6 Best Multi-Zone Mini Split System (w/ Analysis & Comparison)


Many people want to use a multi-zone mini split system to heat and cool their entire house. I've had experience with multi-zone mini split systems. So, I reviewed some of the multi-zone mini split systems on the market to help people make more informed decisions.

Based on my comparison, I concluded that the best multi-zone mini split system is the Daikin AURORA multi-zone system. It has high energy efficiency which translates into low power consumption, great low ambient heating performance and a comprehensive control system.

Here are the 6 best multi-zone mini split systems that I've shortlisted:

Multi-Zone Mini Split System#1
Daikin
AURORA
#2
Daikin
MXS
#3
Mitsubishi
MXZ
#4
Panasonic
Multi
#5
MrCool
DIY
#6
Senville
SENA
Product Image
Number of ZonesUp to 4 zonesUp to 5 zonesUp to 8 zonesUp to 5 zonesUp to 4 zonesUp to 5 zones
Cooling Efficiency, SEER*21.717.720.022.021.522.4
Heating Efficiency, HSPF*11.212.211.39.511.011.3
Lowest Operating Temperature-13℉5℉-13℉-15℉5℉-22℉
Centralized ControlOptionalOptionalOptionalBuilt-InBuilt-InBuilt-In
Compressor Warranty12 years12 years7 years7 years7 years10 years
Other Parts Warranty12 years12 years5 years5 years5 years5 years
Installation KitIncludedIncluded
Price Range$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
* Energy efficiency of 4-zone system with ductless indoor units.

Multi-zone mini split systems are slightly more complicated than single-zone mini split systems. Hence, studying and comparing them require some technical background.

Previously, I led a team of contractors to install about 70 units of multi-zone mini split systems in two luxury high-rise residential apartments. The apartment has 3 bedrooms with a large living room plus kitchen and dining.

So, we installed one multi-zone mini split condenser with 5 indoor units to form a 4 zones HVAC system, one indoor unit for each bedroom and two indoor units for the living room.

Below are photos of the multi-zone mini split condenser unit during installation:

Non-professionals often struggle to understand multi-zone mini split systems. Hence, they rely on contractors to select suitable multi-zone mini split systems for them. However, they usually don't get a full analysis to explain why a specific multi-zone mini split system is chosen.

When it comes to comparing multi-zone mini split systems, I consider the following factors:

  • Brand Reputation – The brand reputation speaks to the quality standard and performance of the multi-zone mini split system. It is my biggest factor when determining the best one out there.
  • Technical Specification – The specification of the multi-zone mini split system is the second most important factor to me, especially the energy efficiency and low ambient heating performance.
  • Features – I also consider the features of the multi-zone mini split system when comparing. However, it is often not a game-changing factor.
  • Variety & Add-Ons – It is a bonus if there are a few choices of indoor units available for the multi-zone mini split system. Also, optional items such as WiFi control and smart thermostat are nice to have but not essential.

With that said, I compared more than 10 different multi-zone mini split systems across 8 different brands to come out with the top 6 multi-zone mini split systems you can consider.

So, let's take a closer look at the 6 best multi-zone mini split systems that I've shortlisted:

1. Daikin AURORA Multi-Zone Mini Split System

Pros

  • Good energy efficiency
  • Great low ambient heating performance

Cons

  • More expensive
  • Maximum 4 zones only

The AURORA multi-zone mini split system is one of the 4 multi-zone mini split systems offered by Daikin, a Japanese brand that is also one of the largest air conditioner manufacturers in the world.

The Daikin AURORA multi-zone mini split system can connect up to 4 indoor units, allowing you to have 4 different thermal zones. The indoor unit choices are wall-mounted, ceiling cassette, floor-mounted and ceiling ducted.

Compared to other multi-zone mini split systems, the low ambient heating performance of the Daikin AURORA multi-zone mini split system is better. It is capable of delivering 100% heating capacity at 5℉ with the lowest ambient temperature it can work being -13℉.

If you don't need more than 4 zones and you don't mind paying a little extra, the Daikin AURORA multi-zone mini split system is your best choice.

View on the official website: https://daikincomfort.com/products/heating-cooling/multi-zone/outdoor-units/enhanced-multi-zone-aurora

2. Daikin MXS Multi-Zone Mini Split System

Pros

  • Less expensive

Cons

  • Less energy efficient
  • Not ideal for low ambient heating

The MXS multi-zone mini split system is another multi-zone mini split system by Daikin. It is very similar to the Daikin AURORA multi-zone mini split system except it is less energy efficient and not good for low ambient heating.

However, the Daikin MXS multi-zone system can have up to 5 zones and it is more affordable than the Daikin AURORA multi-zone mini split system.

The good thing about choosing Daikin multi-zone mini split system is that you can opt for the optional Daikin One+ smart thermostat which is a centralized wired display controller that controls all indoor units.

So, if you need 5 zones and you don't need the multi-zone mini split system to work in very low ambient temperatures, you can choose the Daikin MXS multi-zone mini split system and save on cost.

View on the official website: https://daikincomfort.com/products/heating-cooling/multi-zone/outdoor-units/mxs-series-multi-zone

3. Mitsubishi MXZ Multi-Zone Mini Split System

Pros

  • Up to 8 zones
  • Great low ambient heating performance

Cons

  • Lack of simple centralized control

The MXZ multi-zone mini split system is the only multi-zone mini split system offered by Mitsubishi, another Japanese brand that made various kinds of electrical appliances.

Within the MXZ model, you can choose either the normal type or the hyper-heating type which has better low ambient heating performance.

The Mitsubishi MXZ multi-zone mini split system can connect up to 8 indoor units, essentially letting you have 8 zones. On top of that, it has 8 different types of indoor units for you to choose from including the rare floor-standing air handler and one-way ceiling cassette.

As for the low ambient heating performance, the Mitsubishi MXZ (hyper-heating) multi-zone mini split system is similar to the Daikin AURORA multi-zone mini split system. While its normal version is similar to the Daikin MXS multi-zone mini split system.

However, Mitsubishi multi-zone mini split system doesn't have a simple centralized control system like the Daikin One+ smart thermostat if it is something you wish to have.

If you need more than 5 zones, you can choose the Mitsubishi MXZ multi-zone system so that you don't have to get two multi-zone mini split systems.

View on the official website: https://www.mitsubishicomfort.com/commercial/products/m-series-outdoor?modelID=MXZ

4. Panasonic Multi-Zone Mini Split System

Pros

  • Better air filtration
  • Built-in WiFi control

Cons

  • Floor-mounted unit unavailable

Panasonic is another reputable Japanese company that makes various kinds of electrical appliances including their multi-zone mini split system.

The Panasonic multi-zone mini split system can connect up to 5 indoor units, allowing you to have up to 5 zones. The indoor unit choices are wall-mounted, ceiling cassette and ceiling ducted but not the floor-mounted type.

For the ductless wall-mounted type of indoor unit, you can choose the ClimaPure model which has a built-in WiFi adapter for mobile app controls and you have the option to add on a PM2.5 filter for better indoor air quality.

So, if you want a less expensive multi-zone mini split system that can provide better air quality, the Panasonic multi-zone mini split system is a good choice.

View on the official website: https://na.panasonic.com/ca/indoor-air-quality/comfort-heating-cooling/mini-split/outdoor-multi-zone-split-2-5-zone

5. MrCool DIY Multi-Zone Mini Split System

Pros

  • DIY-friendly
  • Installation kit included

Cons

  • Not ideal for low ambient heating

The MrCool DIY multi-zone mini split system is a very popular choice for people who want to install it by themselves. It can have up to 4 zones.

Generally, the MrCool DIY multi-zone mini split system has comparable energy efficiency. It is also cheaper considering that it comes with the installation kit. Furthermore, it comes with a WiFi adapter for mobile app controls.

So, if you want to save on the installation cost, you may choose the MrCool DIY multi-zone mini split system.

View on the official website: https://mrcool.com/diy-multi-zone/

6. Senville SENA Multi-zone Mini Split System

Pros

  • Affordable

Cons

  • Limited features

When it comes to budget multi-zone mini split systems that can be bought online, the Senville SENA multi-zone mini split system is a popular choice.

The Senville SENA multi-zone mini split system can have up to 5 zones. It also comes with an installation kit and a WiFi adapter for mobile app controls. Its technical specification is also good in general.

So, if you have a tight budget, you may choose the Senville SENA multi-zone mini split system.

View on the official website: https://senville.com/mini-split-ac/multi-zone/

Multi-Zone Mini Split System Comparison

As mentioned earlier, the Daikin AURORA multi-zone mini split system is the best multi-zone mini split system. Now, let's compare it to other comparable multi-zone mini split systems.

Daikin AURORA vs Daikin MXS

Compared to its counterpart (the MXS series), the AURORA series is more energy efficient and better in low ambient heating performance.

Key FactorsDaikin AURORA
Multi-Zone System
Daikin MXS
Multi-Zone System
Cooling Efficiency, SEER*21.717.7 (-18.4%)
Heating Efficiency, HSPF*11.212.2 (+0.9%)
Low Ambient Heating PerformanceDown to -13°FLowest at 5°F only
Number of Thermal ZoneMaximum 4 zones onlyUp to 5 Zones
* Energy efficiency of 4-zone system with ductless indoor units.

The MXS series is 18.4% less efficient than the AURORA series. Despite having a slightly higher heating efficiency, the AURORA series still consumes less power than the MXS series.

Furthermore, the AURORA series performs better in low ambient heating. Even when the ambient temperature drops to -13°F, the AURORA series can still function. Whereas the MXS series stops functioning when the ambient temperature drops below 5°F.

So, I find that the AURORA series is the better one among the two multi-zone mini split systems unless you don't need such a low ambient heating performance.

Daikin AURORA vs Mitsubishi MXZ

The energy efficiency of the Mitsubishi MXZ multi-zone mini split system is very close to the Daikin AURORA. However, it is still shorts by 7.8% for cooling.

Key FactorsDaikin AURORA
Multi-Zone System
Mitsubishi MXZ
Multi-Zone System
Cooling Efficiency, SEER*21.720 (-7.8%)
Heating Efficiency, HSPF*11.211.3 (+<1%)
Low Ambient Heating PerformanceDown to -13°FDown to -13°F
Number of Thermal ZoneMaximum 4 zones onlyUp to 8 Zones
* Efficiency value based on a 4-zone outdoor unit with four ductless indoor units.

The Mitsubishi MXZ multi-zone mini split system has similar low ambient heating performance as the Daikin AURORA multi-zone mini split system. On top of that, the Mitsubishi MXZ can have up to 8 zones.

Hence, you can save costs by having just one multi-zone system instead of two.

However, the Mitsubishi MXZ doesn't provide centralized control. If that's something you want, two Daikin AURORA multi-zone mini split systems may still be a better choice.

Daikin AURORA vs Panasonic Multi

The Panasonic multi-zone mini split system doesn't have a floor-mounted indoor unit. So, if you need the floor-mounted unit, the Panasonic is out of the question.

However, the Panasonic multi-zone mini split is more affordable than the Daikin AURORA multi-zone mini split system. The downside of the Panasonic is overall less energy efficient.

Key FactorsDaikin AURORA
Multi-Zone System
Panasonic
Multi-Zone System
Cooling Efficiency, SEER*21.722 (+1.4%)
Heating Efficiency, HSPF*11.29.5 (-15.2%)
Low Ambient Heating PerformanceDown to -13°FFurther down to -15°F
Number of Thermal ZoneMaximum 4 zones onlyUp to 5 Zones
* Efficiency value based on a 4-zone outdoor unit with four ductless indoor units.

Although the Panasonic multi-zone mini split system has a lower ambient heating capability, its heating capacity can't keep up. While the Daikin AURORA multi-zone system is able to maintain 100% of its heating capacity at 5°F, the heating capacity of the Panasonic multi-zone system drops by nearly 50%.

So, I think the Panasonic multi-zone mini split system is worth considering if you need cooling more than heating. Also, it is more affordable and you have better indoor air quality.

Other than that, you may choose the MrCool DIY multi-zone mini split system if you plan to install it by yourself and also, the Senville SENA multi-zone mini split system if you have a tight budget.

I hope by now you have a multi-zone mini split system in mind. If you haven't, try the below table and make your final decision:

Multi-Zone Mini Split SystemReason to BuyReason Not to Buy
Daikin AURORABuy this if you want a solid multi-zone mini split system.Don't buy this if you don't need low ambient heating.
Daikin MXSBuy this if you don't need low ambient heating.Don't buy this if you need low ambient heating.
Mitsubishi MXZBuy this if you need more than 5 zones.Don't buy this if you don't need more than 5 zones.
Panasonic MultiBuy this if you want better air quality.Don't buy this if you need low ambient heating.
MrCool DIYBuy this if you want to install it by yourself.Don't buy this if you need low ambient heating.
Senville SENABuy this if you have a tight budget.Don't buy this if you have the budget.

Conclusion

Of the 6 multi-zone mini split systems that I've shortlisted, I would say that the Daikin AURORA multi-zone mini split system is the best multi-zone mini split system because it has good energy efficiency, good low ambient heating performance and simple centralized thermostat control.

In addition, the warranty given by Daikin is incomparable.

However, the drawback of the Daikin AURORA multi-zone mini split system is the higher price. Based on my estimation, it will be the most expensive one among the 6 multi-zone mini split systems.

Nonetheless, you'll get better quality and performance.

Meanwhile, if you have specific needs that the Daikin AURORA multi-zone mini split system is not able to fulfill, you can always choose one of the multi-zone mini split systems that I've shortlisted as they are all great multi-zone mini split systems.


Digital Products by aircondlounge

These are the top selling digital products made by me and sold on aircondlounge. Check them out and see which products fit your needs.

Design Engineer Starter Pack

Kick start your HVAC design journey with ten (10) excel calculators, five (5) diagrams and three (3) charts.

  • Simple design
  • Easy to use
  • Key values included

HVAC Basics (eBook)

Learn different types of HVAC components used in residential and commercial buildings.

  • Summary list
  • Sample photos
  • Easy navigation

Chilled Water System (eBook)

Pursuit the truth and learn the fundamental ways to approach the chilled-water system.

  • Comprehensive explanation
  • Fundamental approach
  • Progressive teaching

Visit https://aircondlounge.com/shop to see all digital products sold on aircondlounge.

Recommended Air Conditioners

I reviewed and compared hundreds of air conditioners. These are my latest recommended products. Check them out if you're looking to buy one.

Daikin Atmosphera R32 Mini Split Heat Pump

A high efficiency and very reliable wall-mounted mini split with the latest environmental-friendly R32 refrigerant gas and quality from Japan.

  • Efficiency 27.4 SEER
  • Operating temp. -13°F
  • Warranty 12 years

Midea U-Shaped Inverter Window Air Conditioner

A beautifully designed window air conditioner with the latest environmental-friendly R32 refrigerant gas that runs more quietly than most other window ACs.

LG LV1419IVSM Portable Air Conditioner

Portable air conditioner recommended by 6 reputable reviewers. Low noise operation and high efficiency. More than 70% 5-star rating on Amazon.

  • Low noise at 44 dB
  • High efficiency
  • 2022 best portable AC

Visit https://aircondlounge.com/category/product-reviews/ to see all products recommended by aircondlounge.

Yu Chang Zhen

I enjoy working on air conditioners and ventilation fans because Malaysia is a very hot country.

Recent Posts