Roomba vs. Mint vs. Neato

Ever since the success of the Roomba vacuum, there have been a few new companies sprout up to compete in the robotic vacuum marketplace. And, like all robot vacuum manufacturers, they are trying to help consumers free up time and relinquish them from the burden of doing household chores.

So I thought I’d provide you with a quick comparison of the top models from 3 different robotic vacuum manufacturers on the market right now, let them compete head to head, and provide you with the pros and cons of each unit. My hope in writing this review is to inform you of which robots are best suited to be in charge of cleaning your home and just how much care and maintenance each will need from you.

 

3rd Place is awarded to the quiet and square Mint 4200.

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This machine passed the bar, it does clean the floor in its dry cycle. However, it should be noted that this unit is not made to be used with carpeted floors. Statistically it weighs in at 4 pounds, is 3.1 inches tall, 9.6 inches wide, and 8.5 inches deep, and costs just under $200. The battery is made of a nickel metal hydride, and it works with a remote model infrared.

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Its process for cleaning your floors are a bit primitive, something like rubbing a treated dust rag around. The machine is equipped with microfiber dust rags that can go in the laundry, but it can also be used with Swiffer brand disposable cloths.

On the technological side, the robot is governed by a unit that keeps it working and brings it back to recharge itself most of the time. This home cleaner has no brush or vacuum and sometimes doesn’t make it back to its docking station but for the most part it gets the room clean. Changing the dust cloth gets it ready for its next trip. The “mop mode” cycle however did not live up to expectations during testing.  If you’re using the Mint as a floor sweeper it will perform well enough, as a mop, not so well in this reviewer’s opinion.

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2nd Place goes to Neato Robotics XV-12 which has corners on one side and a curved surface on the other.

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The Neato did a nice enough job of floor cleaning, but was not the best performer of the bunch. Statistically it is 9 pounds, is a full 4 inches tall, 13 inches long, and 12.5 inches wide, and it is priced just above $300. The battery is made of a nickel metal hydride, and it is works via a laser navigation system.

neato xv12 sweepingIts cleaning process is a bit noisy, but it’s because this is a real heavy-duty vacuum which can snatch dimes and paperclips up off the floor and dispose of them quickly into its tray. The suction in this vacuum leaves very little behind as it cleans your home. With its built-in laser technology, this unit will take on every piece of furniture and often pushes smaller furniture pieces out of the way because it is so hungry for the dirt and debris underneath.

The noise it makes will make conversation difficult without shouting, but, it can be scheduled to clean when your home is vacant. It will do a great job at vacuuming, you just need to empty its trapping tray before each scheduled vacuum run.

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1st Place goes to iRobot Rooba 770 which comes from a decade long line of improvements in these cylindrical machines.

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The Roomba 770 performed the best out of the 3 manufacturers tested, which should be expected considering the premium price the product commands. Statistically it is 8.4 pounds, is only 3.6 inches tall, and it’s diameter is 13.9 inches, and cost runs on the high end at nearly$500. The battery is made of a nickel metal hydride, and it is works with a combination infrared navigation system and contact sensing bumper.

roomba-770-stairsIts floor cleaning process includes both a vacuum and a brush to loosen the dirt so the vacuum can suck up more than brushless vacuums. The on-board infrared sensitivity of the unit directs it around obstacles left on the floor before it is scheduled to do the floors.

Although the Roomba 770 is a great machine, this gold medal winner isn’t quite perfect, sometimes in runs out of power at the end of the cycle and needs to be carried back home. But no problem, you can empty the tray of dirt on the way.

While not near as noisy as the Neato Robotics XV-12, the Roomba can also be scheduled to work in an empty house. The Roomba 770 received top marks in ease of use, performance, and design. Although it is the most expensive of the bunch, it is well worth the investment because it simply does a better job than its competitors, with less hassle. As a side note, you can read my full Roomba 770 review here, or if you prefer, click the button below to see it on Amazon.

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