to directly answer the OP and also give my personal observations...
the compex unit without a doubt has its benefits. its not just a placebo effect... I truly believe it works for recovery as there is a marked notice directly after usage and the day after. just using it on, say, the calves, after a hard leg / run day, my calves would feel decent whereas my whole upper legs would be sore.
my wife also noticed the effects.
we have both recovery boots (air relax) and the compex muscle stimulators. I use the recovery boots VERY often, the compex unit is sitting in a box.
the compex unit takes time to dig out of the box, put the sticky pads on a very targeted muscle group, then however long the program is suppose to run for that targeted group. after that muscle group is done, move the pads around to different muscle groups, wait the allotted time... I think you get the idea.
recovery boots you simply slide your legs in them, start the program and sit there and let it do is magic on your entire legs. its much much easier with faster results for your entire leg.
Near identical experience. Was happy with my air relax, but fell for Compexâ€™s marketing as their stuff is always on sale. If you are looking to buy, wait until itâ€™s at least 60% off.
Canâ€™t say that one is better the other, but Compex is a PITA to set up.
Have not tried it for anything beyond the recovery. Iâ€™m likely missing out on some benefits.