NO BLADES, NOW NO NOISE

Dyson Cool AM08

HWM (Malaysia) - - TEST - by ZacharyChan

When Dyson first in­tro­duced blade­less fans with Air Mul­ti­plier tech­nol­ogy, they in­stantly be­came a cult phe­nom­e­non. No mat­ter they were 10 times the price of a reg­u­lar fan, they were ‘mag­i­cal' and safe for kids.

Dyson Cool is the up­dated range of Air Mul­ti­plier fans. Out­wardly, they look the same, fea­ture the same Air Mul­ti­plier tech­nol­ogy and are just as pow­er­ful as the orig­i­nals. What's dif­fer­ent are engi­neer­ing im­prove­ments un­der the hood to in­crease over­all en­ergy ef­fi­ciency and lower noise lev­els.

These in­clude a Helmholtz cav­ity below the im­peller to ab­sorb mo­tor noise (Ed: you can read more about this in our Learn sec­tion this is­sue). They also fea­ture re-en­gi­neered air­flow paths along with some clever tweak­ing of the fan's loop de­sign and air­flow aper­ture to re­duce tur­bu­lence and fric­tion, which means less en­ergy needed to pro­duce the same amount of flow.

Now, the ef­fec­tive­ness of these im­prove­ments varies be­tween mod­els. The smaller AM06 desk fan for ex­am­ple boasts up to 40% power sav­ings and is 75% qui­eter than its pre­de­ces­sor, the AM01. The AM08 pedestal fan on the other hand, is only about 15% more en­ergy ef­fi­cient and 35% qui­eter than the AM03.

We com­pared the AM08 with an off-the-shelf su­per­mar­ket bladed stand fan and found that the Dyson op­er­ated whis­per quiet at speed set­tings up to 5 (max­i­mum 10); it got pro­gres­sively louder be­yond that and at full speed, much louder than our stand fan at medium. On av­er­age, the AM08 needed to be set to a speed of 7 to get a com­pa­ra­ble strength to the bladed fan.

Now, Dyson fans do not pro­duce a buf­fet­ing wind like a reg­u­lar bladed fan. In­stead, air flows like a con­tin­u­ous breeze. In a month with the Dyson, the AM08 worked best in an al­ready cool room that just needed air cir­cu­lated. It didn't work too well when I was al­ready un­com­fort­ably hot and needed to cool down fast. This was most ev­i­dent dur­ing the re­cent hu­mid heat wave; stand­ing in front of the AM08 at full blast just wasn't the same as stand­ing in front of a reg­u­lar fan. Also, be­cause air is pushed out along the loop, you get a donut ef­fect. This is some­thing that re­quires get­ting used to when it comes to po­si­tion­ing and di­rect­ing.

The Dyson Cool AM08 is a bet­ter Dyson fan, there's no ar­gu­ing that. How­ever, un­like a reg­u­lar fan, not every­one will need or ap­pre­ci­ate the Dyson. If the RM1,759 price tag too pro­hib­i­tive, the smaller 25cm AM06 desk fan goes for just RM1,099.

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