Dolphin 300i/30i vs Premier/M400

lifeforce416

New member
Mar 10, 2021
4
Oklahoma
Hey everyone, my wife and I are looking at buying a cleaner for our pool this weekend and have narrowed it down a few models. I was hoping you could help us decide which one would be a better investment for us. We currently have a 30,000 gallon kidney pool and have been struggling with keeping it clean during our schedules. Last summer we had a large algae problem because our schedule wouldn't allow us enough time to manually clean the pool. We are hoping having a Dolphin will help us keep up with the maintenance. Anyways we have spoken to different pool companies and searched the internet but it has been hard to find good reviews for them. Below are the models we are looking at. Hopefully some of yall had some experience with these models and can help us decide.

Dolphin Active 30/300- Like the bigger basket and jet motors
Dolphin Active 30i/300i- interested in the additional cleaning modes (pool store told us the 30i wasn't worth the extra money vs the 30)
Dolphin Premier/M400- Don't like the small baskets but seems to clean better?
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
15,976
Evans, Georgia
Hiya Lifeforce.... you've come to the right place! For that size pool a Dolphin Active 30 would be great. I have read here that some folks find the bluetooth on the 30i to be a bit irritating.
If you give Margaret or Seth a call at Marina Pools in Colorado they can help you zero in on the robot that's perfect for your pool, and their prices can't be beat. That's where most of us here at TFP get our 'bots.

One thing you have to rememeber is the cleaning the pool is mechanical.....whereas testing and maintaining sanitation is chemical. Just vacuuming the pool won't keep algae at bay.... chlorine is what you need for that. ABCs of Pool Water Chemistry
How are you chlorinating your pool?? Do you have a *proper* test kit? We can help you with that algae problem if we get a bit more info.

Holler!

Maddie :flower:
 
  • Like
Reactions: Mdragger88

Jimrahbe

Mod Squad
TFP Expert
LifeTime Supporter
Jul 7, 2014
21,157
Bedford, TX
416,

I currently have both the Dolphin S200 and the Premier.. Both clean equally well, but the difference in the two is like night a day..

The S200 has a large top side basket, the Premier has two dinky bottom loading filters.
The S200 has an all new design with ease of access to all the parts.. The Premier is not even close, and is designed around 20 year old Dolphin Diagnostic..
The S200 cleans just as well as the S300 or S300i.. You just don't have to pay for bells and whistles that you will most likely never really use anyway..
The S200 has no floating handle, the Premier does.. The handle on the Premier helps it tilt to scrub the waterline tile.. The S200 just shoot water out the side and does a much better job cleaning the waterline tile.
That said.. my two S200's are just over a year old, so time will tell, while the Premier is 6 or 7 years old and still working fine. I did have to replace the tracks a few months ago.

Thanks,

Jim R.
 

scdaren

Gold Supporter
Bronze Supporter
May 20, 2018
465
Clovis, CA
Pool Size
15000
Surface
Plaster
Chlorine
Liquid Chlorine
I got the Pentair Warrior SI, which is the same as the S300, but costs less and is a different color. The Bluetooth is a waste of money, I've used it one time, and have had no use for it since.

Just get the S200/Active 20/Warrior SE, whichever you can get the best deal on. Marina will sell and ship you the Warrior SE for $699 out the door, which is a pretty great deal.

Also, spend some more time here learning about maintaining your water and algae control. It's extremely unlikely that your algae came just from lack of brushing, much more likely that it was a combination of too high CYA and not enough chlorine. If your chemistry continues to be a problem, the robot will not prevent algae.
 

lifeforce416

New member
Mar 10, 2021
4
Oklahoma
Skippy,
Thanks for the advice of reaching out to Margaret! Their prices are definitely alot cheaper than my local store.... by $300-400 dollars! She helped answer alot of my questions and helped us narrow it down to the s300 or s300i. As far as the algae goes, we were able to get it under control by the end of the summer. Were not expecting the robots to solve the algae problem, just help us not get behind on the cleaning part. This was our first summer so we had a bit of a learning curb. By the end of season, getting the water balance wasn't a problem, it was just finding enough time in the week to keep it properly cleaned.

Jim,
We had considered the 200 first but decided it was basically the same price as the s300 after you buy the caddy. Since we were going to get a caddy no matter what, it just made since to use to go with the s300 models and pay almost the same amount as the s200+caddy. My wife is still thinking the different cleaning modes are worth the upgrade from the s300 to s300i. I don't know if those additional cleaning modes are really worth it? (Regular, floors only, walls & waterline, deep/ultra clean modes). I saw it comes with a remote control on your phone and some other bonuses but outside of the different modes, we don't expect to ever use the other add ons. My dad has a premier and has loved it for the past 6+ years as well, which is why we were considering it.


I guess the last question my wife and I have before we order one this weekend is are the extra cleaning modes on the s300i worth it, especially the deep/ultra clean mode, when compared to the s300?
 

YippeeSkippy

Mod Squad
LifeTime Supporter
Jan 17, 2012
15,976
Evans, Georgia
I don't have those options but I can sort of dig the idea of running just walls or just floor at times. My water line gets dusty and the cleaner works great on that.

Maddie :flower:
 

lifeforce416

New member
Mar 10, 2021
4
Oklahoma
Can I ask why you've decided to go 300 vs M400?

We liked the 300 because of the basket, cleaning modes and how it performed after demoing it. The M400 did a great job also but I was not a fan of the smaller basket setup, design, or lack of cleaning modes. I did like how well it suctioned though. The part that pretty much convinced us after talking to Margarette was the the m400 design going to be discontinued/fazed out and switching to more of the m600 and active/s series designs. Because of that we decided to go with something that would line up to the future direction of what dolphin is doing.
 
  • Like
Reactions: BowserWowser

Enjoying this content?

Support TFP with a donation.

Give Support