Proscenic P8 Cordless Vacuum
- Excellent value
- Detachable handheld mode
- Great performance on hard floors
- High-quality tools and accessories
- Easy to use
- Tools are stiff to detach
- Average performance on carpets
- No option to turn of brush bar for hard floors
The Proscenic P8 is a cordless vacuum with an impressive array of features – especially considering the low price. With a handheld mode, 30-minute battery life and two speed settings, it certainly appears to have all the ingredients for a great cordless.
Disclaimer: Proscenic kindly sent us the P8 cordless vacuum for us to review free of charge. This did not affect our opinions of the vacuum cleaner though.
Overview of the Proscenic P8
- Cordless vacuum cleaner with a maximum 30-minute run-time
- Two power modes (normal and max)
- Detachable handheld mode
- Powered floor head with rotating brush bar
- Pivoting floor head attachment
- Several tools and accessories
In-Depth Look at the P8’s Features
Like Proscenic’s robot vacuum, the goal of the P8 is to emulate the best cordless vacuums while keeping price as low as possible. Proscenic succeeded with this approach with their robot vac, but we had doubts they could do the same with cordless.
For this reason, we put the P8 through some tricky tests on a range of surfaces. These included carpets, tiles, hard floors, sofas and above furniture. We also tested the accessories and emptying function. Here’s what we found.
Appearance and Design
Firstly, the P8 is a stylish vacuum. It certainly doesn’t look like a cheap vac, although it feels little “plasticky” when you pick it up. We like the blue, red and grey colour scheme, as it provides a more modern feel than many vacuums.
It’s also obvious that it’s been inspired by the Dyson V8 series. This isn’t a bad thing, as the combination of detachable handheld, “stick” design and motorised floor-head is a proven formula for a great cordless. We wouldn’t go as far to say it’s a “rip-off” – but the design is likely to raise some eyebrows at the Dyson HQ.
The P8 is very simple to use, as there’s only a single button. This is pressed once to switch the vacuum to “normal” mode, twice to power up to “max” mode and a third time to turn it off. While this is a straightforward system, it can be annoying to need to cycle through “max” mode to turn off the machine – especially if you want to conserve battery life by turning it on and off when moving rooms.
One thing to note about the P8 is that it has a trigger button for switching it on, but you don’t need to hold this when vacuuming. This is great for making sure your finger doesn’t get tired, but a full trigger system increases battery run-time.
Moving away from the trigger, the handheld mode is a useful feature – especially when combined with the crevice or dusting brush. It also means the P8 is much more versatile than models such as the Gtech AirRam Mk2.
Testing the handheld mode highlighted one of our biggest complaints about the P8’s design though: the stiffness of attaching the tools and attachments. The tools clip easily onto the device, but removing them requires a lot of force while simultaneously pressing a somewhat fiddly button. In fact, the P8’s floor head is so difficult to detach that we can’t recommend it for people with arthritis or other joint issues.
On a positive note, the P8 is a lightweight vacuum that’s easy to manoeuvre around the home. It has a flexible joint between the tube and floor head, which makes steering more convenient. The floor head also has a low profile design, so it can fit under furniture.
We wish the joint was a bit stiffer though, as the steering feels flimsy at times. This can mean the floor head gets “stuck” to one side. It’s a minor issue, but something that could be easily corrected.
Suction Power and Cleaning Performance
The Proscenic P8 provides relatively strong suction power for a cordless – especially considering the low price. While we used the standard mode for most of our testing, the “Max” mode provides noticeably more power and is great for particularly stubborn debris.
The floor head is motorised with a rotating brush bar. This is designed to stir up dust and dirt from carpet fibres, although it also performs well on hard floors.
We tested the P8 on a variety of tasks. Here’s how it performed:
- Carpet – The Proscenic provides decent cleaning performance on carpets – especially considering the low price. It picked up most debris on our carpet tests with a single pass. The rotating bar does a decent job of getting the majority of dirt and dust, although it struggles with pet hair that’s ground into fibres. It also needed several passes to pick up small balls of fluff.
- Hard Floors – The P8 is great on hard floors and can handle both large debris and smaller dust particles. There’s no way to turn off the rotating bar on the main floor head though, so be careful if you have delicate floors.
- Pet Hair – The P8 does a surprisingly good job of getting up pet hair. It can’t match true pet vacuums, but for keeping hair under control it’s a good choice.
- Edges – The brush bar doesn’t go right to the edge of the floor head, so the P8 doesn’t do a great job of edges. Even so, it’s easy to remove the floor head and use the tube or crevice tool along the edge of walls.
- Above Floor – The P8’s detachable handheld mode means it’s great for cleaning under sofa cushions. The dusting brush is also useful for above-floor cleaning.
Keep in mind that the suction power of the P8 can’t match a full-size corded vacuum. While it’s great for quick cleaning, for deep cleans you’ll need something more powerful. This is true for almost every cordless vacuum though.
The P8 is powered by a 22.2V Lithium-Ion battery. This provides around 25-30 minutes of cleaning time between charges, which should be enough for most cleaning tasks. The run-time drops if you use the “Max” power mode though. There’s also an LED display for current battery status.
There’s no docking station included with the vacuum – it just comes with a simple charging wire. Recharging takes up to 4.5 hours, and there’s an indicator light when it’s ready to be used.
Emptying and Cleaning
The dust container has transparent sides, so you can easily see when it needs to be emptied. There’s a latch at the bottom of the bin, which allows you to empty dust and dirt directly into a container.
While this is quick and straightforward, there’s no “push out” function, such as found on the Dyson V7. This means dust can sometimes get stuck around the cylinder and needs to be pulled out by hand. Dust can also escape when you empty it, so we don’t recommend this type of emptying system for people with allergies.
Maintaining the P8 is relatively straightforward. The cylinder un-clips from main body, providing quick access to the filter. The brush bar can also be removed to untangle hair. Everything clips together easily (unlike the floor head).
Tools and Accessories
The Proscenic P8 comes with several accessories. These are generally useful and high-quality – although they can be annoyingly stiff to detach from the machine. Here’s a quick overview of the accessories:
- Soft brush – this is the larger brush in the picture above. It’s used for cleaning surfaces such as curtains and decorations, due to its softer bristles and felt-like bottom. It could also be used for delicate floors if you’re worried about damaging them – although it’s likely to push larger debris (such as cereal) around rather than pick it up.
- Combination crevice and dusting brush – this is a standard tool for most vacuums, but is well designed and easy to switch between modes.
- Round bristle brush – this has stiffer bristles than the combination tool and a larger head. It’s useful for cleaning above furniture and bookshelves.
As we mentioned earlier, there’s no docking station included with the vacuum. You do get a simple wall mount though.
It’s also missing a dedicated hard floor brush – especially as the regular floor head doesn’t allow you to turn off the brush bar. The wheels of the floor head are also relatively hard, so you need to be careful using it on delicate floors.
One of the best features of the Proscenic P8 is its price. It’s considerably cheaper than Dyson cordless vacuums, yet has many of the same benefits. If you want a lightweight cordless with a detachable handheld mode and ability to clean almost any surface, it provides great value for money.
The Proscenic P8 is a great cordless vacuum cleaner that provides excellent value. It has strong hard floor dirt pick-up, a range of useful accessories and a detachable handheld mode for above-floor cleaning. It’s also available for a much lower price than many cordless vacuums.
There are some drawbacks though. The tools and accessories are more difficult to detach than they should be, which can make switching tools frustrating. It’s also not the best cordless for carpets or pet hair, although it still does a decent job.
Despite these issues, if you’re looking for a versatile cordless vacuum that can tackle almost any job, the Proscenic P8 is a great budget alternative to the Dyson series.