While we were quite taken with the now-$300 Electrolux Precision Brushroll Clean upright vacuum we reviewed last year, the brand's $349 UltraPower Studio stick vacuum was disappointing. It looks nice, even offering a few stylistic extras like LED headlights and a transparent "view finder" so you can see the brush. But the UltraPower really struggled in our performance tests in comparison to most of the other stick vacuums we tested. For a top performing stick vacuum that looks like the $349 UltraPower, consider the $180 Hoover LiNX. It isn't as maneuverable, but it will do a much better job cleaning your floors.
Design and features
The Electrolux UltraPower Studio has a dark blue plastic finish with orange and silver accents. It's more colorful than Hoover's LiNX, but it still retains that traditional stick vacuum style. Take an upright vacuum, strip it down to the essentials, and you have the Electrolux UltraPower Studio.
This streamlined stick vacuum only weighs 6.3 pounds. That's significantly lighter than Electrolux's 17.2-pound Precision Brushroll Clean upright, but a bit above average for stick vacuums. Electrolux's $230 Ergorapido Power stick vac is even lighter at 5.5 pounds. The $500 Dyson DC59 and $180 Shark Rocket have unique component-based designs and weigh less -- 4.6 pounds and 4.2 pounds. The $180 Hoover LiNX and $350 Gtech AirRam were the heaviest at 7.3 pounds and 7.7 pounds.
Electrolux's UltraPower Studio has a built-in 25.5 volt Lithium-ion battery. It offers three cleaning modes -- normal, silent, and booster. The other models we tested offer up to two settings max, so the UltraPower leads in setting customizability. Depending on the mode you use, the battery can last for up to an hour and it takes about 4 hours to get back to a full charge.
When the battery is low, stick the whole vacuum on the charging dock, plug the power cord into an outlet and let it do its thing. The LED status bar below the battery will blink every five seconds when it's fully charged. When you're vacuuming, the LEDs also act as a useful indicator. Three bars means fully charged, two bars is less power, and one bar means low battery.
Electrolux added something called Brushroll Clean technology to this model and its Ergorapido stick vacuum. This feature helps de-tangle the brush whenever it's clogged with hair or other debris. Just press down the lever on the right side of the nozzle when the vacuum is on and it does a good job collecting the small stuff. If you have a bunch of larger stuff like Cheerios blocking the brush, the feature will not work.
Stick vacuums tend to offer better usability than traditional uprights. All of the stick models we tested weigh less than 8 pounds and all of them are cordless (except the Shark Rocket). So, if you're clumsy like me or just appreciate a streamlined appliance, they make a lot of sense from an ease-of-use standpoint.
Electrolux's $349 UltraPower Studio is easy to lift, easy to navigate from room to room, and offers exceptional maneuverability. The UltraPower Studio and Electrolux's other stick vac, the Ergorapido Power, were definitely the most maneuverable models we tested. It also has a few drawbacks.
Flexible tubing on the back of the vacuum contributes to its impressive maneuverability, but that also makes it feel a bit unstable. Trying to "lock" it into an upright position proved to be a bit of a challenge; the tubing really wanted to bend, causing the vacuum to fall over. A lot.