Roborock has recently unveiled its new high-end robot vacuum cleaner S6 MaxV, which vacuums and washes floors. With its dual camera, its Qualcomm APQ8053 processor and its ability to recognize objects, it is full of technology. A promising datasheet is one thing. But it is necessary that all these little people are well implemented so that this presents a real interest in use. We tested this S6 MaxV to check what it was in the belly.
A very simple installation
The installation of Roborock S6 MaxV is very simple. It comes with a replacement filter (washable with water), a removable water tank on which a support with mop is clipped and a transparent plastic mat to stick to the floor. This last accessory is placed under the charging base; it prevents the wet wipe resting on the floor for long hours, when the robot is on its base – a good idea to avoid damaging a parquet for example.
The S6 MaxV is of course connected. Once the application has been downloaded, a few very standard operations can connect it to the Wi-Fi network, knowing that the application guides the user through each step.
The charging base is quite compact, so discreet. As for the aesthetics of the robot, it is sober. It can therefore remain visible in a bedroom or even in the living room.
It should also be noted that the new Roborock robot “talks” and that it is even quite talkative. It “explains” almost every manipulation we do. The language as well as the sound level can be adjusted within the application (in the parameters, in the chapter “voice and volume”) until making it inaudible. It is a fairly pleasant female voice, which does not give a “robotic” impression. Certain indications serve only as feedback: for example, the robot confirms by voice that it has started cleaning or that it has completed its mission. Others are very useful, serving as a reminder. For example, it confirms that the dust bin is correctly replaced, advises to check if the mop is properly installed when you insert the water tank or recommends to check if this tank is correctly filled when you start the washing mode.
Efficient suction, but a small dust collector
Roborock claims that the S6 MaxV is the most powerful of its robots. It is certain that aspiration is effective. Besides, we appreciate being able to adjust its intensity within the application, according to 5 levels: medium suction (so-called “balanced”), turbo and maximum power – adjustments to which are added a delicate mode and a silent mode .
The device also offers a carpet mode, which can be activated in the settings. It allows the robot to detect a carpet or carpet to automatically switch to maximum suction power. We were able to check its recognition capacity on our bathroom carpet, even if the S6 MaxV tended to fold it up rather than climb up completely on this small, too light carpet. However, he never got stuck there.
Having only hard floors, during our various tests, we mainly used the turbo mode as well as the balanced mode, the latter being largely sufficient despite the presence of two cats at home. We were able to appreciate the discretion of the S6 MaxV, including in turbo mode. As for the silent mode, it keeps its promises, which is a real asset when you want to start cleaning while being present.
Our only regret concerns the dust collector. Housed under the hood, it dislodges and empties easily. However, its capacity of only 460 ml quickly shows its limits. In the presence of domestic animals, it will soon be stuffed with hair and it will be necessary to remember to empty it after each cycle. More annoying: its opening is positioned on the lower part, which is inclined. If we do not think of returning it the time to go to the trash, we sow what we have just harvested in the Petit Poucet way.
Besides, we would also have liked this robot packed with features to be able to notify it when its collector is full.
An attractive mop fashion
In addition to its suction function, the S6 MaxV has a mop function. Note that it is possible to start a suction without washing the soil (by removing the water tank or deactivating this mode in the application), but not vice versa; even at minimum power, the robot necessarily sucks.
This is not a floor washing per se, since the tank receives only pure water without detergent and the mop performs a wet cleaning, but without scrubbing. However, this function is sufficient to maintain the clean floor between the passages of “real mop”. For example, it eliminates very well the small stains of water that can appear on certain tiles or some traces of wet soles in an entrance.
In addition, it is possible to adjust the quantity of water dispensed (according to three levels). This is very practical for adapting cleaning to the type of floor: for example, we preferred an average water level for our floating parquet, but preferred a larger amount of water on our kitchen tiles, a room that we have tendency to get dirty faster.
To use this function, simply clip the water tank to the front of the robot and then slide the mop holder underneath. The latter is easily detached for washing. We would have liked Roborock to provide a spare second.
If the installation of the tank is childish, on the other hand, its filling is a little less. This tank only has a small circular opening. In addition, to fill it under the tap it must be tilted, otherwise it overflows before the water is distributed there.
Regarding this function, too bad the S6 MaxV does not warn the user when the water tank is empty.
Truly intelligent navigation
In terms of navigation intelligence, the Roborock S6 MaxV keeps almost all its promises. This is expressed on several levels. First, the mapping it delivers in the application is precise. In the field, the robot is able to cover absolutely the entire surface entrusted to it with care and quickly. If desired, it can be passed twice or even three times in the same room to ensure that it is spotless. In addition, the S6 MaxV visualizes very well the location of parts and objects, approaching furniture gently without ever knocking violently. The precision of its navigation system particularly impressed us when it tackled the cleaning of the ground under our round table by going around its feet as well as those of four chairs, without slowing down, without hesitating and without leaving areas.
We noticed that his laser rangefinder was particularly sensitive. For example, the robot refrained from going under our sofa, when it had the place and knowing that most robot vacuum cleaners slip into it without fear.
Likewise, a curtain that descends a little lower is enough so that it does not venture too close to the window or a jacket casually thrown over a back of a chair whose sleeve falls close to the ground so that ‘it does not pass there.
Except under the furniture, in most cases, its long rubber brush fills these hesitations, however.
And what about object recognition?
The Roborock S6 MaxV being the first model of the brand to carry a dual front camera which allows it to recognize objects, we were especially curious to test this function, without giving it any gifts.
As soon as we put objects in his path that he was able to recognize, he identified them, indicated in the application by small icons and even photographed (the real photos can be disabled if desired). He went around them without incident. Whether we put on flip flops, ankle boots or sneakers, he was always able to recognize shoes. Likewise, he was able to identify electrical cables and multiple sockets. We will forgive him for his only error of interpretation, which consisted in taking a boxing glove for a shoe.
As for our bathroom scale, which he should nevertheless identify as promised in the press release, he didn’t care. Not only did he not identify it, he even got on it. An experience which had the merit of proving that the S6 MaxV is rather of the all-terrain type. He managed to get in there and didn’t get stuck on it – reassuring for the slightly raised door sills.
On the other hand, we also placed in his path objects that he could not recognize, among which a makeup bag and more surprising, the bowls of our cats. He got around them well. However, he did not report them to us and did not take a photo. The fact that he knows how to deal with these obstacles is completely reassuring. This confirms that he is able to cope in a domestic environment. But it is a shame that he does not take photos of the unknown objects, which he is however supposed to do since the last update. Because it is fun to know that he saw and avoided a shoe in the entrance, but in the long run it becomes a bit of a gadget. It would be more interesting to understand systematically which object bothers him to properly clean a room.
Complete, almost exhaustive application
The S6 MaxV has a few buttons that allow you to start cleaning and access the basic functions, but you obviously exploit the full potential of such a robot by connecting it.
The application soberly called Roborock is very complete. There are indications such as the level of charge of the battery, the status of the robot and especially a precious map of the housing. There are many possibilities for personalization: cleaning a single room, a single zone or the entire housing, adjusting the suction intensity and the quantity of water in the washing mode, choosing the order in which the parts are cleaned, assigning a mode for each of the parts, obviously programming the robot in detail (days, times, parts, modes), initiating localized cleaning, defining a prohibited area or redefining the cutting of the parts.
Indeed, a single pass is enough for the robot to establish a complete map of the accommodation. He then proposed a fairly logical and relevant breakdown of the pieces, each piece being identified by a color. It is possible to merge two rooms or to re-cut them so that the mapping corresponds perfectly to living spaces or cleaning needs. Too bad the application does not offer to name these pieces, which would make it easier to locate.
In addition, it is possible to enlarge this map by zooming, but not to rotate it. This could come in handy for people who have a rough sense of direction. We admit having turned our phone in all directions to correctly identify each of the rooms in our apartment in order to recut them.
Finally, the application provides valuable maintenance information: condition of the filter, brushes (side and main) and sensors. Roborock even assesses how many hours the robot can still operate before cleaning these elements. Besides, the maintenance is rather easy. The central brush is easily dislodged. As for the side brush, it is screwed, but being made of rubber, it does not specially hang animal hair or hair.