Xiaomi releases a new generation of Smart Air Purifiers

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Xiaomi’s slick looking Smart Air Purifiers have been an excellent choice for those wanting a well-preforming machine without having to spend a small fortune for better health. With the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 series, the Chinese tech-giant has gradually improved upon the previous generation and, perhaps most importantly, we finally have sensible model names.

I am infatuated with my Xiaomi Mi Air Purifier 3H that has been standing in the corner of my bedroom for the last two years. My purely causal observations have led me to believe that owning and running the device has helped me with my asthma, and it does a good job at removing odours from the lab when I’m soldering.

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The three Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier models

Xiaomi has decided to group this generation of air purifiers under one, sensible name: Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4. There’s the base Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4, which is successor to the Xiaomi Mi Air Purifier 3/H. The Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Lite is a slightly stripped down and cheaper version, comparable to the Xiaomi Mi Air Purifier 3C and finally, the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Pro is capable of purifying large rooms.

Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4

With dimensions of 250×250×555 mm, the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 is slightly larger than its predecessor (240 × 240 × 520 mm). The increase in size luckily comes with a beneficial side effect, as it has a 5% higher Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR) of 400 m³/h. It does this while reportedly consuming approximately 20% less energy and being slightly less noisy.

While greater efficiency is always a positive and, for me, would be the main reason for an upgrade, the biggest addition to the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 is a negative air ion generator.

Lately, there has been a lot of hype surrounding negative air ions (NAIs), and Xiaomi will undoubtedly heavily use this feature in their marketing; however, the science is still undecided on whether there is any benefit to having them present in your air. A systematic review concludes that while NAIs aren’t harmful to either human or animal, the reported benefits still need to be verified. The claimed benefits include the promotion of plant growth and regulating of serotonin levels. On a positive note, it is likely that NAIs can remove particulate matter and ultrafine particulate matter at a high efficiency, which would definitely be beneficial to an air purifier.

Xiaomi’s own claim is that the negative air ion generator in the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 will lead to the air it pushes out be fresher. They do not make any further claims as to the benefits of NAIs.

The new Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 with a negative air ion generator
The new Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4

With this generational leap, Xiaomi has also decided to introduce a brand-new filter. Unfortunately, this filter is only compatible with the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4, and no other model, not even the Smart Air Purifier 4 Lite. If you have hoarded countless filters during a sale, you might want to stick to your older model, and it is now ever more important to check whether you are purchasing the correct filter.

This new filter does include a thicker layer of activated carbon, and it uses Xiaomi’s High-Efficiency Filter, which, according to Xiaomi, allows larger volumes of air to pass through. Better airflow allows the fan to run at a reduced speed, leading to a quieter and more efficient operation. As usual, it is recommended to change the filter at least once a year.

While I would by no means categorize the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 as repairable, I am glad to see that Xiaomi at least made it cleanable. As with previous models, it appears that everything else is held together by plastic tabs. To make the insides accessible, the fan grill on top of the device can be removed, without having to release any tabs or loosen any screws.

A hand removing the fan-grill of the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4
How to clean the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4

In the Swiss Xiaomi store, the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Lite is available from March for CHF169 including taxes (~US$215).

Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Lite

Size-wise, the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Lite is comparable to the Xiaomi Mi Air Purifier 3/H, standing just over 1 cm taller. Compared to its costlier sibling, it lacks the negative ion generator, and the CADR drops to 360 m³/h.

As with previous cheaper models, for example the Xiaomi Mi Air Purifier 3C, the top compartment needs to be removed to access the filter. Speaking of the filter, it would appear that the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Lite also uses a unique and new model.

Other differences to the base model include the design. The Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Lite is boxier, with only slightly rounded edges. Additionally, the Xiaomi added its logo to the front of the device.

The Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Lite
The Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Lite

To further cut costs, the detailed OLED screen found in the base and Pro models, is replaced by a more basic seven-segment display, similar to those you would find in an alarm clock. It is what Xiaomi calls a touch screen, but in reality is a screen with capacitive buttons.

The Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Lite screen compared to the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 screen
The Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Lite screen compared to the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 screen

In the Swiss Xiaomi store, the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Lite is available from March for CHF169 including taxes (~US$183).

Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Pro

To round things off, the new Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Pro is the largest, and most expensive model of the three. Standing at 275×275×680 mm, the Pro purifies open spaces or giant rooms up to 60㎡. This is possible due to a CADR of 400 m³/h.

The Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Pro is fundamentally a larger version of the base model. It has a similar design and also utilizes a negative ion generator. Compared to previous models with the pro moniker, it is also more efficient and quieter during operation.

In the Swiss Xiaomi store, the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Pro is available now for CHF299 including taxes (~US$325).

The Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Pro
The Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 Pro

Is the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 a worthy upgrade?

Whether you should sell your older air purifier and upgrade to the Xiaomi Air Purifier 4, is dependent on two factors: the negative air ion generator and quieter operation. If you insist on either, the Xiaomi Smart Air Purifier 4 will suit your needs. I will be sticking with my Mi Air Purifier 3H for the time being.

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