Things We Like
- Excellent performance for the compact size
- Small form factor takes up very little space on the countertop
- Decent build quality throughout
- Comes with a built-in cutter
Things We Don’t Like
- Cheap-looking design
The Inkbird Plus INK-VS01, which falls within the mid-range price range, pleasantly surprises with its compact size. Amazon reviews are filled with praise for its remarkable abilities, especially its speed and efficiency in creating airtight seals on bags.
With a brand-new unit in our lab, it's only fair to put it through rigorous testing. Our review team spent twelve hours evaluating every aspect of this sealer, from its performance to its design and ease of use. Here's what we found.
Where to Buy Price at publication $56.45
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Compared to Other Vacuum Sealers
Our reviewers were pleasantly surprised by the Inkbird Plus INK-VS01 in this area. Even though it's small in size, this sealer boasts impressive power. It performed excellently in both of our tests, earning a solid score of 7.2/10. It impressed us with its strong suction during the dry test and its gentle yet effective suction power in the moist food test.
8.0 Dry Food Test
The Inkbird Plus INK-VS01 performed surprisingly well in the dry food test. It was able to vacuum-pack a bag of black rice grains until the grains were so compressed that they gained a brick-like hardness. The sealer was able to maintain a fairly stable suction strength of 63 kPA and 62 kPA in two separate tests. The cycle times were efficient, at 17 seconds and 16 seconds, respectively, demonstrating its quick and reliable vacuum-sealing capability.
Overall, the Inkbird Plus proves to be a solid choice for dry food vacuum-sealing.
6.0 Moist Food Test
The Inkbird Plus INK-VS01 performed effectively in the test with moist food. As expected, the sealer reduced suction power and took longer to properly seal moist and soft food. It consistently maintained a suction strength of 28 kPA during both tests when vacuum-sealing fresh mango slices. Although the sealing process took a little more time, it remained reasonably efficient at 26 seconds for the first and 22 seconds for the second. Most importantly, it successfully sealed the fresh mango slices without squishing them, which is exactly what we wanted to see.
So, if you’re expecting to pack a lot of moist or soft food with your next sealer, the Inkbird should fit the bill pretty well.
For a sealer with such performance, the Inkbird Plus INK-VS01 has a very compact form factor, which is perfect if you don’t have a lot of countertop real estate. While the sealer feels slightly cheap, all its components are solid, and there are no significant design flaws. However, its lack of extra features is a downside, albeit understandable given its small size.
In the Box
Besides the sealer itself, the Inkbird Plus INK-VS01 comes with the following items in the box:
- Sheets of pre-cut bags and uncut plastic bag rolls
- Detachable power cord
- Replaceable seal foam
- Air hose and adapter
- User manuals
The Inkbird Plus INK-VS01 is much smaller and lighter than most other vacuum sealers in its price range and class. It's particularly compact in terms of width and height. For instance, it's only about half the size of larger models like the Nesco VS-12 and the Anova Precision Vacuum Sealer Pro. To give you an idea, the Inkbird is just 3.9 inches wide and 1.57 inches tall, while the Nesco VS-12 measures 7.8 x 4.3 inches.
Plus, it's super lightweight, weighing only 1.57 pounds, as opposed to the 4+ pounds of full-size models. So, if you value a small and lightweight vacuum sealer, the Inkbird Plus INK-VS01 should definitely be on your radar.
9.0 Build Quality
The unit we got has solid build quality. The control panel is clearly labeled and responsive, the lid doesn't wobble when we open or close it, and the lid's locking mechanisms work smoothly. However, our only concern with the build quality is that it feels a bit less robust compared to other models in the same price range, such as the Anova Precision Pro and the Nesco VS-12. While the metallic top of the lid adds a nice aesthetic touch, it's not quite enough to give the sealer a premium look that matches its price.
Because the sealer comes with a detachable power cord, there's a convenient port at the back where you can plug it in. A handy silicone plug covers the port to keep it safe from the elements when not in use.
The underside of the sealer has four anti-slip feet positioned at four corners of the sealer.
9.0 Control Panel
The control panel of the Inkbird Plus INK-VS01 is simple and consists of only four touch-sensitive buttons.
From left to right, there's the "Food" button, which allows you to switch between different food modes like "Dry" and "Moist." Next is the "Seal" button, specifically for sealing the bag. Then, there's the "Vac Seal" button, which initiates a complete work cycle, including both vacuuming and sealing the bag.
On the far right, in blue, there's the "Stop" button, which you can use to halt the sealer's operation for any reason.
The fifth and final button, labeled “Vac,” is inside the sealer's interior. This button activates the motor, enabling vacuum packaging when using an air hose adapter. You can easily connect the air hose adapter to the raised vacuum port in the vacuum channel.
The Inkbird Plus INK-VS01 has latch locks, so you must press the lid down to lock it securely. It takes a bit of effort but isn't too difficult to close. Both locks on the lid engage evenly when you press down with both hands. To unlock, there are buttons on each side of the sealer that you can press.
Overall, the locks and their construction work fine. However, it's worth noting that using the lid with one hand can be a bit tricky compared to the more convenient handle lock models like the Anova Precision Pro.
5.0 Extra Features
The Inkbird Plus INK-VS01 doesn't come with many extra bells and whistles, but it does include a useful bag cutter at the top. This feature makes it easy to trim plastic bags to the perfect size from the rolls.
Additionally, inside the vacuum channel, you'll discover a pair of bag hooks that help you position your plastic bags correctly.
The Inkbird Plus INK-VS01 could be easier to use, especially when closing the lid with one hand. Aligning the bag and sealing it can be challenging due to the narrow vacuum channel and compact size. This led to some sealing issues during our tests. On the bright side, it's safe and quiet, though it doesn't have a chime feature.
6.0 Ease of Use
The Inkbird Plus INK-VS01 could be more user-friendly. One of the main issues is closing the lid, which can be quite tricky, especially if you're trying to do it with just one hand. It's much easier with a second person's help to ensure the bag fits snugly in the vacuum channel and the lid closes securely. While the bag hooks are meant to assist with alignment, the narrow vacuum channel, a result of the sealer's compact size, still makes it a bit challenging to use. This challenge led to a few unsuccessful attempts at sealing during our tests
9.0 Safety & Noise
Inkbird has really prioritized safety in the design of this sealer. They've placed a highly visible sticker on the heating bar to caution users about its hot surface. Additionally, there's a safety warning sticker inside the sealer to provide important safety instructions.
The Inkbird Plus INK-VS01 is on the louder side, having achieved a noise level of 83.2 dBA during a dry food test. But this is still within the general range for the loudness of most vacuum sealers.
7.0 Indicator Lights and Chime
The Inkbird Plus INK-VS01 features four indicator lights on its control panel, excluding the progress bar. Two of these lights are located on the "Food" button, indicating which food mode is currently active. Depending on whether you select "Seal" or "Vac Seal" as your working mode, the corresponding light on that button will illuminate when pressed.
Additionally, there is an indicator bar at the top of the control panel to help you track the sealer's progress. This light bar moves across to indicate the progress and turns off once the sealer has completed its task.
All of these lights are bright and easily visible, even under strong studio lighting conditions.
Behind the review
Matthew Lee is a writer and editor for HealthyKitchen101. With over 8 years working for various outlets and agencies, specializing in tech review and other subjects of note, such as current affairs.
Lap is Head of the Research, Testing, and Review Team (RTR Team) at HealthyKitchen101.com, where he directs and supervises the testing of kitchen gadgets and appliances.
Nguyen Ntk is a graphic designer, photographer, and videographer whose philosophy centers around respecting and celebrating the beauty of reality. Through his lenses, Nguyen strives to capture the true essence of objects and events, showcasing and highlighting authentic features without distortion or exaggeration.