Compare Roomba Models – with Chart

roomba comparison

As countless models of Roombas have been released over the last 20 years, it can be hard to know where to even begin when it comes down to choosing one. This article has been written to be an exclusive point of reference for you in order to help you compare Roomba models in order to make a purchase.

Choosing your Roomba doesn’t have to be hard. This Roomba comparison is the culmination of hours and hours of research an in-depth thought into providing recommendations for different models based on different circumstances.

Last updated: 11/06/2019

The Roomba S9+ has made its way onto the market pushing the limits of suction power and cleaning ability found in robot vacuums. Having only been released within a short time from the previous Roomba i7+, the S9 is unlike anything else seen from both iRobot or its competitors, such as Bobsweep or Shark ION.

This model is a premium piece of technology and very exciting development in the industry. Whilst it is easy to get wowed by the most complex features and arguably the best Roomba, do not forget that this is not what your purchase is about.

The best Roomba for you is the one that fits into your context. Your budget, the size of your home and your expectations will inform this decision. All the information here is all you need to compare Roomba models in order to find this.

Also Read: Best Roomba for Pet Hair


The Best Roomba Models

  • Best Overall – The Roomba S9+ is the culmination of the best of iRobots technology. This high spec vacuum comes with a very, very expensive price tag. You can purchase the Roomba S9 without the self disposal.
  • Best Overall – The Roomba i7+ is a very complete model that shares some of the best features that the S9 has, such as Self-Disposal. The Roomba i7 is this robot vacuum without the Self Disposal technology. This can be bought after though.
  • Best All Rounded – The Roomba 960 is a smart choice that balances cleaning ability and budget. It is basically as good as the Roomba 980 but for a few hundred dollars less.
  • Budget Wi-Fi – The Roomba 690 can also connect to the app but is much cheaper due to having a less powerful cleaning motor and more basic navigation.
  • Budget Non-Wi-Fi – The Roomba 614 is the best non-smart budget option as it is significantly cheaper than the other models. Admittedly, the features of the Roomba 614 do not compare to the newer and wirelessly connectable models.

If all of this confuses somewhat, do not worry! The rest of this Roomba comparison will go into the finer details of the features and specs, whilst explaining their significance.


Roomba Comparison Chart

VIEW ON AMAZONDESIGNMODELNAVIGATION TECHNOLOGYMOTORSELF RECHARGE & RESUMESELF DISPOSAL
roomba s9ROOMBA S9+iADAPT 3.0
IMPRINT Mapping
SUPERIORYesYes
Roomba s9ROOMBA S9iADAPT 3.0
IMPRINT Mapping
SUPERIORYesNo
roomba i7+ with self disposal stationROOMBA i7+iADAPT 3.0
IMPRINT Mapping
GEN 3YesYes
i7 roombaROOMBA i7iADAPT 3.0
IMPRINT Mapping
GEN 3YesNo
Roomba 980ROOMBA 980iADAPT 2.0
SMART MAPPING & VSLAM
GEN 3YesNo
Roomba 960ROOMBA 960iADAPT 2.0
SMART MAPPING & VSLAM
AEROFORCEYesNo
Roomba 980ROOMBA 890iADAPT 1.0AEROFORCENoNo
roomba e5ROOMBA e5iADAPT 1.03-StageNoNo
Roomba 690ROOMBA 690iADAPT 1.03-StageNoNo

Roomba S9+ – The Most Advanced

roomba s9

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Every inch of the Roomba S9 uses the best technology of its kind, the objective winner of this Roomba comparison. iRobot has moved away from the traditional circular build to a D shaped robot vacuum, copying the likes of Neato. This labeled PerfectEdge Technology allows the robot vacuum to get deeper into corners in a way that other Roombas have not been able to. Such a shape also makes the main rubber brush under the body 30% wider.

Just as with its predecessor, the Roomba S9+ has an Automatic Dirt Disposal unit capable of holding up to 30 bins worth of dirt. The Roomba S9 (minus the +! is the same robot vacuum without this dirt disposal unit although it can be purchased at a later date.

Roomba s9

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The power of the cleaning motor is second to none when compared to any other Roomba or robot vacuum. Labeled as the Superior 3-Stage Cleaning System, the maximum suction power is 40 times greater than the standard motor found in the Roomba 600 series. This comes into its own when tasked with cleaning carpets.

The fine-tuned iAdapt 3.0 that features vSLAM & Mapping technology allows the Roomba S9+ to navigate very efficiently around a living space. A camera builds up a map of your home accessible through the iRobot Home app which the S9+ remembers and uses to path its cleaning route. Building on this, Imprint Smart Mapping distinguishes each room and allows for them to be individually cleaned.

Standout Features

  • Strongest Motor
  • Best Navigation Technology
  • D-Shaped design
  • Self Disposal
  • Voice Control
  • iRobot Home App

Takeaway Point

An unmatched robot vacuum from iRobot that is the best Roomba. If you’ve got the budget and many carpets then this is the Roomba for you.

Related: Shark ION vs Roomba


Roomba i7+ – Self Disposing & High Spec

Roomba i7+
Roomba i7+

 

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The Roomba i7+ is a relatively new model which shares many features that the Roomba S9+has. For example, it was the first model that came with Automatic Dirt Disposal. This eliminated the relatively frequently emptying of the bin that you saw with the previous Roombas. iRobot offers flexibility by allowing customers to buy the Roomba i7 and purchase the disposal unit later.

iAdapt 3.0 and Imprint Mapping Technology are also consistent between the i7 and the Roomba S9. When it comes down to it, cleaning time shouldn’t be too different on easier to clean surfaces. This technology also includes the ability to choose which room to clean in addition to the basic iRobot Home app functions.

i7 roomba

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Key differences come into play when considering the motor power and design of the newer S9. The Roomba i7 uses iRobots 3rd Gen Motor which achieves a maximum suction power that is 10 times that of the 600 series. This doesn’t even come close to the S9 ability to achieve 40 times that figure.

It is important to remember that this doesn’t mean the S9 will always perform better in every clean as the i7 is more than capable on hard floors. It is on the thicker and deeper carpets where the i7 won’t compete. That said, the D-shape and wider brush of the newer S9 will also make it more efficient at cleaning in both corners and open spaces.

Standout Features

  • iAdapt 3.0
  • Imprint Smart Mapping,
  • Decent motor
  • iRobot Home App
  • Auto Disposal
  • Voice Control
  • Recharge & Resume

Takeaway Point

Until very recently the i7+ was the “wow” product of this Roomba comparison. Whilst the Roomba S9+ is more advanced, it will not necessarily do that much better of a cleaning job in some homes. This is a cheaper option for Self Disposal technology.


Roomba 960 – A Well Priced But Highly Effective Robot

Roomba 960
Roomba 960

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The Roomba 960 is a real gem of a robot vacuum. Much more reasonably priced yet still highly capable, it may no longer be top of the range but it is possibly the best option for most customers. When you compare Roomba models, this vacuum is a standout in terms of the quality for the price.

iAdapt 2 is the mid-range level of navigation technology from iRobot but isn’t actually that far behind the capabilities of iAdapt 3. The principal difference is the lack of Imprint mapping and targeted room cleaning. Beyond that, the Roomba 960 has Smart Mapping & VSLAM technology which allows for the most efficient cleaning routes.

The Roomba 960 is one of the only models with the recharge and resume function. Just as with the other models that have it, the robot uses the mapping technology to pick up cleaning exactly where it left off. Map Reports of the home are displayed on the iRobot Home app and in detail clean statistics are shown through this platform. This app also allows for scheduling and other control features.

A lagging point of the Roomba 960 is the Aeroforce 3-Stage Cleaning Motor which has 5 times the power of the 600 series motor. Still capable of cleaning hard floors, the 960 will be a little less on point when it comes to carpets.

Standout Features

  • iAdapt 2.0
  • Smart Mapping & vSLAM
  • iRobot Home App
  • Voice recognition
  • Recharge and Resume

Takeaway Point

Roomba 960 is a very suitable choice for most readers. It has the best balance of features whilst being reasonably priced compared to the newer models.


Roomba 980 – Used To Be The Best

Roomba 980
Roomba 980

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The Roomba 980 used to be the powerhouse of iRobots robot vacuum range. However, the money is not worth it over the Roomba 960 and it is not as good as the newer models featured in this Roomba comparison.

The iRobot Roomba 980 Vacuum Cleaning Robot takes the edge over the 960 by some subtle improvements which include; a better motor, 45 minutes more battery and a carpet boost function. All of these features are better in terms of specifications, but whether this is necessary for a practical living is a different matter.

This is a key consideration to take into account as the 960 model is a significant $200 less than the iRobot Roomba 980 and will likely get the job done. The Gen 3 motor (the same as the i7) is significantly more powerful on carpets. This is great, but only if the 960 won’t do the job when realistically it will be able to do on most surfaces. For carpets, it doesn’t compare to the superior S9+ motor.

The iRobot Roomba 980 is Wi-Fi enabled with the use of the iRobot Home App. For all you passionate smart homers we recommend one of these models with it. If you want the convenience of scheduling, monitoring activity, pausing and playing your robot, viewing stats and many more functions from the ease of your phone then these models are for you.

Standout Features

  • iAdapt 2.0
  • Smart Mapping, vSLAM
  • 3rd Gen Motor is powerful
  • iRobot Home App
  • Voice recognition
  • Recharge and Resume

Takeaway Point

Big spenders, stick to the i7 or S9 as these are more advanced. The 960 is almost as good and a smarter purchase considering the price. All in all, the  980 has lost its place in the range when you compare Roomba models navigation and cleaning technologies.

We have written an article comparing the Roomba 960 vs 980 in more detail.


Roomba 690 – Budget Smart Home Option

Roomba 690
Roomba 690

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The iRobot Roomba 690 robot vacuum is a capable piece of equipment for a much more realistic price tag for most people. It was released in 2017 to fill in a gap in the iRobot product line, a mid-range smart robot vacuum cleaner. While the other models are better, they are also much more expensive and for some slightly more modest features, you can still get the job of cleaning your home done.

When you compare the Roomba 690 with the 900 series, the major difference comes from motor power and smart mapping. For less than half the price of 980, the iRobot Roomba 690 robot vacuum can still connect via Wi-Fi to the Home app and is our top budget smart pick in this series.

Accordingly, this is potentially the most popular choice due to its lower price balanced with some of the newest features. The iRobot Roomba 690 features are practically the same as the classic 650, just with Wi-Fi connectivity and access to the Home app.

The cleaning motor is therefore slightly weaker compared to the 900 series and may struggle with high pile rugs and carpets. The iRobot Roomba 690 just uses dirt detection lacking Smart Mapping and VSLAM so cleaning routes will not be as efficient.

It has a 1 hour battery life but can take up to three to charge, so relying on dirt detection only with one hour each round may not be enough if you have a large house. This is the first model featured yet to not have Self Resume cleaning function. A self recharge and resume feature makes battery life a little less important, hence we haven’t touched upon it much.

This model also has the potential to use voice recognition assistants Amazon Alexa & Google Home, a much sought after feature. If you compare the 690 with the other smart feature Roombas, it is a more realistic option for many purchasers due to the price.

Key Features

  • iAdapt 1.0 Navigation
  • Dirt Detect sensors
  • Amazon Alexa & Google Assistant compatible
  • iRobot Home App

Takeaway Point

The budget smart home option that does a good job on less challenging surfaces. The price tag will probably make this robot vacuum one of the preferred choices of this Roomba comparison.


Roomba 890 – Smart Connected Roomba With Moderate Price

Roomba 980
Roomba 980

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The iRobot Roomba 890 Robot Vacuum offers a smart home compatible vacuum which is a middle ground between the 690 and 980 in terms of price and motor power.  Most of the mind power and functions of Roombas come from the iRobot Home App which is equal to any model that can connect it.

If you want better home mapping and motor power go for a higher end 900 model and if you would sacrifice motor power for a lower price go for the 690. If you want a balance then look no further than the iRobot Roomba 890.

The iRobot Roomba 890 features and functions offer a middle ground between the 980 and 690. The main difference is the motor power when comparing Roomba models in the 800, 900 and 600 series.

The iRobot Roomba 890 motor uses the Aeroforce 3-Stage Cleaning system, about half the power of the 980’s max output and five times the 690 ‘s output.  The critical difference here will be how effective the robot vacuum is with dealing with carpet mess, higher carpet pile or the density of fibers.

The iRobot Roomba 890 can return to Home Base to charge but it will not resume on its own like the 980 or 960.  The smart home side of features are enabled with the iRobot Home App, so all of the standard perks apply.

Standout Features

  • iAdapt Navigation
  • Dirt Detect sensors, Stair fall prevention
  • Amazon Alexa & Google Assistant compatible
  • iRobot Home App

Takeaway Point

The Roomba 890 is pretty slap down the middle of iRobots range. We have written an article comparing the Roomba 890 vs 690 in greater depth.


Roomba e5 – New Roomba Similar to 890

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The Roomba e5 is a new mid-range Roomba that fits in somewhere around the level of the Roomba 890.

It shares many of the same features with some subtle improvements, such as having a slightly larger battery life and a larger and washable dustbin.

The Romba e5 was released alongside the Roomba i7 and i7+ models but it is not on the same level and unfortunately misses the best features. It doesn’t have any form of smart mapping technology which is a shame as the older Roomba 900 series models even have this.

The Roomba e5 is on a very similar level to the Roomba 890, so much so that it is hard to distinguish the differences. The main technologies such as navigation technology and motor used are the same. they are also both Wi-Fi enabled with connectivity to the iRobot Home app.

The subtle differences are the battery life and the dustbin size. With the Roomba e5 you get an extra 15 minutes of clean time which totals 90 minutes. The battery life does have some benefit here as there is no resume cleaning after recharging as seen with the newer models.

The dustbin is also a little larger and washable.

Standout Features

  • iAdapt Navigation
  • Dirt Detect sensors, Stair fall prevention
  • Amazon Alexa & Google Assistant compatible
  • iRobot Home App

Takeaway Point

When you compare Roomba models e5 to the 890 you see some subtle improvements making it a wiser option.


Roomba 614 – Cheap And Cheerful

Roomba 614
Roomba 614

The iRobot Roomba 614 vacuum cleaning robot is a cheap and cheerful robot vacuum relative to the other products explored here. A comparison of Roomba Models 614 and 980, you have opposite ends of the spectrum within the product range in terms of price, functionality, and features.

At a price under a third of the top of the range Roomba 980, the iRobot Roomba 614 vacuum cleaning robot is certainly a much more comforting purchase decision compared to the other models. If you are buying a robot vacuum for pet hair without being fussed about smart home compatibility, the iRobot Roomba 614 is your best option!

The iRobot Roomba 614 vacuum cleaning robot is, in essence, the same as the 690 with no smart home features. It shares the same motor, edge sweeping brushes, automatic recharging, the navigation method, and dirt detect technology. What you can’t do is schedule cleans, connect to the iRobot Home App and therefore voice recognition.

A simple click of the “Clean” button on the iRobot Roomba 690 gets it going.  As a smart home blog we recommend getting a model which can connect to the Smart Home App, but still, consider this choice the right decision for someone just looking for a simple robot vacuum. Due to its price, we believe the 614 is one of the top choices.

Takeaway Point

The ultimate budget option for this Roomba comparison. The 614 is by no means flashy, yet very appealing compared to the very high typical costs of Roombas.


Roomba 650 – The Old Legend

iRobot Roomba 650 Vacuum Cleaning Robot
iRobot Roomba 650 – The classic Roomba

The iRobot Roomba 650 robotic vacuum cleaner is the best-known model of robot vacuum there is and quite possibly the best selling. Having first been announced in 2012, this model is slightly outdated with new models outshining it with their cleaning and technological ability. The reliable and sturdy iRobot Roomba 650 robotic vacuum cleaner is still a great choice for a tidy price compared to its older siblings and a great choice if you want something to get the job done. When you compare Roomba models 650 and 690, the only difference is the smart technology found in the newer version. One distinct disadvantage of the iRobot Roomba 650 robotic vacuum cleaner is the lack of Wi-Fi connection and therefore lack of access to the Home App, making this model less efficient than the 690. When you compare the Roomba 650 with the latest release by iRobot there is quite a difference. Now it would be much wiser to go for one of the newer models. But please, stand with us in recognizing the other model’s heritage found with this absolute classic, the Roomba 650.

Also Check Out: iLife vs Roomba


Roomba 880 – An Outdated Power House

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The iRobot Roomba 880 robotic vacuum cleaner has been replaced by the 890 that adds the smart features. It has been discontinued by iRobot although still available on Amazon used. When you compare Roomba models 880 and the 890, the $120 difference is justified in the long run. The ease of use and control that comes with iRobot Home App makes it a worthwhile purchase. On that basis, we probably wouldn’t suggest buying this model over the other Roombas.

Included: iRobot Roomba 880 robotic vacuum cleaner, Charging Station, Line Cord, 1 Extra Filter, 1 Flat Cleaning Tool, Manual

Features: iAdapt Navigation, Dirt Detect sensors, Stair fall prevention, Recharge (No resume), 3.6 inches high, Aeroforce 3-Stage Cleaning System, Dual Multi-Surface Brushes, Filters

The iRobot Roomba 880 is the older and non-smart version of the 890. Features shared are pretty identical in regards to cleaning ability and navigation. The fundamental difference is a lack of the Wi-Fi connection and associated app functions.


Roomba Comparison Final Word

The Roomba product range offers enough variety to make it attractive to quite a range of customers. When you compare the Roomba S9+i7+960, 980 with all the other models on show, they are a clear cut above the rest.

The S9+ is without a doubt the best in every aspect, and it has a unique disposal system as well as iAdapt 3.0 Navigation. However, it is expensive and another Roomba may suit you better because of the price aspect.

There is an inevitable feature and price trade-off applies which in the case of robot vacuums is to be much more considered. This is because they can be very expensive.

We hope you enjoyed this Roomba comparison!

DESIGNMODELAVAILABILITY
roomba s9ROOMBA S9+
Roomba s9ROOMBA S9
roomba i7+ with self disposal stationROOMBA i7+
i7 roombaROOMBA i7
Roomba 980ROOMBA 980
Roomba 960ROOMBA 960
Roomba 980ROOMBA 890
roomba e5ROOMBA e5
Roomba 690ROOMBA 690

Check out some of our other articles to compare Roomba models against alternative brands:


FAQ

This section answers some questions you may have about Roombas in a short concise manner.

What is a Roomba?

Roombas are a robot vacuum manufactured by robotics company iRobot. They are the original commercial robot vacuum and have been leading the market for the last 15 years. Such devices are aimed to replace any human effort put into vacuuming.

How does a Roomba work?

Roombas use a mixture of technologies to navigate around floorspaces, suck up dirt off the floor and store it until it needs to be disposed of.

How much is a Roomba?

Roombas come in old and new versions, as well as varying in features. Their range is typically priced between $200-$900.

What is the difference between the Roomba models?

The main difference between the Roomba models are the power of the cleaning motor, efficiency of navigation technology, included accessories and the ability of Roombas to recharge, resume and self dispose after cleaning. The higher the series number the generally better, except the i7+ which is the best.

Which Model of iRobot is the best?

There is no one size fits all approach to choosing the best Roomba model. The Roomba i7+ has the best features objectively, but it also the most expensive. A cheaper Roomba will be perfectly adequate for a smaller home with hard floors. It all depends on your personal situation.

Which robot vacuum is best?

The iRobot Roomba is the most solid brand of robot vacuum and the Roomba i7+ is leading the market at the moment. There are other brands such as Dyson, iLife, Neato and Bobsweep which provide robot vacuums, although they are not as well reviewed as Roombas.

Is a Roomba good for hardwood floors?

Hard floors present an easy task for a Roomba. All models will have no problem cleaning up dirt and debris on harder surfaces, even the cheaper ones such as the 614.

Which robot vacuum is best for pet hair?

All Roombas are designed to capable of cleaning up pet hair. Inevitably, when you compare Roomba models, the newest and best vacuums will be the most consistent for picking up fur.

Can Roomba clean entire house?

This depends on the size of your home, which Roomba you have and how many floors their in your home. In general, the newer models with better mapping technology will be able too.

Can you use Roomba without WIFI?

The smart home enabled Roombas; S9, i7+, 960, 980, 890 and 690 all connect to WiFi but can be used without it.

How long is a Roomba cleaning cycle?

This depends on the cleaning job size. Typically you can expect it to last around 60 – 120 minutes.

How long do Roomba batteries last?

This Roomba comparison features model with battery lives between 45 – 120 minutes.

What kind of battery does a Roomba use?

Various rechargeable lithium-ion batteries.

What is a Virtual Wall for Roomba?

An accessory which the Roomba interprets to be a wall and therefore not clean past. This prevents the Roomba going in any room you don’t want it too.

Are robot vacuums worth it?

In our opinion, absolutely! yes

Rupert Pople

Rupert is the founder of this website and a smart home tech enthusiast fascinated by the power of connected devices. Within his Business Management (BSc) degree at the University of Nottingham, he studied the technological impact of the Internet of Things.

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