On to a new series of bots, and I am in somewhat familiar territory with the Greek line. I spent last week pouring over the stand alones, all great bots to be sure, but it is nice to be able to have another look at Maytronics three tired system, .The Atlantis, Apollo and Apollo Plus all fall into the usual niches. An entry level machine, a mid range device and a high end build. The Apollo vanilla is the mid range, and the features on offer here are impressive.
At its core, the Dolphin range comes with some amazing features, some of which are far from standard with other companies. So when you rise through the ranks of their builds you will see some very high end features on mid range, and well priced, devices. If I were to compare this to another bot in the Dolphin range it would have the be the DX4, if only for the filter bag system they both use, but I have some interesting news in that department. You’ll have to read down to the ease of sue section, but the Greek bots have a feature not seen in other builds.
So let’s dig deep, find out if the Apollo blazes like the sun.
Maytronics Dolphin Apollo Design and Build Quality
If the product is name brand, if the brand has a range of products available and has been in business for a few years you can be assured of the quality of the build. Maytronic would be ruined if they released a bad product. You will find the parts of this build fit flush, the plastic used is to a high standard and there is no rattle. I have noticed with low grade pool cleaners that when shaken they will have significant give, so when you receive your new pool cleaner give it a short shake, if it is noisy, then you have a defect. Design wise I like this one. The yellow is a bold choice, but the smooth transition from cylinder tread to the chassis looks great. The large easy to reach handle is a nice touch too.
At the end of the day I don’t review bad products. Whether you should buy this or not will depend entirely on the features, and price.
Maytronics Dolphin Apollo Features and Specs
On to the insides, and s is usually the case in a Dolphin build there is a lot to be impressed by here. It comes with all the features seen in the Atlantis bot, so let’s get those out of the way first. An in ground pool cleaning robot, with a 60′ swivel cable, the Apollo is designed for use in pools of up to 50′ in length. That swivel cable is tangle resistant, making it unlikely that this build will be stopped mid cycle. Many robotic pool cleaners suffer from tangling issues, so it is nice to see that detail here. In addition to cleaning the pool floors with its bottom mounted brushes, this little bot can make that 90 degree transition to the pool wall. It really is a must have feature in my eyes. If you are looking in general, bear in mind that a cylinder based propulsion system is much more likely to be able to climb the pool wall than a wheeled solution.
The new features present here are the full bag indicator and a remote control.; It is also a little faster than the Atlantis. The full bag indicator makes the weekly timer function actually worth something, as you now don’t have to take the thing out of the water to see if it’s full. The remote is very basic though, allowing you to set cycle options and little else. Most versions of the Apollo do come with a caddy though, making it easy to move and store the bot, and at 22 pound dry you will be getting some use out of that caddy. The pump here is the standard Maytronics Dolphin high powered pump, capable of filtering 4,233 gallons of water every hour.
Overall this is a nice upgrade over the Atlantis. The new features are all handy, even if the remote control options are limited, and the core feature set is up to Dolphins usual high standard. If I were to pass judgement right now then it would be easy to recommend this bot, but we haven’t come to the price yet.
Maytronics Dolphin Apollo Ease of Use
I like a robotic pool cleaner to be easy to use. there are options on the market that are not, they require external pumps and a lot of set up before they can even be used, and even then they still require manual cleaning. The Apollo is an all in one unit. The pump is built in, and as I have previously mentioned is a powerful 4,322 gallon per hour beast. There are a few things that makes this a little more difficult to use than the Atlantis, such as the addition of some remote options, but at its core this is a plug and play device.
Getting the hang of the remote control is easy enough, but does add complexity to the build. My biggest issue with this is the bottom loading filter bag. I am not a fan of filter bags in general, but the fact that you have to flip the whole thing over to clean it out is an unnecessary difficulty. There is an interesting feature unique to the Greek line that i have to bring up here. They all have a filter mesh conversion kit, so if you are like me and dislike the filter bag you can change it. This is not a feature I have encountered before.
Maytronics Dolphin Apollo Pricing, Value, & Discounts
Well I am disappointed. When I first checked this bot out I was very pleased with it. The feature set is robust, the build quality is high, there is a lot to praise here. But the price is far too high. I always shop around, it’s why I provide a price range rather than a flat price. This bot falls into the $1000 to $1200 range. While I have already said the feature set is great, it does not warranty that price. The vast majority of robotic pool cleaners are fairly priced, and all of them free up your time, thus paying you back in the long term, but to pay this back to you in time would take far too long for me to call it worth it.
The other cost to consider, if you can find this at a good price, is the cost to run a cycle. With Aquabot products I was able to provide more exact figures here, but seen as Maytronics has not released the power consumption information, so I am forced to guess. Assume a base power consumption of around 180 W and factor that into your local cost per kilowatt hour. Should be around 10c per cycle give or take a nickel. Not a huge sum, but one that adds up, and so should be considered.
I love a good warranty, and a big part of my job is to wade through them. If I discover something I don’t like then I inform. With the Aquabot range i was able to expose the shoddy Limited warranty. but I cannot do that with Maytronics Dolphin warranties, as they have not given it to me. I have contacted them requesting their full warranty, but as yet they have not released it to me. As it stands I cannot judge the value of their 24 month bumper to bumper warranty in full. I will update this review when they do send me the information.
Maytronics Dolphin Apollo Conclusion
Oh so close to being able to recommend this one. If the price were more reasonable I could recommend it easily, and if you find it in the sub $1000 range then by all means consider it sincerely. Right now, no. Dolphin themselves offer better products at lower prices, better to look into the Supreme or even the DX range if this is the feature set you want.
- Automatic, requires no supervision.
- Anti tangle cable
- Cleans walls
- Weekly timer function
- Remote options
- Full bag indicator is nice touch
- Bottom loading filter
- Warranty info is light on the ground.
- The Greek range is far too expensive