Proscenic has been around since 2013 which is an eternity in the smart home world. I have their air fryer T21, their Wet-Dry Vacuum cleaner F20 still going strong, and for a few days their new vacuum cleaner S3 with self-empting charging base (which I could also review if you want, let me know in the comments). Because of that I was happy to take a look at their newest robot vacuum the Floobot X1, a top robot in the economic range with a couple of interesting peculiarities and with the necessary compromises.
UNBOXING & PACKAGE CONTENTS
Contrary to what he had previously accustomed us to, with very spartan packaging and as free of plastic as much as possible, here we find a more premium packaging and less attentive to environmental sustainability, strange because today many brands use recyclable and environmentally friendly materials as a marketing lever, an aspect that Proscenic had never advertised. Vacuum comes with all of the standard accoutrements and even a remote control, it also include a spare side brush, mop pad, HEPA filter and one extra dust bag.
DESIGN, MATERIALS AND STRUCTURE
Let’s start with how it looks, because it is clearly a distinctive point of this product, both the vacuum and the base station are encased in glossy piano black plastic and while they look great they’re tremendous dust and fingerprint magnets, on the contrary opaque plastics are quite soft and cheap. Proscenic did receive the Red Dot Product Design 2023 award for this sleek design, the X1 doesn’t have the very common lidar tower used for navigation and instead integrates the PathPro™ Laser-Assisted Navigation into the front making the height profile significantly smaller, is smaller in diameter with only 33 cm and with no turret which allows X1 to easily pass under most furniture and radiators thanks to a thickness that stops at 7.4 cm.
For the rest is quite traditional, with the front bumper, two touch buttons on the upper part of the robot, the status LED for the Wi-Fi and the lower part which houses the brushes and, optionally, the washing cloth, on the back we have the system that allows you to release the unfortunately 2 in 1 tank split for water, 305 ml, and for powder, 290 ml.
Charging and dust empty station takes up 50cm x 35cm space on the floor but you can use it without the plastic “landing” pad witch is there to prevent the mop from soaking the floor when the vacuum finishes its job, i could say it is one of the most compact bases on the market. To characterize it we find a LED creen that indicates the status of the robot’s battery and some other base function or warning indicator, and the door to access the dust bag, 2.5 litres, the container that houses the bag also provides a UV light that sterilizes the interior to reduce the transmission of pathogens, self-empting process in quite loud but do a good job cleaning the robot dust tank.
NAVIGATION AND CLEANING
Proscenic X1 uses a particular technology called NeuVis LiDar, it’s LiDar, like on other similar robots, but here the scan does not take place at 360° they called it PathPro™, the mapping is different and quite accurate, unfortunately this peculiarity is its greatest strength and its greatest weakness because the robot often has to rotate on itself to map the environments well and recognize them during navigation making it slow in mapping and cleaning, and this aspect combined with a battery of only 3200mAh greatly affects the autonomy, in fact I would not recommend it for rooms larger than 90/100 square meters.
The claimed suction power is 3000Pa, which is higher than many budget vacuum cleaners but lower than the more expensive options on the market these days which go up to 6000Pa. But 3000Pa is sufficient and it vacuums really well, doing a great job with pet and human hair without tangling them excessively in the rotating brush, while the Vibright technology, which allows the cloth to vibrate 3000 times per minute like we see on other brand like Roborock allows for wash the floor well enough, clearly it’s not like using an ad hoc floor cleaner or a expensive robot mops with spinning mops like X1 omni or L10s ultra, but at least you get a higher degree of cleaning than a more traditional robot vacuum and it helps keep floors clean longer. I point out that the cloth is not lifted as on the latest robot models so it must be removed if you want to have carpets and rugs cleaned, but it avoid them when the mop in insered thanks to a carpet detection function.
During cleaning the robot is a little aggressive, i really wasn’t that impressed with the collision sensor as it tends to bump against some big object and some piece of furniture, I advise against leaving delicate furnishing elements around in order to avoid accidents, similar speech for objects such as socks and cables, smaller objects are almost always run over (particular attention to pet poop), certainly on this aspect they need to work a lot on the software side.
APP AND SMART USE
The Proscenic app allows a good customization: modify and rename the maps (up to 5) and the rooms, indicate the areas to clean, create virtual walls and no go zones for the areas to avoid, change the suction power and the water flow even for each single room, schedule weekly cleaning, check the consumables and update firmware, all the functions are represented only as tiny icons and you’ll need to play and click for a while until you figure out and remember what they do, and I honestly didn’t understand some functions, such as the possibility of keeping the two LEDs on the robot always on or always off, which in addition to providing information on the status of the robot are also touch keys for starting/stopping the robot and for returning to base, always on are an unjustifiable choice in a period where we are even attentive to the stand-by lights and they can be annoying at night, and having them always off makes it impossible to see where the touch keys are and understand the status of the robot, in my humble opinion they should manage themselves autonomously and stay on during use to turn off when the robot is on the dock and has completed recharging.
However, the app is not the only way to control the robot, it has voice command compatibility with both Alexa and Google Assistant and a very unusual remote control which allows you to control the basic functions of the robot even without a wifi connection or app.
Proscenic Floobot X1 it’s not perfect and the navigation, although good despite the limited vision of the frontal lidar, is not at the level of that of the classic lidar turret but make it capable of reaching places where competitors do not arrive, and it provides all the necessary vacuum and mopping functions in a compact and elegant design, If you want to save money and the below average autonomy and the not perfect obstacle avoidance is not a problem for you, it could be a valid help at home, especially if purchased on offer (currently at 399 euros on Amazon).
Occasional mapping issues
Battery life below average
Obstacle avoidance and some features need improvement
RATING 3,5 OUT OF 5
Videos is coming…