We’ll examine the similarities and differences between the Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra and the Roomba Combo J7+.
These robot vacuums are versatile options with the additional mopping feature, adding a layer of functionality, but the S7 MaxV Ultra has a pad washing feature absent in the Combo J7.
However, the Combo J7+ is the cheaper alternative, so which model should you choose? Find out more below.
An Overview of the Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra and Roomba Combo J7+
Airflow: 13.39 CFM 📝 Sand on Hard Floor: 99.6% 📝 Deep Cleaning: 77.95%
Side brush: One 📝 Brush roll: Twin rubber extractors
Navigation: LIDAR + Front Camera 📝 Map saving: Yes 📝 Number of maps: 4 📝 Containment: Yes 📝 Selective Room cleaning: Yes 📝 Recharge & Resume: Yes
Self-Empty: Yes 📝 Bag capacity: 2.5liters 📝 Dustbin capacity: 400ml
Mopping: Yes 📝 Pad Washing: Yes📝 Clean water tank capacity: 3 liters 📝 Dirty water tank capacity: 2.5 liters 📝 Water tank (inside robot): 200ml
Battery: 5200 mAh Li-ion 📝 Run time: 180 minutes 📝 Noise: 72.9 dB
CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON
Airflow: 9.8 CFM 📝 Sand on Hard Floor: 96.7% 📝 Deep Cleaning: 88.3%
Side brush: One 📝 Brush roll: Dual all-rubber extractors
Navigation: Front Camera + Gyroscope + Optical Sensor 📝 Map saving: Yes 📝 Number of maps: 10 📝 Containment: Yes 📝 Selective Room cleaning: Yes 📝 Recharge & Resume: Yes
Self-Empty: Yes 📝 Bag capacity: 2.4 liters 📝 Dustbin capacity: <400ml
Mopping: Yes 📝 Pad Washing: No 📝 Clean water tank capacity: N/A 📝 Dirty water tank capacity: N/A 📝 Water tank (inside robot): 100ml
Battery: 4460 mAh Li-ion 📝 Run time: 60 – 80 minutes 📝 Noise: 66.2 dB
* If you click on any of the links above and purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost.
The Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra and Roomba Combo J7+ are versatile hybrid robot vacuums that can vacuum and mop simultaneously.
Each model has unique advantages and disadvantages, which we’ll examine in this section before moving to the test data I gathered.
More Versatile: Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra
- The more versatile option with its pad washing and self-emptying features
- Efficient navigation (did not get lost)
- Above-average obstacle avoidance
- Stealth surveillance robot
- Decent pad-washing system
- Feature-rich app
- Fully autonomous for long stretches
- Very expensive
- Subpar at deep cleaning carpet
- It can’t go underneath furniture below 3.8 inches
The S7 MaxV Ultra is Roborock’s first do-it-all robot vacuum capable of emptying the dustbin and washing the pad autonomously, thanks to its versatile base station.
One downside is its bulky design since they had to cram the water tanks and bag into a limited space.
It retains the ramp-style dock found in the Roborock S7+ with the wide auto-empty port connecting to the robot’s brush roll.
The MaxV designation means it uses Roborock’s “Vision” technology, which utilizes cameras for obstacle detection and avoidance.
One neat feature is it doubles as a CCTV camera, so consumers can see what the robot sees even if they’re out.
The Roborock app integrates it seamlessly, so consumers can easily access it.
It uses LIDAR, so it’s proficient at navigating and didn’t get lost during the experiments.
Traversing around chair legs won’t be an issue, and it didn’t bump anything hard, so it’s safe on furniture.
Cleaning performance is efficient, at least with surface debris, but it was below average during the deep cleaning experiments.
What makes the S7 MaxV Ultra unique is its equally efficient mopping performance.
Most robots before it weren’t good at mopping stick juice stains, but that changed with the S7 MaxV’s release.
iRobot’s First Hybrid Robot: Roomba Combo J7+
- Best-in-Class obstacle avoidance
- The retractable pad enables it to avoid carpets or rugs during vacuuming/mopping cycles
- Lower profile design than Roborock
- Cheaper alternative
- Smaller base station footprint
- Above-average deep cleaning
- Not as good at picking up surface dirt
- Struggles mopping stick stains
- No pad-washing feature
The Roomba Combo J7+ is iRobot’s first hybrid robot capable of vacuuming and mopping simultaneously.
It’s something long overdue for Roomba, and this model has some intriguing features.
Unlike other brands that utilize a fixed mopping system, the Combo J7 has a retractable pad.
One advantage of this design is complete pad avoidance on carpets during the hybrid cycles (mopping and vacuuming).
Unfortunately, this design has inherent consequences – most apparent is the lack of an agitating element.
So, it’s not as proficient and will stall when mopping sticky residue.
Like most Roomba products, it’s above average on carpets but not as good as the S7 MaxV Ultra on hard floors.
Despite the apparent design variances, there are similarities between these products.
1. Self-Emptying Dock
These robot vacuums have self-emptying base stations that run after every cleaning cycle to suck out the contents of the dustbin.
2. Hybrid Function
Another similarity is the hybrid function, meaning these robot vacuums can vacuum and mop simultaneously.
The mopping systems are different (check the next section), each with advantages and disadvantages, so these are excellent options on surfaces like tile.
3. Obstacle Avoidance
Both have front-facing cameras, enabling them to evade obstacles.
The Combo J7+ has a single camera system that doubles as its navigational sensor.
And it’s the best (I’ve tested) at avoiding obstacles, along with the Roomba J7.
The Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra has a twin-lens camera system flanked by lasers, enhancing its obstacle avoidance capabilities over the S6 MaxV.
With the aid of the two lasers, it’s much improved over the S6 MaxV but not as good as the Roomba Combo J7+.
Next, we’ll look at the differences between these versatile robot vacuums.
1. Navigation Sensor
The Roomba Combo J7+ relies on its front-mounted camera, gyroscopes, and the VSLAM algorithm, while the S7 MaxV Ultra uses LIDAR (or Laser Distance Sensor).
Both traverse in a predictable back-and-forth pattern, but LIDAR is more proficient and misses fewer spots.
One advantage of VSLAM is it doesn’t have a protruding cover, so it can reach areas that laser robots can’t.
2. Brush Roll Design
Another difference is the brush roll design. The Roomba Combo J7+ uses two “extractors,” while the Roborock S7 MaxV uses one all-rubber roller.
Roomba’s twin roller design is advantageous at picking up embedded debris, but Roborock’s higher airflow helps it pick up surface dirt better.
3. Side Brush
Their side brush designs vary – the Combo J7+ has a three-pronged brush with bristled tips, while the S7 MaxV Ultra has a five-pronged all-rubber brush.
One issue with Roomba’s side brush (except for the S9+) is its fast-spinning nature that scatters large dirt piles.
However, this isn’t an issue with light debris like dust.
4. Dustbin Placement
The next difference is the dustbin location, with the Combo J7+ at the back and the S7 MaxV on top.
5. Base Station Function
The Roborocks S7 MaxV Ultra base station may be bulkier, but it’s more versatile since it doubles as a pad-washing center, whereas the Combo J7 dock can only empty the dustbin.
Roborock’s base station houses two water tanks – clean and dirty, enabling it to scrub, rinse the pad, and refill the in-robot water tank.
Thus, it’s more autonomous and doesn’t need as much babysitting.
To see all the functionality, click the links above for the full review.
We’ll examine the differences and highlight the most helpful features of each brand.
1. Live Map [Roborock Only]
Roborock pioneered this feature and has improved upon it over the years.
This feature will help you keep track of the robot during the vacuuming or mopping cycle.
You’ll see where the robot is on the map and the areas cleaned through the gridlines.
One upgrade introduced not long ago is the 3D map feature that’ll help you see the map from a three-dimensional perspective.
2. Mapping Run [Both]
The Roborock and iRobot apps have the mapping run feature where the robot sets off to navigate a floor level with the vacuum motor shut off.
This mode helps conserve battery, allowing the robot to cover as much ground without recharging.
One variance giving Roborock the advantage is its LIDAR sensor, enabling it to fast-track the process since it doesn’t have to go through every corner to create the map outline.
Roomba products don’t have this capability since they rely on a camera sensor that can’t fire signals against the wall.
Therefore, it must go through every nook and cranny for map creation.
3. Map Saving [Both]
Once the app concludes map creation, you can save the map in both apps. One advantage for iRobot is it can save up to 10 map levels, while Roborock can only save up to four.
However, I think that number is overkill for a self-emptying robot vacuum since you’ll rarely move it with its bulky base station.
4. Containment [Both]
Another similarity between the Roborock and Roomba apps is the containment feature, but there are some nuances.
The Roborock app is more versatile because it can block diagonal areas, whereas the iRobot app can only block square or rectangular zones.
One helpful feature of the S7 MaxV app is the invisible wall, where you can draw diagonal lines to block the robot from going into off-limit areas.
The Combo J7 is limited in this aspect and can only block square or rectangular zones.
5. Clean Zones [Roomba Combo J7+ only]
One feature available only in the iRobot app is clean zones, where you can add designated “clean” areas.
These are savable, meaning you don’t need to draw it on the map again.
You can access it through the “new job” button or by voice through Alexa.
6. Zoned Cleaning
Roborock’s version of the “clean zone” is zoned cleaning.
The function is similar, but you can’t save these areas, so you’ll need to draw them again if you want to clean the same area.
7. Obstacle Detection [Both]
Since these robots have front cameras, both have obstacle detection, where the cameras take snapshots of the things they see during the cleaning cycle.
You can see these obstacles in real-time with the Roborock app, but not in iRobot since it doesn’t have a live map feature.
One advantage of the iRobot app is you can convert these into keep-out zones, saving time from having to draw it on the app.
8. CCTV Function [Roborock S7 MaxV only]
One of my favorite features of the S7 MaxV app is the CCTV feature, where you monitor your home through the lens of the robot as it cleans.
While these robots have smart navigation and move in predictable patterns, some nuances exist.
The Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra utilizes LIDAR (or Laser Distance Sensor), where a laser sensor on the robot rapidly fires laser signals in a 360-pattern to check its location on the map.
One advantage of a laser is its precision and not relying on a light source to function.
The Roomba Combo J7 relies on a front-facing camera and gyroscope underneath for location tracking.
A camera needs light, so it may not function well in low-lit areas.
Roomba mitigates this by adding an LED underneath the front camera to help with visibility.
Despite all this, the Roomba Combo J7 was efficient during the coverage test, completing the two-pass run in around 18 minutes – nearly the same time as the Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra.
But it missed more spots, which isn’t surprising since most Roomba options have this issue.
The Roborock S7 MaxV was more efficient, picking up nearly every crumb after the first pass.
Despite the upgrades, Roborock added to the S7 MaxV, namely the laser sensors flanking the twin-lens camera, there are still glaring issues with its obstacle avoidance system, particularly at evading stretched wires and pet feces.
Yes, it can evade stretched wires, but it’s not consistent. However, it’s much improved with avoiding coiled wires and pet feces, but I wouldn’t rely on it since the algorithm lets it get too close.
The Roomba Combo J7+ uses the same algorithm as the J7, which is the best-in-class at evading obstacles.
iRobot backed it with the POOP guarantee – (basically) if it touches dry pet feces, you can return it and get a replacement (for free).
One issue with the Roomba Combo J7+ is its low airflow. I tested it using an anemometer, which only registered less than 10 CFM.
The Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra got higher scores but was still below average.
Here are the complete results below.
Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra
Roomba Combo J7+
This section will compare how the Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra and Roomba Combo J7+ cleans various surfaces.
I used debris types like quaker oats, quinoa, pet litter, coffee grounds, and sand.
Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra
Roomba Combo J7+
|Sand on hard floor|
|Carpet (Surface Pickup)|
|Carpet (Deep Cleaning)|
The Roomba Combo J7+ got a higher overall average because of the ten-plus percent advantage difference in the deep cleaning experiments.
This is one advantage of Roomba’s twin-extractor design.
But if you look closely, the S7 MaxV Ultra was better with surface debris experiments because of its higher airflow and more efficient cleaning pattern.
Which Option is Better on Hard Floors?
The Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra was a few percentage points better with cleaning surface debris (99.95% vs. 97.85%).
The two+ percent variance is significant in these experiments since the Combo J7+ wasn’t as efficient and scattered more debris with its fast-spinning side brush.
Roborock’s advantage extends to the sand experiment, which was nearly perfect (99.6% vs. 96.7%).
The Combo J7 left more sand after the cleaning experiment.
Unfortunately, this is an inherent problem with low airflow Roomba models. The only alternatives that did well were the S9+ and 980.
Edge Cleaning Comparison
The Roborock S7 MaxV wins this category since it picked up more, thanks to its more efficient navigation, higher airflow, and three-pass run.
Here’s a before and after shot for the S7 MaxV.
It wasn’t perfect, but it got most of the debris out.
The Combo J7+ left more debris in this area, but you could see chunks at the edges.
Another issue with the Combo J7+ is debris scattering outside you don’t see in the photo.
The Roborock S7 MaxV’s higher airflow makes it the better option for vacuuming hair.
It got higher averages based on the five and seven-inch experiments.
Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra
Roomba Combo J7+
It got 100% in the five-inch experiments, and you can see proof in this photo of hair inside the dustbin.
However, hair wrapped on its brush roll in the seven-inch experiment.
The good thing about Roborock’s bristle-less roller is it’s easy to dislodge hair.
Unfortunately, the Roomba Combo J7+, even with its improved airflow, wasn’t good at cleaning hair.
It only got 42% of five-inch strands, so I didn’t bother doing the seven-inch experiments.
Most of it wrapped on the axles, but it was easy to clean.
Which Option is Better on Carpets?
The answer to this is two-pronged. While the Roomba Combo J7+ was better at deep cleaning carpet (88.3% vs. 77.95%), the S7 MaxV Ultra was better at cleaning surface dirt (98.97% vs. 97.97%).
Part of it is the navigational pattern, where Roborock does an extra pass. Another is the airflow variance.
Nonetheless, the Roomba Combo J7+ would be more practical for daily cleaning tasks, especially for cleaning low to mid-pile carpets or rugs.
Next, we’ll examine the mopping results for the Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra and Roomba Combo J7+.
I tested both using (nearly) dried red wine and juice stains. The latter is mainly a struggle with robot mops without an agitating element.
The Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra is one of the more proficient alternatives for mopping, as it aced both experiments.
It got nearly everything out after the first pass, even tough-to-mop juice stains.
The Roomba Combo J7 isn’t as good. It struggled to clean juice stains and stalled badly during the experiment.
Another advantage of the Roborock S7 MaxV is its pad cleaning feature, unavailable with the Roomba Combo J7+, so this task is automated.
The Roborock S7 MaxV wins this category since it’ll run for up to 180 minutes, more than twice the range of the Combo J7+ (only 80 minutes).
Combined with its proficient navigation, the S7 MaxV Ultra is better suited for cleaning bigger homes since it has a better mapping run feature.
The Roomba Combo J7+ won’t be efficient inside larger homes since it needs to recharge more often, but it can clean large areas with its “recharge and resume” feature, also available in Roborock.
I used a sound meter from a few feet away to measure noise.
Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra
The Roborock S7 MaxV is the noisier robot vacuum, breaching 70 decibels in the highest power setting, while the Roomba Combo J7+ is quieter at around 66 decibels.
Fortunately, you don’t have to use Roborock’s highest setting since it will pick up debris even in the turbo or balanced setting.
These settings will have a lower noise output.
The carpet boost feature would be the best compromise for the S7 MaxV Ultra to balance range and cleaning performance.
Roborock’s popularity has prompted third-party manufacturers to sell components like filters and brushes, but iRobot still has the advantage here.
But Roborock batteries seem to have better longevity, and none I own have broken down (yet).
Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra
Roomba Combo J7+
Washable E11 Rated Air Filter
Smart Navigation (LIDAR)
Smart Navigation (VSLAM)
|Recharge and Resume|
|Number of Maps|
|Auto empty capacity|
Where Can I Buy These Robots?
The Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra and Roomba Combo J7+ are available in online stores like Amazon.
Disclaimer: I will earn a commission if you purchase through any of the links above, but at no extra cost, so it’s a win-win for us!
Which Option Is Better? The Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra or Roomba Combo J7?
I like the Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra based on its overall performance, but if price is a huge deciding factor, then the Roomba Combo J7+ may be the better alternative if you don’t mind its limitations.
Another model to consider is the Roborock Q Revo, which offers the same function as the S7 MaxV Ultra but at a lower price.
5 Reasons to Choose the Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra
- Better overall performance: The S7 MaxV Ultra is more efficient with vacuuming and mopping than the Combo J7+.
- More autonomy: There’s no need to babysit this robot for weeks since it has self-emptying and pad-washing features.
- Runs longer: The 5200 mAh lithium-ion battery has enough juice to run for three hours (or 180 minutes).
- Better mopping: It handled tough-to-clean juice stains without stalling.
- Stealth CCTV: You can monitor your home through the S7 MaxV’s surveillance feature.
4 Reasons to Choose the Roomba Combo J7+
- Better obstacle avoidance: It uses the same algorithm and front sensor as the J7+, making it one of the best obstacle-avoiding robots.
- Deep cleans better: Roomba’s twin extractors and the slight bump in airflow enabled the Combo J7+ to pick up 10% more sand in the deep cleaning experiment.
- Low profile design: Nothing protrudes on top so that it will fit underneath lower clearance furniture.
- Compact base station: The Combo J7+ base station is lighter and easier to move around.
The Verdict: Do You Need The Full Autonomy?
One question you’ll need to answer is, do you need the S7 MaxV’s autonomy? And are you willing to pay a premium for it?
Other benefits come with the Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra, like the efficient cleaning and mopping performance, but answering these questions will dictate your decision.
Another option is going with the cheaper Q Revo, but it won’t be as good at evading obstacles and doesn’t have the CCTV feature.
The Roomba Combo J7+ is a decent option but with inferior cleaning performance.
However, if your priority is cleaning carpets or obstacle avoidance (especially pet dung) – it may be the better alternative.