USB Mini Vacuum Review

Product Requirements:

An available USB port

Does your desk seem to accumulate an ungodly amount of dust? Mine certainly does. I am not exactly sure what the true culprit is, but I suspect it is a combination of pet hair (from the two dachshunds that share the office with Steve, Sarah and me), West Texas dust and matters best left to the imagination. Even with a HEPA equipped
air purifier
, the dust just seems out of control sometimes. Of course, it certainly does not help that my desk is white – any miniscule particle that lands on it is shown in stark relief. We have to dust the room as well as clean the desk and its contents every couple of days because of the never-ending floating particles.

Cleaning my black keyboard and the fold down panel on my horizontal computer tower can be a real chore. There are so many nooks and crannies that seem to operate as impossible to reach dust catchers. In the past, I have kept a bottle of canned air handy for blowing everything away, but this is really just a temporary fix as I am simply
displacing the dust, not removing it.

I have seen advertisements for miniature vacuum cleaners before – mainly aimed for use in vehicles, and I thought that using one might be a possible solution. That’s why when USB Geek sent Julie & me their USB Mini Vacuum to review I was happy to give it a try.

Included in the box are the vacuum unit with integrated USB coil cord, a bristle brush attachment, a flexible rubber keyboard crevice attachment, and operating instructions.

Photo courtesy of USB Geek

The vacuum itself is made of black plastic. It feels solid enough, yet there is some flexing because the middle will separate to expose the filter area. The vacuum measures approximately 5″ long x 1.5″ wide x 1.5″ thick (widest point) and weighs 2.1 ounces without any attachments.

There are three settings on the top rear side: ‘off’, ‘LED light on’ and ‘LED light with vacuum on’.

The underside of the vacuum has a forward facing LED light which is supposed to illuminate the area directly in front of the vacuum. There is also a ‘high power’ button which accelerates the vacuum’s motor when the switch is in the ‘LED light with vacuum on position’.

Photo courtesy of USB Geek

The middle section of the vacuum twists off to reveal the filter and canister area of the vacuum.

Photo courtesy of USB Geek

There are two included attachments: the bristle brush and the keyboard crevice tool…

Photo courtesy of USB Geek

Operating the USB Mini Vacuum is easy enough. You insert the desired attachment into the front end, plug the cord into a nearby USB port and slide the switch to the ‘LED light with vacuum on’ position. The engine will whirr and you can begin vacuuming…in theory.

I ran the crevice tool over my laptop, but the larger particle I could see before using the vacuum was still evident after many passes. Holding the vacuum over the particle did not lift it. Attaching the brush head, I was able to scoot the particle…but this brings me back to the canned air dilemma.

In a very unscientific test, I held the vacuum to my face, but I could not feel any suction on my cheek at all. Pushing the ‘high power’ button did make the engine whirr louder and faster, but it did not seem to really add to the suction power.

Evidently the vacuum must have a bit of suction, because opening the canister to expose the filter did show that particles had been trapped. Of course, opening it in the area I had just vacuumed probably defeated all of my work as the particles promptly tumbled out…

Personally, I felt like using the brush attachment did more good than anything else…but only because it was dusting, not necessarily vacuuming. I hate to completely dismiss any product, but for my needs the USB Mini Vacuum was not sufficient. For only a few dollars more, I could buy a slightly larger vacuum with true sucking power. However, those of you that like to collect USB gadgets may want to invest the purchase price just to have a new gizmo for your collection.

The USB Mini Vacuum is available from USB Geek and other sources.

Price: $12

Pros:
Multiple attachments
Two speed settings
LED light

Cons:
Random particle pick-up
Expensive for what it does…or doesn’t do

 

Product Information

Price:12.0
Manufacturer:USB Geek
Pros:
  • Multiple attachments
  • Two speed settings
  • LED light
Cons:
  • Random particle pick-up
  • Expensive for what it does...or doesn't do
Posted in: Computer Gear, Laptops and Gear

4 comments… add one

  • Jerry Danzig September 11, 2009, 9:45 am

    I bought one of these USB vacs too, and the prongs designed to hold the rubber-tipped attachment broke on the first day. Good idea; poor build quality…

    1
  • Ilias April 9, 2010, 6:22 am

    What if you hack it with an external battery and feed it 7.5v instead of 5v that the USB provides?
    That should make the motor work faster and theoretically could improve its performance.
    Their price dropped to $2 on ebay.

    2
  • Thy February 27, 2011, 6:14 am

    I have been wanting a keyboard vacuum for quite some time now, and every so many months I google it to see if there is anything good out there… but always the same bad reviews for each and every one of them.

    Is there truly not a single good-working keyboard vacuum yet on this planet?

    3
  • Boris C. September 9, 2011, 2:29 am

    In my opinion all these mini “vacuums” are a scam.

    4

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