Speed Cook oven vs. Convection/Microwave

ellessebeeJanuary 25, 2013

Can someone please explain the difference to me between what's called a "speed cook" oven and a microwave with convection? And are there other speed cook ovens besides the Advantium? I just came from a store where I saw a Kitchen Aid triple stack with a regular oven under a micro with convection and broiling element. (warming drawer on the very bottom) There was also a steam cook feature on the control pad but the salesman couldn't tell me anything about that or even which oven it was in. Anyone out there know anything about this? I am considering the Thermador steam oven, Thermador convection wall oven and also an Advantium or some microwave that can do double or triple duty. Any advice? Thanks

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We have an electrolux icon speed oven and I love it. Still learning to use its "speed" function but it heats up SO quickly and it is a fantastic second oven - we used it non stop for Thanksgiving and Christmas. It is also a great microwave - easy to use.

Everything I have speed cooked in there - from casseroles to chicken breasts - has turned out great. There is a learning curve. I basically wanted a second oven but no great place for one and a microwave so we did this. Haven't regretted it except it is BEAR to keep clean!

    Bookmark   January 26, 2013 at 5:23PM
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I'm still trying to figure this out myself. I have an Advantium, and I can tell you what that is. The Advantium has 4 heating elements: a microwave magnetron, a convection oven element, an overhead halogen heating element, and a underneath ceramic heating element. This allows it to be used 4 ways: a regular microwave, a convection microwave, a regular convection oven, and what GE calls a speed oven. With the speed oven setting, you can set different combinations of the 4 heating elements to get the right degree of cooking heat with browning through the halogen element. When you are using the speed oven mode, you use a metal tray instead of a glass one for microwaving. This allows the ceramic element underneath the tray to contribute to additional heating and cooking which cuts down on cooking time. The Advantium comes with a ton of preset combinations [I can't remember how many, but it's probably listed on the GE website]. For example, if you want to roast vegetable or bake potatoes you can just use a preset. The speed oven is what it sounds like. It's a lot faster. For example, a baked potato takes just 20 min instead of 40 in a regular oven. When used in the convection oven mode, it's just like using a regular oven. You set it to a particular temp and it just works like a regular oven. Having run through all of these wonderful features though, I have to say that 90% of the time we just use it like a regular microwave. But it does come in handy for certain speed cooking activities, like potatoes, and mainly during the holidays or for a dinner party when you need a 2nd oven. In the latter case, we often just use is as a convection oven and not as a speed oven. We are just like athensmomof3. We didn't have space for both a 2nd oven and a microwave, so the Advantium combines both. As a microwave, it's actually quite good and spacious. Overall I'm very happy with it. I don't know if other speed ovens like the Elux or Miele offer exactly the same thing, or if they are just convection microwaves.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 2:51PM
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I am looking at this issue to, ellessebee. I'm wondering if there are any speed ovens that don't take a huge cabinet. The Adventium 220 is expensive and must be put in an upper cabinet. I like cooking items in base cabinets.

athensmomof3- where did you place your Electrolux speed oven? Is it built in or can it be exchanged out?

EurekaChef-is your Adventium 120 or 240? If it's 120 do you find it still bakes potatoes, a small casserole or 8 x 8 pan of brownies well?

Thank you. I will review other threads too on speed ovens.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 3:28PM
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The speed oven is in a stack with an oven below and a warming drawer below that. I use it lots as a second oven so that was the most logical place to put it.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 5:19PM
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My impression of the advantium (I don't have one) is that it can microwave while regular heating which saves cook time. I have a kitchenaid convection/microwave and it cannot do that even though it has all the devices to be able to do it. However, it IS a true small convection oven with bottom heat, fan heat, a ceramic broiler unit that adds some heat from the top and of course microwaves. It heats quickly and cooks/bakes well. It is also hard to clean since it has stainless walls rather than coated ones. It steam cooks; I think that is just a normal microwave function and sensor.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 5:27PM
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I plan on getting a slide in 30" range. What are the options for placing this speed oven in the kitchen? I like the idea of having a smaller oven without having to go to the wall oven option, because of lack of wall space. Where could this speed oven be placed if we do not have a wall oven?

    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 7:47PM
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I just returned from PC Richards where I hoped once and for all to put an end to my quest for the perfect microwave/speed cook oven. No such luck! I told the kind but not so well-informed salesman that we have a Whirlpool G2Microven which has a halogen light and magnetron and that I wanted to get something similar. He said they're no longer made and didn't mention any other Whirlpool replacement although I have read on this forum about something called Velos. (No store has had one for me to see or purchase.) The salesman showed me a bunch of microwaves with convection but couldn't tell me if they were what is called "speed cook." I pointed to the Advantium 110 they had on display and he said it was GE's version of the same thing as all the others. Then he showed me a GE Profile but couldn't establish the difference between it and the Advantium - said it was just "construction." So I am still in a state of utter confusion BUT when I find what I want I will be installing it under a cabinet AS IF over the range even though it will not actually be over a range. My cabinet person said she can fit it out with trim to make it look built in. The only difference between this installation and wall-oven built in is that it will sit in about 8 inches from the edge of the counter and have a swinging door whereas a wall installation would be out 24" and might have a drop down door. You might consider this installation yourself, or put it over the range as a vent/hood. We have that configuration now with our Whirlpool and it is vented to the outside. It is not the strongest fan but that's all we could do in this kitchen. I would love to hear others chime in about their experience with speed cook ovens. I am on the verge of getting the Advantium 220 just to put myself out of my misery! I also have to select a refrigerator and wall oven! Please pass the Excedrin....

    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 8:26PM
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My definition.

A speed oven has a heating element on the top side that allows your to broil. A good unit will also allow you to set the amount of microwave energy that is used AT THE SAME TIME as the convection oven and/or broiler.

A microwave convection oven will have a heating element for convection, but no other. You may be able to use some preset microwave power settings depending on the vendor. Sharp has two defined, but you cannot change the Temp or Microwave power.

A GE Profile convection/microwave is NOT an Advantium. The 110v version has smaller heating elements than the 220v (something like 1000w versus 3000w), so it takes is a lot longer to heat up. But once it does, it makes an adequate oven. The Advantium is more flexible than your basic convection/microwave (Sharp, GE) since it has the broiler. You would have to look at the manual to see if it also allows you the flexibility to set the combination of temp and microwave energy.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 5:33PM
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Ok, I just took a look at the manuals for the Advantium wall oven and OTR unit(110v).

They both have an upper halogen element (lamp), rear convection element (and fan), lower heating element and microwave. They both have a 'vast' array of preset 'menues' for cooking different foods. They also both allow you to vary all 4 elements (upper, lower, convection, microwave) to any setting combination you desire.

It also looks like they are both the same size internally. But the OTR is a grand cheaper.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 5:48PM
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I was looking at the 220V manual for the OTR unit above.

The 110V OTR unit does not do the same. It does NOT use the convection element during speed cooking. Only the Upper halogen (and they are small), the lower (small) heating element and the microwave are used in combination. This is probably why folks who use the 110v unit don't care for it's speedcook ability.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 6:02PM
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Weedmeister! You are better than an asperin for curing my headache. Distilled all the information in one place so well. Thank you so much! That's one decision made, now for the wall oven and refrigerator....

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 6:46PM
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In response to earlier question, I have a 240 V. I think there's a big diff and if you do go Advantium, I would recommend 240 V.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 10:16PM
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ellessebee -- your salesman sounds like, well - a waste of space.

I have a Miele combination oven, the low end one. I can tell you about that. There is a higher end one; I can never remember their names. Maybe "speed chef"?

The difference, I think, between low and high ends is the high end has a mess of preset cooking combos. My low end does not. It has three cooking methods and all combinations (and permutations) of these are available. They are (1) MW (2) convention oven (3) broiler. They each work great by themselves and well together too. But there is a long learning curve, I find, in figuring out what to do, how to cook the food. I find, like others, I rarely use the "speed" setting because, in part, it's not necessary. Being a small oven, it's really efficient in there -- it holds my huge le creuset lasgana pan just fine but takes about 3 minutes to heat to 400. Cooking stuff on just regular convection is way faster in there than in my oven. I use it as a "second" oven preferentially all the time!

I love the thing. The broiler works great. The MW is not quite as even as I'd like -- there's no carousel of course and sometimes it's not the evennest of MW-distributors.

I love that it's electric and I can program it to have dinner cooked for me when I get home. I love that!!!! (I know, not exotic but I've never had it before).

Mine is 240V; I read that if you want to do this combo thing, it works much better to do it with the huge burst of power. Know that this takes a dedicated 240V plug, so more costly installation, perhaps.

I bought this over the Advantium because I wanted it undercounter. The Advantium, all agree, really is, as advertised, not adviseable to be mounted down low -- apparently there is a scalding-steam issue and the location is a danger. There is no such problem with the Miele. I'm not quite sure why not, but, well, I can live without knowing that.

The Miele was costly, but it has become an integral part of our kitchen-life. I understand others love their advantium as well, I just couldn't make it work for me.

If you buy one of these things, do heed the advice from many on here to design a narrow cabinet immediately adjacent, either horizontal or vertical, to house the racks that will need swapping out. Without very easy landing-space, the machine quickly becomes a pia to use to its full potential and therefore morphs into a really expensive water-heating unit. You don't want to waste money like that -- do yourself a favor and front-load the planning for this thing to work as you'd wish it to. I think that also means make room for the 240V feature as well, though I'm not sure of that. This was my reading on it all at least.

BTW, I vaguely recall some discussion about that fourth heating element on the floor of the advantium which the Miele lacks being good, principally, for pizza. I can't attest to that being its only utility, but if that is the case, then for us at least, that function I would prefer in the gas oven anyway, so I don't miss it that I know of. [Actually, that function I prefer to relegate to a pizzeria who always does it way better than I can anywhere at all. For some reason I make the worst pizza on the face of the planet].


    Bookmark   February 1, 2013 at 1:01AM
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I've been steadily reading since joining last week. I really appreciate the level and quality of information sharing - and the polite discussions.

We are redoing our kitchen with new, intensively featured cabinets and new countertops. We'll keep our old fridge for now and our very quiet Bosch DW. We're abandoning 18 year old double wall ovens and 36" gas cook top and the countertop MW goes into storage for holiday backup. We're currently thinking of a 36" dual fuel range and an under counter speed oven and leaning to the Miele Masterchef. How wide does that rack storage need to be if using a vertical space? Can other items be realistically share the space - either vertically or horizontally?


    Bookmark   February 17, 2014 at 6:03PM
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"Vertical space"? You mean a cabinet stack? ... or do you mean something to store the racks on end, like books?

I have a narrow drawer underneath the open box where the Miele slides into. It's very simple and very helpful; I appreciate the advice from here to do that very much! It's the same width as the box, which is 24" I think. I believe the whole thing is 24" x 24" x 24" in fact. If you explain better what measurement you're looking for I can measure for you. But for consistency sake probably you just want to build in a space that's similar to the machine's box. If you're putting in a tray slot next to the MW box, that's going to want to be about the same height as the MW box and if so, it will be the right size anyway .... does that make sense?

    Bookmark   February 17, 2014 at 6:43PM
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Sorry if someone else mentioned this, I didn't read all the previous posts carefully. But I think one key difference between a speed oven and a microwave/convection oven is that in a speed oven, usually the microwave and the convection portions can run simultaneously. My built in Kitchenaid combo oven has microwave and convection, but since it can only run one at a time I don't consider it a speed oven. Many speed ovens do have a 3rd heat source (usually either halogen like on the Advantium or a broil element like on the Miele) but I wouldn't say that is required for it to be a speed oven. The Electrolux Icon doesn't have either of those things and it certainly is a speed oven.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2014 at 9:54PM
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Sorry. I didn't make myself clear. I can get the cabinet cutout for the oven itself from the vendor information

I was asking about how much space would I need to store the Miele parts that get changed out. Obviously, it will need to 24" tall if the parts storage is vertical. How wide does it need to be? 4"?, 6"? 8"?

If the Miele parts are stored in a drawer, it would be 24" wide. How deep does the drawer need to be?

And, is it practical to store other things with the Miele parts?

    Bookmark   February 18, 2014 at 10:04AM
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Hi HVtech42. I've read a lot of postings on this Forum and perceive that the only speed ovens (convection and microwave can operate simultaneously) are 240 v and the only 240 v that can go under counter is the Miele. If I have misunderstood this, I will widen my consideration (I was initially intrigued by the Electrolux Icon)

    Bookmark   February 18, 2014 at 10:20AM
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I believe you can get a 120V Advantium as a speed oven but it is not recommended as it is underpowered. It is said and confirmed here, that the hot air vent is too hot for undercounter use. For this reason I bought the 240V Miele so it could be undercounter.

There are (or were) two flavors of Miele, a highly programmed one and a less-so one. I have the less-so. We like it very much. It's possible the programmed-one does things that the non-programmable one does not, like cycle through a range of cooking instructions within the course of a programmed period, say, 15 min on convection only, then 15 min on convection/MW ... I am not positive about this as I do not own it. We are fine with out single-instruction programming.

I have a dim memory of there being a second speed oven that will go undercounter... can't remember. But I would take seriously the manufacturer's recommendations, because there was a report of someone ignoring it and installing it below counter and then being surprised at how searing the vent air was. With a child around that could be very dangerous. The aire that comes from the top of my Miele is hot, but not searing. I don't know what they do with the really hot air! I've wondered about that ... ;)

It sounds like you're planning (OP) a vertical slot to the side of the Miele. The width for that slot is not much. You will receive, at least I did in my low-end one, a (very expensive to replace) glass tray that is shaped like, um, a shallow dish. It is 1" deep and molded so that the side slides into the cavity of the oven. You will also receive one metal rack that slides into the oven; it has no 'pan' part to it so it is just the thickness of the metal, about 1/4". Personally, I searched and found a couple metal cookie tins to fit directly into the slots of the cavity, and those have some depth as well, approx 3/4". When stored in the drawer I use underneath it all, they nestle in the glass tray so additional depth is less. I also have a silicon mat which takes up no thickness of course, that I store there. Sometimes if you've used the oven and then want to use the MW, it's so hot in there I worry about setting anything on the tray. The mat helps for this.

Thus my drawer really is very thin, about 2.5" plus the "bonus" space up top. It's an upper drawer (the oven is above it but no drawer) so that is approx 1/4" addition.

This depth works perfectly for me - again, it's a drawer. I can fit the appliance booklet in there as well and a couple thin oven pads. It absolutely helps not having additional depth and junk to paw through. No way would I use this machine as much as I do if it were any more troublesome to get at the stuff -- just as explained here. As is, I have a little sorting to do through the racks I have stored -- also I stick a cooling rack in there too. This irks me a tad but not enough to stop using the oven. Anything more and I probably would start doing that little insidious subliminal calculation that results in an appliance not getting used.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2014 at 11:14AM
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