“If I purchase a used Omnicam, will I be able to upgrade to the newest software?”
This has been a frequently asked question since the release of the Primescan AC and accompanying 5th generation software this past February. After months of speculation, we now have a solid answer:
- In Dentsply Sirona’s October 7th press release, they announced all CEREC 5.1 SW updates will be released in October 2019.
- Dentsply Sirona’s 5th Generation Software web page states that all 2018 Omnicam ACs and older will need a performance upgrade in order to run CEREC 5.1 and CEREC Connect 5.1 software. The extent and cost of the required Performance Upgrade will depend on your current PC Hardware version. Dentsply Sirona has built an Upgrade Advisor tool to help you check the hardware status of your Acquisition Center.
- The Performance Upgrade comes in one of two variations: a Performance Package upgrade, which includes a new SSD drive with Windows 10, additional working memory, and a Connect 5.1 software license; or a PC Upgrade, which is exactly as it sounds- a new PC with Windows 10 and a Connect 5.1 software license.
- If your PC Hardware version is 2.2.7 to 4.2.1, then you only require the Performance Package. The cost for this package is $1,000 for CEREC Club members and $1,600 for non-members. Club members will also receive the CEREC 5.1 software license for free, while non-members will be charged $5,000 for the software.
- If your PC Hardware version is 2.2.1 to 2.2.6, then you will need the Upgrade PC. This upgrade costs $4,359 for CEREC Club members and $5,459 for non-members. As mentioned before, non-members will also have to pay for the CEREC 5.1 software license.
Obviously, the big takeaways here are that Omnicams will continue to be manufacturer supported and receive software updates. Also, an Omnicam with 2.2.7 hardware or better is worth a veritable $3,300 more than those with older specs.
To consider the broader view- after eight full months to monitor the effect of the Primescan release, it “feels different” than the Omnicam release did back in 2012. Back then, you got the sense that the Bluecam was dead in the water. Sure, the Primescan is sleeker, bigger, and faster, but is it necessarily an Omnicam killer? I don’t think so, especially when you consider the value proposition of a $70k Primescan vs a $20k Omnicam. Even if you have to invest a little bit more in an Omnicam to get the latest hardware and software available, you’re still sitting pretty at about 35% of the cost of a Primescan. Is the Prime really worthy that much more? Or could one make do with an Omnicam for a few years and then make the jump to the Primescan when they become available in the secondary market? I’ll leave that for you to decide. No matter which way you go, you can’t go wrong with CEREC, as the brand continues to maintain its stranglehold as the industry leader in in-office CAD/CAM manufacturing now and for the foreseeable future.
See below for a copy of Dentsply Sirona’s press release: