in my testing....I would say that the M5 truly is the best of the best. the 3rd higher speed brush, top loading cartridge filter and the split drive motors on the m5 make it the best. I am using the M4's for my customers...and this was after extensive testing of other dolphin models, smartpool nitros, and some other private labeled maytronic units.
the cartridge is really easy to hose off and taking it out the top makes it even easier. No comparison to the old bags.
The aquabot viva (european made) was a great unit back when I had one about 6 years ago. Rock solid.
But, the trend is going towards units that can be repaired easily for not a ton of money. The aquabot viva still uses the very expensive motors, etc...and isn't too easy to work on.
In the past 2 weeks, I've had 5 different cleaners at my pool to test out for my customers. I've also had some of my employees test them out.
without exception, the ones with the cartridges were the most favored. The m5 was killer, but a little too expensive for me to give to all of my customers as standard...and also more than most need.
The pentair 830 was really nice too. It had all the features of the M4 except for the 3rd brush and the top load cartridge. The 830 also came with a remote as standard the it was optional on the m4. But for the extra money, I thought the m4 was worth it.
One of the important items in my test was to see how much Crud went back into the water when pulling the cleaner out. Here are my results of the top 3
pentair 820/830 dolphin endeavor - all work the same. cartridge on bottom with a mechanical flap. it works decently, but not 100% perfect. some of the dirty water still comes out if you take it out normally..but not terrible. if you flip it over, there is no problem. But the 820 was hard to flip over because of the lack of handle.
Smartpool scrubber - had a flap that opened on the front that allowed the water to escape, but still let a little bit of dirt out if you didn't flip it.
dolphin m4. when I saw how this was designed, I was very skeptical. it is a cloth bag over the dirt inlet flap rather than a spring loaded door. The top of the back has a weight that makes it fold over when the cleaner isn't on. (sort of like those old change purses your grandmother used to carry...when you pushed them, they open.) When I saw this, I knew it wouldn't work. but...shockingly..it was the best. it lest the water flow through the fabric but not the dirt. This was the best performer of all of them. I've only tested it about 5 cycles, but so far, i haven't had any dirt blow back.
I have the Dolphin Deluxe 4, the Leslie's only bot. The bag is a major pain in the butt, I can only imagine the cartridges are far easier to handle. Adjusting the handle does make a big difference in how it tracks the pool and climbs the walls. I have mine set with one float in and one float out. Also, the wall climing for you may improve as the air works its way out of the robot. When mine first goes in, it won't climb the wall completely as the air in the system will cause it to fall away from the wall and go to the floor. After a while, all is good.
Also, mine will dump dirt back into the pool if I take it out slowly. I have to get the handle to the water's surface, then yank it out quickly and in one motion.
Wishes for mine? Cartridges, a daily timer, and remote control. Sounds like the M5 is the way to go.
Note that the Dolphin Deluxe 5 from Leslies also includes cartridge option....although, one must deal with the fact that leslies mostly sells the deluxe 4 and many of the stores are not that knowledgeable about the deluxe 5 - especially the cartridge option. I went with it though.....I wasn't too comfortable with the responsiveness of the other local maytronics resellers here in san diego so no matter which way I went I was going to end up handling nearly all issues on my own. So far, the deluxe 5 is working well.
So, I'm new to the forum, but this is the ONLY place that a Google search revealed ANY information on the Dolphin Premier. I have narrowed my choice in robotic cleaner to the Premier, the M4 or the M5. Any thoughts? I have a free form pool....about 26,000 gallons....PebbleTec surface. I am having a hard time deciding between these models as I see more similarities than differences. All of them now have a remote option. All of them have Caddys. All of them have the top loading filters. HELP!!!!
I am new here and tried to post a reply to this thread but it ended up as a seperate thread. I have the same questions as jmbeaver and dmrap on the Dolphin Premier. Looking at the Maytronics site this unit looks to be a top of the line residential model. I am planning to buy one from poolexpress but would really like to hear some feedback first. Base on the Maytronics site this unit seems every bit as good as the Dolphin Supreme M5... maybe better with the multi-media options. Anybody have any feedback? Thanks.
SCP has an exclusive on those cleaners, so they don't have as much of a presence as some of their other models.
I currently have an M4 and and M5 in my pool that I am evaluating. After 3 weeks of testing, I can say they are the 2 best cleaners I have ever used (and I've tested about 20 or so over the past few years.)
Differences? the m4 and m5 are exactly the same (top load cartridge, extra high speed 3rd cleaning brush) in almost all areas except the following:
m4 does not come with a remote but you can buy a basic remote for it for around $80
m5 comes with an advanced remote that lets you choose wall scrubbing, ultra clean, and other cleaning modes.
m5 has split drive brushes so it can turn at a zero radius (like a tank) and the remote can easily control it
m4 does not have split drive brushes so when using the remote, it doesn't turn as nicely as it is a much wider radius turn.
m4 has a daily/weekly timer on the power supply so that it will turn on automatically every day/week etc. M5 does NOT have this
m5 does have a delay start (to start the cleaner 1 hour or so after you turn it on.) M4 doesn't have this.
the m5 also costs alot more due to the extra drive motors in the split brushes for the great turning ability. But unless you really really need to control your cleaner's location precisely from the remote control, I don't think giving up the weekly timer feature is worth it.
we will be using the m4 for the pools we build for our customers.
any other questions, feel free to call or email me.