There is an interesting pattern emerging from the Dolphin robotic pool cleaner stable. The Deluxe 4 has been covered here in brief before, in my review of the Discovery. It is not the only clone in the hen house though, as Dolphin seem to have minor variants of all their builds in a variety of online and offline retailers. I imagine this is to get around the exclusivity deals made with said retailers, and while it might not be too great a thing for them to have the same bot available from a rival, it can only be a great thing for us, the consumer.
The Deluxe 4, as I mentioned before, is a riff on the Discovery, and that bot was fully featured, if a little on the expensive side. Let’s see if the Deluxe 4 can change my opinion on the build. The Deluxe 4 has a few extra minor features over the Discovery, but we lose a few things too, most obvious of which is the remote control options. I’m always enthused by a remote control bot, but I realize that it is not strictly necessary.
So let’s break this bot down, see the changes made and make sure it is still worth the asking price.
Maytronics Dolphin Deluxe 4 Design and Build Quality
There are a few things you can be certain of when buying a Dolphin robotic pool cleaner. The first is the feature set, it really is very impressive what comes as standard, and the second is the quality of the build. All Dolphin robotic pool cleaners are fit well, and the Deluxe 4 is no exception. The fit of the parts is flush and you will noticed no rattle when you get it out of the box. Lower quality builds do have rattle, as a result of their poorly fitted components. If your Dolphin build makes noise when it’s not supposed to it is a sign of a hardware fault.
As to the look of the build, I am flabbergasted. Who choose this color scheme? It looks like a toy, and not in the good way. Granted, the look of the build is of little importance, but when you have the choice between the Deluxe 4, with its garish color scheme and the Discovery, which looks much nicer in blue, then I don’t think many will opt for this one. Unless it is cheaper than the Discovery then you have to buy it.
Overall a great build marred by a ludicrous color scheme. As I said, if it is cheaper than the Discovery then go for it, it does everything you want it to do, and you can always make it wear the robotic pool cleaner equivalent of a paper bag over its head.
Maytronics Dolphin Deluxe 4 Features and Specs
A fair step up from the Deluxe 3, the Deluxe 4 is packed full of features, both useful and well implemented. All Dolphin pool cleaners come with a core set of skills that are fantastic too, so let’s get those out of the way first. This is an in ground pool cleaner, so if you have an above ground pool check out my Aquabot cleaner reviews. It comes with a 60′ cable that uses patented swivel cable tech. Swivel cables are tangle resistant, and I have seen them used sparingly with other firms. If you have owned a robotic pool cleaner in the past then you know that a tangled cable is the number one reason for a cycle stop, with acorns being a close second. I love this feature, and am always happy to see it.
The average cycle time for this bot is 2.5 hours, but there is a speedy 1 hour option for emergencies. the on board pump is robust, able to filter 4,322 gallons of water an hour. Our bottom mounted scrubbing brushes are the finer kid this time, so they clean hard, and deep, removing grout from the tile line. If you have a tile bottomed pool cleaner then be sure to buy accordingly. Not only do they clean the floor well, but this bot can make that 90 degree transition to the pool wall, climbing to the top cleaning as it goes. Why this feature isn’t standard with other firms I will never know.
Now to the bonus round, and the features here are impressive. First we have the full filter indicator and the weekly timer. they work in unison making it so you don;t have to take it out of the pool until it is completely full. The bot also comes with a caddy, for easy storage. Mostly what we see here are the time saving features, the Deluxe 4 lacks remote control options, so if that is a must have feature for you then you will have to look elsewhere. If you take a look at my reviews be sure to click on anything that says Plus or RC, that should be what you’re looking for.
In all a well rounded bot, with a nice focus on ease of use. The core dolphin features make sure that your pool is cleaned well and the bells and whistles on this one save you time in the long run. An excellent little package.
Maytronics Dolphin Deluxe 4 Ease of Use
I prefer my electronics to be as easy to use as is possible. There are a few robotic pool cleaner builds out there that are extremely difficult to use. The kind without internal pumps and require interfacing with your pools pump for example. I am not a fan, which is why I focus on the easier to use products. The Deluxe 4 is very simple to get to grips with. Just plug it in, set the cycle and drop it in the pool, could not be easier. Now, there are a few issue with the core design of this build, which it shares with the Discovery, so let’s break those down.
The biggest issue with the Deluxe 4 in my opinion is the weight of the build. Granted, it does come with a caddy and the handle is nice and big, but it doesn’t completely remove the problem of getting it in and out of a pool. Next is the bottom loading filter bag chamber. I hate having to flip the whole machine over to change the bag. It makes a task that is easy just that little more annoying. The use of a filter bag is a minor problem too, as having to be extra careful when fitting it takes a little more time. There is a handy conversion kit available, and I suggest you get it, cartridges are much more efficient.
Maytronics Dolphin Deluxe 4 Pricing, Value, & Discounts
I tend to think of the price section as the most important bit. I have fallen in love with a product in the past only to find the asking price so unreasonable that I stopped caring. Well I was utterly surprised by the price range of thew Deluxe 4. $600 to $800 range for this bot. That is astounding to me. All the features of an entry level bot with a few extras on top, at an entry level price? How the Deluxe 3 retails for the same price is beyond me. Remember to look out for the Dolphin Discovery as well, and find the best price. I always say that any robotic pool cleaner will have paid for itself in free time within a year, but I have to lower the timescale for this one. Great bargain here.
The other cost to consider is the price per cycle. Now this will vary from place to place, as the price per kilowatt hour does differ, and Maytronics have not released the power consumption information on their bots, but I can still make a fairly accurate estimation. On average a cycle should cost around 10c, plus or minus 5c. Not a huge sum to be honest, but when you buy a new piece of tech the running costs will add up over time. Better then I think to consider them early.
Now to the warranty. I usually break down the warranty piece by piece to find its value. I did it with the Aquabot line, proving that while their full coverage warranty is great, their Limited warranty is significantly less so. I cannot do this for the bumper to bumper warranty offered by Maytronics on their Dolphin line. they have yet to send it to me. I emailed them regarding it a while ago, so I don’t know why it is taking so long. When they send the info then I will update this article, and all the other articles too. All I can say about it is that it is for 36 months, and bumper to bumper usually covers both parts and labor.
Maytronics Dolphin Deluxe 4 Conclusion
Well, this was a pleasant surprise. It is not often that you can get a fully featured bot in this price range. It cleans floor, walls, has a full bag indicator and a weekly timer. In terms of ease of use this ticks all the boxes. The caddy is useful and the handle is nice and long. Now, the look of the bot may leave much to be desired, but at this price I don’t care about looks anymore. Besides, a can of spray paint is cheap,right? There are a few minor issues with the core design, the use of filter bags and the bottom loading filter chamber, but they are minor. And you can convert this bot to accept filter cartridges. In all a great build.
- Works out of the box, no need to connect it to a pool pump.
- Cleans walls and the tile line
- Remote control options.
- Extremely low price for what you get
- A whole host of features usually seen in more expensive builds.
- Warranty info is light on the ground.
- Bottom loading filter