This Roomba model comparison guide will cover the many details and differences between each model. Hopefully having this information all in one place will help you decide which model is right for you. These machines offer a ton of convenience, especially being able to schedule them to run at certain times when you may be out of the house. This gives you one less chore to deal with each week so you can spend time doing something you enjoy.
Relegating a task such as this to a robot presents a few issues. The real question is how well they perform and whether they’re worth the price. Can it really replace a common vacuum cleaner? Let’s jump right into the first model on our list and break down the functionality. Be sure to check out the deal section at the bottom of the page as well to find the latest prices and offers.
December 2019 Update: The prices can fluctuate frequently so I’d recommend clicking the links below to view the latest prices and offers on Amazon. At least add the item to your cart to see a total price with any fees/deals. You don’t want to leave the site without seeing this newest deal!
The Roomba 650 is considered the entry-level model and happens to be the company’s best-selling robotic vacuum for a reason. As with all of these models I’m talking about today, it offers self-charging, which means the machine will automatically return to the base station to recharge its own batteries. There’s also a scheduling functionality which allows you to set a specific time for the machine to run, up to 7 times a week. I’m not sure who would need it to run that frequently but who knows how dirty your place may get I suppose. I should mention that you can also press a button on the machine to manually run it whenever you want.
The three-stage cleaning system is the AeroVac Series 1 variant. It includes a dirt detection feature which is also Series 1. This uses acoustic sensors to detect dirt on the ground. Once that happens the Roomba will then focus its cleaning on that spot. It’ll run multiple passes until your entire floor is clean. Roomba has improved on this even further with later versions.
As far as air filtration goes, it comes equipped with a standard AeroVac filter, which isn’t quite as good as the HEPA filters on the pricier models. On the accessories front, you’ll receive 1 Virtual Wall and 1 brush cleaning tool. The Virtual Wall device lets you prevent the machine from going into a specific area in your home.
Roomba 770/Roomba 780
Both of these models are very similar, which you might expect based on their numbering. They both utilize the newer AeroVac Series 2 cleaning system and are equipped with HEPA filters. The dirt detection mode is Series 2 with a special “Persistent Pass Cleaning”. This uses acoustic AND optical sensors to detect dirt and debris on the floor. It’ll go back-and-forth over a spot until it considers it clean.
The Roomba 770 comes with 2 Virtual Walls and the Roomba 780 comes with 2 Virtual Lighthouses. These Lighthouses are more advanced than the standard Walls. To simplify them, the Walls prevent the machine from crossing into another room; the Lighthouses act as a gate, letting the machine into another room only when the previous room has been cleaned.
The accessories also vary a bit between these models. Both include a convenient remote control to use with the machine. With the 770 you’ll receive 2 Virtual Walls and 2 different brush cleaning tools. On the 780 you get 2 Virtual Lighthouses, the same brushes on the 770 plus an additional brush set, and an extra filter set.
Roomba 870/Roomba 880
The Roomba 870 and Roomba 880 both use a newer AeroForce three-stage cleaning system that provides up to a 50% boost to their cleaning performance. There’s also a second generation motor inside which makes this vacuum 5x more powerful than the 600/700 series. The air filters included are HEPA-style filters which trap particles as small as 1 micron. They both have extended batteries installed that last up to twice as long as lower models. That should be great news for anyone that has a larger home to clean.
There are a few differences between them though. The 870 model only comes with 2 Virtual Walls while the 880 has 2 Virtual Lighthouses and a wireless command center remote control. Whether the multi-room functionality is worth it will be up to you. Since they’re virtually maintenance free there aren’t any brushes included. You do get an additional large HEPA filter with your purchase though.
Now we’re at the highest-end model, the current top of the line Roomba. It’s equipped with iAdapt 2.0 Navigation and will create visual landmarks from its optical sensors so it doesn’t lose track of where it is. This machine will clean an entire level of your home and can run continuously, for up to two hours. If the battery starts to run low before it finishes, it’ll return to its charging station to recharge and automatically resume vacuuming once it’s ready again.
There’s also an app available for your phone so you can control the Roomba no matter where you are. Imagine you’re at work and forgot to schedule the machine to run. Just bring up the app and tell it to start cleaning immediately over your wifi network! You can even schedule cleaning times from the app as well. It’s really a nice convenience being able to have so much control over your devices.
The Roomba 980 has the AeroForce cleaning system from the 800 series but is also paired with a third generation motor for outstanding performance. There’s a feature called “carpet boost” which will increase the air power up to 10x the amount to remove dirt and dust wherever it’s hiding. This is easily the most powerful Roomba so far.
You’ll receive two sensors called the Dual Mode Virtual Wall Barrier with this model. These are similar to the original Wall device but they have a new “Halo mode”. When this is activated the Roomba will keep a distance of 4-feet from wherever the barrier is placed. It’s perfect for protecting something or keeping it out from underneath an area you don’t want it to go.
Overall the iRobot Roomba vacuums all perform really well and do a great job at freeing up your time. Even the Roomba 650 offers wonderful performance and functionality. It’s easy to see why it’s the best selling model, even if it lacks some of the nice features from the other ones. They’re all convenient machines that allow you stop worrying about an annoying chore.
How about we do a quick estimate together. Let’s say you spend around half an hour vacuuming each week, and there are 52 weeks in a year. That’s a total of 1,560 minutes or 26 hours, you could potentially free up. Think of the better ways you’d rather spend that time.
I should quickly mention that all of these models include intelligent sensors to prevent them from falling down the stairs. They have internal components calculating all sorts of things, like checking for dirt or something. In my opinion, they can replace a regular vacuum while offering a nice bit of convenience. You’ll ultimately be the one to decide which model is right for you. Compare the various features and see which one fits your needs and budget.
Current Roomba Offers
Please visit the links below to view current prices and deals that are currently running. Amazon tends to have many of these available so I’d recommend checking them out. Add one to your cart to see a total with any tax or offers applied. NOTE: They also currently have a certified reconditioned Roomba 650 at a discounted price if you’re willing to consider that.