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654 of 662 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Once in a while ... you get a great product
I grew up in the 1950s and remember when we got the very first "Osterizer." It was all chrome, heavy, with a small glass jar (no handle), and had two speeds.

Since then, I've owned several blenders, including an Oster avocado-green plastic base model (ah, remember the 1970s?), a KitchenAid, and most recently a Cuisinart "Vari-Speed." All of these work, to one...
Published on October 10, 2012 by John H. Meyer

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48 of 50 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Motor died after only 2 months of use BUT COMPANY SENT REPLACEMENT!
My husband and I make two fruit smoothies for breakfast every morning. This blender was fantastic until after two months of use, the motor died. UPDATE: The Breville company sent us a new blender! If you have problems with this blender, DO NOT SEND IT BACK TO AMAZON - instead contact the company directly.
Published 19 months ago by Christy Anderson


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654 of 662 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Once in a while ... you get a great product, October 10, 2012
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Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Breville BBL605XL Hemisphere Control Blender (Kitchen)
I grew up in the 1950s and remember when we got the very first "Osterizer." It was all chrome, heavy, with a small glass jar (no handle), and had two speeds.

Since then, I've owned several blenders, including an Oster avocado-green plastic base model (ah, remember the 1970s?), a KitchenAid, and most recently a Cuisinart "Vari-Speed." All of these work, to one degree or another, but they all suffer from one or more of the following problems:

* Extremely noisy
* Hard to clean
* Ingredients don't get to the bottom, so you have to stop and push them down with a stick
* Insufficient blending, even after a long time on high speed
* Insecure lid that lets ingredients burst out when the jar if full

This Breville BBL605XL has none of these problems. It is a remarkably good product. I've owned it for over a month.

Let me tell you about it.

Noise

I have a Radio Shack sound meter. I filled my old blender (the Cuisinart) and the Breville with equal amounts of water and turned them on to their lowest speeds and, with the meter exactly one foot away, measured the sound. I then repeated the test at the highest speeds.

_____________Breville_____Cuisinart
Low___________71dB_________84dB
High___________83dB_________89dB

The dB scale is logarithmic. What this means is that something that is 3dB louder is actually twice as loud, and something that is 10dB louder is ten times as loud. The numbers don't entirely do justice to the amazing difference in sound level because the Breville has a much lower frequency sound (more bass) and therefore is less annoying, even if it were as loud. The fact that it is less than 10% as loud as my old blender is pretty amazing.

Cleaning

Every other blender I've had has a base on the jar that unscrews. You then need to clean the base, the blender blade assembly, and the rubber washer. You then must clean the jar, the lid, and the removable insert on the lid. By contrast, the Breville has the entire blending mechanism semi-permanently attached to the jar (it can be removed with screws, if needed). At first I thought this was a really bad idea because I thought I couldn't get under the blades to clean them. However, because of the wide, sloped design of the bottom of the jar, it is extremely easy to just push the wash cloth to the bottom of the jar, give it one turn, and everything comes clean. The lid is round and therefore wipes clean quickly. By contrast, my old Oster and Cuisinart blenders had square lids, and those four corners were always tough to clean, and there were all sorts of nooks an crannies. The Breville lid has no nooks. The only negative on the Breville lid is that the ridges on the edge of the lid, which provide an incredibly secure seal, do trap food. You need a brush if you really need to get stuff out of these grooves. However, they are quite wide apart, so any common brush easily reaches into the grooves.

It takes me less than half the time to clean this blender compared to how long it took me to clean my previous blenders.

Jar

This isn't listed above, but I should mention that the jar is plastic. Every other blender I have owned had a glass jar, and I always preferred this because plastic often discolors or picks up odors. However, this plastic is some form of polycarbonate, and has so far shown no signs of discoloration and has picked up no odor. I actually now prefer this to glass.

Blending Efficiency

This gets to the heart of what any blender is all about. Every blender I've owned will not pull large lumps of stuff down into the blades, or will pull some lumps, but then when the mixture starts to thicken (especially with smoothies), everything at the bottom just spins around, while all the other stuff just sits at the top of the jar going nowhere. (You know what I'm talking about, don't you?)

Not with this unit. I am truly amazed at how well this design pulls ingredients to the bottom. In addition, there is a "smoothie" button that cycles between a constant blending speed and a series of pulses. I've used this both with smoothies and with various ice mixtures, and have not had one single lump of un-blended ingredient remaining. Very nice.

Lid

The lid does not let ingredients leak out. I mentioned that I owned a KitcheAid (a long time ago). I returned that after one use because as soon as the ingredients hit the lid, they spilled out onto the counter. My old Oster blenders were a little better, but the lid on those were really designed merely to slow down the leakage, not to stop it. As everyone who has used a blender knows, when you hit the "high" speed button, the ingredients forcefully shoot up towards the lid and on some blenders can actually pop the lid off. Not with this unit. In fact, the lid fits so securely that Breville provides a "finger pull" loop to help you remove the lid. Don't get me wrong, it isn't that hard to get off, but it is definitely in there very securely.

Do I have any negatives about this blender? Actually, no. This is one of those rare purchases where everything is great, and nothing is bad.
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521 of 534 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent blade design that keeps things moving, March 23, 2012
This review is from: Breville BBL605XL Hemisphere Control Blender (Kitchen)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The things I like best about this blender are its wide bottom hugging blade design and the wide based BPA-free jar that makes easier to get blended concoctions out of the container. The unique blade system means that you won't have to stop the blender and resituate the ingredients often if at all like with a lot of other blenders. I make green smoothies with about a half pound of fresh spinach, a cup of water, a few ice cubes, frozen berries, a few leaves of kale, a couple cups of cabbage, a peeled banana and lemon and flax seed. Before getting this blender, the only one that could handle this type of smoothie is the Vitamix 4500. But with the Vitamix I had to use the tamper several times or turn it off and rearrange the ingredients that were stuck down at the bottom to get it to start blending again. With the Breville, I don't have to use a tamper and don't have to resituate the ingredients because they don't have a tendency to get stuck.

This blender has a smart, sturdy looking design that looks good on my kitchen counter. It feels substantial and you can tell that a lot of thought went into the design. It is a 750-Watt blender with LCD timer. It has a 48 oz. BPA-free jug. There are 5 speed buttons: Snow, Mix, Blend, Liquefy, and Puree, plus Pulse, Ice Crush and Smoothie buttons. The Ice Crush and Smoothie buttons are minute long pre-programmed blender settings which include a variety of speeds to optimize the process of crushing ice or making smoothies. The first time I used this blender I just used the #5 or Purify button and it did a good job of making all the fruits and veggies into a smooth icy drink. In subsequent trials, I used the Smoothie button and found it to work well, but I used the Purify button afterwards to make my drinks really smooth being that I use so much spinach and other leafy greens.

The instructions advise that when blending a heavy load, to run the blender in 10 second increments to keep it from overheating. I thought that "heavy" meant ingredients like those in my smoothie, but a call to customer service indicated that those ingredients weren't "heavy" and by heavy they meant something like cake mixes or peanuts that you're making into peanut butter. They also told me that the machine would show a warning and turn off if it was really overheated. I have not been able to produce that warning with anything I've tried so far.

This blender is relatively quiet when making blended drinks or blending soft foods. It can be really noise when using ice or harder foods. I would say it comes pretty close to the noise level of my Vitamix on ice or hard foods but much quieter on soft ingredients. This is expected. It will crush a cup or two of ice into snow and make great slushies or snow cones. When I tried to put several cups of ice into the machine at a time it left some chunks of ice in the bowl. The instructions say not to put hot foods into the blender but warm foods are OK. The blender will run in 60 second increments and then stop as a safety feature and to restrict wear on the motor. I didn't find this to be a problem; I just started it again a minute or so after it stopped. I rather like this feature because I'm usually multitasking when it comes to meal preparation and there have been times when I forgot about the Vitamix and left it going much longer than necessary when I left the room to get something.

I'm impressed with this blender and am giving it 5 stars because I think at this price point it is a good deal. It is much better than your average inexpensive blender and can do many of the jobs of the super-premium high priced ones. It does some things, like keeping the ingredients moving without getting stuck in the bottom of the container better. It comes with a 1 year warranty.
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311 of 323 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I LIKE IT... and Im a 'blender snob', April 2, 2012
By 
W. L. Holder (Phoenix, AZ, USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Breville BBL605XL Hemisphere Control Blender (Kitchen)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Ok, Im not a blender snob, but I use my blender daily. Dont know what Id do without it. I have had some good ones, couple great ones, and a lot of junk ones. This one fits in with the greats (so far).

I have been using a Waring blender until this arrived. Now that is awaiting a new home with the first friend who wants to take it. This blender is great. The pitcher is large, a nice change as most 'good' blenders have figured out it is easier to make it work well with a smaller pitcher, so they all come with smaller pitchers now. This one is BIG. The blade design allows for a big pitcher with a wide base, and still blends properly and keeps ingredients from clumping around the bottom. The blade has an extra set that "sweep" around the bottom of the pitcher and keep ingredients from hiding there, forcing them back up into the other blades to be crushed with the rest.

I usually start my day with a fruit smoothie. We put fruit and basic ingredients into freezer bags and store them in the freezer. That way you just dump the bag in the blender, add some juice, and blend. A minute later Im out the door with my breakfast in hand. Many blenders have a hard time with frozen fruits, basically making a frosty mess that sticks inside the blender. This one powers right on through.

The unit itself is heavy and sturdy. No wobble. Doesnt feel like it may tip over if you dont hold your hand on the top while blending. The lid is VERY secure, even the cap in the lid to add ingredients is a snug fit.

BEST OF ALL... the base even has a keeper to wrap the cord and keeps it secure and out of the way. No more blender cords everywhere, tangling under the cabinets, or excess coiled on the counter. Just uncoil what you want, the rest stays hidden. Entier cord coils nices when stored too! Its the little things that make a good product great.
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92 of 97 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Blender, Surprisingly Quiet, February 15, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Breville BBL605XL Hemisphere Control Blender (Kitchen)
Great blender. I had a Vitamix 5200 blender for about a year (roommate's), so I can compare this to one of the best blenders, as well as review it on its own merits. I think this is an excellent alternative for a better price.

First, the shape of the pitcher and blade seem pretty effective at thoroughly mixing/blending the contents of the pitcher. I don't have air pockets forming nearly as much as I've seen with other blenders. The blender does a good job at making frozen drinks, smoothies, and hummus. There are ridges in the sides of the jar that seem to really promote a big vortex when mixing up a frozen drink. The jar is made from desirable Eastman Tritan copolymer, this is much stronger and resistant to scratching than the ABS or polycarbonate plastics used in almost every other non-glass blender jar. The lid seals tight, and has a grip ring to help remove it, a nice touch. There is a small cover you can remove from the lid to add ingredients mid-cycle, however it doesn't stay in well at all. Just the vibration of using the blender twists it to the unlock position, which makes it constantly fall on the floor when I take the full lid off.

The controls are pretty straightforward: a few buttons for various speeds, and dedicated buttons for smoothies and ice crushing. A backlight illuminates the button indicating which speed is active, a very nice touch. Overall, the control panel looks really cool when it's all lit up. The buttons are all on a single membrane pad, meaning they can be easily cleaned with a quick wipe of a sponge, and no crevices for junk to hide. There is a little digital count-up timer, which I guess could be useful once you get used to it and know that the smoothie you like best takes exactly 32 seconds to blend; I couldn't see any use for it, though.

The motor is comparatively quiet for a blender. Compared to others, it's a lower-pitched hum, there's much less of the high-pitch whine that is so common to cheap motors. This one's digitally regulated too, so the speed of the blade seems to be consistent, no matter how thick or chunky the ingredients it's blending up. Rated at 750 watts (about 1HP), but who cares, it has plenty of torque/HP to blend whatever. I think the blade/jar design is far more important than how much electricity it chews up. One negative - the motor cuts off automatically after 60 seconds, a safety feature to prevent overheating, buts also means you can't do things like heat up soup in the jar, a feature that Vitamix touts.

I just hope it holds up, Breville cheaped out on the warranty, it's just 1 year... so I'm afraid there's some dopey consumer-grade seal or other plastic part that will break a few months after the warranty ends. But I'm hoping not, because I really like this blender.

Things that standout for me vs. Vitamix blenders:
+ Much quieter
+ Nicer design (appearance, finish and quality of the electronic controls)
+ Overall height & footprint is smaller, making it fit on the countertop better
+ Better ergonomics - nice little touches like pour spout, grab ring for the lid
+ Cord storage in base
o Uses same Eastman Tritan copolymer material for the jar - it's the best plastic available, but still eventually gets cloudy
- Can't run continuously (like for making soups) - timer stops operation after 60 seconds
- Much shorter warranty (just 1 year)
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48 of 50 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Motor died after only 2 months of use BUT COMPANY SENT REPLACEMENT!, April 3, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Breville BBL605XL Hemisphere Control Blender (Kitchen)
My husband and I make two fruit smoothies for breakfast every morning. This blender was fantastic until after two months of use, the motor died. UPDATE: The Breville company sent us a new blender! If you have problems with this blender, DO NOT SEND IT BACK TO AMAZON - instead contact the company directly.
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213 of 240 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not perfect, but blends pretty well, March 21, 2012
This review is from: Breville BBL605XL Hemisphere Control Blender (Kitchen)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
First, a disclaimer: my other blender is the much more expensive Vitamix 5200c - 7 YR WARRANTY Variable Speed Countertop Blender with 2+ HP Motor and 48-Ounce Jar, so I'm used to near perfection in a blender and incredible performance. This Breville is simply not as good as that one, but it is a third of the price, so I still think it's pretty impressive.

Reading the ad copy, I was amused to see that first of all, I was supposed to notice how quiet it is. Actually, I didn't notice that at all. It sounded like a regular blender to me. The first thing I noticed was the horrible off-gassing, plasticky smell when I opened it. Horrible! Worse than new carpeting. Washing it still did not entirely get rid of the odor, and if it weren't labelled BPA-free I almost would have been afraid to use it. Now, a few days and uses later, the smell is almost gone.

As far as performance, I think it's pretty good. I tested out its capabilities by making 2 different smoothies with frozen fruit, celery soup, and chopping onions.

Smoothies. The creation of a frozen-strawberry "snow" was pretty neat, and it hacked up those frozen, whole berries in pulse mode very effectively. This can definitely handle ice. When I dumped a bunch of yogurt on top of them, in smoothie mode it was able to automatically alternate puse and blend mode to make a decent smoothie in one minute. I did scrape the sides after the minute was up and puree for about 15 seconds afterwards, and my smoothie was mostly lump-free. I did encounter a few chunks, but nothing too bad. With frozen mango, I ended up with a lot more chunks, but on the other hand the instructions for the machine say to chop all fruit into 1-inch cubes before blending. I just dumped a frozen mass of mango spears in with a bunch of yogurt. I think if I had blended a little longer all the lumps would have been gone.

Celery soup. This was a tough test. I sauteed a bunch of celery, including the leaves, and made a white sauce on the side. Then I threw it all in the blender and hit puree. One of the drawbacks to this blender was that the instructions say to let any ingredients cool before blending. For soup-making, that's a major hassle. Anyway, the blender was on puree for quite a while, and it did pretty well with the celery leaves and strings. The soup was delicious, but there were a few strings left and I also kept encountering chunks. The leaves were fairly well demolished. Probably if I had kept blending it might have handled it, but the instructions say not to blend for more than a minute at a time. I do know my Vitamix would have had it completely pulverized in the amount of time I let the Breville go. Still, it mostly passed this test, too.

Chopping onions. Something about the ad copy had made me think this might do for a food-processor. I admit, it was able to chop the onions fairly well without pureeing them (on pulse). I found it very hard to scrape all the onions out from under the blades. I would not want to use this regularly to chop onions.

Here are a few other things I noticed about the blender. Although the blender pitcher can go in the dishwasher, the lid must be hand-washed. I know that's the sort of thing I would forget and end up ruining as a result. The capacity of the blender is 6 cups. I'm used to 8, so that would be a negative for me. The cord storage is very nice, and the whole unit looks sleek and modern, matching my appliances. The blades look as though they can only come off with a screwdriver, so a thorough cleaning of the blender pitcher/blades would not happen very often in my house. I really like timer; it's less likely to allow me to overwork the motor by just leaving it on because I got distracted with something. Also, a last negative is that the blender must not only be stopped but also then turned off. I can see myself forgetting to hit the off-button, because it can be not running but still turned on.

Overall, yes, I think this is a good blender. It did pretty well on the tests I gave it, although not as well as my ordinary, pricier blender. This is still not by any means a cheap blender, though, so the standards for performance need to be high. Even given high standards, this blender performed well and I would recommend it.
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63 of 68 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Initial impressions, March 24, 2012
This review is from: Breville BBL605XL Hemisphere Control Blender (Kitchen)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
First thing: The loop on the top! Ah, someone understands about losing your grip.
And second: The loop in the middle of the plug so it is easy to grab it and pull it free of the outlet.
Third: The 21st century plastic "jug" of the blender is very light, glossy and BPA-free. And very easy to clean.

99% of the time I use the blender for smoothies. So I tested the "Smoothie" button. Chunks of banana, some juice, some yogurt, and a handful of blueberries. I press "Smoothie." It starts whirring, as normal. Then after maybe 15 seconds, it does two high-speed spurts. It does this interval a couple more times. And stops after 60 seconds. It has a digital timer so I could see the countdown to the finish. Normally I have to run the blender more than a minute or two, and I manually "spurt" it, too. This was much smoother. No banana lumps in the drink.

The blender has an extra set of blades that creates a better vortex to really stir up the ingredients. That's the non-scientific explanation.

I am very pleased with this blender. The Cuisinart is going to the back of the cabinet.
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82 of 93 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All that I hoped for & a little bit more, May 10, 2012
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This review is from: Breville BBL605XL Hemisphere Control Blender (Kitchen)
Love the Breville BBL605XL! My old blender died and I was on the search for a replacement and, was so close to purchasing the best rated mainstream blender by Consumer Reports, BH&G and other sites for $99. The Vitamix was out due to the retail price. Not yet satisfied, I continue to scour online stores and came across this Breville model getting good reviews. Next stop, Amazon to see what consumers had to say. I was quite surprised by the great reviews and comparisons to other blenders. I took a leap and purchased hoping it would live up to my expectations. Now I have used almost daily for smoothies, frappuccinos and soups for the last 2 weeks. What do I love the best? 1. The smoothie pre-programmed button really works! Makes my old blender look really sad. This Breville blends frozen fruit. It blends fresh fruit without the need to add fluid to make it blend. I no longer have to grind my flax before I add to a smoothie - this grinds up all seeds and is totally smooth. 2. The Ice crush button - I have never had a blender that crushed Ice like this. I would swear my Frappuccinos come from Starbucks. The ice is perfect! 3. BPA-free plastic. This thrills me. 4. Cord Storage - you can wrap the cord under the base to get out only the length you need. No More trying to hide the cord. This unit has a powerful motor, big blender capacity and more. All of my small appliances seem to be wearing out. I can only hope that as I replace them, they are as good as this Breville BBL605XL is.
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65 of 74 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Attractive, modern, sturdy high-end blender, April 9, 2012
This review is from: Breville BBL605XL Hemisphere Control Blender (Kitchen)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Compared to my old workhorse anniversary model Waring Blendor, this Breville BBL605XL Hemisphere Control Blender is noticeably quieter so I can use it late at night without disturbing the neighbors. The Breville does a much better job crushing ice. It has a plastic jug that is lighter and easier to handle and clean than a glass jug, the lid fits tighter, and it has a very cord storage underneath. It has thoughtfully-designed details such as grips on the lid and plug, measuring marks on both sides of the jug, and textured rubbery feet that do keep it in place on the counter.

On the other hand, compared to the Waring, the electronic controls are more complicated and so perhaps more prone to break-down. It has a difficult time handling thick mixtures once they approach the consistency of soft-serve ice cream. The brushed titanium finish on the metal base almost looks like plastic in contrast to the Waring's polished chrome. It is also a bit larger than my old blender, which is important in my small kitchen where the only other countertop electric appliance is a microwave.

The controls take a minute to get used to, with a two-step process. It is necessary to first turn on the blender and then select a speed or function.

The most useful (and even amazing) button is the one that turns ice cubes into a soft snow of even consistency. Yes, it really does that! I like to make snow with it, then throw in a peeled orange and a teaspoon of sugar and make a fruit ice. It also makes a nice slushie, lassi, or daiquiri.

It will turn out a frozen smoothie or shake as long as there is enough liquid and the mixture doesn't get too thick to drink with a straw. Otherwise, an air pocket will form and it will continue spinning the blades without actually doing anything to the contents. Sometimes using the pulse will take care of the problem and if not, I have found that a tablespoon or two of hot water and a good shake of the jug will get things moving again. Surprisingly, adding the frozen fruit, blending, and then afterwards adding yogurt and milk works better than starting with liquid.

I made cream of broccoli soup with it and it did a great job. (I left the little plug in the cover out and covered the hole with a towel so pressure wouldn't build up from the warm liquid.)

The attractive packaging was both secure and recyclable except for the plastic bags.

Overall, I do prefer the new Breville even with its contemporary laboratory aesthetic. This was unexpected as I am fond of the look and simplicity of my old blender and it took a few days for me to admit this! I give it 4.5 stars but will round up to 5.

Edit 5/31/12: I have been using this blender an average of more than once a day. I still like it just as much but have noticed that sometimes the little plastic cap in the center of the lid will unlock because of the vibration. Today when I was making snow out of ice for some frosty strawberry lemonade, it actually popped out. A minor inconvenience but I think that it should be redesigned to be more secure and also that the hole should be a little bit bigger so a standard ice cube will go through it.

Edit 8/13/12: Some of the numbers are starting to wear off the buttons.

Edit 1/13/14: I still use this blender at least several times a week, though not daily. The plastic cap in the center of the lid is aggravating as it jiggles out of place and falls off randomly when the lid is removed. Blending frozen fruit and ice has given the inside of the bottom of the blender a matte finish. Otherwise, still going strong and no complaints. I rarely use any of the special blending programs. I like this blender a lot and have especially enjoyed the lightweight jar. The sealed buttons make it easy to clean.
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193 of 228 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice end result from a product with a few flaws, April 18, 2012
This review is from: Breville BBL605XL Hemisphere Control Blender (Kitchen)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I wasn't as impressed with this blender as I'd hoped to be. The good things about this product is that it has different settings for things like smoothies, etc; and a LSD electronic timer. It has two hemispheres which supposedly makes blending easier to do.

Let me say that I love making smoothies of all kinds. I use my food processor to do this, but it did a horrible job on making green smoothies. I wanted to find a blender, and was happy when I received the opportunity to try the Breville BBL605XL. I used this appliance several times. The first attempt was to make a smoothie with one of the most challenging tests a blender can face: frozen fruit.

I added blueberries, strawberries, wildflower honey and yogurt to the blender. Breville promised that the blender could handle ice, fruit, etc; quietly, with no problems, no fuss.

Well, mine failed the first test. On first use, the blender blades choked, and was unable to process the frozen fruit. I then added a little bit of water, thinking a little liquid would get things moving. Didn't help. I had to take a knife to break apart the fruit and add it back into the Breville.

The manufacturers also promise that the Breville would process fruit, etc; in a super-quiet manner. Unfortunately, mine sputtered, hawed an moaned, making a lot of noise as it chopped away at the fruit. The blender motor began to get a burning "electric" smell too, as well, as if the appliance was struggling to work through the fruit. I had to take the blender off of its pedestal, shake the cut fruit pieces around a bit before it could pulse through it. And after helping it out, and after three tries on the smoothie setting, I got a relatively smooth smoothie, which was smoother than what my food processor could accomplish, hence the three stars.

I've used Vitamixes before, which have had no problem with fruit. I like Breville Products, overall, but I expected more from this blender.
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Breville BBL605XL Hemisphere Control Blender
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