|Item model number||NE58H9970WS/AA|
SAMSUNG NE58H9970WS Slide-In Induction Range, 30-Inch, Stainless Steel
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Let me start off by saying that I really wanted to like this - I had saved up for two years to replace my old electric coil stove, which was slow to heat, difficult to clean, and had non-level burners. This Samsung range seemed like the best unit other than viking, dacor, etc where they start at $5000. I ordered this unit from a big box store with free delivery, and haul-away of my old stove. That all went painlessly, and I have been using the stove at least twice per day for the past month.
Let me start with some pros:
- The unit looks very nice and modern
- It is very easy to clean
- It boils water very quickly and heats evenly
- Dual-oven divider is handy and allows the smaller top half of the oven to be used like a toaster oven, very quick to melt cheese etc using broil setting (but some issues with this feature as well)
- Oven heats quickly and bakes evenly (Edit - there are issues with the oven, see below).
Now the significant cons:
- It's noisy. There's a fan that runs even when just using a small burner on low heat, and it is loud enough to be obvious. Also, there are frequent clicks from somewhere within the unit, it drives my wife crazy. Sometimes there is a weird ultrasonic sound when placing a pan on the burner. All around, a bunch of annoying electronic and whirring noises. My old coil stove was much quieter, and even that one had a noticeable hum.
- The temperature control is digital, so there are only 10 discrete settings from low to power boost. I find it frequently impossible to get the right simmer temperature, setting 2 doesn't simmer at all, setting 3 simmers too much. Additionally, with my old coil stove (which was infinitely variable), I could put a pot of water on and use it is a souse-vide style cooker at very low temperatures. This is impossible with this unit and it a huge let down, now I need to buy an immersion cooker to do what I used to do with no problem and no extra equipment. Samsung should have at least provided half-stops so there could be twenty settings instead of ten. 10 discrete settings is like cooking in 8-bit mode.
- Power boost does not work if you have another burner active (at any power level - WTF??). This kind of makes it barely useful, since in the most frequent case of boiling water for pasta, you may already be preparing a sauce. So you can have the burner at "9" but not power boost, which takes quite a bit longer to get it boiling. This is unacceptable behavior, firstly there is plenty of power overhead to support many burners active at once, and in the rare case where there is not enough overhead, the stove can be intelligent enough to determine when it can and can't support power boost mode. Not being able to quickly boil water when I also have a small pot on a low simmer setting is a ridiculous design oversight.
- The "burners" are very sensitive to the size of pan and type of cookware. The large burner, for example, has a minimum pan diameter of 7.5" in order to work. Well my 10" "everyday pan" has a bottom contact area of just about exactly this size. As a result, it only works about half the time, and I have to constantly jiggle it around so it registers. Another inexcusable design oversight. A 10" frying pan should have no problem using the large element. As it stands, about 40% of the surface of the stove is now only useful for boiling water or making soup, since my large saucepan seems to be the only thing reliably "compatible" with the large element. Edit: I bought a different 10" frying pan, and it works more reliably on the large burner. So be prepared to spend time hunting for just the right cookware.
- Only one oven rack is on roller glides, the rest are the crappy usual style that jam up and have to be jostled around and scrape up the oven paint. For a $3K product, all of the racks should be on rollers, or at least designed to bind up less often than they do, and certainly not a friction mount. In addition, two of the three racks have a metal bar that prevent you from being able to slide out oven pans without lifting them up over the hump. This means one-handed operations are now two-handed, and it's less safe because I have to maneuver around a protruding piece of hot metal that would be very easy to bump with my forearm. I honestly don't know if they QA'd the product design at all.
- You can't broil something on high in the top oven and bake something in the bottom oven. If you can't actually use it like two ovens, don't market it as such.
- Speaking of the oven, I recently discovered that my oven will not hold temperature in bake mode. It preheats fine (verified with an oven thermometer), but then slowly loses heat after preheating, and I mean loses a LOT of heat. I was trying to cook a pizza today, and had the oven preheated to 475. Put the pizza in, and it was in for a long time and still did not seem to be cooking properly. So I stuck an oven thermometer inside and it was only at 350 degrees - WTF? Bumped the setting to 480, oven heated again to the correct temp, then started losing heat again once it reached the set temp. This is obviously a defect and renders the oven useless, will report after trying to have it serviced. THIS SHOULD HAVE BEEN CAUGHT BY QA BEFORE THE PRODUCT LEFT THE FACTORY.
- The touch control panel sucks. There is no force-feedback, and it goes haywire when you wipe it down with a rag. Seriously? You have to engage the control panel lock in order to wipe it down without accidentally turning on all the ovens. Additionally, sometimes just by brushing past it, it will turn on the warming drawer?! The button layout is also needlessly complex and non-intuitive.
So it's fair to say I'm quite disappointed in this unit. Some serious design flaws significantly reduce the utility of some of the standout features, and I almost miss my crappy old coil stove on account of it's super simple operation and reliability. I hope that Samsung takes this feedback and improves their future products.