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With falling prices, new models and brands getting involved in the market for robot vacuum cleaners is hotting up. Neato and iRobot continue to lead the way in variety and popularity, but the arrival of Dyson at the top end and a flood of low cost models at the bottom will shake up buyers’ choices into 2017.
Generally, though robot vacuums are still hot sellers, with more homes looking to save on the drudgery of trolling up and down with a hefty cyclone cleaner. Neato’s range offers something for most budgets and users, with newer models trying to improve their flexibility and user experience.
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Overview: Botvac 80 vs Botvac 75
- Design: Both the D80 and D75 models stick to pretty much the same Botvac design and look and feel. The D80 comes in black, the D75 in white with a black bin, with that Neato button prominent on the top cover with a tiny LED display and controls for setting it up. They both operate in the same way with laser guidance and route learning, so they can be more efficient.
- Smart Cornering: The D-shape design, with the blunt end at the front makes it easy for the Botvacs to pick up the maximum amount of dust. A major new change is on the right side, with both models having an extra edge brush to pull fluff from under furniture or corners to pull it into the suction part. They use CornerClever technology to reach into corners and for better cleaning.
- Tech: They both use Neato’s Botvision using a mix of laser scanning, room mapping and real time object detection to for an effective, logical cleaning path. They also know where the charger is, and can automatically recharge before carrying on with their cleaning duties.
- Dimensions: The both measure around 12.7 x 13.2 by 3.9 inches tall with weigh around 9 lbs.
Key Features of Both
It is on the insides and underneath that things change slightly. The Botvac D75 is billed as being perfect for everyday cleaning on all floor types, and has a slightly larger spiral blade brush for more coverage.
The D80 is designed to pick up more pet hair for those with a menagerie at home. It features the new brush of the D80 plus a combi brush to reduce noise and high performance filters to keep dust in the unit. They also come with a larger dirt bin, holding some 0.7-liters of fluff.
Apart from the brush layout and filters, this pair of Neato robot vacuums are pretty much identical. The extra bits on the D80 do give it a $50 premium on the D75 (For the latest prices and discounts, check here), but for those with allergies or just too many pets, that would be a small price to pay.
Boundary markers can keep both Neato products out of harm’s way, while a drop sensor will prevent them tumbling down the stairs. Pairs of filters and additional boundary markers are available for $18, keeping consumables down to a reasonable level.
Finally, both offer an easy to program auto-schedule using the LCD display screen and button controls. It only takes a minute to create a cleaning schedule that fits around your day. Or you can tap the start button if you have friends coming round and what to impress them with your automated cleaning buddy.
Pros and Cons Worth Considering
Both devices are firmly mid-market, with a price and features to match. Both do a great job of cleaning the casual daily build up of dirt, although both will struggle with dense dirt and deep carpets.
The first thing to note is an increase in power for cleaning, although neither product seems to shout about this improvement over previous models. That and the new brush make for improved cleaning on hard floors or light carpets.
They can typically clean for up to an hour before needing recharging, and will pick up where they left off. There is some claim that these are supposed to be quieter than previous models, down to 62db. However, it is pretty hard to discern much difference.
Unfortunately these lack the WiFi and app features of newer, upper-end, Neato models, but are still perfectly suited for the tasks at hand with
The D80 is obviously the model to go for for families with cats and dogs, with the unit’s emphasis on getting the maximum amount of hair into its larger bin. Those with allergies should find it picks up more of the dust and grains that can make life a misery.
While white is never a good color for a home cleaning appliance, the D75 does look slightly sportier than other models, On the negative side, it only comes with a standard filter, so won’t as good for those with allergies.
|Price||(For the latest prices and discounts, check here)||(For the latest prices and discounts, check here)|
|Cleaning||SpinFlow Power Clean. Extra large dirt bin, focus on pet hair||SpinFlow Power Clean. Good all rounder|
|Navigation||LaserSmart mapping and navigation technology||LaserSmart mapping and navigation technology|
Alternatives to consider:
The Roomba 880 and Roomba 770 (see full comparison here) are iRobot’s comparable models on the market for a comparable price. Their round design may not be quite as efficient but they still offer mighty cleaning performance.
Seeing the Neato devices in action is really required to see how good and smart they are. Sure, smart home aficionados will want app connectivity, but it is hardly essential to the good running of these devices. They both clean and run well, and the designers seem to have ironed out the quirks that users of some earlier Neato models experienced.
Patrick Sinclair is a geek; make no mistake about that. He runs All Home Robotics in his spare time so he doesn’t have to think about his depressing cubicle and it gives him an excuse to buy expensive gadgets to review!