Over the last decade or two, digital micro-electro-mechanical system (MEMS) accelerometers have been proposed as a replacement for analog electromagnetic coiled geophones. Although many positive results have been reported in articles and at conferences, other authors have claimed that there are no obvious differences between them. This article compares the analog geophone and MEMS accelerometer and our results show that the MEMS accelerometer has made some improvements on electric specifications. However, these improvements are so slight that identifying the enhanced signals obtained by the MEMS accelerometer is extremely challenging, if not impossible. Whether these improvements can evolve into significant acquisition benefits depends on many other factors involved in a seismic survey and which may contaminate the weak signal and effectively cancel most of the accelerometer's improvement.

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