We have had a nice break away from pool cleaners this last few weeks, been shaving my face with a variety of different razors and providing you with my findings. But when I discovered the Active series of cleaners from Dolphin I had to get my feet wet yet again. They are amazing.The first Active bot I reviewed I wrote off, it lacked the core feature set for the most part and any money saved would be rendered pointless by the time you would have to invest making up for their shortcomings. Not the case with the latter day Active bots. The Active 20, Active 30 and Active 30i are all fully featured pool cleaners that will do everything you need them to do and more besides.
The Active 30 is the flagship Active bot from Dolphin. There is a slightly better version, the 30i, but the improvements are negligible. This bot seriously impresses me. Not only does it have all the features that you might want, it looks fantastic and its core design is truly amazing and modern.
So let me take the next 1700 words or so and explain exactly why this bot has me so enthused.
Maytronics Dolphin Active 30 Design and Build Quality
I made a few comments a number of weeks back regarding some of Dolphin’s other models, the DX2 to be precise. A wheeled bot is more prone to breaking down. It is part of the reason I am so excited by the Active series. They use treads, and these will drive over anything. A sturdy build this, reminds me of the better Smartpool bots, and they are famed for the quality of their bots.
All clean cleans and understated colors with a single pop blue. Absolutely the best looking build to come out of the Maytronic Dolphin stable.
Maytronics Dolphin Active 30 Features and Specs
I have been reviewing these products from months now. I have learned a lot about their inner workings, and even more about what it takes to make a good cleaner. I have come up with a set of prerequisites for every section in my reviews, and in the features and Specs section there are three must haves.
The Active 30 is an in ground robotic pool cleaner with a 60 ft cable. The cable uses swivel tech to mitigate the tangling that cables tended to be prone to. A tangled cable used to be the number one cause of cycle stoppages, so it is nice to see it here. The on board filter is one of the most powerful on the market.
The break up even clumped debris well and make short work of even algae. There are two different cycle times with the Active 30, 1 hour speed clean and an 2 hour in depth. The speed clean on this machine matches the deep clean in other more expensive bots, I am convinced. I have seen this bot climb from bottom to top, sticking close and cleaning well all the way. If you have a tile bottomed pool you are in luck, as this little bot can also scrub the tile line well, without scouring or damage.
Those featured are shared with the Active 20, so what is the benefit to the 30 I hear you ask? Well, I am glad you did. This little bot comes with a caddy, for ease of transport, and it is remote ready. Bluetooth in fact, so you can control it with your smart phone. It lacks a dual drive motor, so do not expect 1:1 control, but it is good of broadly directing the bot to where it needs to go.
Overall, one of the strongest bots in the entire Dolphin line. It has been too long a time since I have been this impressed with a build from any robotic pool cleaning companies bots.
Maytronics Dolphin Active 30 Ease of Use
There are two core kinds on the market at the moment. The old school external pump system, and the slightly new internal all in one systems.
The difference is in the filter system. The top mounted filter canister used in the Active series is a work of genius. The whole thing can be lifted out, hosed down and slotted back in. There is no issues with cleaning and it can only go back in one way. It is literally the easiest method out there, and one that comes with no annoying repeated actions. The weight of the bot is not enough to cause issue, but it comes with a caddy anyway, in case you do find it a chore lugging it around.
There really isn’t any specific issues with this build.I usually have to rely on minor annoyances in this section ion order to critique, but there are none with the Active 30. It is perhaps the best designed robotic pool cleaner the world has ever seen. I am nonplussed.
Maytronics Dolphin Active 30 Pricing, Value, & Discounts
Here is the only downside to the entire thing. The price. I spent the last several sections telling you how great this thing is, and make no mistake it really is as good as I am saying it is, and now we come to here and I have to tell you how expensive it is too. Expect to pay in excess of $1000 to $1200 for this bot. That said I recommend clicking here to see if there are any current discounts or deals available. It isn’t the most expensive on the market, but that ain’t pocket change neither. Bear in mind that buying a robotic pool cleaner, any robotic pool cleaner, will save you time in the long run. It is an investment, and depending on how you value your time, it will have paid you back in short order. The Active 30 will make that time fly by too.
Unlike the Aquabot range of robotic pool cleaners, the Dolphin bots do not state their actual power consumption figures, so I am forced to assume a few things in this section. I find out the average price per kilowatt hour then slot in a figure that matches the average as stated by Dolphin, then I look at the highest price per kilowatt hour and the lowest to get the median, rather than the mean price per cycle. I got 14c, a little lower than Dolphins mean. It is not a large sum, I’ll grant you, but it is one that will add up, so you are going to have to bear it in mind. Too few folk pay any attention to the price of new hardware, and it is becoming an issue.
I review products for a living. With the Dolphin brand robotic pool cleaners I have yet to be able to provide an opinion, as they haven’t sent me the warranty. I have contacted them about this, and hope to get a reply one day, but as it stands I cannot pas true judgement. The Active 30 warranty lasts for 2 years and is limited. Now, the Hayward’s limited warranty was pretty amazing, so that is not an immediate death sentence. Until Maytronics get back to me I am afraid that this will have to be a black mark from me.
Maytronics Dolphin Active 30 Conclusion
I cannot believe I am saying this, but Dolphin may have created the perfect robotic pool cleaner. I really hope no one else tells them, as they might increase the price when they realize just how good the product is. Personally I prefer the Active 20, it’s cheaper and has all the core features. But if remote management is important to you, and the free caddy is pretty good too let’s face it, then the Active 30 may be exactly the robotic pool cleaner you want.
- Works right away
- Cleans everything
- This has a canister filter
- Warranty info is limited
- Price is a little on the high side. A caddy and remote control options are not, from my perspective, worth the added expense over the Active 20.