ATLA Hands-On Review: Dust Devil KONE

ATLA Hands-On Review: Dust Devil KONE

Gregory Han
Oct 24, 2006

As soon as we saw the Dirt Devil KONE online and in print, a handheld vacuum designed by prolific Karim Rashid, we knew we were going to give in and get one. In a household of two wrasslin' felines, fur, whiskers and toenails litter our white vinyl and wood floors more often than we'd like. We always wanted a small household vacuum, but always balked at the ho-hum industrial design. We fess up: looks matter. But now we're here to report back if the Kone works as well as it looks.

So what do we think after two months of using the Kone? Overall, a positive experience, with some notable shortcomings. The hand vacuum is powerful enough to pick up wayward cat litter crystals and sucks up dirt with ease, but has problems occasionally regurgitating its payload if shaken. Emptying out the washable bin is a relatively simple affair (cat hair can be a bit of a pain). It's a beautiful object of art when not in use, with a night light feature. At first we loved the nightlight, but then we quickly realized it was just wasting energy so we've kept it off; but the option is a keen aesthetic feature. In terms of ergonomics, my girlfriend and I are a bit divided. She notes the Kone is a bit heavy for her to use for any extended amount of time, with a slightly unwieldy grip. I haven't had any problems myself, and the Kone fits comfortably in my average size paws. But dainty, it is not. My biggest issue with the hand vacuum was its propensity to jettison small debris right into the eyes if aimed incorrectly, but I've learned to point the air vent away when using it.

Dust bunnies, begone!
Is this any better than a typical Dustbuster in terms of day to day cleaning? Perhaps not. The dustbin catch needs to be regularly emptied about every third use and the rubber tipped end sometimes makes it a little difficult to glide smoothly across hard surfaces. This is not a replacement of a full feature vacuum by any measure. More like an occasional sidekick. But with its reliable performance, excellent battery life (I've done our whole 630+ square foot studio without nary a hiccup in power), its unique design, and ability to shoo away ill behaved cats at the press of a button, we can say the Dirt Devil Kone has a welcomed place in our humble abode.

ATLA: Approved!

And that was just our bedroom.

Purchased for $39.95 via

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