Dyson V12 Detect Slim Review

Dyson V12 Detect Slim Absolute Extra Review

Dyson has launched a new vacuum series – the V12, and we’ll have a close look at it in this review.

Before testing this product, I thought it was another version of the V15 with the push button switch, but there’s more variance.

It’s a smaller version than the Dyson V15 with a (slightly) smaller form factor.

This variant solves the most significant issues (of the V15) related to weight and bulkiness.

If you need something more lightweight than the V15 but with less power and deep cleaning performance, the V12 will be an excellent compromise.

Lighter and Better Ergonomics than the Dyson V15

Dyson V12 Detect Slim

Dyson V12 Detect Slim Review

One nagging issue with the V15 Detect for all its cleaning performance is its massive frame and weight, hampering its ergonomics above floors and carpet. Dyson aims to fix this issue with their new model, the V12 Detect. This variant has a compact and lighter frame, alleviating the ergonomic issues plaguing the V15. However, it has less power, thus, won’t be as efficient on carpets, but that’s the only drawback. Aside from that, it performs nearly as well as the V15 in other aspects.

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Pros

  • Lighter and more compact than the full-sized Dyson V15 Detect
  • A cheaper alternative to the Dyson V15
  • Excellent cleaning performance despite the drop in airflow
  • Above-average at cleaning hair
  • Excellent run time even with the nozzle (even with the smaller battery) – maxing out at 63 mins.
  • The sealed system did not leak during the fog test.
  • Lots of tools out of the box
  • It comes with the hair screw tool, which is one of the best at cleaning long hair strands

Cons

  • Smaller capacity dustbin (0.35 liters)
  • Still an expensive cordless vacuum
  • The standard brush roll lacks the gates found in the V15 Detect
  • Not as good as the V15 with deep cleaning carpet
  • Noisy

Introduction to the Dyson V12 Detect Slim

The V12 series is Dyson’s newest and addresses issues plaguing the full-sized V15, primarily related to its bulk and weight.

Before testing the V12, I thought that these models were similar. However, upon getting the V12 and comparing it closely to its older sibling, the V15 uses a (slightly) smaller form factor, making it lighter and more ergonomic.

Dyson V12 and V15 size comparison

You could see the size variance, how the V15 is much bulkier and more top-heavy than the V12.

Push Button Switch

Another upgrade is the push button switch, which addresses another concern of consumers about constantly having to squeeze the trigger.

Dyson V12 push button switch

Nothing having to squeeze a trigger makes a massive difference with comfort when using a full-sized cordless vacuum.

I’m not sure why Dyson waited this long.

The first Dyson with a push button switch is the Omni-Glide, then the Micro 1.5KG, and the V12 is the next option with it and the newer V15 variants.

Nonetheless, there are several downsides to the V12, and the biggest is the smaller dustbin (0.35 vs. 0.77 liters).

The smaller battery’s next downside is that it won’t run as long as the V15, but it’s much better than the Micro 1.5KG (63 vs. 27 mins).

There’s no other way around it because the V12 uses a smaller battery to reduce its weight.

Floor Nozzles

Dyson V12 Detect Floor nozzles

Consumers will get two nozzles out of the box – a standard brush roll (or the motorbar cleaner head) and the slim laser roller with the green laser light that helps track almost-invisible dust on hard floors.

Unfortunately, the standard brush roll isn’t the same as the V15 and does not have adjustable gates so that it won’t pick up large debris like the V15.

It’s similar to the Dyson V8 with the brush design and seals behind it.

Dyson V12 and V8 brush comparison

Again, you cannot interchange the Dyson V12 and V8 nozzles because the former has a smaller connecting port.

Dyson V12 and V8 standard brush plug comparison

The same goes for the slim roller attachment, so that the V12 attachments won’t fit in the V15, V11, or V10 variants.

Even with the plug variance, the tool dimensions are similar. Here’s a side-by-side photo of the slim laser roller of the V12 and V15.

Dyson V12 and V15 soft roller comparison

These tools have a green laser light that accentuates almost invisible dust better than any white LED-equipped stick vacuum.

Dyson V12 laser slim roller accentuating dust on hard floors

The photo above shows how dust pops against the green light. It’s one of the innovations Dyson introduced with the Dyson V15 that they’ve been rolling out with other models like the Outsize and V12.

Lighter Frame

Dyson’s V12 frame is slightly smaller than the full-sized versions (V10, V11, and V15). It’s an in-between option between the V11 and Micro, a middle-ground alternative if the Micro’s dustbin is too tiny or needs something better on carpets.

Without any tools, the V12 Detect weighs a little over 3 pounds.

Dyson V12 lightweight body

And with the nozzle and extension tube, it goes up to around 4 pounds and 9.6 ounces.

Dyson V12 weight with nozzle and extension tube

Add the push-button switch, which helps its usability and ergonomics, allowing consumers to hold the cordless vacuum without squeezing anything.

The lighter frame helps, especially with specific tools like the under-bed attachment for cleaning underneath furniture.

Dyson V12 under attachment

Dustbin Design

Dyson V12 dustbin open

Unfortunately, the smaller form factor negatively affects the V12’s dustbin capacity.

Whereas the full-sized V10, V11, and V15 utilize a generous 0.77-liter capacity, the V12’s is slashed by more than half at 0.35 liters.

It’s one of the compromises consumers will have to live with for better ergonomics.

Fortunately, the V12 retains the same sealed dustbin as its siblings, which didn’t leak during the fog test.

Dyson V12 fog test

Two Batteries and Chargers

Dyson V12 two batteries and chargers

One of my favorite features of the V12 is it comes with two batteries and charges so that consumers can charge both simultaneously.

Please note that it’s a downsized battery (only 2500 mAh versus the V15’s 3600 mAh), but the run time is still decent, with up to 63 minutes in the lowest setting (using the slim laser roller) – more than doubling the Dyson Micro’s output (27 mins).

Piezo Sensor

Dyson V12 Piezo sensor

The Dyson V12 retains the Piezo sensor found in the V15, informing consumers of the debris size detected using a specialized sensor (the Piezo) that measures it by how much noise it generates.

The graph behind the vacuum motor is a visual representation of debris flowing through the Piezo sensor and automatically increases power when it detects more dirt (only applicable in the auto setting).

Watch this video to learn more about the Piezo sensor.

How Much Power Does The Dyson V12 Have?

Dyson cordless vacuums rank tops among cordless stick vacuums with airflow, and the V12 is no different. (at least in the max setting).

However, it lags behind the other full-sized options and is closer to the V8 than the V15.

Here’s the airflow output with the nozzle.

  • Low: 24 CFM
  • Auto: 28.52 CFM
  • Max: 48.38 CFM

And the output using the wand.

  • Low: 27.43 CFM
  • Auto: 32.23 CFM
  • Max: 58.74 CFM

It has a max output of over 58 CFM, (slightly) more than the V8 but much less than the V15.

Still, it’s an upgrade over the smaller Micro and will pick up more debris on carpets.

Cleaning Performance

Despite the lower airflow, the Dyson V12’s performance doesn’t differ much from the V15.

  • Overall: 98.31%
  • Hard floor: 99.8%
  • Sand on hard floor: 99.9%
  • Carpet: 99.45%
  • Deep cleaning: 94.1%

Hard floor results

Dyson V12 hard floor results
  • Quaker oats: 99.2%
  • Coffee grounds: 100%
  • Quinoa: 100%
  • Pet litter: 100%

The Dyson V12 works best on hard floors with the laser slim roller attachment, one of the best I’ve tested for cleaning hard floors.

Dyson is the pioneer of the soft roller tool. The slim roller is another innovation, with the bright green LED accentuating almost invisible dust better than any LED-equipped stick vacuum.

Dyson V12 laser slim roller inside dark room

Dust pops out inside a dark room, and you can easily track them.

Sand on hard floor

Dyson V12 sand on hard floor

Another strength of the V12 is picking up sand; it got an average of 99.9% after two tests with fine-grade sand.

And it got this score with the first test at the lowest setting, which bodes well for usability because you can use it longer.

The eye test also reveals that it picked up (nearly) everything after one back-and-forth pass.

Edge cleaning

Dyson V12 edge cleaning

Another strength of the Dyson V12 Detect is its edge-cleaning performance, which I must say is excellent.

Check the before and after photos above.

It got everything out of this area with superb efficiency, gobbling up most of it after a few passes.

Hair wrap

Dyson V12 hair wrap soft roller
  • 5-inch strands: 96%
  • 7-inch strands: 100%
  • 9-inch strands: 92.5%
  • 11-inch strands: 98%
  • 13-inch strands: 100%

You’ll notice the results are uneven, with the percentages all over the place. One weakness of the slim roller is hair tends to wrap around the axle.

And depending on the entry point, hair strands can wrap in this area.

Dyson V12 hair on axle

It’s the only reason why the V12 got 100% on the 13″ test and 92.5% in the 9″ inch experiment.

Aside from the hair wrapping on the axle issue, I didn’t see any hair accumulating on the roller, so it’s an excellent sign.

Always check the axle for buildup if you own pets or clean long hair.

Carpet results

Next, we’ll look at how the Dyson V12 performs on carpet, and it picked up a high percentage.

Low pile

Dyson V12 low pile results
  • Quaker oats: 97.8%
  • Coffee grounds: 100%
  • Quinoa: 100%
  • Pet litter: 100%

Outside the quaker oats experiment, the V12 aced all the other tests, picking up a perfect 100%.

Despite the downgrade airflow, it has enough agitation to pick up surface debris on low pile carpet.

Mid pile

Dyson V12 mid pile results
  • Quaker oats: 100%
  • Coffee grounds: 100%
  • Quinoa: 100%
  • Pet litter: 100%

Surprisingly, the Dyson V12 got 100% in all four mid-pile cleaning experiments, which was a surprise given the lower airflow versus the V15.

Again, this shows that it’s got enough agitation to pick up surface debris, even on this surface type.

Deep cleaning result

Unfortunately, the Dyson V12 Detect didn’t do as well at cleaning embedded sand as with surface debris.

It only got an average of 94.1% after two tests. There are a few reasons. The most obvious is the lower airflow at the max setting, hampering its pick-up.

Another is the older brush roll that used the same bristles as the Dyson V8 Absolute.

Regardless, the result is still decent and among the upper echelon of cordless stick vacuums, but it lags behind the likes of the Lupe Pure, Dyson V11 Outsize, V15 Detect, and V11 Torque Drive.

Hair wrap on carpet

Dyson V12 hair wrap on carpet
  • 5-inch strands: 96%
  • 7-inch strands: 100%
  • 9-inch strands: 92.5%
  • 11-inch strands: 30%

The Dyson V12 was excellent at picking up to nine-inch strands but struggled with longer eleven-inch hair, only getting 30%.

Unlike the V15 that had the combs, the V12’s motobar attachment doesn’t have any active-anti tangle system, limiting its effectiveness to a low quantity of nine-inch hair.

Tools Out of the Box

Dyson V12 tools

Here are the tools I got from the Dyson V12 Detect Slim Absolute Extra. One disclaimer, though, the tools you’ll get will vary depending on where you purchase, so always check first with the merchant before buying.

  1. Dyson V12 unit
  2. Motorbar cleaner head
  3. Laser slim fluffy
  4. Hair screw tool
  5. Light pipe crevice tool
  6. Mini soft dusting brush
  7. Stiff bristled brush
  8. Combination tool
  9. Under bed attachment
  10. Extra battery
  11. Extension wand
  12. Two battery chargers

Some special tools include the hair screw tool, that’s excellent at picking up long hair strands. I tried it on a large quantity of hair above eleven-inches nothing wrapped on the brush.

Dyson V12 hair screw tool before

Usually, I won’t dare try to clean this with a standard mini turbo brush because everything will wrap on the roller, which was the case in the V8.

12-inch hair on Dyson mini turbo brush

But with the hair screw tool, there are no issues, and nothing is wrapped on the brush.

Dyson V12 no hair on hair screw tool

Another noteworthy tool is the light pipe crevice tool with an LED built-in to illuminate its surroundings.

Dyson V12 light pipe crevice tool

This tool is another innovation from Dyson and is very helpful for cleaning low-lighted areas.

How long will the Dyson V12 Detect run?

I did several experiments with the Dyson V12 with its run time, letting the motor run until it stops from a full charge.

It ran up to 63 minutes with the slim roller attachment in the lowest setting and up to 37:50 minutes in the middle setting.

Multiply those figures by two since this variant comes with two detachable batteries, so that figure goes up to over 120 minutes!

How noisy is the Dyson V12 Detect?

Unfortunately, as with other high-airflow stick vacuums, the V12 Detect is noisy. I tested it using a sound meter, and here are the results.

  • Low: 70.1 dB
  • Auto: 72.5 dB
  • Max: 80.7 dB

It ranged between 70 and 80 decibels, the latter is on the high side, so it’s not something you’d want to use late at night with the kids sleeping.

Product Specifications

ModelDyson V12 Detect
Brush roll on/offNo
Battery25.2-volt 2500 mAh Li-ion battery
Charging time2-3hrs.
Battery lifeup to 63 mins. (from one battery)
Weight5.2 lbs.
Width9.8"
Overall length45.75"
Battery indicatorYes
Filter typeWashable pre-motor and HEPA filter
Dust capacity0.35 li
AirflowUp to 58.74 CFM
CordlessYes
BaglessYes
Warranty2 yrs.
PriceCheck Price

Where can I buy the Dyson V12 Detect Slim?

The Dyson V12 Detect is available in online stores like Amazon. Please note that attachments will vary depending on the store, so please double-check before deciding.

Disclaimer: I will earn a commission if you click on any of the links above, but at no extra cost to you, so it’s a win-win for us!

Does the Dyson V12 offer excellent value?

I’d say the attachments I got are a resounding yes. The under-appliance tool works great at cleaning areas under the bed, which are the toughest to reach inside my home.

Your answer will also depend on what tools you’ll get, so double-check with the store to ensure what’s included.

Nonetheless, I’d opt for the V12 Detect over the V15 Detect anytime because the former is cheaper, has better ergonomics, and performs nearly as well.

However, the V15 Detect is the better option inside homes with lots of carpets since it has more airflow, so it will deep clean better.

5 Reasons to purchase the Dyson V12 Detect

  1. Better ergonomics: The V12 Detect’s lighter and more compact frame won’t be as tiring (to use) as the heavier V15.
  2. No more trigger: Dyson replaced the trigger with a push-button switch, so no need to squeeze continually.
  3. Excellent surface debris pick-up: While it has less airflow than the V15 or Outsize, it still picks up surface debris at a premium stick vacuum level.
  4. Double the run time: Select V12 variants will come with two batteries and two chargers so you can recharge them simultaneously!
  5. Lots of tools: Consumers will get many attachments depending on their chosen variant.

The Verdict: Better Ergonomics Than the Dyson V15 Detect

The V12 Detect is Dyson’s answer to all the issues raised by their customers about the V15 Detect – its heavy frame, tiring-to-use trigger switch, and high cost.

It’s a middle-ground option between the Dyson Micro 1.5KG and the V15 Detect for those who want something that still performs without having to deal with the bulk of a full-sized stick vacuum.

With all the extension wand and slim roller attached, the V12 is more than a pound lighter versus the V15, which doesn’t sound much, but every ounce counts for these vacuum types.

It won’t have the feather-light steering of the Micro 1.5KG, but it cleans better on carpets and runs longer.

More Ergonomic Than The V15 Detect
  • Ergonomics - 95%
    95%
  • Surface Cleaning - 99.71%
    100%
  • Deep Cleaning - 94.1%
    94%
  • Quality - 97%
    97%
  • Design - 96%
    96%
  • Value - 94%
    94%
96%

Summary

The Dyson V12 Detect is an excellent value alternative to the V15 Detect, with features that rectify the V15 issues like the top-heaviness and the trigger switch many consumers dislike. Dyson used a smaller form factor and replaced the trigger with a push button switch, so there’s no need to continually squeeze it to use, making it more ergonomically appealing to use.

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