The Midea 3-in-1 is a highly portable and smart technology-enabled machine. While our testers enjoyed the ability to control this appliance from their smart devices, it is noisy and only moderately energy efficient. If portability from room to room is your main concern, the rolling wheels on the bottom of the device made this one of the easiest machines to move around on hard-surfaced floors. However, compared to the other AC units we tested, this one only had mediocre cooling abilities, and when considering the high price point, there are better options on the market.Editor's Note: This product review was revised on April 21, 2022, to include advice on what we would recommend to a friend.
Midea 3-in-1 Review
Pros: Easy to move, decent energy efficiency
Cons: Poor cooling abilities, noisy
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|Pros||Easy to move, decent energy efficiency||Great value, highly portable, performed well in our energy-efficiency test, solid cooling performance||Very quiet, decently portable, solid cooling performance||Energy efficient, easily portable||Inexpensive, relatively light|
|Cons||Poor cooling abilities, noisy||Runs on the louder side||Expensive, bulky window insert||Underwhelming cooling abilities||Poor cooling capabilities|
|Bottom Line||This is an expensive machine that is easy to move around but ultimately offers poor cooling abilities||You'll save cash and receive exceptional performance, though it does run a touch louder than others||If you live in a consistently hot climate, this is our favorite dual-hose portable AC||The lower cooling abilities do not quite make up for the energy-efficient capabilities||An affordably priced model that is sufficient for smaller rooms, but has subpar cooling capabilities|
|Rating Categories||Midea 3-in-1||SereneLife SLPAC10||Whynter ARC-122DS E...||Airo Comfort||Black+Decker BPACT08WT|
|Cooling Power (40%)|
|Energy Cost (15%)|
|Specs||Midea 3-in-1||SereneLife SLPAC10||Whynter ARC-122DS E...||Airo Comfort||Black+Decker BPACT08WT|
|Timer||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Set up on the remote only|
|Modes||Heat, auto, cool, dry, fan||Cool, dry, fan||Cool, dry, fan||Cool, dry, fan||Cool, dry, fan|
|Number of Fan Speeds||4||3||3||3||4|
|Measured Weight||56.2 lbs||54.7 lbs||60.4 lbs||51.5 lbs||51.3 lbs|
|Window Kit Length (without modification)||Min: 26.5"
Max: 50 1/8"
|Measured kWh on High (Average)||0.85 kWh||0.91 kWh||1.06 kWh||0.71 kWh||0.8 kWh|
|Measured dBa on High at 4'||60.5 dBa||62 dBa||57 dBa||58 dBa||58.4 dBa|
|Room Rating||200 sq ft||350 sq ft||400 sq ft||350 sq ft||300 sq ft|
|Single or Dual hose||Single||Single||Dual||Single||Single|
|Projected Summer Cost||$122.60||$116.22||$131.61||$88.17||$113.62|
|Measured Temperature Drop After 60 Minutes||8ºF||11ºF||10°F||6ºF||6.4°F|
Our Analysis and Test Results
Certainly, the most crucial component of an AC unit is its ability to cool a room. The Midea offered mediocre results in our cooling power tests. Our testing room started at 78°, and after an hour of running this machine, the inside temperature only dropped 8°. While it wasn't the worst performance in our AC testing group, we were not particularly impressed by those numbers.
Portability is the one metric where this model scored some serious points. The built-in wheels worked quite well when rolling this unit from room to room. However, if you are likely to encounter stairs and need to carry this device, it is a bit unwieldy. The built-in grips are rather small and don't quite accommodate a full fingertip's worth of room. The weight is distributed unevenly, making it even tougher to lug around by hand. Overall, this model is great for wheeling around single-story buildings but tough to get up and down stairs.
While almost all of the units scored similarly on our decibel reader, the actual sounds each machine produced were highly variable, with some being much more bothersome to our testers than others. The Midea emitted a high-pitched buzzing sound that we found quite obnoxious. The noise that came out of the machine wasn't a consistent hum but rattly and somewhat sporadic, adding to our dislike.
One of the biggest downsides to any air conditioning unit is the relatively high cost of operation. The Midea scores reasonably well in this metric. According to our calculations, it costs around $122 per three months of daily use. These numbers put it squarely in the middle in terms of average cost.
With the Midea, you can set a schedule, connect to Alexa or Google Home, look at the "sleep curve", see the indoor temperature easier and more reliably, and turn the unit on or off remotely.
Should You Buy the Midea 3-in-1?
The Midea 3-in-1 has middle-of-the-road energy efficiency and mediocre cooling abilities. We think consumers can find a better value elsewhere. If having a wheeled device that is easy to push around a single story is a high priority for you, this device might be worth it, but we'd suggest most folks look at other options.
What Other Portable Air Conditioners Should You Consider?
Our favorite unit we tested was the SereneLife SLPAC10, which does a respectable job cooling efficiently and has a lower operating and upfront cost. For those seeking max cooling power, check out the Whynter ARC-14SH.
— Buck Yedor and Austin Palmer
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