Updated Nov 27, 2019

Dyson V10 vs. Dyson V11: Are V7 & V8 Still Relevant in 2019?

Cam Secore

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After a month of testing, I determined Dyson V11 Torque Drive is the best cordless stick vacuum for all floor types because it’s quieter, has a better runtime, and an LCD screen. However, Dyson V10 Absolute is the better bet for those with mostly hard floors because it’s more affordable and includes a special roller for hard surfaces.

I’ll compare and contrast these two stick vacuums (Dyson V10 vs. Dyson V11) by evaluating four categories: carpet, hard floors, battery, and design.

dyson v11

Dyson V11 Torque Drive

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  • Carpet: It’s indisputably the best for carpets. It has incredible suction power and the Torque Drive roller changes modes automatically once you get onto the carpet.
  • Hard Floor: You get one roller for all surfaces. You don’t need to switch rollers, but the Torque Drive roller doesn’t clean as efficiently on wood as the Soft Roller.
  • Battery: With motorized tools, the Eco suction mode gets 66 minutes, Medium 43 minutes, and Turbo 8 minutes.
  • Design: It’s quieter than the V10, and there’s an LCD screen which shows the remaining runtime.

Best for you if...

You have mostly carpets. V11 Torque Drive goes deep on carpets, has the longest runtime, and is quieter than other stick vacuums. It works well on hard floors too, but if you're paying top dollar, you need to get the Soft Roller that's optimized for hard floors (or you can buy the Soft Roller separately).

Budget Option

For $100 less, the V11 Animal is the same machine minus the LCD screen. It’s a better value because the screen isn’t useful for the average user.

dyson v10

Dyson Cyclone V10 Absolute

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  • Carpet: You’ll get a Torque Drive roller for carpets with amazing suction power. It’s not as powerful as the V11 from a spec standpoint, but the difference isn’t too great.
  • Hard Floor: With the V10 Absolute, you get a second roller (Soft Roller) with lots of specialized technology for cleaning hard surfaces.
  • Battery: With motorized tools, the low suction gets 45 minutes, medium 27 minutes, and max 7 minutes.
  • Design: There’s no screen and it’s heavier than some stick vacuums, but it’s about a pound lighter than V11.

Best for you if...

You have mostly hard floors or want better value. V10 Absolute comes with two rollers. The Soft Roller technology picks up more debris in one swipe while only needing the lowest suction setting. But you'll need to switch to the Torque Drive roller once you get to carpet.

Budget Option

For $100 less, V10 Animal is the same machine minus the Soft Roller. It’s a great option if you only have carpets or don’t want to switch rollers when changing surfaces.

 

I’ve been obsessed with gadgets since I was eight years old. I buy each device reviewed with MY money and don’t have insider access. I’m just like you, the everyman.

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cordless vacuum companion

Things To Know

  • It’s hard to find the ideal Dyson vacuum because Dyson has confusing product names and keeps the previous generations going. There are eight cordless stick vacuum variations on Dyson’s site, with more than 15 variations available on Amazon.
  • Easy Dyson Cordless Vacuum Comparison Guide:
    • The number (V6, V7, V8, V10, V11) is the model type. A new “V” model comes out each year. Usually, there’s a slight increase in suction power and battery runtime.
    • The word after the “V” is the variant and refers to the rollers that are included:
      • Motorhead: You get one roller, and it’s the most affordable entry-level unit.
      • Animal: You get the Torque Drive roller, which is great on hard floors, but shines on carpets.
      • Absolute: You get the same Torque Drive roller (from Animal) AND the Soft Roller, which works best on hard floors.
    • If you have mostly carpets, you want a Motorhead or Animal. If you have mostly hard surfaces, you want the Absolute variant.
  • While vacuuming on hard surfaces, the suction power on the spec sheet is irrelevant between these models. What should you look for? The rollers (e.g., the variation type). I made a video demoing how drastic the difference is between the Torque Drive head and the Soft Roller head on hard floors.
  • Battery runtime shouldn’t be a significant factor in your decision either. Because batteries are heavy, cordless stick vacuums get heavy on your wrist after 20-25 minutes anyway, making the extra runtime irrelevant for the typical consumer.
  • I’ve tested and reviewed four Dyson stick vacuums over the last two years. Unsurprisingly, each iteration is better than the last, and that’s how I’ve ranked them (e.g., Dyson V11 is the best).
  • Dyson V11 may be the best machine overall, but Dyson V8 Absolute is the best bet for most people because it’s just $350 and works with all floor types. It’s a fantastic value and provides two rollers: one for hardwood and one for carpet.
  • If you want to learn more about the previous generations, I’ve written two other comparison posts:

Dyson V11

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Carpet (A+):

  • The new Torque Drive roller is almost the same as V10’s, but it senses the floor surface type and changes the suction level and roller speed automatically.
  • I can’t find the official Airwatt ratings for each suction mode, but there’s no doubt the V11 has the most power.
  • The “Turbo” suction mode has 185 Airwatts of suction and is the most powerful suction from stick vacuum on the market.
  • While the extra power isn’t worthwhile when on hard floors, it’ll come in handy when going deeper on carpets. (I made a video showing each suction mode while on carpet with rice.)

Hard Floor (B):

  • While vacuuming on hard floors, you’ll use the Torque Drive cleaning head. Because unfortunately, Dyson doesn’t sell a V11 Absolute variant in the US (they do in the UK though).
  • Despite superior suction power in the V11, it doesn’t work better on hard floors.
  • The Soft Roller from the V10 is compatible because both vacuums are the same wattage, and can be purchased separately. Like I mentioned before, the Soft Roller isn’t necessary for hard floors, but enhances efficiency. If you’re spending premium money on a vacuum, why not get one that’s fully optimized for hard floors?
  • When comparing the V11 Torque Drive to the V10 Absolute on hard floors, my preference is still the V10. If you bought the Soft Roller separately and put it on the V11, you’d get more power (not noticeable on hard floors) and a longer runtime.

Battery (A+):

  • The V11 has 3600mAh battery and advertises up to 60-minutes of battery life. Unlike the V10, Dyson is underselling the battery runtime. I had even better results with the motorized tools attached.
  • With motorized tools (Torque Drive, Direct Drive, Mini Motorized) you’ll get:
    • Low Suction: 66 minutes.
    • Medium Suction: 43 minutes.
    • Max Suction: 8 minutes.
  • It takes 4.5 hours to recharge the battery fully from 0%.

Design (A):

  • There are three major differences in the design compared to V10: the addition of an LCD screen, the weight, and the noise level.
  • LCD Screen:
    • The screen shows which cleaning mode you’re in, and how long the vacuum will run for. This runtime dynamically changes based on the mode and roller being used. It’s cool to see a precise time remaining, but I found it wasn’t always accurate. Also, are people vacuuming for more than 40 minutes at a time? But if you’re planning on using the Turbo mode on carpets, the screen will be helpful.
    • The screen shows errors, such as clogs or filter misalignment.
    • Dyson missed an opportunity to show the time remaining until recharge.
  • Weight:
    • The handheld weighs 4.4 pounds. It’s light enough to work as a great handheld vacuum, but it’s close to a pound heavier than V10. The added weight comes from the added screen and the 60% bigger battery from last year.
    • If you’re planning to use handheld and the wand together to clean areas above your head (blinds, corners, ceilings, things you can’t reach, etc.), you’ll notice a big difference because you’ll be aiming the vacuum upwards and putting lots of extra pressure on your wrist.
    • It weighs 6.7 pounds with the wand and a roller attached.
    • You won’t notice the added weight for medium to short cleaning sessions.
  • Noise:
    • It sounds quieter than V10 by a wide margin. The numbers don’t exactly verify what my ears heard. Here are my measurements:
      • Eco Suction: 75 Db.
      • Medium Suction: 78 Db.
      • Turbo Suction: 81 Db.
  • It comes with a docking station, but it’s bigger than V10’s. I had hoped to place my V11 on my already-installed V10 docking station, but the vacuum is too big.
  • It comes with a plastic clip that attaches to the vacuum wand, allowing you to attach two of the attachments (crevice and combination tool).

Dyson V10

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Carpet (A-):

  • While vacuuming carpets, you’ll use the Torque Drive cleaner head.
  • In almost every situation, you’ll need at least the medium suction mode (34 Airwatts), which should give you around 27 minutes of continuous vacuuming.
  • The “Max” suction mode has 151 Airwatts of suction and is enough power to compete with lots of corded vacuums.
  • The low suction mode (16 Airwatts) isn’t enough power in most situations while on carpets.

Hard Floor (A+):

  • While vacuuming hard floors, you’ll use the Soft Roller head, which is sometimes referred to as the “Fluffy” head. The Soft Roller is a gamechanger for hard floors for a few reasons:
    • It uses carbon fiber filaments to help reduce static electricity, helping it pick up fine dust other vacuums will miss.
    • The Soft Roller is faster at cleaning up on hardwood, and you’ll preserve more battery.
    • You can usually get away with using the lowest power setting.
    • Bottom line: For regular, everyday, cleaning (dust, hair, cereal spills, etc.), the Soft Roller cleans more efficiently and for longer on one charge because only the low setting is needed.
  • The only downside to the Soft Roller is you’ll have to carry both included rollers (Soft and Torque Drive) if you have carpets. The Soft Roller won’t work on carpet. If your house is mostly hard flooring (wood, tile, laminate, concrete), the Soft Roller is a must-have and this is only included with the Absolute variants.
  • You can vacuum hard floors with the Torque Drive head just fine, but you’ll need to use the medium setting and it’s not as efficient because it tends to push objects rather than picking them up on the first try (check my video).
  • If using just one head is your plan, you’ll want to buy the V10 Animal to save $100 from the Absolute.

Battery (B):

  • The V10 has 2300mAh battery and Dyson advertises a 60-minute runtime.
  • The runtime advertisement is inaccurate. That number only applies if you’re using the vacuum as a handheld without attachments.
  • With motorized tools (Soft Roller, Torque Drive, Direct Drive, Mini Motorized) you’ll get:
    • Low Suction: 45 minutes.
    • Medium Suction: 27 minutes.
    • Max Suction: 7 minutes.
  • You’ll need the medium suction mode in most situations on carpets and the low suction on hard floors.
  • It takes 3.5 hours to recharge the battery fully from 0%.

Design (A):

  • The handheld weighs 3.7 pounds with balanced weight distribution. It’s light enough to work well as a handheld.
  • It weighs 5.8 pounds with the wand and a roller attached.
  • The V10 sounds substantially louder than V11. My not-so-accurate numbers say it’s louder but the difference is not substantial:
    • Low Suction: 77 Db.
    • Medium Suction: 81 Db.
    • Max Suction: 91 Db.
  • All V10 variants (Absolute, Animal, Motorhead) come with a docking station, a crevice, and combination tool for using the vacuum as a handheld.
  • The dustbin holds 757 ml of dry material.
  • You push down on the button and the debris is squeegeed out of the dustbin. You don’t have to get your hands dirty.
 

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