Kobe RA02 Series Experiences?

FarmerMcLarryAugust 14, 2013

Hi everyone.

Just wondering if anyone has experience with the Kobe RA02 series hoods. In particular, I'm considering the RA0242SQB-1 to put over my new 36" BlueStar range. Just wondering what you think about their quality, effectiveness, noise levels - anything really :)

The sales guy was steering us toward a VentAHood. I don't have experience with either, so any input would be helpful. Thanks!

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I installed my RA-02 36" back in April of this year. Hard to say how good it is because this is my first ever range hood therefore I have nothing to compare with.

The reason for which I got it was that it's one of the very few models that do not have electronics that can break down (and I'm saying this as an EE!). That being said, the two 4-position rotary switches may be flimsier than expected, as the one controlling the fan speed lost its "click-click" feeling in about 2 weeks of daily use - the effect is that the actual setting must be done visually, not by feeling the clicks when twisting the knob. I can live with that for the time being but probably will replace them later with better-built switches. The CS response was slow enough that I gave up having it fixed through them. However, being such a simple hood, the fix is straightforward and I like tinkering.

Regarding noise, on the first level it's quite quiet, on the medium you can hear it and still carry a normal conversation next to it, but on the full speed it's a little noisy. Again, I have nothing similar to compare it to.

Otherwise, the LED lights are fine, their light is a little harsh but one gets used to. The hood build is solid, just as they advertised. The baffles work well, catching a lot of grease, although the installed angle is too close to horizontal for the condensate to flow to the catch trough in the back.

In the end, what can I say? I like the hood, as it does its job (when in doubt, set it on high and it sucks everything), but there are a few shortcomings that make me recommend it only reservedly.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2013 at 9:50PM
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Thanks for the response and insight! This will be my first range hood too, so we're in the same boat. I'm glad to hear you have an overall positive impression of the unit.

How hard do you think it will be to swap out the switches? I like the simplicity of the unit as well and am hoping that this would be an easy fix if needed. I can't imagine it would be too difficult.

As far as the LEDs go, is it the color of the light that is harsh?

You mentioned on high it's a little noisy. Per Kobe's website, your unit is rated at 1.8, 4.7 and 5.4 sones at low, medium and high. The unit I'm considering is 2.5, 6.0, and 8.0 respectively. Hmmm... makes me think it might be a wee bit loud at full tilt, although, the 42" exhausts through an 8" exhaust vs a 6" of the 36", so I wonder if that would help reduce noise? What size range do you have yours over (again, mine will be a 36") and do you find it adequate?

There are no local suppliers of this hood in my area, so unfortunately I would be buying sight unseen. Any additional info would be much appreciated!

    Bookmark   August 15, 2013 at 11:24AM
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The LED light is harsh to my eyes because of the skewed spectrum these white LEDs have. I actually would have liked halogens instead, despite the fact that they put out some heat. IMNSHO, the modern light bulbs, be them CFLs or LED, sorely fail in the spectrum category and don't come even close to the light color a decent halogen puts out.

My range is a 30" Maytag and I find the ventilation to be adequate; the hood sits at 29" above the range top, though. It sucks all grease and smoke I can produce (roasting coffee beans, frying, meat searing etc).

One thing to note though is that the depth number is confusing. The actual baffles are shorter and pushed towards the back, which means that the back burners are better serviced than the front ones; if I cook something on the front burners and need to remove all effluent, I have to use the High fan setting.

Regarding the noise, I find that there is a significant difference between Medium and High, much more than 5.4 sones vs. 4.7 sones (even considering a logarithmic scale).

Changing the switches will likely be a simple mechanical job.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2013 at 3:26PM
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