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Favourite induction cooktop?

Posted by canuck82 (My Page) on
Mon, Jul 2, 12 at 23:51

So, I know there's tonnes of posts on the awesomeness of induction, but I'm having trouble finding one or two brands that seem to be the favorites.
I often have 3-4 burners going at once. I also usually like to have 2 big pans on the stove at the same time ( say to boil pasta water and make a sauce at same time.) I've looked at Miele, Wolf and thermador. Which one do all you fabulously knowledgeable folks recommend?

Thanks!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

I'm 3 weeks into using my 36" Thermador CIS365GB induction cooktop and I'm enjoying more than I ever thought I would. Thermador has power (up to 4600W on boost) which is what I was looking for. There are 5 elements, ranging from 1200W to 3600W. The latter can be boosted to 4600W or equivalent of about 35000 BTU/hr.

It has all the options you can imagine - instant response, finely graduated heating levels, intuitive controls (a bit complicated to learn IMO), safety features plus sensordome. This latter is a feature I haven't even tested yet - I was told it didn't work and I didn't include it as a factor when choosing this model. The cooktop turns off if temperatures rise above 1000 deg F, or if a pot boils over. I haven't had either situation arise so I don't know how well this works.

The sensordome works on two of the elements. It is supposed to keep the pot at a fixed temperature. This allows you to program your cooking so you can time cooking at one temperature, then switch to a different level and continue. As I said, I haven't tried using this yet.

The instant heat is amazing. I can do a fairly decent stir-fry in a carbon steel wok. I can sear more effectively than I ever could on gas. The kitchen doesn't heat up, cleanup is a snap and I don't have to worry about setting my potholders on fire!

So far I haven't heard any of the humming noises others have reported with their cooktops, regardless of the cookware I'm using. When the elements reach high temps, a fan starts up to dissipate the heat, but it's not very noticeable.

The link gives the specs and more details.

Cheryl

Here is a link that might be useful: Thermador CIS365GB


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

I like my KA, but it is noisy - it clicks and buzzes. I do like the burner configuration and the bridge burner. The controls are pretty easy to use.

If I had room for a 36" cooktop, I'd have gotten the AEG zoneless from Canada. It's not very expensive, and it adjusts to the shape of the pans you are using. Thermador has a new zoneless coming out in July, but it's $5K.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

Miele, Bosch. I also like the Elux, but that's just me.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

The 36" Electrolux Icon won me over. I like the placement of the hobs. Two large and a medium large across the front and the two smaller in the back.

I have found that pans with two handles rather than one longer handle work best. I often use two 14" pans at a time.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

I'm seriously considering an LG 30" induction cooktop. I like the hob arrangement and the fact that it has a bridge element. Does anyone have any experience with the LG to share?
Many thanks.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

Here's how sensordome on the Thermador works, if it is another name for the Bosch superduper thingie. It maintains the temp inside a pan. You are frying. Every time you add a room temp or refrigerated item to the frying pan, without sensordome, the temp would keep going down. But, wait, with sensordome, the oil in the pan stays at a constant temp, even when adding additional items to fry.

I have the Bosch, same parent company as Thermador. And same goodies, altho I didn't opt for Bosch's sensordome. But I have timers that shut off the hob and all the wonderfulness of induction. Great hob layout, too.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

Burner layout was my #1 priority (next to price of course!). I can put a 10" and a 12" pan right next to eachother in the front on my Kenmore slide-in. May be able to put to 12" skillets there but I don't own two.....

Besides burner layout -- I'd venture a guess that the expensive cooktops don't cook much differently then the Kenmore.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

westsider - the sensordome is a bit more than the Bosch autochef. The Bosch autochef adjusts to keep frying temperature constant at 350 deg. I don't believe you can adjust this - at least in the specs I found online, this is a constant temperature of 350F.

With the sensordome, you set the temperature you want (within reason, I suppose). And you can program it to run for X minutes at temperature 1, then Y minutes at temperature 2, etc. Now, this is from the manual. We haven't tried to use it yet. And the temperature is of the pot, not of the contents. But if this feature works, I think it could be very handy.

Cheryl


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induction -

Dear Cheryl or Jadeite, Thanks, I stand corrected. I did assume, incorrectly, that Bosch autochef was the same as Thermador------.

Readers, pay attention to Jadeite/Cheryl. She speaks from having the unit itself.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

canuck82 is it possible to have favorites? Who has bought several and tried them all out?


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

Of course Davidro1 is right. Most of us have only had one.

BUT, you can get part way to making a decision about a favorite by considering how you cook and what pan sizes you most often use. Like you, we often have at least two large pots going for a meal (one for pasta and one for the sauce). Then we also usually have a medium-sized one for steaming veggies. So when in the market for an induction cooktop, we looked for ones with hob placement that would facilitate that.

Also, I preferred that the larger/largest hob(s) be at the back or center, as I didn't want to have to reach over a big pot of boiling water to reach a smaller pot.

Finally, consider how the controls work. I've read here that while Miele is well loved by all who have it that the controls can be a bit touchy. Visit appliance stores that have "live" cooktops just to try out the controls, if nothing else.

In the end, all these factors combined to lead us in the direction of the 36" Bosch 800 series. What it lacks that some other have is a bridge unit. Something it would be nice to have, but we'd not use it very often. We also considered the Termador 36" that Jadeite/Cheryl purchased, because of the even larger center hob -- which would have been nice for steaming lobsters. But in the end, price considerations led us back to the Bosch. We've had it since early November and have been very happy with it.

The bottom line is that induction is a proven technology and almost all induction cooktops seem to be reliable -- though there are reports over the years of problems with Wolf. Go with the one that fits your way of cooking, your budget, the look and feel of your kitchen and whether you need/want extras like timers that turn off individual burners.

Oh, yes, and consider the "required" amount of space below the cooktop if you are thinking about putting a drawer directly underneath.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

Kashmi summed it up very well. I also agree with kashmi's last point about "required" space (and we both put in those quotes because we're not convinced it's actually necessary). I chose the KA in large part because it had very little "clearance" required underneath, but also very little on either side. You can check the installation diagrams online to be sure the unit you want will fit in your kitchen design.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

For me, cost was a factor and Bosch 500 series was ideal for me. It has auto timer on each of the burners, nice layout, touch for temp(rather than hitting up, up or down, down buttons), has good reliability and was reasonably priced (plus had a rebate offer going on).
Zoneless would have been cool, but I did not want to spend over 2K.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

I have a Miele and I've posted more than once about how much I love it. It was my big splurge in the kitchen remodel, and I've never regretted it for a minute. I thought the controls were a bit fussy at first, but apparently I've adjusted because I no longer ever have trouble making them 'go'. I like the burner configuration and sizes, they work well for the pans I have and the way I cook. Even my larger saucepans fit on the medium sized burners, so I can have three good sized pans going at one time, and I frequently do! Even though I rarely have all 5 burners going at once, I love having so much room to work on the cooktop. I also like that just about everything about it is able to be customized, from how many 'steps' I have to what some of the buttons do and how it heats up. It just seems built to operate for my convenience, not the other way around, if that makes sense. That's the way I like my appliances to work, so it's all good. :-) If you had a specific query about this model, feel free to ask, I'll do the best I can.

Cj


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

We have the Bosch 30" 800 series and love it. I'd suggest looking at the "burner" layout as well as the controls and see what works best for you. We love the controls on the Bosch - one touch to change.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

fredanj: "I'm seriously considering an LG 30" induction cooktop. I like the hob arrangement and the fact that it has a bridge element. Does anyone have any experience with the LG to share?"

We have been using an LG induction cooktop for more than four and a half years; it is our second induction cooktop, and we have been all-in on induction for a dozen years. (Our first was a Jenn-Air, which became unrepairable when Whirlpool summarily assassinated all legacy models from the Maytag days.)

What most sets the LG apart from all others is its vertical compactness. If you install it in a tile counter and the tile is laid on double thick layers of plywood, the bottom of the cooktop electronics could be above the bottom of the hole that you cut in the plywood to install it in. Moreover, because the cooling fan's air exhausts above the counter (through narrow slots in the stainless trim at the rear of the cooktop), you need not worry about materials or ventilation in the space below the counter.

Functionally, for cooking purposes, the LG does everything that any other induction cooktop can do. However, probably for cost economies, some extra features found in other cooktops were shortcutted. There are no timers on the burners, for instance, other than the timers that automatically shut down a burner after a minute or so when no pot is atop it.

The cooling fan apparently is not triggered by a thermostat (as our Jenn-Air's was, for instance), but simply is on when any burner is powered, and off when no burner is powered. This has caused us -- out of an abundance of caution rather than because of any actual issue that we have encountered -- to move pots that are large reservoirs of heat away from the burners after we have turned the burners off, so as not to send too much heat down to the electronics beneath the glass. We do not know whether there would be a problem over time if we did not take this precaution, but we do it anyway.

As with most cooktops that have touch controls, liquid spills onto the controls send the LG induction cooktop into a tizzy. The cooktop shuts its power down and flashes a frantic "E" message. Wiping up the spill and performing a reset with the power button gets you back to where you started.

The stainless steel griddle that ships with the LG induction cooktop is just the right size and shape for the bridged burners on the left, and it is really nice to cook bacon without having to bend the slices. The bottom of the griddle is quite smooth, as is the "glass" (Ceran) surface of the cooktop, of course, so the griddle does need to be held in place if you are trying to get a spatula under a recalcitrant pancake or fried egg. And, although the shiny polished face of the griddle is gorgeous right out of the box, be sure to get a photograph of it before you cook with it for the first time, because just about anything harder than a pastry brush will leave hairline scratches in its soft metal surface. The scratches are purely cosmetic and have no adverse effect on cooking, but you will have a mirror polished griddle only once, and no more after you have actually used the griddle for its intended purpose.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

Thanks so much, Herring Maven, for all of this information. The one item that concerns me a little is the issue of the frantic errors with the touch controls when there are the inevitable spills.

The only induction cooktop that I know of with the controls that are a bit out of the way are the Bosch cooktops. The 800 model has the controls in the front stainless steel strip.Do you think it's worth giving up the bridge element and the slightly preferred hob arrangement of the LG to get the Bosch controls?

I so appreciate this advice.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

We have had Wolf 36" induction since October 2011. Love everything about it. Easy to clean. The "print" on it hides any mess even if there are any spills, etc. "Burner" sizes are 5 1/2, 6 3/4, (2)8 3/4 and an 11". I dont notice any noise/humming that some complain about with induction cooktops...??pans used. The deciding factor for us was the variety of "burner" sizes (larger) and the controls. The controls are large, easy to see, easy to use.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

fredanj: "The one item that concerns me a little is the issue of the frantic errors with the touch controls when there are the inevitable spills. The only induction cooktop that I know of with the controls that are a bit out of the way are the Bosch cooktops. The 800 model has the controls in the front stainless steel strip.Do you think it's worth giving up the bridge element and the slightly preferred hob arrangement of the LG to get the Bosch controls?"

It is always a matter of personal preference, of course. Allow me to respond by going "off-topic" with two non-appliance analogies.

(1) Many years ago, the Consumer Product Safety Commission went (in our opinion) one step too far with regulations on infants' sleepwear, requiring all sleepwear to be flameproof. The problem was that the flameproof chemicals were carcinogenic (cancer inducing). As parents of an infant at the time, we had a high degree of control over whether there were any flames in the vicinity of our infant when he was sleeping. On the other hand, if we bought our infant's sleepwear in the United States, we had no control over whether he would be exposed to carcinogens.

(2) As a result of outright deceptive advertising, the great majority of automobile drivers in North America mistakenly believe that "all-season" tires are superior to so-called "summer tires" in wet-pavement conditions. (The exact opposite is the case; all-season tires are a very bad choice on wet pavement.) Most new automobiles sold in the United States come with the inferior all-season tires because the auto makers think that car buyers want them. While I am not happy that when we purchase a new vehicle, we (in a region that gets more than 120 days a year of wet pavement) need to throw out four brand new tires and replace them with "summer" tires in order to make our car safe, we are in control over our options.

Back to cooktops. We can (to some extent) control spills on our cooktop (but still suffer them occasionally). Moreover, when we do get the inevitable spill, we can wipe it up, reset our LG induction cooktop with the power button, and resume operations. We are in control. On the other hand, if we had any among most other induction cooktops, we would not be in control whether we could heat the entire surface of a grill sitting over two adjacent burner areas.

We prefer situations where we can control the outcome.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

"On the other hand, if we had any among most other induction cooktops, we would not be in control whether we could heat the entire surface of a grill sitting over two adjacent burner areas."

Hmmmmmm, I've had the Elux Icon Induction cooktop well over 2 years now, and to be honest, not many spills, alto the controls are separated from the cooktop by an SS strip.
This is "Academic thou" as this model has been replaced with one without "said ss strip".

However, sometimes when we clean the control area, we may see an error msg, especially if the touch area is wet, but all we do is dry it off and the error goes away, No need to hit an off button or whatever, and I just don't recall seeing any or many complaints about any of the induction cooktops, (regardless of brand), as far as spills or whatever on the touchpads creating any great problems, but----maybe I missed them???

Gary


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

fredanj - you don't have to compromise in order to obtain a "bridge" element. A ferromagnetic griddle which spans any two adjacent induction elements will heat up quickly. We use a cast iron griddle on two elements on our thermador and get perfect results in no time flat.

I have spilled on our cooktop, and there is no effect on the controls. There is a control lock which prevents anything from being accidentally turned on or off. This is useful for cleaning, and also in case someone unwittingly touches the controls.

Cheryl


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

dodge59: "...sometimes when we clean the control area, we may see an error msg, especially if the touch area is wet, but all we do is dry it off and the error goes away, No need to hit an off button or whatever, and I just don't recall seeing any or many complaints about any of the induction cooktops, (regardless of brand), as far as spills or whatever on the touchpads creating any great problems..."

Perhaps you regard the need to press the power button to be a "great problem"; we do not: it requires two or three seconds' use of a single digit. My impression is that we do not disagree otherwise.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

Thanks very much for this information.
Jadeite, that's wonderful to know - that I can make an acceptable "bridge" situation without the actual bridge element.

I may decide to go with the Bosch just to have the ability to set the temp directly rather than using the + and - buttons. I'm trying to minimize irritants that might come up every day, and I think that the controls are a big factor for us.

I'm sure that I'll be pleased with any of the inductions, but, like all of us, I want to spend the money with as few surprises as possible. It's very difficult to see these units in appliance stores. They all have one or a few, but never the brand I'd like to see.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

We agree, even on having to hit the power button "H M".
Not a big deal!

What was a "Big Deal" to me was my old Caldera Cooktop.
When it gave error msgs---and that was several times a day, I would have to go outside and turn off the circuit breaker for a minute or 2, and sometimes do that more than once, and You guessed it, several times I turned off the wrong breaker, either the one to the oven or speed oven, then I would have to reset the clock on those---grrrr---anyway that's why the Caldera is in the trash dump, and replaced by Induction.

Gary


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

jadeite: "fredanj - you don't have to compromise in order to obtain a "bridge" element. A ferromagnetic griddle which spans any two adjacent induction elements will heat up quickly."

You seem to be suggesting that the third element that LG put into the LCE30845 induction cooktop between the two bridgeable burners is otiose, and that the cooktop would heat a griddle that spans the two outside burners just as effectively if the middle third element were missing. Do I summarize your opinion correctly?


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

maven - yes, on my thermador there is no need for an additional element.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

Here's a question.
We are trying to select a 36" induction cooktop. I am dazzled by the Thermador, but both Miele and GE would cost less. The Miele and GE have stainless rims around them, but the Thermador appears to be rimless.

Has anyone heard of any problem with spills going through from the Thermador (or the other two for that matter) down to the cabinet below the unit?

What about the appearance of the rim(s) after a while? The Thermador in the store and the GE's rim both looked a bit worn.

What happens at home after a while? Should I be concerned about these issues?

Thanks,
curiousreader


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

I don't know which model Thermador you've seen. Ours has a stainless rim. It's less than 2 months old, so it is still pristine. We haven't noticed anything leaking past it, but I think it is caulked in so should be leakproof.

Cheryl


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

If the GE is the GE Profile isn't it still available with or without trim? I have a 30" GE Profile without trim. There is a rubber-like piece that goes between the countertop and the cooktop to seal.


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

I've only had two and they were built almost 30 years apart.

As far as I'm concerned, they're all the same. Layout is the only thing that varies. The rest is negligible (unless you want features like timers, etc., but that info is readily available).


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

Thermador has recently (I believe... I haven't noticed it before last week) come out with a "rimless" model. See link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: CIT365KBB Black Mirrored Finish with Frameless Design


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RE: Favourite induction cooktop?

Herring_Maven: I have an uncontrollable urge to refine your comment on all-season tires. (Apologies to the OP.)

In the realm of tires I can stand to use, the difference between high performance all season and high performance summer is that the glass transition temperature of the rubber is higher for the summer tire, whereas the all-season stays soft to sub-zero temperatures. The performance cost is that for a hot tire on hot asphalt, the all-season will not achieve the same level of longitudinal or transverse force that the summer tire will achieve.

Both tire types will use hydrophilic rubber, and both will use carbon and silica compositions to keep their soft rubber from wearing too fast. Which one does better in rain will depend on the depth of tread vs. puddle depth (hydroplaning resistance) along with how well the grooves shed water at speed. Tread and sidewall stiffness is also important.

Manufacturers will not, except for high end and exotic cars, push up the car price to put quality tires on when most people are more interested in hard rubber tires that last 70k miles and don't have to be changed instead of tires that last 15k miles but stick like glue to wet pavement.

The original price of a Bridgestone S-02 high performance summer tire was $230 in ten-years-ago dollars. Manufacturers likely pay a tenth of that in quantity for tires that just meet DOT requirements.

kas


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