciate the quality of the sounds with this model. My physician colleagues are often eager to borrow this stethoscope over others due to the clarity of sound. I take pride in my Littmann Cardiology III, and out of all the stethoscopes on the market I firmly believe that for the price, features, and quality that this is the best stethoscope available. If you are in direct care of patients and assessing multiple organ systems on a regular basis you owe it to yourself to get this stethoscope. Your purchase of a stethoscope of this quality is an investment in your ability as a If you doubt me, find a coworker with one and try to borrow it for a while to see the difference between lower quality models and this one.

Categories Stethoscope ReviewsSours:

Littmann Cardiology IV Vs III

We all have our weapon of choice for completing specific tasks in our line of work.  A hairdresser has a specific pair of scissors she loves, an artist’s chooses a specific brush as his favorite weapon of choice and for doctors, their stethoscopes are usually their most loved tool of the trade.   These special weapons allow us to perform our tasks with ease and agility and lends us unique characteristics that others later use to identify with us.  The style of your weapon of choice can also lend you a certain amount of charm and status. 

It is important for medical professionals to choose wisely when selecting their stethoscopes.  These medical tools, like all other medical equipment, don’t come cheap and the type of stethoscope you have can have a huge impact on your work or even on your performance as a medical student. 

Littmann is one of the best stethoscope brands available on the market.  Thousands of medical experts and med students invest and love these specific stethoscope types because the brand has been known to create high-quality stethoscopes that are incredibly durable, functional, light and practical. 

If you are in the cardiology division then you might be tempted to buy one of their high-performance cardiology stethoscopes such as the Cardiology IV or the Cardiology III.  Deciding between these two is going to be tough since they are both exceptionally good stethoscopes.  But which one is the best pick for you?  The older Cardiology III or the all-new Cardiology IV?  Perhaps this comparison will help you choose.

Littmann Cardiology III

The Littmann Cardiology III is the predicator of the Cardiology IV and if you happen to have the honor of working with one of these stethoscopes then you will be able to witness that it is pure joy.  This stethoscope has the same beautiful design we have come to love about Littmann’s ranges.  It is fitted with a machined stainless steel chest piece that is oil and alcohol resistant and has a dual lumen tube that doesn’t consist of any latex – a huge benefit to medical professionals and patients with latex allergies.  The stethoscope is lightweight, has a two-piece diaphragm that many claims are challenging to put together when you are cleaning your stethoscope and it is fitted with a double-sided chestpiece.  This is a cardiology high-performance stethoscope that has been used, trusted and loved by medical professionals until the Cardiology IV made its appearance.


  • 123 grams
  • Dual-sided chestpiece
  • Suitable for adult and pediatric patients
  • Two tunable diaphragms that respond to pressure change for capturing low or high-frequency sounds
  • Convert pedriatic side to open bell for low frequencies
  • Two-in-one tube design eliminates noise interference
  • Affordable price
  • Durable materials
  • The tube isn’t made of latex
  • Oil and alcohol resistant chest piece
  • Dual chestpiece is convertible
  • Can be hard to find since they are going off the market
  • Not as acoustically accurate as the Cardiology VI
  • Two-piece diaphragms are hard to put together

The Littmann Cardiology IV

The Littmann Cardiology IV is an upgrade on the Cardiology III.  It is based on the same glorious design and features but with quite a few improvements that cardiologists cannot seem to praise enough.  The main difference between the new Cardiology IV and the older Cardiology III is the better audibility.  You can hear higher frequency sounds to help you learn more about your patients’ health.  The single-piece tunable diaphragms allow you to hear low and high frequency sounds on adult and children patients on both either of the more suitable sides of the chestpiece.  The Pediatric side converts to an open bell that you can keep covered with the small diaphragm.  One of the best improvements is the one piece diaphragm unit because the device is much easier to put together after cleanups.  The Cardiology IV has a thicker or higher bell which results in the better acoustics.  It also weighs 5 grams less than the Cardiology III which is beneficial for medical professionals who are always hustling and bustling.  Like the Cardiology III the stethoscope also consists of new-generation tubing that contains no traces of latex.  This is a beneficial feature for medical professionals and patients who might be allergic to latex.  The machined stainless steel bell or chest piece is oil and alcohol resistant which ensures great durability.


  • High-performance cardiology stethoscope
  • Double-sided chest piece for adult and children patients
  • Tunable on each side of the chestpiece
  • Bell is made of machined stainless steel
  • Tube is made of next-generation rubber
  • Weighs only 123 grams
  • Higher bell results in better audibility
  • Pediatric side converts to open bell
  • 17 different colors 7 finishes
  • Better audibility
  • Pediatric side converts to open bell and stays clean by covering it with small diaphragm
  • Available in a wide range of colors and finishes
  • Single piece diaphragms ease the installation into the stethoscope
  • Tunable on each side of the chestpiece

Final verdict

If you happen to already have a Littmann Cardiology III then you certainly didn’t make a bad purchase.  This is a terrific stethoscope for both students and professionals alike.  But if you are newly buying your stethoscope then spending those few extra dollars on the new and improved Littmann Cardiology IV certainly will be worth your while.  The lighter weight, easier assembly and enhanced audibility will give you lots of practicality while you are helping patients and will enable you to clearly hear high to low frequencies that could give you valuable information on the condition of your patients.  If you consider the fact that those inaudible sounds could make a huge difference in the health of a patient then the Cardiology IV certainly is worth the extra money. 

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Same Day Engraving and Shipping If Ordered by 2pm EST

Littmann is the leading name in stethoscopes, with a reputation for quality and practical design on the cusp of new technology and innovation. With uncompromised craftsmanship, each Littmann stethoscope, part and accessory provides reliability for any clinician. At,  we offer you the opportunity to personalize your Littmann stethoscope with engraving on the tubing and/or chestpiece. Models include the Cardiology series, Classic Series, and Lightweight and Select series.Hear heart and lung sounds better than ever before with your very own stethoscope from 3M Littmann.


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Littmann Classic III vs Littmann Cardiology IV - 5 Minute Stethoscope Review

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