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A slight accident a few months ago resulted in us needing a new microwave, my brother had decided to 'forget' to put the milk in his porridge bowl one morning and one small fire later our microwave was unusable and smelling like a smelly thing. The smell of burning lingered in our kitchen for many months after the incident and our family swore that they would not purchase another microwave again as the incident would only repeat itself once again! However, the smell had faded slightly and it was decided.... We were having a new microwave.
In Curry's we came across this rather nice looking Sharp R-270 microwave with an attractive control panel and a fancy looking digital display. We had it for a reasonable £50 which we thought was a rather reasonable price considering it was from the high street and it was on offer from £69. The box was rather small and was easy to carry which helped with the long walk to the car and it felt rather light compared to the other microwaves that we have owned in the past.
*** About the Sharp R-270 Microwave ***
This sharp microwave is a rather compact oven with a 20 Litre capacity (For anyone that wants to know!). It has a power of 800 watts which seems to be the average in the microwave world and it has a power consumption of 1.2kw, definitely lower than our standard oven which should mean a microwave is very much more energy efficient than a standard oven! It is a very stylish looking microwave with a silver plastic front surround and the metal sides and top cover.
*** Setting up ***
Once the microwave was unpacked it was a breeze to set up, there were a few plastic covers to remove, a microwave plate to unwrap and a simple 'find a place for it to live' task to complete and we were good to go. Once it was plugged in the screen lit up and it was ready for cooking, we instantly noticed how nice the microwave looked with its rather appealing silver case and its slightly tinted window. It looks very well designed and very similar to most other microwaves but with a hint of style. It felt of a good quality even though it was light and felt slightly tinny when knocked by hand. There is a vent on top of this oven and Sharp recommend a gap of at least 15cm if you are placing under or in a unit of some kind.
A quick flick through the instruction manual confirmed that everything the buyer could possibly want to know about their new microwave is in there. It is probably the most detailed instruction manual that I have ever seen and it explains exactly how a microwave oven works and all of the wave lengths and power etc. In all honesty I never read the instruction manuals for appliances as I can't be bothered and I like exploring! I learn from making mistakes so I stay away from them but trust me... Everything is in this manual! Well done Sharp, excellent job!
The microwave has many different options on the display panel with short cuts for cooking different foods. At the top of the panel there are three buttons - A 10 minutes, 1 minute and a 10 second button that are used together for selecting an overall time of cooking. These are easy to use but obviously are not as easy as the old style 'Turn the knob to the desired time' type of microwaves. Below these standard buttons are an array of features that the microwave has such as speed defrost, auto weight defrost and auto weight cook. Basically with these features you just press the button and enter the weight of the food and the microwave will do the rest, we do not use this feature as it is too much work weighing some foods but it could be handy if you're a large microwave user. The other buttons on the microwave are the shortcuts for cooking specific foods such as popcorn, fresh vegetables, pizza and a few others. We never use these either but they are there if we ever need them.
Unfortunately the Display screen on this microwave does not have the clock function; I would have thought that a microwave of this price range would have had a clock as it is usually a very basic feature. It is not missed that much in our household but obviously it can be a handy feature.
*** Cooking ***
We are not a large user of a microwave so I cannot comment on cooking large meals but from the amount of milk and porridge we have warmed I can say that it warms them rather well. When cooking the microwave is rather quiet and a lot quieter than our old oven, the noise does not annoy anyone at all and it sounds quality. It seems that some foods do take a rather long time to warm in this oven which is surprising as 800 watts is a respectable amount of power, milk takes slightly longer than it did in our old cheap microwave of the same power but it is not a huge problem for us as its certainly very much quicker and more efficient than using the hob and having to wash saucepans etc.
The microwave having a 20 litre capacity is rather large in size. Our older microwave was about the same size as this on the outside but it could not fit larger plates in without breaking them in half. Our plates which are not huge at 11 inches fit easily into this microwave which is good as they certainly did not in our last - a Hinari. I think a 12" plate would happily fit into this microwave but any bigger and you may struggle, the plate inside the microwave is an average size and it seems very strong.
While cooking the usual microwave light comes on which lights up inside, this is rather bright and it seems to do its job well. The screen clearly shows the countdown during cooking and the microwave gives the usual three beeps when you're cooking is finished, unfortunately this beep is not extremely loud and it can be easily missed if you have the TV on while cooking.
We have used the defrost option a few times and it seems to work very well. The large plate allows meat to be defrosted with ease and it does not take too long at all, certainly quicker than waiting without a microwave.
*** Cleaning the microwave ***
This is a rather easy task as most of the inside parts can be removed, this is handy as I usually forget to cover foods going in and I end up creating a mess. I'm not sure if the dish is dishwasher proof but we have put it in a few times now and it is still in one piece. The surface inside the oven is nice and smooth and it is extremely easy to wipe any splatters of food from the walls and door. The outside of the microwave is cleaned easily with a damp cloth and some sort of detergent, the front silver parts of this microwave are plastic so there is no polishing required with this microwave like our last stainless steel Hinari oven.
*** My overall opinion ***
I think this is a very nice and stylish looking microwave, we have now owned it for a few weeks and it has given us no bother at all. Some foods can take a little bit longer to cook in this oven which is strange and this is the only reason that I'm going to knock one star from its rating. It would also be nice to have a clock on the display screen as I would have thought this would be a basic feature on a model of this price, maybe I'm wrong?
Would I recommend this to a friend? - I certainly would! I think that the price is right and it is easy to use with some great features. The instruction manual is absolutely fabulous and it fits in well with modern kitchens as well as the more traditional types.
Thanks for reading
The R270 is a versatile microwave from Sharp combining functionality with a sleek design / With a 20 litre capacity the R270 is ideal for cooking family meals / The incorporated 8 auto cook menus take the guess work out of cooking and ensures your favourite dishes are cooked to perfection every time / This 800W microwave has 8 power levels enabling you to achieve the results you want / Quick defrosting can be achieved with the 3 express defrosting options and if you are in a hurry the 3 express cooking options cook your favourite dishes quickly and efficiently / The touch control panel is simple to use and features an easy to read digital display / The microwaves easy clean interior makes cleaning any spillages easy and quick / / Short name: Sharp R270SLM