In this paper, theoretical comparison between electromagnetic dampers based on a “motional emf” and “transformer emf” design is presented. Transformer emf devices are based on the generation of emf in a stationary circuit, in which the emf is generated by a time-varying magnetic field linking the circuit. Motional emf devices are based on the generation of emf due to a moving conductor within a stationary magnetic field. Both of these designs can be used as damping elements for applications such as semi-active and regenerative vehicle suspension systems. The findings herein are provided so as to evaluate the most efficient device for such applications. The analysis consists of comparing the damping coefficient of the electromagnetic devices for a given magnetic field and given volume of conducting material. It has been found that for a limited range of dimensions, the transformer emf devices can be more then 1·2 times as efficient as the motional emf devices. However, for most realistic situations, motional emf devices will have the highest efficiency.