Pros: Powerful suction, no bags. An amazing feat of marketing.
Cons: One of the most over-hyped, poorly designed things in the great wide world.
I'm sure that the main reason people buy a vacuum is to clean things. Lots of reviews here praise the Dyson for it's suction power, but that is only one part of the equation. In my opinion, the Dyson fails miserably as a design for cleaning things.
Let's start with floors. Many people have noted that while they love their Dyson, it won't go under things. Does it matter that when you're done using the Dyson as an upright, you have to add an attachment and go over the same room again? You tell me.
Now, let's consider those attachments. Starting with the detachable wand. There is some wacky scheme where the rigid part of the vacuum wand slips inside the flexible hose. It's a very efficient way to store the hose and wand, and it looks great! Too bad it doesn't really work.
I can't say enough about how poorly designed this thing is. I just don't know where to start. OK, take the flexible hose. It expands when you pull on it, contracts when it's stored. Again, it sounds like a great idea, but wait! It is so poorly matched to the rest of the vacuum that the suction of the motor forces the hose to contract. The result is like vacuuming with a big spring constantly pulling you back to wherever the Dyson is parked.
Which is a little inconvenient on stairs, for example. Now, if you have no stairs, you might be OK with this. If you do have stairs, and you attempt to clean them from the top down, better anchor your Dyson securely! You'll get about three steps before it wants to jump on top of your poor head.
Oh, even if you don't have stairs, check out the length of the rigid part of the wand. It is made for the vertically challenged. I am only 5'8", yet the entire time I used this (with the separately ordered hard floor attachment) I was bending over. Now, I'm used to vacuums designed for tiny people, but this is the worst yet.
Absolutely the only thing this wand is any good for is doing upper walls and ceilings. I'll give it that. Now, try removing the rigid part of the wand and doing some lampshades, bookshelves, etc. You'd better have two free hands! Not only is there this big spring pulling, pulling, pulling on your arm, but any time you turn or twist the brush attachment, the hose kinks and blocks the suction. You'll need that other hand to hold on to the hose to fight the pull and keep it from kinking. Too bad if there are light or small items on your dresser! At least you'll be able to see them when they hit the dirt in the canister.
OK, now, take a breather. Just look at the thing. It has got to be one of the ugliest designs since the Pontiac Aztec. Nothing makes any sense. When we got ours the assembly required a trip back to the store because the assembly instructions showed the handle aimed the opposite way. Turns out they had modified this at some point and hadn't updated the instruction manual. That's just great for a $25.00 MP3 player, but not so hot for a $500 vacuum. One that you must assemble yourself.
So the handle is on the front of the vac. Where's the on/off switch? Imagine that, it's located so you'll need two hands to turn this thing off and on. It doesn't look like a switch, and it works when you release it. Personally, I've seen this sort of switch function a lot lately, and it sucks. I like switches that activate when you push on them, not when you release them.
Boy does this thing scream PLASTIC! I suppose it's a styling decision, like so much else about it. I don't mind plastic when it's done right, but everything on this feels tentative and flimsy. Latches don't really seem to be latched, and they are hidden among the decorative ridges and gee-gaws so that their purpose is entirely cryptic. Attachments go on with a friction fit, and tend to fall off under beds and chairs and things. I do believe that the type of plastic used in the construction is strong enough, but time will tell about that. We've had it about a year.
Now, that hard floor attachment. Obviously, if you need to get under beds or other furniture, you will need this. Well, it's extra. $500 for a vacuum that requires an extra purchase to make it useful. OK, maybe most people don't have stairs or hardwood floors or use their vacuum to clean their furniture and bookshelves. Otherwise, if you are a wrestler looking to get a workout while you vacuum, this is for you!