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Verdict

The Aeno AP3 Air Purifier offers HEPA air cleaning with the added benefit of odour-neutralising charcoal, UV-C light, and an ioniser. That’s a lot for such a compact device, which could make it ideal to keep the air fresh in a bedroom. Sadly, it was very disappointing in practice, with the filter making next-to-no difference in our smoke test.

Pros

  • Compact and quite affordable
  • UV-C sterilisation

Cons

  • Poor smoke performance
  • No smart controls or sensors

Key Features

  • A HEPA air filter with UV sterilisationThis air purifier can filter odours, mould and even bacteria from indoor air. It’s also got an ultraviolet light to destroy microbes.
  • Suitable only for small roomsThis is a small purifier. Its 110m3/h clean-air delivery rate means it’s only really suited to small rooms.

Introduction

Aeno’s AP3 Air Purifier is about the size of a bathroom bin, but it manages to fit in quite a few features.

In its base, there’s a three-stage filter that includes HEPA 13 and carbon layers designed to filter out microscopic particles and remove odours. Surprisingly, for such a compact product, it also has an ultraviolet lamp capable of destroying and sterilising bacteria and other microbes. Finally, there’s an ioniser tucked away in its air outlet grille.

That’s not a bad feature set, but it’s important to mention a couple of significant omissions. The AP3 doesn’t have any smart features, so there’s no app to give you more control or information. Perhaps more fundamentally, this air purifier has no air quality sensors, so it can’t automatically step up its work rate in response to pollution.

This is a small purifier, with a relatively modest clean-air delivery rate (CADR) of 110 cubic metres per hour. In theory, that would allow it to scrub the air in a 25-metre-square room around two times an hour, making it about right for use in a bedroom.

Design and features

  • A simple, compact air purifier
  • Straightforward controls

This air purifier isn’t perhaps the most stylish example I’ve seen, with fairly widely spaced fins in the output through which you can see the tiny ioniser, along with a trace of reflected UV light. In the middle of the outlet there’s a touch-sensitive control panel offering sleep, mid and high-speed fan modes, separate control of the UV-C light, and a filter indicator. That’s it for the controls – there’s no Wi-Fi or infrared remote, no timer function, and no auto mode.

Aeno AP3 Air Purifier controls
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

Air enters this purifier through notches distributed almost fully around the base. Turn it upside down, remove the base plate and you’ll find a removable, cake-shaped filter. That’s a departure from the norm for air purifiers, which use hollow cylindrical supplies that provide a larger surface area. This filter has standard mesh and HEPA13 layers, but adds a third stage of carbon granules, which should absorb and neutralise certain gases and odours.

Aeno AP3 Air Purifier filter
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

If you look into the base of the AP3 you’ll also see a small UV-C LED, mounted on the underside of its fan, which remains lit with the filter removed. I’d turn the air purifier off before changing the filter.

Aeno AP3 Air Purifier UV-C light
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

Performance

  • Low power use
  • Very diffuse air output
  • Ineffective against smoke

The Aeno AP3 Air Purifier comes with an external AC power adaptor, and appears to use very little power. In ‘Sleep’ mode it drew just 2.4 watts, which is about as low as I’ve measured. This rose to a maximum of 5.2 watts with the fan on high speed, while switching the UV-C light on consumed another 1.7 watts irrespective of fan speed.

Even at its slowest fan speed, I could feel a light breeze from the output. Air emerged in a diffuse pattern, travelling upwards and outwards at roughly 45 degrees rather than shooting straight up. Despite this, I measured a maximum wind speed of 1.3 metres per second, just 15cm away from the grille. I couldn’t measure any air movement from one metre away.

Perhaps surprisingly, this isn’t the quietest air purifier I’ve tested. In sleep mode I measured 46dB from one metre away, which is hardly deafening, but it could be just a little too much for some light sleepers. It doesn’t help that the control panel beeps whenever you press a button, and this doesn’t stop even in Sleep mode. Conversely, the AP3 is comparatively quiet at its highest speed, creeping up to only 53.2dB.

AENO AP3 air purifier on a desk
Image Credit (Trusted Reviews)

The Aeno AP3 didn’t perform well in practice. I test every air purifier by shutting it in a small room with a burning smoke pellet and an air quality sensor, and timing how long it takes to scrub the air clean of particulates. These are measured in micrograms per cubic metre (µg/m3), and in my test we look for particles measuring less than 2.5 micrometres across (PM2.5). The biggest purifiers can get the air quality back to very good – a reading below 12 µg/m3 – within about 10 minutes, but I’d expect a smaller device like this to need 20 minutes or more.

In fact, the Aeno AP3 became the first air purifier I’ve tested to essentially fail this test. It took 28 minutes to even get our PM2.5 sensor off its 999 µg/m3 maximum. Even after half an hour, the room still had faintly visible smoke, and the reading had fallen only to 400 µg/m3. It was so ineffective that I abandoned the test, opened a window, and used another air purifier to help finish the job.

I double-checked the AP3 after this test, ensuring that I’d removed the plastic wrapper from its filter, refitted it correctly, and that air was flowing through the device normally. Unfortunately, it was working fine: it just didn’t seem very good at this tough test, suggesting that this purifier is better with lighter levels of PM.

However, it’s instructive to compare the results I got from the Levoit Core 200S on the same test. This similarly specified purifier had the PM2.5 reading down to 464 µg/m3 after 11 minutes, and had returned the room air to a ‘good’ reading of 17 µg/m3 after 22 minutes.

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Should you buy it?

Germicidal ultraviolet on a budget

The Aeno AP3 is pretty small and cheap for a device with UV-C sterilisation. Its simple controls could also prove easier for people who don’t want smart features.

You want more powerful purification

We can’t test air purifiers for everything, but this one performed very badly in our smoke test.

Final Thoughts

It’s good to have a germicidal ultraviolet light on a compact and reasonably affordable air purifier, but alas there’s not much more to recommend the Aeno AP3.

Its carbon filter and UV-C lamp mean that it might be great for getting rid of odours or killing mould or bacterial spores, but our smoke test suggests it’s not at all good at dealing with particulates.

I’d definitely choose the Levoit Core 200S instead: although it doesn’t have ultraviolet, it’s cheaper, has smart features, and was more effective in my tests. For alternatives, see our hand-picked list of the best air purifiers.

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How we test

Unlike other sites, we test every air purifier we review thoroughly over an extended period of time. We use industry-standard tests to compare features properly. We’ll always tell you what we find. We never, ever, accept money to review a product.

Find out more about how we test in our ethics policy.

Used as our main air purifier for the review period

We test smart purifiers with their apps and we test Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant compatibility.

We time how long it takes each purifier to remove smoke from a closed room.

FAQs

Can air purifiers get rid of radon?

No. Radon is a radioactive gas which can’t be filtered out of the air. For this reason it’s important to ventilate your home, especially if you live in an area rich in granite or clay soils.

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Time to clear smoke

Full specs

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AUD RRP
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Size (Dimensions)
Weight
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Voice Assistant
Filter type
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Max room size
Smoke CADR
Number of speeds
Filter replacement light

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