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Cordless vacuums are generally a tradeoff. You get less suction and capacity than a corded vacuum in exchange for lightweight convenience. The Proscenic P11 bucks that trend a bit, promising a whopping 25000Pa of maximum suction at a fraction of the price of other popular cordless vacuums. In real-world use, however, it failed to live up our expectations, struggling to pick up some types of debris and often leaving dirt on the floor.
The P11 adheres to the basic cordless vacuum blueprint. The main vacuum unit includes the handle, a touch display, and a 0.65-liter dustbin. You attach one of the P11’s accessories to the end of a metal extension tube and the tube to the vacuum for floor vacuuming. You can also attach an accessory directly to the vacuum unit for handheld vacuuming of furniture and car upholstery.
And there are a lot of accessories. Besides the main floor brush attachment, there’s a crevice tool, a round brush, an upholstery tool, and a separate mopping module. A brush-cleaning tool that can remove hair and tangled carpet fibers from the main roller is also included. Unfortunately, there’s no way to store these tools on the vacuum nor is a separate storage solution included, so you must figure out a way to not lose track of them.
The P11 comes with a wall-mounted charging dock that you can attach with screws or an adhesive sticker. You connect the power adapter to the charging dock and just hang the vacuum in it when you need to top off the battery. Of course, this requires you to have some convenient wall space for the dock in the proximity of an electrical outlet; if you don’t, you can just remove the battery and connect it directly to the adapter whenever it needs a recharge. You should get about an hour of battery life per full charge, though that can vary depending on which suction modes you use.
The P11 is lightweight and nimble. It glides across hardwood and low pile carpets with the lightest push and is easy to navigate around and between furniture legs thanks to its slim design. Getting under couches and into cabinet toe spaces is also a breeze, thanks to a hinge on the floor-brush attachment that gives the extension tube about 90 degrees of tilt. Overhead vacuuming was easy as well, as the relatively light 6-pound vacuum unit doesn’t fatigue your arms quickly.
The vacuum was tougher to maneuver on high-pile carpet. I had to prod it across a fluffy throw rug, and changing direction often required me to lift it and reposition it. That extra effort translated to longer vacuum times, which is significant when you only have 60 minutes of battery life.
The P11 has three suction modes, all selectable from the touch display: quiet, auto, and powerful. Auto is the default and is best if you have multiple floor surfaces, as it automatically increases the suction when it detects carpet and decreases it when hard floors are detected. It’s also designed to extend battery life.
The suction itself, though, was disappointing. The vacuum slurped up dust, dirt, and pet hair without a problem—the last helped by a saw design on the roller brush that cuts pet hair to keep it from getting tangled. But getting larger debris, such as food crumbs, usually required that I toggle to the highest suction power. When I sprinkled some white carpet powder in my living room carpet and vacuumed it up, there was still a visible dusting of powder on the surface of the floor and in a glob that got pushed further into the carpet fibers.
The P11’s mopping module is similar to what’s used on robot vacuum/mop combos. You fill a reservoir with tap water, attach a Velcro-backed microfiber cloth to the bottom of it, and then attach it to magnets on the bottom of the floor-brush attachment. Small amounts of water drip onto and dampen the cloth as you push the P11 across the floor. As it is with robot vacuums, this mopping technique is closer to wiping down the floor with a damp rag, and you’ll get a better result doing it by hand. Most of the surface dirt comes up, but tougher soil and stains remain.
The P11’s dustbin removes and opens easily for emptying, and the filter assembly can be removed so you can clean the HEPA filter and sponge. The user manual provides clear step-by-step instructions for this process and it’s relatively straightforward.
Even though its impressive suction numbers didn’t translate to exceptional performance on the floor, the Proscenic P11 is a solid cordless vacuum for targeted use. It would make a good supplementary vacuum to your regular workhorse, maybe one you keep upstairs or use for light-duty maintenance cleaning.
But it won’t replace your regular vacuum or mop, and it doesn’t perform particularly well on long-fiber carpets. If you’re OK with those caveats, the P11 may be a welcome addition to your broom closet. If you can spend a little more, however, there are more capable performers, including the Tineco Pure One S12.
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The Proscenic P11 doesn’t live up to it’s impressive suction numbers, but it’s an adequate, lightweight, and inexpensive performer for maintenance cleaning.
- Mops as well as vacuums
- Lots of accessory tools are included
- Failed to pick up larger particles of dirt
- Doesn’t vacuum or maneuver well on deep-pile carpet
- Mopping leaves stubborn dirt behind
Michael Ansaldo is a veteran consumer and small-business technology journalist. He contributes regularly to TechHive and writes the Max Productivity column for PCWorld.