Review: Dyson V15 Detect vacuum boasts a laser, piezo dust measurer - but are those just gimmicks?

The Dyson V15 Detect went on sale in New Zealand on May 27, 2021.
Photo credit: Dyson

This week, Dyson's latest vacuums have been released in New Zealand, including the V15 Detect.

The cordless stick vacuum features a few new innovations on top of all the tech featured in last year's models.

The V15 Detect's new features are designed to do two things: Provide more proof to the user of how effective their cleaning is, and wage war on hair getting tangled in the heads.

But are these new features genuinely helpful, or are they just gimmicks?

I've been using a 'Dyson V15 Detect Total Clean' for the past week and here are my thoughts.

Firstly, you can expect all the standard stuff you get with a modern Dyson - most importantly the 'Hyperdymium' motor with 125,000rpm for what the company says is the most powerful suction of any cordless vacuum.

The V15 Detect is a step down in size from the V11 Outsize, which means it weighs less and that's nicer on your hand when using it. But it also means a smaller dust bin and hence more regular emptying if you're vacuuming a large area.

There's also the usual handful of attachments to clean various types of surfaces around the home that are easy to change out on the fly, along with a new one - more on that later.

But the latest tech in these latest vacuums is what's interesting, right? Let's dive in.

Laser dust revealer

This is definitely the flashiest of the new features. It might seem a little silly and over-the-top but, in action, it's fun and genuinely useful.

Dyson v15 Detect hardfloor laser illuminates dust.
Photo credit: Dyson

Part of the fluffy head for hard floors, the laser's colour and angle means it clearly illuminates dust and dirt. Moving the vacuum back and forth, you can see the floor getting cleaner in a more visible way than ever.

This adds to the inherent satisfaction that comes from visibly seeing dust and dirt pile up in the clear plastic dust bins these things have always had - but y'know, it's way cooler in that it's a frickin laser beam.

Things to note: On a really bright sunny day, this can be hard to see. Also, when you're vacuuming up alongside the bottom of a large shelf, fridge or other similar object, the laser shows up the massive amount of dust hiding underneath which, as of yet, there is no attachment small enough to reach.

That may make you want to move everything about to clean under it more often - which is a good or bad thing, depending on how you look at it.

Anti-tangle comb and hair screw tool

People must have been getting really mad at hair getting tangled in their Dyson vacuums because there are two new aspects of the V15 Detect focused squarely on this problem.

The primary carpet cleaner head now has an anti-tangle comb inside it that basically brushes the brush as it rotates, removing hair and shooting it through to the bin.

Tangled hair hasn't really been an issue for me in the past so I'm not noticing much difference with this.

Dyson v15 Detect hair screw tool.
Photo credit: Dyson

There's also a new attachment in the form of a cone-shaped hair screw tool. This is designed with things like hair-filled pet baskets in mind - as shown in the supplied image above.

Again, not an issue in my home, but it is quite exciting to test out. Drop a long piece of ribbon on the ground to run this over and it shoots up instantaneously, quick as a flash.

Dust counter

Perhaps the most interesting new feature is a piezo acoustic sensor that counts - 15,000 times per second according to Dyson - how many particles are being picked up and what size they are. This information makes the vacuum increase or decrease its suction power, but it also informs the user.

It's presented on the LCD screen along with other info from previous models like battery level - see the image below.

Those particles are divided into four categories by size representing the different types of dust you're picking up: under 10 micrometres (µm), 11-60 µm, 61-180 µm and 181-500 µm.

On a typical cleaning session, all four info bars on the LCD screen start leaping up on the first push - expect several million <10 µm particles to be sucked up in just a few seconds.

Dyson says the feature is there to "show you scientific proof of a deep clean" but I think it's probably too much information and not actually that useful for most users.

But, for some people, this info is really helpful.

Dyson v15 Detect piezo dust counter.
Photo credit: Dyson

As the father of someone with a dust mite allergy, it can give a rough idea of how well I'm managing all the tiny, mostly invisible stuff that makes my son's life difficult, and this is really important to me.

However it could go even further. If you want to keep a record of how much dust you're picking up and map how that changes over time, you have to manually record the information. Perhaps there's a way it could be sent over Bluetooth or something to automate that process?

That might be so niche that only a few nerds like me would use it but hey, it can't be a big step from the impressive tech that's already there, so I hope it's added.

The V15 Detect is a top-end vacuum and is priced like one - in Aotearoa it'll set you back $1500. Even if that's affordable for you, I'd recommend carefully thinking about what you need in a vacuum as, for some, this unit will be overkill.

There are plenty of cheaper options around, from both Dyson and other brands. None of them have laser beams coming out of them though.

Newshub was supplied a Dyson V15 Detect for this review.