Miele is the biggest name in canister vacuums, and the absolute top of the Miele line is the Miele S5981 Capricorn. Professional reviewers give this model high marks for its cleaning power, noise level and ease of use. They also like the machine's features, which include variable suction, fingertip controls and on-board tool storage. The excellent filtration system, which includes sealed-system construction and an active HEPA filter, is described as one of the machine's best features. The only negative point cited in any professional reviews (aside from price) is the lack of a powered stair or upholstery tool. Users rave about this machine's powerful motor, maneuverability and sturdy construction. However, the Miele S5281 Callisto (*Est. $900) , another model in the same line, offers comparable performance for about $300 less.
The most detailed tests of the Miele S5981 Capricorn were performed by editors of AllergyBuyersClub.com, a retail site that caters to the needs of allergy sufferers. Ristenbatt.com, another retail site, also recommends this model highly, although this review may be swayed by its lucrative price tag. The Miele S5981 Capricorn also gets good marks (although not absolute top marks) from ConsumerGuide.com, a product review site. Two versions of the Miele S5981 Capricorn (with different power heads) are reviewed at Amazon.com; neither has more than 20 or so reviews, but both get very good ratings.
This retail website, which focuses on the needs of allergy sufferers, names the Miele Capricorn S5981 as the best canister vacuum overall. Reviewers give it top marks for its cleaning power, filtration, quality, maneuverability and ease of use. The vacuum also earns a perfect 5-star rating from about a dozen users on the site.
Review: Miele S5981 Capricorn Canister Vacuum Cleaners, Editors of AllergyBuyersClub.com
The expert reviewer at ConsumerGuide.com gives the Miele S5980 Capricorn (an earlier version of the S5981) 4 stars out of a possible 5. Although the reviewer likes its powerful suction, bare floor tool and HEPA filter, the price is a major drawback.
Review: Miele Capricorn Canister Vacuum S5980, Editors of ConsumerGuide.com, July 2008
Two versions of the Miele S5981 Capricorn (with different power brushes) are rated at Amazon.com. Neither version has more than 20 reviews, but both receive 4-to 5-star ratings. Users love this model's power, performance, quality construction and quiet operation.
Review: Miele S5981 Capricorn with SEB-236 Power Brush, Contributors to Amazon.com
This retail site lists the Miele S5981 Capricorn as one of eight recommended canister vacuums, citing its powerful motor, fingertip controls, HEPA filter and quiet operation. However, there is no information about how the recommended models were tested.
Review: Ristenbatt Vacuum's Preferred Models, David E. Ristenbatt