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Roborock S8 series: 8 best features and key differences

Roborock S8 Series C

The robotic vacuum market is getting rocked by the arrival of the Roborock S8, S8+ and S8 Pro Ultra robots. Here are their big features.

Over the last decade, Roborock has carved out a reputation for being the best robot vacuum cleaner brand on the market. Finder recently attended the launch event for the company's latest entry into Australia. The experience included some hands-on time with the product, demonstrations and an opportunity to talk to staff from the company about their motivations with the new product.

Roborock S8 Series 1

Roborock S8 series Australian launch date

The Roborock S8, S8+ and S8 Pro Ultra launch in Australia on May 5.

How much is the Roborock S8?

The Roborock S8 retails for $1,299 in Australia, while the S8+ is $1,899. At $2,699 the Roborock S8 Pro Ultra is a significantly bigger investment, but it comes with features to match as I will document below.

I did ask about whether you could buy just the dock – for example, if you wanted a dock upstairs and one downstairs, but only the single robot vacuum. This is not currently an option.

Roborock S8 vs S8+ vs S8 Pro Ultra

The new Roborock S8 series comes in 3 variants, so what's the difference between them?

The S8 and the S8+ are effectively the same robot vacuum. The difference is the S8+ comes with a docking station that the vacuum will return to and self-empty its collected dust. It can do this for up to seven weeks before you need to empty the bags. This time depends on how often you use the vacuum and the state of your floors.

Many of the key features can be found in both these models. Notably the DuoRoller Brush, the industry leading 6000Pa suction power, the VibraRise mopping system and 3D obstacle avoidance.

The S8 Pro Ultra, on the other hand, steps things up again. And indeed, when you pick it up you can feel it's got more weight, a greater girth and a different look underneath to its compatriots. Functionally, this has a lot to do with the mopping feature. It uses VibraRise 2.0, a double sonic mopping feature for a wider, more thorough and efficient clean.

The DuoRoller Riser Brush on the Pro Ultra, and the mop itself, can be lifted independently of each other, too. So, the mop can be up while doing carpet, and the brushes up while doing wood floors, should you please. This reduces cross-contamination, assuming your carpet has pile height 5mm or less.

The S8 Pro Ultra also has a significantly different dock. It's bigger, so that's something to take note of, but that's because there are dirty water and clean water tanks in addition to the dust bin. When the Roborock S8 Pro Ultra returns to its dock, dirty water is emptied, fresh water is added, and then it even dries the mop with hot air to stop mould gathering.

roborock S8 series 2

Top 8 features of Roborock S8 series

  1. The DuoRoller Brush technology: With two rubber brushes now below the robot, turning in towards each other, we should see a big improvement in its ability to pick up smaller objects. Most notably, pet hair, with collection said to have improved by 30%.
  2. 6000 Pa HyperForce suction: By comparison, the previous S7 series came in at 2500 Pa and the S7 Max series that followed at 5100 Pa, so the numbers speak for themselves. You're getting a lot more power out of your Roborock robot vacuum cleaner, which when combined with the DuoRoller Brush, makes a huge difference.
  3. Mopping 2.0: While the S8 and S8+ use similar mopping technology to the last iteration - sonic vibrations to the tune of 3000 times per minute and 6 Newton pressure - the S8 Pro Ultra really steps things up. A second vibration point on the mop effectively doubles the effect, the company called in Vibrarise 2.0. The self-drying technology on its dock is also a new feature.
  4. Quieter: The S8 will reportedly operate at 55 decibels, which isn't too far off the S7 Max series, but a fair drop from the 68 decibels we saw with the original S7 release.
  5. 3D avoidance detection: Regardless of whether you're using the Roborock S8 series during the day or night, using PreciSense LIDAR Navigation, it can detect up to 42 different objects as a 3D shape, and avoid these while doing its set routines.
  6. Software upgrade: The app is a key part of the robot vacuum experience, and amongst a number of upgrades, 2 highlights include the ability to place no-go zones on your map, and for auto-mapping to be completed 6 times faster.
  7. Faster charging: You can now expect your Roborock to fast charge 30% quicker, which is handy for those with bigger homes. You can set it to only charge during off-peak times, too.
  8. Service centre expansion: While we hope nothing goes wrong with your Roborock vacuum cleaner, if it does, servicing the tech will be a lot easier. Previously, there was only one centre in Sydney, but in 2023 new centres will also open in Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth.

roborock S8 series 3

Roborock S8 series Impressions

While my time with the Roborock S8 series vacuum cleaners wasn't enough to warrant a review, this latest entry clearly moves the brand forward in compelling ways. Especially in the S8 Pro Ultra. Better brushes, mopping and suction power all point to a more thorough clean, driven by a smarter AI that better adjusts to the intricacies of any given home.

My time with the demonstrations suggested it was intuitive to use the app and to really customise the performance of the Roborock robot vacuum. And its ability to pick up small objects, and mop liquids, was impressive, albeit in a setting created by the manufacturer.

Our only initial disappointments are the over-reliance on bags that cannot be reused (not easily at least) and an intolerance to using non-Roborock cleaning fluids in the mop's water.

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