The actual difference between the Dyson DC40 (standard multi-floor version) and the DC40i (independent) is simply that one is provided with an additional accessory to that of the other (clarified in the section below 'Difference in accessories' and further on in the 'conclusion') despite that (and the colour change -- where the DC40 multi-floor is usually yellow and the DC40i is often in a red/silver body) there are actually no differences between them -- the cleaning suction power (air watts), practical specifications (cord length, bin capacity) are all the same i.e it is the exact identical vacuum model.

(Note: for quick details of the difference, head to the quick summary section below, detailing the varied attachments you get with the all the versions of the DC40).

So firstly, a quick outlook on what is the same between the DC40 and DC40i i.e the actual vacuum cleaner model. Whereby, they have the same cleaning performance (suction power) -- both being encompassed with the unqiue patented 'Radial Root Cyclone Technology' (an advanced technology only available with Dyson vacuum cleaners that essentially allows three distinct advantages to that of other vacuums i) it is bagless ii) allows the DC40 to generate high centrifugal forces that can allow it to suck up microscopic dirt and debris as small as 0.5 microns and iii) it doesn't suffer with loss of constant suction power) as well as its motor being able to generate an impressive 200 Air watts -- which is more than sufficient power do perform a very good cleaning finish to that of the standard home. Moreover, both are fitted with the new automatically adjusting cleaner head (which adjusts to hard floors by lowering itself and raises for that of soft flooring) in order to optimise cleaning and prevent suction loss for all floor types.

With regards to specifications -- Height: 107 x Width: 35 x Depth: 31 cm (hence being a bit more compact than that of its larger counterpart the DC41, making it more suitable to those with the smaller apartment/home) i.e both are the same size and the practicalities of the vacuum are also identical e.g. bin capacity at 0.42 gallons, the cord length at 24.7 feet with a further max reach of 40 feet and also weighs in at 14.6 lbs. As it is encompassed with the Dyson ball technology (although it takes a bit of getting used to, from that of the rigid four wheel mechanism) it makes the DC40 incredibly easy to operate; given that it is so light as well as being able to turn the vacuum on a singular dime (when compared to the old rigid four wheel mechanism -- where you had to drag the vacuum back and forth to get around tight corners).

Dyson DC40 Multi floor upright vacuum cleaner
Amazon Price: $499.00 $330.00 Buy Now
(price as of Oct 8, 2013)

Difference in Accessories

As has been previously mentioned the only real difference that comes with the DC40 and the DC40i is that of the accessories provided. To be clear, it is best to start with what comes with the DC40 standard (multi-floor) version, which is the: combination tool (that is essentially both a crevice tool to vacuum tight gaps and areas as well as a powered dusting attachment) and a stair (upholstery) tool -- these are the standard set of tools that essentially come with every Dyson vacuum. 

Then where the DC40i differs is in the fact that not only is it provided with those accessories of the standard DC40 (i.e the combination tool, stair tool) but it also comes with the Dyson Stiff Bristle Brush. This tool essentially allows you to easily remove tough 'dug-in' dirt stains within carpets through the tough nylon bristle performing a 'flicking' motion to pop up the dirt to be sucked straight into the DC40's bin. This is essentially where the only difference lies as well as that of the colour change between the two.

You should know however, you can actually purchase this 'stiff bristle brush' separately (see just below) therefore if you can't locate a retailor who is selling the DC40i, you can simply buy the standard version and then get the bristle brush additionally. To get the best price and deal on the DC40 or DC40i, you should simply calculate some simple math -- where does the DC40 price + the stiff bristle brush price come to an overall price that is cheaper than getting the DC40i on its own. If it does, then you should buy them separately, then again you should consider do you actually need the attachment. Just be sure to do a bit of research into what provides you with the best deal.

Dyson Stiff Bristle Brush
Amazon Price: $19.99 $10.00 Buy Now
(price as of Oct 8, 2013)

DC40 Vs DC40 Animal

Furthermore, there are the 'Animal' versions to consider i.e the DC40 Animal Vs DC40i Animal -- which is essentially the same attachment description as just provided above (where the DC40 standard and DC40i get the same equipped accessories) but now they both receive the highly rated pet hair tool as well-- the 'Dyson Tangle Free turbine tool', which is obviously intended for those households who suffer with pet hair (although comes as a great tool for doing inside cars too). What makes this tool so unique (given in the name) is that due to the two circular counter rotating discs it features -- it means pet hair cannot be trapped within the turbine (which happens rather frequently to many of the other pet hair tools, which eventually end up losing power and eventually breaking down) allowing it to have a much longer life span, whilst being very good at what it does (to be sure on this just check out some of its reviews). Again, as with the Stiff bristle brush, this attachement can also be purchased indiviudally (see below), so now just calculate this attachment also.

Dyson Tangle Free Turbine
Amazon Price: $69.99 $44.00 Buy Now
(price as of Oct 8, 2013)

In conclusion, the Dyson DC40 and all its versions are the actual same vacuum model (i.e identical cleaning power, specifications etc.), the variation being in what attachments come with what version of the vacuum in hand -- then from this the additional tools you desire with its given relative price (of the encompassed lot and being able to be bought separately) ultimately determine which version you choose.

A final quick summary of the DC40 Vs DC40i Vs DC40 Animal Vs DC40i Animal with regards to what accessories come with what version.

  • DC40 (Multi-floor): Combination Tool, Stair Tool.
  • DC40i (Multi-floor): Combination Tool, Stair Tool, Stubborn Dirt Brush.
  • DC40 Animal: Combination Tool, Stair Tool, Tangle-free Turbine Tool.
  • DC40i Animal: Combination Tool, Stair Tool, Tangle-free Turbine Tool, Stubborn Dirt Brush.

If you have any questions, remarks or concerns regarding either the DC40 (standard multi-floor version) or the DC40i (independent version) or the actual article account then please do not hesitate to make them in the comments section below and I will be sure to get back to you as soon as possible.