Shark Detect Pro vs Shark Stratos – which vacuum you should buy this Amazon Prime Day

The Detect Pro and Stratos are Shark’s best offerings to date - here's which one would suit you best

Image of one of the best Shark vacuum cleaners
(Image credit: Shark)

Over the years, the Ideal Home team has tested some of the best vacuum cleaners on the market. And there’s no doubt that Shark vacuum cleaners have regularly come out on top. 

These Shark products are constantly taking the top spots on our best cordless vacuums list, offering customers the chance to ditch the restrictive nature of a corded vacuum cleaner in favour of a practical and portable option that still boasts impressive suction power. And with bigger vacuum cleaner deals on the horizon, we’re helping you choose the right Shark cordless vacuum for your needs. 

We're pitting two of our favourite 5-star Shark cordless vacuum cleaners (which we've tested) against each other to help you decide which one you should buy before the deals come to an end. 

So, without further ado, let the battle between the Shark Stratos Anti Hair Wrap Plus Pet Pro Cordless Vacuum IZ420UKT and the Shark Detect Pro Cordless Vacuum Cleaner IW1511UK commence! 

Which one has better features?

The Shark Detect Pro and the Shark Stratos are considered to be two of the best Shark vacuums on the market today, but there’s no doubt about the fact that they offer very different features, which is something to consider if you’re wondering whether cordless vacuum cleaners are worth it

When our reviewer and vacuum cleaner expert, Molly Cleary, tested the Shark Stratos IZ420UKT cordless vacuum, she was particularly impressed by the CleanSense IQ feature. This mode uses an infrared sensor to detect dirt and debris that’s not visible to the naked eye and automatically increases suction power for a reported 50% better pickup. 

And while Molly was worried the CleanSense IQ feature would be a gimmick, she was pleasantly surprised. She said, ‘Areas that I might not even have guessed were high traffic (like around my bed), light up like a Christmas tree with this feature, and mean that I pay more attention to them on my next vacuuming session.’

Shark Stratos vacuum cleaner in action

Molly testing the Shark Stratos on her carpet

(Image credit: Future/Molly Cleary)

As well as offering this impressive suction power, the Stratos also boasts the addition of Anti-Odour cartridges that should banish musty smells in your vacuum’s bin, and a DuoClean head that offers a dual-brush roll system that will deep-clean carpets and work on hardwood floors, too.

In fact, Molly was particularly impressed by the visible lines on her carpet when she used the Shark Stratos. And she was confident that the vacuum ‘had really gotten into the depths of the fabric and pulled up the dirt.’

If you’re wondering what the Detect Pro has to offer, the stand-out feature is the brand-new technology, which means that this cordless vacuum cleaner is kitted out with four different types of detection.

DirtDetect detects dirt you can’t see and automatically boosts suction power, EdgeDetect senses when you’re by a wall or corner and doubles suction, FloorDetect auto-detects floor type and optimises performance for carpets and hardwood floors, and LightDetect automatically illuminates hidden dust in low-light areas.

Using the Shark Detect Pro in a living room

Molly testing the Shark Detect Pro on a rug

(Image credit: Future/Molly Cleary)

When testing in her own flat, Molly found these new technologies made vacuuming both her hardwood floors and her carpeted areas a breeze. This was also thanks to the lightweight quality of the Detect Pro, and Molly said, ‘You can zoom it around a room with so little effort, and it feels like it glides around partly on its own.’

Of course, both Shark offerings come with anti-hair wrap technology as standard, which is a major plus point for both - especially if you have pets or a particularly hairy family member!

Which one has a larger bin volume?

Bin volume is definitely something you need to consider when buying a new cordless vacuum cleaner. Too small of a bin, and you may find that you’re emptying it more often than you’d like. But too big of a bin and you may find that the overall size of the vacuum cleaner is also bigger - meaning you have to find somewhere to store it in your smaller house. 

Ultimately, you need to work out whether you’d benefit from a smaller or a bigger bin volume yourself. But one thing we can tell you is that there is a big difference between the Shark Detect Pro and the Shark Stratos. 

Shark cordless vacuum cleaner plugged into wall

(Image credit: Shark)

While the Stratos boasts a fairly large bin volume at 0.8 litres, the Detect Pro is just half the size at 0.4 litres.

But it’s important to note that you can upgrade your Detect Pro purchase if you’re worried about this smaller bin size. For an extra £50, you can buy the Shark Detect Pro Cordless Vacuum Cleaner Auto-Empty System. This comes with a nifty new stand that will automatically empty your vacuum cleaner into the 1.3L tank after every use. All you need to do is make sure you empty it every month - or when it’s full.

Which one has a longer run time?

On paper, both 5-star Shark offerings should give the average user more than enough run time. But while both have at least 60 minutes of suction power in them, there’s no doubt about the fact that the Stratos wins this battle. 

Shark Detect Pro vacuuming up dirt

(Image credit: Shark)

The Detect Pro has up to 60 minutes of run time in its battery, and Molly found that it was a very true 60 minutes when she used this herself. And while the Stratos battery also offers up to 60 minutes, it also comes with a second battery - meaning you could have 120 minutes of run time if you really needed it.

Which one is heavier?

Although cordless vacuums are perfect for those who want to vacuum their stairs without the restriction of cords and plug sockets, they can often be much heavier than their corded alternatives. This has the potential to be dangerous for those with dexterity concerns.

However, it seems as though Shark has been working on this weight issue over the years - which is why its newest offering, the Detect Pro, is one of the most lightweight Shark cordless vacuum cleaners yet. 

Shark cordless vacuum cleaner under sofa

(Image credit: Shark)

Molly noticed just how lightweight the Detect Pro was as soon as she took it out of the packaging. And at just 2.76kg, it’s almost half the weight of the Shark Stratos, which weighs 4.07kg. So, if you’re looking for a lightweight vacuum option, the Detect Pro would suit you perfectly.

What’s the price difference?

If you want to buy the best cordless vacuum under £250, you’ll be hard-pressed to find one with the Shark name attached to it. These vacuums can normally be found at the more expensive end of the spectrum, but there’s a reason for that. Shark is celebrated for its high quality, and it seems as though the prices reflect that.  

Shark Detect Pro crevice tool

(Image credit: Shark)

But if you want to buy the cheaper of these two 5-star cordless vacuum cleaners, the new Detect Pro definitely wins this round. With an RRP of £349.99, it’s significantly cheaper than the Stratos’ RRP of £499.99.

Even if you do decide to splurge and buy the Detect Pro with the Auto-Empty system, it’s still cheaper than the Stratos.

Final verdict: Which one should you buy?

When it comes to the Shark Detect Pro vs Shark Stratos debate, it really does depend on what you want from a cordless vacuum. As both of these cordless Shark vacuum cleaners were rated 5 stars by our expert reviewer, we have no doubts that you would be happy with either. 

If you want a stylish option that offers impressive suction, the Detect Pro certainly wins that battle. But if you want a larger bin volume and a longer running time, the Stratos will fit the bill. 

Molly has tested both of these Shark cordless vacuum cleaners, but it seems as though the new Detect Pro just sneaks past the Stratos, in her opinion. She said, ‘The lightweight vacuum has a much more reasonable RRP than the Stratos, and the cleaning power is just as good, if not better. With a sleek, white exterior, snazzy control pad and a new shiny QuadClean floorhead, it’s a fantastic buy.’ 

With Amazon Prime Day coming up, there’s never been a better time to grab yourself a new Shark cordless vacuum cleaner. 

Lauren Bradbury

Lauren Bradbury is a freelance writer and major homes enthusiast. She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in English and Creative Writing from the University of Chichester in 2016, before dipping her toe into the world of content writing. After years of agency work, writing everything from real-life stories to holiday round-ups, she decided to take the plunge and become a full-time freelancer in the online magazine world. Since then, she has become a regular contributor for Real Homes and Ideal Home, and become even more obsessed with everything interior and garden related. As a result, she’s in the process of transforming her old Victorian terraced house into an eclectic and modern home that hits visitors with personality as soon as they walk through the door.