I am planning out a dissertation study of Brain-computer Interface (a.k.a. Brain-machine Interface, BCI, BMI, etc) applications.

One of the 3 papers in that dissertation will involve collecting original data, analyzing it, and writing a biofeedback application based upon this data.

I'm in a Computer Science department at a university which does not have a med school, so as far as I know I'll have to purchase the equipment myself out of a very modest research budget.

Thus, my question is "what's the lowest-end (i.e. cheapest) kind of EEG machine which would still be considered modern and sophisticated enough to be publication worthy in journals?".

Of course, I've done a good bit of research on this by reading recently publications on Google Scholar and will continue to do more research, but there's a lot of information overload and I have no prior background with EEG equipment, so any insight would be greatly appreciated.

From what I can tell the main thing driving price is the number of leads or sensors. They seem to range from 1 lead in consumer EEG toys to 100 leads, with a lot of products being advertised that have 16 or 24 leads. There are of course a lot of other features, so feel free to answer using either specific products or in terms of whatever features you've found important.


I have been working with BCI since some time and would recommend you to try these ones. They all have been widely used in MS/PhD research and their results are more or less accepted everywhere:

  • Emotiv
  • NeuroSky (Starts from 99$)
  • g.tec (Most accurate/Expensive one - not recommended for startups)

P.S: Last, but not least, feel free to have a look at BCI Competition datasets. I remember I used them in my semester project. Plus, if you are interested in getting the dataset of invasive BCI, I can provide you the email of respective research as well. Best of luck in your Research!!

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  • $\begingroup$ That's highly useful! Neurosky only has 1 sensor though, right? Is that enough for most purposes? $\endgroup$ – Hack-R May 30 '16 at 14:39
  • $\begingroup$ @Hack-R I would recommend you Emotiv (hence first in list). Emotiv has been used by MS Thesis students regularly here, so its quality would do for you! $\endgroup$ – Failed Scientist May 30 '16 at 14:48

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