Dyson's Air Multiplier made waves upon its release in October, promising a highly-efficient non-buffeting fan replacement, complete with the product design that Dyson has made its name on. But with that promise came a hefty price tag. Does the Air Multiplier live up to its lofty goals? Read on to find out.
Firstly, let's go through briefly how it works. A turbine pulls in air through the base, which is then ejected at a speed of 55mph through a tiny slit around the edge of the ring. That air pulls more air with it thanks to friction, resulting in approximately 15 times more energy efficiency.
That bit of engineering isn't new - it's used in cabin air conditioning systems on planes and to dry water-based paint, according to Pocket-lint readers - but Dyson has certainly reimagined the fan as a considerably more efficient device than its contemporaries.
The noise level is about equivalent to a regular fan - maybe a smidge quieter, but not vast in difference. The lack of "buffeting" (caused by a regular fan's blades) is noticeable when it's pointed out, but it isn't really a game changer. There's still a bit of exhaustion on your skin after using it for a while.
The safety aspects shouldn't be neglected, though - no blades means no sliced young pinkies. Speaking as a reviewer who bears a scar from nearly losing a finger by stretching out in the night and colliding with a running metal fan, that's not something you should overlook - particularly if you have young children in your home.
It's hard to say whether the Air Multiplier looks good. It looks distinctive - its magnifying glass shape will attract "what's that?" comments from dinner party guests - but it won't fit into anything but the most modernist, minimalist, interiors. It does, however, look nicer than a normal fan. There's a lot to be said for that.
But the most impressive feature of the Air Multiplier isn't the design or the engineering - it's the price tag. The device will set you back a whopping £200, compared to less than a tenner for a traditional desk fan. Is it worth that kind of cash? Most certainly not.
The Air Multiplier is a clever bit of engineering that solves a few problems that no-one really had. It's a luxury product, almost a concept product, and carries a price tag that's representative of that status. It's sorta pretty, and has some nice features, but at the end of the day it's just a fan. It's not going to change your life.