We've been testing the Proscenic P11 smart vacuum cleaner for a good few weeks now, using it to clean pet hair, kitchen crumbs, and anything else you can imagine finding on the floors of a two-bedroom apartment that sees guests traipsing in and out.
Why the Proscenic P11? At a super affordable RRP of $249.99/£179, this is a brilliant "first vacuum." It also works perfectly if you share a space with roommates or live in a dorm. It links with your phone so that you can track your cleaning (and check who hasn't been doing their fair share!) which the majority of other vacuums out there can't.
I've tested two other Proscenic vacuum cleaners, one being the Proscenic P11 non-smart version, which also doubles as a mop while it vacuums. The other Proscenic product I reviewed (and loved) was a brilliant robot vacuum mop that I still use to this day, three times a week in fact. I am interested to see how the P11 smart differs from the non-smart version, other than the obvious: The P11 Smart doesn't mop at the same time as it vacuums.
While I'm not sure that the smart aspect of this vacuum cleaner really sells it for me, it is an undeniably great buy if you're watching the pennies but need something to sweep your floors. Read on to find out whether this model made it into our best vacuums guide, and whether smart technology is a must-have in a vacuum cleaner.
TLDR: What we thought of the Proscenic P11 Smart vacuum
The Proscenic P11 Smart is a well-performing vacuum cleaner that comes with a lot of positive points, as well as a few negatives. First thing first: It's super affordable, which makes it all the more attractive. It comes with three tools included, making it super versatile. It's easy to use and even easier to maneuver around your floors, whether they are tiled, wooden, or even carpeted. I love that when you switch it off, it automatically goes into boost mode for a couple of seconds to ensure everything is in its bin and out of its stick.
We would say to avoid this vacuum if you're hoping to clean up after a busy family, or if you live in a large household, as it only has a 16-minute battery life at its strongest. Alternatively, it's great for apartment and flat owners, and it works wonders for picking up pet hair. The "smart" feature of this vacuum is pretty pointless in our eyes, but there might be some people out there who are interested in tracking their cleaning. The only thing the app is great for is telling you when your filter needs replacing. Otherwise, it's a little tricky to empty its bin, so if you're in a rush this might add some extra stress to your day.
Testing the Proscenic P11 Smart vacuum
Annie tested the Proscenic P11 Smart vacuum cleaner in her two-bedroom flat that she shares with her husband and her pug. She used it for a total of four weeks, switching between this and her Henry Quick as she reviewed these vacuums at the same time.
The techy stuff
• Weight: 4.56kg
• Noise: 78dB
• Power: 28.8 Volts/450 Watt
• Runtime: 15–60 mins
• Charge time: 2–2.5 hours
• Power modes: Eco, Auto, Boost
• Dimensions: 49.4" x 10.04" x 8.72"/125.48cm x 25.5cm x 22.15cm
• Bin capacity: 0.65 liters
• RRP: $249.99/£179
• Accessories: Round brush, crevice tool, and mini-motorized tool
This vacuum cleaner arrived in a small box that had a handle for easy carrying from A to B. I forgot to snap a photo of the inside of the box to capture the packaging used, but essentially the vacuum itself and its tools were wrapped in equal parts recyclable material and equal parts plastic or bubble wrap. This was unfortunate in my eyes, as everything definitely could have been protected in recyclable packaging.
In terms of setup, once I had figured out all of the parts and constructed it to be a stick vacuum, I was ready to connect it to my phone. Since reviewing the Proscenic M8, I already had the Proscenic app downloaded. So, I went straight on there and navigated the '+' icon at the top of my screen. Then, I selected my vacuum cleaner from a list and my phone browsed for it and connected to it within a minute or so.
When the vacuum is off it will flag a warning sign on your phone saying it's disconnected. When they are connected, you will see the Bluetooth symbol on your vacuum's screen.
How to use the Proscenic P11 Smart vacuum
This model is easy to use as far as vacuums go. Simply pull the trigger and you're off. It will switch itself onto Auto mode so that you can either stay there or switch to Eco or Boost depending on the job. You don't need to hold the trigger while using it either. To switch modes, simply press the fan on the screen. It's that easy!
Otherwise, pull the trigger once more to switch the vacuum off. Note that it will turn on Boost mode for a couple of seconds before switching off. This is to ensure any debris or dust is out of the brush head and tube before emptying. I love this feature as it's not one that you see a lot, but it really makes a difference as it stops leftover dirt from escaping once you've finished vacuuming.
Using on hard floors
Using the Proscenic P11 on hard floors is as easy as it looks. It glides across hard floors beautifully, so much so that you could even vacuum one-handed (which I had to do while taking videos and photos for this review). I found that it performs well on all modes on hard floors, and the mode that's best to use really comes down to personal preference. If I am in a rush, I'll use Boost mode to whizz around my apartment, but afterward, I will have to put the vacuum straight on charge as this drains the battery fast.
Don't get me wrong: It's definitely not the best vacuum I've ever used in terms of suction, but there's no denying that it gets the work done. This is why I recommend it to anyone with roommates or if you are looking for a dorm vacuum. It wouldn't be able to keep up with the mess of a family household, but we noticed it can vacuum up some pretty large things. Namely, the heads of dried flowers, pieces of Lego, dog kibble, and more.
This brings me to pet hair! I found that this vacuum, despite what I have read in some reviews from Amazon, does manage to collect the hair from my pug. It obviously collects hair better on Boost mode, just something to bear in mind in terms of battery life. The vacuum has a built-in headlight so that you can see what's lingering on your floors. With a beige color dog and dark floors, this feature makes cleaning 10 times easier as I can see where I've vacuumed or where I need to vacuum.
Using on soft floors
I don't have any carpet in my home (yet) but I do have two rugs I tested this vacuum on. While cleaning them with the Proscenic P11 Smart, I preferred to switch on Boost mode. It's not too strong for rugs in this mode, in fact, I think it offers just the right amount of suction power.
The first rug I used this vacuum to clean was a short pile IKEA rug. It came up really well after using Boost mode and every time I used it, I barely needed to push the vacuum as it sailed around my coffee table with ease.
Next, my amazing Ruggable rug. While testing other vacuum cleaners I had issues with their suction being too powerful on this rug as it's quite thin. With too much power, a vacuum will try (and succeed in) sucking up a rug that's lighter weight. However, I didn't have this issue on Boost mode, and it cleaned pet hairs and other bits of debris off this rug quite efficiently making for a smooth-sailing job. Whenever I use this on soft floors, it does such a fast job that it's like I am on turbo mode.
It also has no issues going from one flooring type to another, unless your carpet is rolling at the sides of course. I didn't have to pick up the vacuum once while using it, I simply just pushed it from my hard floors onto my rug and tapped the screen to change the mode.
Using the attachments
I really liked the attachments that came with this vacuum, and I might go as far as to say they are some of the best attachments I've used with a vacuum.
The mini motorized tool turns this vacuum into a smaller version of itself, and this made cleaning my couch an absolute breeze. I cleaned it so fast and went on to clean the dog's bed(s) with it too. Then, I moved into my bedroom and used it to clean my velvet upholstered bed frame that gets dusty every few weeks or so. I love the shape of this head, and it's also great for cleaning small spills in my opinion. I like using it to clean smaller rugs (think bedside-size) as well, and it does a great job of cleaning a doormat.
The round brush is the attachment that will probably get used the most often as it's really great for cleaning hard surfaces. I used it on my wooden dining table for a soft touch that still picks up every crumb. You can also use it to clean shelves and kitchen countertops. The cleaning possibilities are truly endless with this one. It's also worth noting that this can spin, so the head can face upwards and you can clean underneath furniture with it, too. Handy!
The majority of vacuum cleaners come with a crevice tool, but this one is different because it has a slight dip in its design (on just one side) so that it hooks onto things such as your baseboards. The same rule goes for shelves and door frames. I also used it to clean around the corners of my rooms both on the floor and up on my ceilings. It was narrow enough to reach between my washer and kitchen cabinets to clean whatever had collected in there over the past however long.
Using with the app
In my opinion, connecting this vacuum to its app is pretty pointless, unless you are adamant that you want to track your vacuuming habits. Not sure why you would be, but that aside, you don't actually have to connect it to your phone, so this feature you can take or leave. The only thing this it's really great for is telling you when you need to replace parts based on how much it is used.
Essentially, the app tells you how long you've cleaned, and in which modes.
The battery life of the Proscenic P11 varies depending on which mode you choose to use. It can last from 16 minutes on Boost mode to 60 minutes on Eco mode, and it needs to be charged for two to 2.5 hours.
When charging this vacuum cleaner, you can either detach the entire battery from the vacuum and just charge that, or you can charge them both together. When doing the latter, you'll be able to see the charging status on the vacuum's screen. If you choose to charge only the battery, you won't know the status but it does light up green once fully charged.
You can mount this vacuum to the wall to charge it that way, but I am yet to mount any vacuums to my wall considering how I am forever testing something new. Included in the box are all of the screws and plugs needed to mount this vacuum on your wall.
How to clean the Proscenic P11 Smart vacuum
To empty this vacuum's bin you'll need to detach its extension tube from the main part of the vacuum. The bottom of the bin flaps open, but to be honest it's a bit of a fiasco. Prepare to get your hands dirty. I ended up detaching the entire bin from the vacuum each time and taking it over to the trash can. In some cases, I actually had to remove the filter components to get the dust and dirt out as the gunk wrapped itself around these parts. This is probably the only feature of this vacuum that I think needs working on, but if this wouldn't bother you then it's simply a great FYI. It can be tricky to get the bin back onto the main vacuum unit, but it's possible to get the hang of it. Just remember to make sure everything is lined up once you re-assemble the bin with the filter components after emptying.
Otherwise, this vacuum cleaner comes with a cleaning brush included in the box, which makes things a lot easier. To clean its roller brush, you'll want to detach it from the extension tube and pop it on a surface or on the floor. Find the lock and unlock it so that you can slide out the brush. Then use the tool provided to clean the hair off it. Bearing in mind I have a dog whose second favorite hobby is molting, this vacuum never had much pet hair tangled around its brush. It didn't really have much tangled around its brush considering how much I had used it. I was really impressed every time I cleaned it. When putting the roller brush back in, you need to make sure it all lines up or you won't be able to pop the cover back on.
The vacuum filter needs to be cleaned every two weeks. To do this, you can just run the filter and the sponge part underneath cold water and leave it to air dry. Don't put either of these in the sun.
Is the Proscenic P11 Smart vacuum right for you?
This vacuum cleaner is great for anyone who is looking for something cheap and cheerful. It retails at a super affordable price and more often than note it's on sale at Amazon. While it's not something you'd want to buy to keep up with the paces of a large family or to use in a house that's being renovated, it will cope with the dust of a smaller household or apartment.
It's also great if you are searching for something that's lightweight and easy to use. It comes with your usual attachments, which we appreciated for cleaning furniture, upholstery, and more. Overall, it's a steal and is definitely one of the best budget-friendly vacuum cleaners out there.
More top vacuum picks
If you want a Dyson
The Dyson V15 Detect wowed us while reviewing thanks to its generous 60-minute battery life and the versatile attachments that come in the box. It has green laser dust detection that illuminates dust particles invisible to the eye for a deeper clean. It has an LCD screen and it offers incredible suction. For £629.99/$749.99, but it's often on sale.
If you want something for families
We tried and loved the Henry Quick cordless vacuum. It's only available in the UK, but it offers incredible suction for a super reasonable price tag. It is bagged so you'll want to factor in the price of the pods, but they do last for awhile and offer dust-free emptying. It's great for whizzing around a family home and getting the job done fast. Check out our review.
About Real Homes reviews
Annie has been testing this vacuum cleaner in her two-bedroom apartment that she shares with her husband and her pug Doug. Annie has hard flooring fitted throughout her apartment with the addition of a soft rug here and there. With help from her robot vacuum cleaner, Annie finds she only needs to vacuum her home once or twice a week.
Annie was allowed to keep this vacuum cleaner with the hopes of giving it to a family member or friend to use so that she can update this review in due time and give an insight into how it lasts when used frequently. In the meantime, she'll be reviewing another vacuum cleaner.