* Prices may differ from that shown
I purchased this approximately two and a half years ago from Argos for the price of around £80 I recall (although I have been unable to locate the receipt). I have seen it is still quite widely available and the average price seems to have now dropped to £65.
*Looks are important*
One of the main reasons for purchase is that it was a stainless steel silver and went with my kitchen (at the time)! The actual front of the microwave is also a partially reflective mirror and is very modern looking. However this is unfortunately also one of the major downsides of this microwave. After a few weeks (and admittedly some robust use - this does get used on a daily basis) I noticed that it was getting very grubby - fingerprints show up very easily and generally food seems to cling to this microwave. Sadly this is not just true of the outside of the microwave but also of the inside which is a similar (if not the same material) as the outside. No matter how hard I scrub either it does not comes out and I have been resigned to the fact that as long as this microwave lasts me, it will be grubby. If only microwaves were dishwasher proof......
*It's as big as a house!*
Well not quite but it is a lot bigger than expected and this is the second downfall in my opinion for this microwave. Not only is this a big microwave but it is bulky and can be a pain to move around the kitchen when cleaning. Also it takes up a lot of room on the work surface. What is good about the size however is that you can fit very big things inside! So it is probably best suited to a large family (which I am not). The microwave has a 20 litre capacity.
*With size comes power*
Well a bit anyway! At 800 watts power this is a fairly powerful microwave. My experience has been that it heats food evenly and very quickly. It also has an auto defrost feature which I have to admit I haven't used but is useful to have to ensure food is thawed properly before re-heating (insert health and safety advice here)! However with power also comes noise - this is a very noisy microwave- it also has the very annoying function of beeping when your food is read and continuing to beep at intervals until you open the door and take your food out.
Using this microwave is fairly straight forward. It has a 24 hour clock on it which I like as I can take note of the time before I wander off. The door is easy to open and close and there is a thick glass plate inside which is easy (although very heavy) to remove for cleaning purposes.
The only complaint I do have here is that the microwave is solely operated on one knob/dial which you have to turn round and round to operate. Unless you are using one of the preset times already on the microwave it can thus be very time consuming to time your food. The timings also only go up in 30 seconds slots so you cannot get very accurate times on there - although what I tend to do is just stop it when I think the food inside is ready.
The microwave also has a grill, however despite instructions I have not been able to work this out so cannot comment on the grill capabilities of this device.
I suppose this is a good microwave for large families however due to the grubbiness of this, the noise and difficulty in getting all the features working I would have to say that I do not personally recommend this microwave and thinks there are probably much better ones out there.
Not long after me and my university friends moved in to our new house at the beginning of the academic year, we we're shocked to discover the house did not have a microwave! Being the students we are, a microwave is an absolute essential in home cooking!
We requested that a microwave be supplied, and the landlord dropped off this beauty.
Setting up the microwave was a peace of case, literally just plug and play. For any technophobic sorts, the microwave comes complete with an easy to read manual which explains all the settings.
The actual design is pretty cool as when not in use, the front door has a mirror like effect, although when food is being heated, you can obviously see the plate turn.
The buttons are pretty simple to use as well. The microwave has a simple auto settings, where you press the button and the microwave will cook in increments of 30 seconds (depending on how many times you press it).
There is also a circular dial which can be turned clockwise to increase the time, or increase the weight in defrost mode.
Yes that's right, there is a defrost mode which is very useful in defrosting your meats in a quick fashion... just be sure to enter the correct weights.
The power of the microwave is 800 watts, which comes in handy to know when you are heating up a ready meal.
There is also a child lock feature on the microwave, however as we live in a child free home, we have not explored this further.
The microwave is easy to clean, especially with the mirror like effect on the front.
It also comes with a digital clocks that displays the time in either AM/PM or 24 mode.
As we did not pay for this microwave I had to do some research on average prices, and you will be looking at around £40 for this, brand new of course.
All in all, a microwave is a microwave, but I think this has to be one of the best ones I've had the pleasure of using!
Russell Hobbs has become one of my favourite brands for household gadgets, and so we decided to get this microwave from Currys for £50, on sale at the time. We have had it for two years now and it has been working beautifully without any problems.
The specifications of the microwave are as follows:
Size: 26.2 cm height, 45.2 cm breadth and 39.5 cm depth
Power consumption: 1200 watts power output: 800watts
capacity : 20 litres
size of the turntable: 24.5 cm diameter
The oven is a silver-gray colour and the door has a mirror effect. The oven is quite compact and I like the sleek design with neat sharp lines. The handle is a vertical cylinder at the right end of the door. The controls and display are arranged in a neat vertical pattern to the right side of the door, with a little digital display at the very top and six control buttons below. The circular knob at the bottom is for setting the time or weight of food.
The door easily swings outward on pulling and shuts with a click. The oven automatically stops working when you open the door, and there a light always comes on when the oven is working so there is no way you can doubt whether the oven is on or off. Also you can see inside the oven when it is on with the light inside.
The inside is white, so you can clearly see food spills and splatters. There is a glass turntable on a roller mechanism. It is big enough to comfortably hold a standard sized dinner plate, and the oven is high enough to hold most utensils and dishes I have. The turntable can be cleaned easily, and is dishwasher safe. The insides and outside are cleaned easily enough with a sponge and soap, but the corners are quite sharp and a bit difficult.
The oven comes with an excellent manual that gives detailed instructions on what you can and cannot do with the oven, what you can cook in it and how long you need to cook it for, caring for the oven, the various functions etc. There is hardly any setup required, just the simple matter of putting in the turntable and its roller. Both these can be removed for easy cleaning. The cord is quite short, so you do need to keep it quite close to a socket. I usually keep it at the corner junction of my worktop, which is an area I might not otherwise have put to good use.
The small digital display usually shows the time, you can set it to 12 hour or 24 hour pattern. It also shows the cooking time or weight of food inside when in use.
Following are the six control buttons:
1. The POWER button sets the microwave cooking power. It is shown in percentages as 20, 40, 60, 80 and 100. You can select the required power by repeatedly pressing the button. I normally use 80%.
2. The CLOCK button is for setting the time, again by repeatedly pressing the button.
3. The AUTODEFROST button is, obviously, for defrosting frozen food. After pressing this button you set the weight of the item with the knob at the bottom and the time is automatically set by the oven.
4. The AUTOCOOK function is a series of set programmes for cooking various items. There are eight autocook options, which are shown to the left of the control buttons (milk, rice, potatoes, pizza etc ). You choose the option number by repeatedly pressing this button, and further there are time options which you select using the knob.
5. The STOP/CANCEL button stops any currently running program and resets the oven. Eg, if you set the oven for 1 minute and decide to take the food out at 30 seconds and shut the door, it will start running again unless you press this button or leave the door a bit open. It is also used for setting child lock.
6. The START/QUICK START function is for starting a set program after selecting the time or weight. With the quick start option, you dont have set the time. When you shut the door and press quick start directly the oven starts running for 30 seconds.
I mostly use the microwave for reheating and defrosting food and making tea or some milk drink. For these purposes, I find this an excellent gadget. It takes me one and a half minutes to make tea ( at which point it will be bubbling up to the top of the mug) and two minutes to heat food from the refrigerator.
The only thing I have cooked in the microwave are things like carrots, potatoes and beans for making stir fries or soups. I normally use the Autocook Potato option and the time taken depends on the size of the pieces, but has never exceeded eight minutes.
Another thing I must mention is the beep noise it makes once the food is done. It will keep on making this noise every couple of minutes or so until you go and open the door,which is great if you are always distracted like me.
It would be really bothersome to heat up food and make tea on the stove, especially when you are rushed and a microwave makes things really convenient. This oven has really worked for me and I would be happy to recommend it to any one.
I have recently bought this product as I am an expectant mother and was concerned about the suitability and safety of my previous long suffering microwave. I was looking for value for money at a time when, obviously, every penny counts but I was also requiring a larger capacity which could handle a large baby bottle steriliser with ease. This microwave more than met my needs as it housed the steriliser but did not look bulky, it fit into my kitchen stylishly and was a bargain.
The front door is sleek, yet surprisingly easy to keep clean and the buttons provide varied cooking options without giving a cluttered look. If in a hurry (or if you havent time to read the very straightforward instruction manual) these pre-setting buttons can be ignored in favour of the traditional timer wheel dial. I'm sure both these options will be a godsend when I have to multi-task with baby in hand.
The back of the unit comes with a 'spacer', preventing the product from being placed too close to a wall, allowing air to circulate which helps avoid overheating.
Overall, I am very pleased with my purchase.
I brought this microwave last year and I have had no problems with it. The main reason for buying a microwave was because I had a microwave steriliser for my babies bottles. After looking around I found that alot of them are not tall enough to fit the steriliser in however I have had no problems with this one.
For the price I paid I feel that you get a lot of 'extras' which similarly priced micorwaves you dont such as digital display and buttons rather than knobs. The buttons allow you to determine exactly how long you wish to microwave something rather than having to fiddle with the knobs to try and get the exact time. It also has jet defrost which is a very useful feature.
Personally I find it a lot easier to clean than other microwaves in the past, except keeping the shiny outside fingerproof and smudge- free is tricky!
I find the product easy to use however, I have not mastered resetting the clock!
It looks like a really expensive product and would look great in any kitchen, I have recommended this product to friends who have also brought one and agree that it very good value for money.
Why this microwave
This is a microwave we bought just after Christmas after our 18 year old combination microwave blew up in flames. Given I hadn't bought a microwave in many years I was surprised how far they had moved on and how much smaller they generally were.
We choose this microwave as we wanted a basic microwave that could be used to heat food up and defrost food if necessary. As we hadn't really used the combination element on our previous microwave we decide this was a function we didn't really need. Also we haven't really used the grill on our previous microwave as it generated too much cleaning so this was another function we felt was unnecessary for our needs.
Very easy to step up and fool proof really it is just a case of making sure there is adequate space around the microwave and the manual provides a handy guide to this. The manual it self is very easy to read and has very clear instructions and guides with pictorial guides as well as written instructions to help you use the different settings
The look and design
The microwave itself is a fairly small size for sitting on top of a work top it measures 262mm by 452mm by 395mm it is a small and tidy little box really. I find on our standard size work top that it sits nicely with enough space at the front to open the door and rest a pot on the work top without having to carry it do a different area. One of the nice design features on the microwave is the mirror effect door. When not in use the door acts as a mirror but when you are cooking food the light from inside the microwave lights up the door so you can see the food going round inside. The mirror effect though nice to look at is tricky to keep streak free and shows up the fingers marks very easily.
The microwave has a turntable design and comes complete with a round glass tray for pots to stand on. I generally clean this with soap water and it works a treat. I don't think it is dishwasher safe though as there is no where in the manual doesn't stipulate you can put it in the dishwasher.
There is a digital display which if you want you can programme to show the time on either a 12 hour or 24 hour setting. We have this on a 24 hour clock and it is very easy to set. The instructions in the manual are very clear and simple to follow to set this. The clock unfortunately does not seem to store the time if the power gets switched off.
Buttons and dials
The buttons to press are also in a silver metallic effect and are all in a horizontal line down the front. There is a power setting, auto defrosts, and auto cook stop/cancel and a start button to press for all the different functions. There is a dial to turn to select the length of time you wish to cook food for or to select the weight in a defrost mode. All you have to do is turn the dial clockwise to set it and anti-clockwise if you goes to far. I personally get a bit frustrated with this dial turning business really as up to 5 minutes it goes up in 10 second bursts and it seems to take an age as you turn the dial to set the time or weight. .
Power and simple use
This Russell Hobbs microwave is an 800 Watt microwave meaning it has plenty of power and falls in between most common categories on the back of reheated meal packs that seem to always stipulate either 750 Watt or 850 watt cooking times. I personally always go for the 850 option for a time guide and this frequently is enough for me to heat the food sufficiently. The manual refers to this being a category D microwave power wise if you know what this means I don't really understand the categories really but this is probably handy to know.
In regards to cooking food the main two things that I use this microwave for are reheating a standard size tin of baked beans and this is achieved in 3 minutes which I personally find a lot quicker than my previous microwave that took 4 minutes 30 seconds to do this. The other thing I use it for mainly is heating a mug of milk for some Horlicks or similar this takes me just 1 minute 30 seconds and the milk is then hot enough to drink and dissolve any Horlicks powder but not so hot I burn my mouth! I find that this power is sufficient for my needs. But on the occasions I use it to melt some butter if I am making flapjack say I do tend to do this in 30 second burst as I have been know before to splatter butter and syrup around as it has heated so quickly.
To use it if you know what time and power setting you need is straight forward you press power and if it is a full power you press this button just the once, if you need it less than this then you keep pressing the power button to decrease the power by 20 % each press. You then turn the dial to the correct time and press start. Very simple and very easy to do with out any problems at all.
The capacity can take 20 litres now if you're like me this means nothing to you then what I will say as an illustration is that it is large enough to fit a 1 and a half litre Pyrex jug on the turntable without any problem. It can fit a large dinner plate in the turntable without any issue and small microwavable dishes to reheat peas without any problems. I used to place a chicken in our old microwave over night to defrost (without using the microwave) to keep the cat from pinching the chicken if it was just sat on the work top. I find with this microwave there is just enough room to do this for an average family size medium chicken. We have never had a problem with the smaller size of this microwave but if you are using it frequently to reheat meals then there is really just enough room for two packs of average size ready meals on the turn table. If you know you are going to need a large size for more than these sort of uses I have talked about then this one will be too small for you needs
This function has just been a revelation for me my previous microwave just never seemed to work very well on defrosts and would often end up cooking food whilst it defrosted. With this microwave I have never had that problem. To select this function you press the auto defrost button then turn the dial for the weight of the food to be defrosted then press start. What puzzled me the first time I did this was that it seemed to stop about half way through and I wasn't sure why so I just press start and it was off again. After consulting the manual though what it did tell me was I needed to turn the bit of meat over half way through and this is too stop there being any problems. Now I have to admit I haven't always turned things I am defrosting over but I have always been surprised how well it has defrosted things. The item it defrosts that pleased me most was some mince as none of the strands of meat had cooked and the meat became a nice soft texture again as if it had never been frozen. In fact I have actually found I now prefer to defrost mince in the microwave rather than over night as it seems to make the mince softer for some reason.
This is actually the bit of the microwave I use the least and I think the reason is simply I find it easier to select the time and power myself. Equally some of the options are not things I routinely would cook in a microwave such as popcorn, pizza, fish spaghetti and rice. The only options I would actually use it for is the milk, potatoes and auto reheat bit and I find it just is too fiddly to do via the auto cook buttons. This is because you need to first select the option out of 8 choices, then select the weight and then press start. For me it is just not a practical option or one that as a family we use.
Whilst this microwave does have this function it is actually not something we have used as yet. Despite having a curious 3 year old he hasn't shown any interest as yet in pressing the buttons on the microwave. I am sure as soon as he does we will be locking it. This is achieved by holding the stop cancel button for 3 seconds a beep then is heard and a padlock appears on the display unit.
As previously mentioned the front is a nightmare to keep clean and streak free because of the mirror effect door. Inside is nice and easy to clean but it does seem to hold on to strong smelling food quite a while even after cleaning which I find a bit frustrating as even if I have wiped any spills after reheating a curry it still smells of it for a few days strangely.
Overall I would say this is a good basic microwave and I am especially please with the auto defrost function and the power settings on this. The addition of the auto cook function I think is something I can live without and don't use really. The microwave door though looking good with its mirror effect is a nightmare to keep clean. We have had no problems using this microwave in the 5- 6 months we have had it and I would definitely recommend it too people. We bought ours in the Sainsbury's sale for around £30. When searching for an up to date price for this review this microwave appears to be tricky to find now and I think it is only available second hand or from discount retailers.
Short name: Russell Hobbs RHM2017