At first glance, the Shark IONFlex 2X DuoClean and the Dyson V8 vacuums couldn’t be any more different in appearance. The former looks pretty bulky, with a tacked-on pair of LEDs gracing its face and a large canister protruding from the lower half of the grip, almost looking like a tumor of sorts.
Meanwhile, the Dyson gets away with clean, elegant lines; it’s almost as minimalist as hoovers can get. There’s a substantial price difference, too. The Shark model has a competitively lower MSRP than the luxurious Dyson by quite a notch, but as the two are already a few years old, you’ll find them easily trading online for roughly the same prices nowadays. The two models are also both lightweight by design, being as easy to use handheld as you could expect from a cordless vacuum.
Shark IONFlex 2X vs Dyson V8 – Two Luxury Cordless Lightweight Vacuums Compared
So, what makes these two different, and even more importantly, what makes them so competitive? Which should you buy? Let’s find out, shall we?
Okay, so, to begin, let’s analyze the Dyson’s specs a little more closely. The V8—this is the so-called V8 Absolute variant, meaning you get as many extras and additional heads as Dyson could cram into the packaging, as opposed to the cheaper V8 Animal, which comes with less stuff—is Dyson’s range-topper when it comes to cordless hoovers, and it’s easy to see why. Not only can it transform into a really compact handheld vacuum with ease, owing much of that flexibility to the uber-small, yet voluminous dirt bin, not only is it fully HEPA-filtered, and not only does the built-in battery last for up to 40 minutes, making the entire remainder of the vacuum industry seem to be lagging behind in battery tech, but all in all, the Dyson V8 is a really content-rich package. You get two different heads, which you may think doesn’t sound like much, but that’s because none you’ve used were ever as effective as these two.
The standard head is direct-drive and provides supreme suction. Dyson claims its 150% more powerful than their previous and less expensive model in the ‘V’-line, the V6, and they also claim that the V8’s suction mechanism is the strongest one on the market, period.Whether that’s not just the magical power of marketing at work we can’t make out for sure, but the fact remains: It’s one darn good vac, cleaning nearly any surface with ease never before seen. Nearly.
For those exceptional cases, the secondary head comes into play. That one forgoes the standard direct-drive motor for a soft roller that removes large dirt, pieces of debris and anything else that the primary head may have problems with. When used together, the two can clean everything and anything, especially if in conjunction with the optional High Power Mode, which temporarily increases the motor’s power even further than already. When transforming into handheld mode, the two heads can unfortunately not be used—an adapter would’ve been kinda nice, but then again, their bulky size may not have hit the spot with most people, who primarily use handheld vacs to clean tough-to-reach places, not wide, flat areas. As if to make up for that, what Dyson does include is a practical, wall-mounted docking station. Not only is it perhaps the most stylish way we’ve ever seen to store a vacuum cleaner, but it also charges the device. Kudos to whoever came up with that!
Shark ION Flex
Meanwhile, in the other corner of the ring, there’s the Shark IONFlex 2X DuoClean. Apart from possessing a much longer name than the Dyson, it also makes use of some unique features that their oh-so forward-thinking competitor, well, does not. And to clarify between the Shark ION Flex and Shark ION Flex 2x model, both are identical models where the latter comes with an extra battery pack.
The ION Flex 2x features a function dubbed ‘Reach Mode’, which basically activates a number of joints placed along the wand, giving it articulation and the ability to reach behind corners, below desks, tables and chairs and so on. One could almost make the argument that you don’t even need a handheld vac if you’ve got a cordless one that does this, but thankfully, Shark haven’t gone that far and still included a way to transform the Shark IONFlex into a smaller, more compact handheld version of itself. The brush and motor of the Shark, though, are a completely different story. Instead of ingenuity, they instead opted for maximum ease of use and versatility, trying to create a jack of all trades, or, to be more precise, a vacuum of all surfaces. Yes, the advertised transition from floor to carpet and back is ‘easy’ per se, but it’s nowhere near as fluid and effective as the Dyson with its two heads. Then again, when using the Dyson, you constantly have to switch between heads in the first place, while on the 2X, you don’t, so there’s that.
Another noteworthy edge that the IONFlex 2x has is its use of removable battery packs. They give you two of the things out of the box, and coupled with the charging station, that means you can always have some reserve power ready to go—swapping an old battery out for a fresh one is about as time-consuming as doing the same on the remote control for your TV, if not less so—more than making up for the impact that the, compared to the Dyson, slightly low battery life of 30 minutes has on everyday usability.
Where the two vacs really find themselves facing eye-to-eye is on the issue of handling
Both are ridiculously lightweight for cordless standards, especially so in their handheld forms, and both were clearly conceived in a lab that ranked ergonomics very highly, so there’s no strain, stress or pain, even after literal hours on end of hard use. The only possible detriment to the IonFlex in this case that we could make out is the aforementioned, humongous and totally unattractive-looking canister mounted right below where your hand rests on the grip. Thankfully, you don’t really notice its presence in normal use, but it is there, and the same problem was solved by Dyson in a much more elegant and better-looking fashion—just make a smaller container that can still hold an acceptable volume, and make it as easy as possible to open and clean.
In the end, it’s up to you to make the final decision of ‘Which is better?’
While the Dyson may have a more well-renowned brand name, a cleaner design, its powerful motor, charging station and brilliant pair of heads speaking for it, the Shark ION Flex 2x has got its unique Reach Mode, a larger, if not quite as good-looking canister, a more flexible power solution thanks to the swappable batteries and a much lower price tag, at least if you buy from the manufacturer, not marketplaces like Amazon, which often list both the V8 and the 2X for the same amount of money.
Which One You Should Pick Depends Totally on What You Prefer
|Simplicity and Practicality – Shark IONFlex 2X
Refined, High-Tech Efficiency – Dyson V8
|Price – Shark IONFlex 2X
Performance – Dyson V8
|More features – Dyson V8
More Versatility Out of the box, with fewer things to fiddle with – Shark IONFlex 2X
The Choice is Yours!