Our houses are being filled with smart devices but there are still some household tasks that can’t simply be solved by those. Sure, a robot vacuum cleaner can handle most floors without breaking a sweat or a circuit board but beds, couches, and cars still require more specialized equipment. It doesn’t have to be connected to the Internet to actually be great at what it does and the Proscenic S1 3-in-1 cordless vacuum cleaner is perhaps the testament of how a simple appliance can still be “smart” with just the right combination of features.
There are only so many ways you can design a cordless vacuum cleaner, especially a handheld one. In almost all cases with cordless devices, one has to make a choice between weight and battery life. While the Proscenic P11 that we reviewed last year leaned more towards the hefty side of the equation, the S1 was designed to be easy on the arms, trading power for the ability to get close and personal with fabrics, corners, and cars.
The design of the Proscenic S1 is simple and functional, with the main body taking the form of a large tube with the handle attached at the bottom. The handle is the part that you plug into the charging dock and has the power button that also glows when charging.
Despite its sleek and unified look, the body is actually modular and you can easily remove the receptacle, filter, and battery just by pressing a few well-hidden buttons. One design quirk, however, is that the receptacle dislodges at an angle that will spill its contents if you’re not careful and not standing directly in front of a trash bin.
The charging dock itself mirrors the simplicity and functional design of the vacuum cleaner. In addition to holding and charging the S1, it also has slots for the mattress brush and the 2-in-1 extension that also has a slide-out brush for those hard-to-reach places. The dock’s small footprint allows it to be placed anywhere. At least anywhere near a power outlet, of course.
Power and Battery
Proscenic advertises a rather strong 90,000 RPM engine that can produce a suction power of 12,000 Pa. That, however, isn’t actually the default mode. Pushing the power button once to turn it on puts you into Eco Mode with only 8,000 Pa of suction, ideal for more delicate surfaces or silent operation. Another press of the button puts you into that Turbo mode with all that advertised power.
In truth, you can definitely get by with just the Eco Mode, especially for hard surfaces. It has enough suction not just for particles but also some lighter solid objects as well, like pieces of plastic or even parts of fabrics. For carpets and pet beds, however, you’ll want to switch to Turbo Mode, but that will also drain the battery faster.
Proscenic’s advertised 30 minutes of use for the 22,000 mAh battery is actually too generous and we would find ourselves stopping to recharge after just 17 minutes on the strongest setting, roughly 20 on Eco.
When it does come to charge, you do have two options, either charging it on the dock or plugging the Proscenic S1 directly via a USB-C cable. The latter could be useful when a regular wall socket isn’t available, like in a car.
The battery itself is actually removable but there is no way to actually charge the battery separate from the vacuum cleaner. So even if you do buy spares, you’ll have to remember to always keep them charged beforehand, swapping them out as needed. It takes 2 to 2.5 hours to fully charge one for that 17 to 20 minutes of use.
The Proscenic S1 goes a bit further than your basic vacuuming needs with features that can make life both safer and easier. There is, for example, the H12 HEPA filter that can be removed and washed as needed. This can filter out harmful particles that get released when the vacuum disturbs dirt and dust that have stuck to surfaces and corners.
Simple as it may be, the 2-in-1 flat suction extension is actually genius in its design. The slide-out brush stays out of the way when all you need is a smaller nozzle for narrower areas. At the same time, however, it will stay put in its place when you do slide it out to use it to brush surfaces that may be too delicate or small for the mattress brush.
Going for less than $100, the Proscenic S1 2-in-1 Cordless Vacuum Cleaner definitely offers a lot of value without asking too much. Of course, it won’t be competing with larger wireless cleaners, like Proscenic’s own P11, but you won’t be developing “gorilla arms” either just to vacuum your or your pet’s beds.
The removable battery and USB-C charging option are also nice touches, though Proscenic could have gone the extra mile and made those truly modular and portable. That said, it isn’t that big a deal breaker and, even without that convenience, the Proscenic S1 remains a smart purchase, whether you have a smart home or not.