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Should I Buy a DC39 or DC54?

By Edited Oct 27, 2015 0 1

Dyson DC39 Vs DC54

Are you interested in getting a powerful canister vacuum and have come across the Dyson DC39 and DC54 models -- however are unsure as to which to get and/or whether the significant price difference is justified for the DC54? Or are simply wanting to know the difference between them? Then you have come to the right comparison guide -- highlighting both their differences & commonalities amongst specifications & features, ultimately determining which model is the best overall  -- as well as which suits your specific cleaning needs & prefrences. 

Which Offers the Best Cleaning Suction Power? 

DC39: Radial Root Cyclone Technology | 

DC54: Cinetic Technology |

As the DC54 is essentially an upgrade to that of the DC39, you would expect it to offer a better cleaning peformance & you would be right. The DC39 offers 280 AW of constant suction with fitted Radial Root cyclone technology (making it in turn a very powerful canister vacuum, easily a market leader). However, Dyson have managed to actually improve on it even further with the DC54, by integrating their very latest & highly anticipated cyclone technology: Dyson Cinetic technology, making it by far their most powerful vacuum cleaner produced within their range.

The way Cynetic technology essentially works is through instead of offering several large cyclones like the radial root cyclone has within the DC39 -- it has 54 small & incredibly efficient cyclones that are in turn able to generate much higher & more powerful centrifugal forces that allow it to suck-up far more particles than any other cyclone mechansim (for more information, see the video below). Also note both cyclone technologies allow them to operate without a bag & suffer with no loss of suction.

Dyson DC39 Animal canister vacuum cleaner
Amazon Price: $499.99 $331.18 Buy Now
(price as of Oct 27, 2015)

Cleaning Performance & The Difference in Cleaner Heads

DC39: TriggerHead Floor Tool |

DC54: Multi-Floor - MuscleHead Floor Tool | Animal - Latest Carbon Fibre Turbine & Articulating Hard Floor Tool |

There have also been technological improvements at the bottom end of the vacuum too with an upgraded cleaner head. The DC39 uses a TriggerHead tool which can be controlled from the handle (to switch from various floor types) -- with the spinning brush bar to clean dirt & debris off of soft flooring which can then be turned off  -- for use on hard & delicate flooring. 

With the DC54 multi-floor you are provided with the 'improved' MuscleHead cleaner tool, which basically self-adjusts to allow for optimal cleaning on various floor types (hence no switch required) with a low profile design to allow easy cleaning under furniture.  When it comes into contact with hard-floors it will allow contact with the soft nylon bristles to suck-up dust & debris and then when it reaches soft-flooring it retracts the cleaning brush to produce the 'dual-channel' edges that remove the dirt.

The DC54 Animal is however fitted with two cleaner heads: i) the latest carbon fibre turbine head which acts with 'conductive carbon fibre brushes' that enables removal of microscopic dust from your hard-floors & then engage tough brushes to pop out dug-in dirt from soft flooring (again like the MuscleHead, there is no need for switches -- automatically switching when it comes into different floor types) & ii) the 180 degree articulating hard floor tool that is fitted with ultra fine & soft nylon bristles to remove dust from hard flooring, featuring an incredibly low profile to get in between tight gaps. 

To put it simply they are each an improvement on the next i.e the MuscleHead has a greater pick-up rate than the TriggerHead, and the Latest Carbon FIbre Turbine head has a greater pick-up than the MuscleHead.

DC54: Explaining Dyson Cinetic

Which is Easier to Use/Handle?

They are actually quite similar in this regard whereby they have identical dimensions (DC39: 50.7 x 36.8 x 26.1 cm, DC54: 50.7 x 36.8 x 26.1 cm) and are very similar in their weight too (DC39: 7.5 kg, DC54: 7.6 kg). They both operate & steer using the centralised Dyson ball technology; making them incredibly mobile and easy to use -- especially when you compare them to a fixed rigid wheel canister vacuum that easily topples over when you take a tight corner or bump into a wall, whereas with the DC39 & DC54 they simply don't -- due to being able to turn instantly on a singular dime.

Which Provides the Best Practicality Factor?

They actually offer pretty much the same attachments when comparing the basic multi-floor version -- the combination tool (to allow for powered dusting) and stair tool (that can be used on upholstery). Moreover, if you get the Animal version of the DC54 (as explained above you also get a different cleaner head & the articulating hard floor tool when compared to the DC54 multi-floor version) & DC39 -- you get an additional specially engineered 'Tangle-free turbine tool' for effective pet hair pick up. The DC54 also comes in further versions -- suchas the DC54 Animal (Pro) Complete where you get an additional array of attachments (to all the ones stated above) which include: soft dusting brush, flexi crevice tool, stubborn dirt brush -- all to improve cleaning functionality further.

With regards to specifications both machines have the same bin capacity of 2 litres as well as the maximum reach (10 metres for the telescope reach + 6.5 metres for the cord length) -- hence the DC54 is essentially built on the same design framework as the DC39 -- being primarily intended for those who have the mid-to-large sized home. 

Further Information

Both canisters are backed by a five year warranty that covers both parts & labour. The DC39 has a filtration system fitted to prevent allergens & dust particles from being expelled into the air whilst vacuuming -- hence only producing cleaning and healthy air (hence are safe for use by allergy sufferers & asthmatics etc.).

The DC54 however operates in such a way  that the cinetic technology allows it (through oscillating vibration tips that prevent clogging & capture pollens and micro dust as small as 0.5 microns) to essentially 'not need any fitted filters' yet still produce healthy clean air -- hence no maintenance required i.e cleaning/replacement costs in this aspect, in turn this makes the DC54 the only vacuum to have "no filters, no loss of suction & no bags". Therefore, both machines are safe to be used by asthmatics & allergy sufferers.

Conclusion: Which Cleaning Machine Should I Buy -- the DC39 or DC54?

Clearly the DC54 is a significant upgrade on that of the DC39 (particularly in the cleaning power & performance) -- so if all you are after is the most powerful vacuum around, then the DC54 has now well & truly claimed that spot. But if you are after the best value canister vacuum -- then you have to consider the quality of the two & the difference in price between the two models -- and this is aspect is all a matter of preference & a decision only you can decide. However, my personal opinion on the matter is: as much as I admire the DC54, the price is just a bit too much & would advise you opt for the DC39.

In sum, the practical features remain fundamentally the same as well as having a similar 'easy to manoeuvre' mobility aspect (as said hence both are aimed at being a family vacuum for a decent sized house). The only real difference is the significant leap in progress made with the cleaning power & performance with the DC54 compared to that of the DC39. This being said, the DC39 should certainly not be considered as lacking power by any means.

Let me know which one you choose & why? Also, if you have any questions, comments or concerns regarding either the comparison article 'DC39 Vs DC54' or about either canister model specifically (i.e the DC39 or DC54) or the versions (Multi-floor, Animal, Animal Complete) then please do not hesitate to make them in the comments section that you will find just below



Dec 24, 2013 5:09am
Hi, I'm recently considering getting a Dyson and I am finding it particularly hard to find explanations on the various different types of heads that comes with different dyson models, in particular the difference between the musclehead tool and the latest caron fibre turbine head, and I find your post very helpful in answering my questions.

One question I have though, and this is through all the information I had gathered be it from Dyson sales representatives or from the web. That is, I was told that all the machines from the range DC54 ( all the different colors) are essentially exactly the same, the only difference comes in the type of head used. My question is, say I replace the musclehead tool on the DC54 multi floor with the latest carbon fibre turbine head, it will essentially become the "allergy" or "animal" range?

Also here in Australia we have the "allergy" range which essentially just means on top of the carbon fibre turbine head, an additional mattress tool is included. So why wouldn't Dyson just sell DC54 just with the carbon fibre turbine head, and that would essentially become DC54 multi floor, but just an upgrade from musclehead tool to carbon fibre turbine head? In other words, why would Dyson still sell the latest cinetic machine with an older model tool instead of all being the latest carbon fibre turbine head?

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