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adh673

Induction Vs. Gas Range

14 years ago

I've been reading for a couple hours about gas ranges vs. induction cooking. I've been with a 30 year old electric 30 inch stove for the last 10 years so anything is going to be an improvement but now I dont know what to do.

I'm about to do a kitchen renovation. My space is 20 by 13. I had toyed with the idea of a 48 inch range b/c I love the look, but I wondered if my kitchen was too small for it- the wall I targeted would only have 20 inches on either side of it. I liked the two ovens though. I have a convection oven in the basement from a recent remodel which I never use. Dont know how.

So I thought I was between a 36 inch and 48 inch range, but now I am reading so much on induction I wonder if I am doing the right thing (have to run a gas line). I like the look though- which I realize is shallow. But I like that pro style look and my overall aesthic is sort of old world/european. Are there any induction type arrangements that would look good in this era? The pictures I see show them in sleek contemporary settings...

I also have small children and I suppose it would be better to have induction that big gas knobs hanging out at their eye level, but I really dont know what to do now...

Perspective, advice appreciated!

Comments (37)

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    HI,

    I am no expert because I am struggling with the same decision myself, but because I've been obsessed with it, I'll share my thoughts incase it's helpful.

    I think nothing looks cooler than a range. I don't even think a pro cooktop looks as 'cool'. However, I have slowly weaned myself off the range idea because with my bad back, the idea of not bending for wall ovens has won. But, as hard as it is to tear myself away from the looks aspect, I came to the tough love decision (with the help of all of you) that function matters.

    The only disadvantages of induction that I have come up with are the following:
    1. Can't char peppers (I do that once a year)
    2. Can't use any size pot.. that is my only concern. I do think 8 out of 10 times, induction size maneuvering won't even be a thought.
    3. Can't cook if electricity is out. Not a consideration for me
    4. Can't use all brands of cookware. Mine all works
    5. Learning curve to use something different. I barely know how to use gas, so...
    6. May not be as appealing for resale because it's not something many people are familiar with. Eh, if someone is buying a house, the cooktop won't be a deal breaker. We already have a gas line so we will run it to the new cooktop area so it's available to a potential buyer.

    Advantages of induction
    1. Less heat in the room .. could be disadvantage if you are in a cold climate
    2. No hot cooktop. I have cats jumping around so that is huge to me. With kids, I think that would be huge as well.
    3. Some brands will shut off automatically. Considering I often forget I'm even cooking something, that is HUGE to me as well (it's embarrassing, but at least I can admit it :)
    4. It apparently cleans like a dream. That would be great. I find our grates big and heavy and sometimes I don't even clean it if the mess isn't too big... and sometimes even when it is :(

    So, it doesn't look as cool, but if I can figure out this pot size thing, I'll probably get it.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    The induction site is good reading. The new electrolux slide-in with double oven is do out in March. ajmadison has a good deal on it. Or sears freinds and family -30% next on Feb 21 6-9pm. Electrolux makes the 19k cooktop sold to restaurants especially in Europe. Look for it on their site under food service. They make a series of cooktops available in the uk with maxisense. No specific spot where you must place the pan.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Induction site

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  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    We are finally starting to use our induction cooktop. It is everything that I hoped it would be... easy to figure out, easy to clean, and quick. It also is pretty quiet considering we don't have the hood hooked up yet to drown out the assorted noises that others have mentioned.

    Yes, you might have to buy some new pots and pans. We are and they are available in all price ranges, quality, and ease of use. I like the idea of maxisense and wish that was available here...

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Has anyone bought from The Induction site? They have the new Electrolux range but I've not really heard anything about tis site before.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Is the new Electrolux that Dan is referring to a 36"? I have a space for a 36" slide in range but I'd really like an induction cooktop and oven underneath.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    The best thing to do is download the installation manuals (Most are available at AJMadison Web-sige) on any cooktops and ovens you many be interested in. The manuals will give you cleareances as well as location of the wiring for these appliances. It will tell you if you can mount an oven below the cooktop, as well as clearances above the cooktop and the need for whether that which is above the cooktop needs to be incombustible or not.
    Good Luck!

    Gary

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I bought a portable Viking induction cooktop to try out and I love it so much I want induction in my new kitchen. I love the quick response and exquisite temperature control it gives me. I really like having the big knob, rather than a finger-touch control. I am replacing a worn-out electric Jenn-Aire, and I have not cooked much on gas. I really don't want to have to go to gas. I just envision the grates surrounded by crumbs and splashed and bits of cat hair and fluff sticking to the greasy grates! (Those are my experiences with gas cooking cleanup)

    My home is old and historic and I really wanted a stove with some color and character, so I looked to Viking for their induction range. However, there have been so many negative reviews on Viking appliances (mostly the refrigerator)that I am very leery of buying one. One quote that sticks in my mind is "$4k boat anchor".

    I called the Lacanche people, and the induction units available in Europe for their gorgeous ranges are not available in the US models.

    The 30" Kenmore and 30" Electolux are the other options, although they are not going to look great in my Victorian kitchen. I am a bit leery about the delivery time on the Electrolux, as it keeps getting pushed back.

    The 36" Diva de Provence is also very expensive and looks very contemporary. I am concerned about service on that one.

    I also looked at induction cooktops over an oven. There is a big issue with the amount of space required UNDER the induction top to allow for air circulation, requiring the oven to be even lower in the cabinet. If I could have wall ovens, I might go with the induction cooktop and just a storage cabinet underneath. There is a post here about someone who is struggling with this problem. Make sure you understand the issue if you plan an induction cooktop with a separate oven underneath.

    Overall, I am very impressed with induction and know it is pefect for me. It has been used widely in Europe, and in commercial kitchens for years, but the US public is not widely experienced with it. I did use this as an excuse to get rid of my mis-matched pots that were not induction-capable, although most all mine actually were useable.

    I really can't imagine why anyone would settle for radiant electric cooking now when induction is far superior.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I put a lazy Susan under my Icon induction cooktop and put the oven off to the side of the cooktop, alto with the Electrolux I could have put the oven below the cooktop but this way you dont hafta "get out of the way" if i'm using the cooktop and wife wants to use the oven.

    Gary

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Offsetting the undercounter wall oven from the cooktop is a good move. It erases a lot of complications involved in present and future appliance choices plus simplifying the installations.

    Folks should also keep in mind that the induction range choices and availability are limited at this time and it may take perhaps five years to see them become mainstream and push radiant products to the sideline.

    The induction 30", 36", cooktops plus wall oven choices provide a greater chance to get closer to your ideal but at a higher cost.

    Given the present economy which will slow down new products coming to market, if you need to choose from the widest available selection of good cooking appliances, plus style, then gas ranges, rangetops, cooktops, would be the way to go. Even if costly gas lines must be installed where gas is available.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    "I really can't imagine why anyone would settle for radiant electric cooking now when induction is far superior."

    Lots of people cannot afford induction.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Is the cost of a gas range and the cost to run the gas line going to be more expensive than the Kennmore induction range?

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    So does anyone have a photo of an induction in a non-contemporary kitchen? I know its shallow but I wonder if I will lose my old world charm of planned remodel. Its seems clearly the best for cooking, which I do a fair amount of but gas would be an improvement overy my current situation. I really wish they would make a cool looking induction slide in.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    A gas range can be considerably cheaper than induction. You will need a 50 amp line for the induction. If your wiring is not really new, you might not have 50, likely 40 which isn't enough. An induction "might" work OK on 40 amp but I wasn't going to chance it.
    I agonized over this decision for 5 months. I have decided gas. The induction at $3,000 versus a simple gas for $550 plus the gas line is a no brainer. If you are looking at top of the line gas, then the price will be more equal. I wanted white and all the inductions I saw were stainless. Our electricity is ofen down and I can't cook on induction without electricity. I CAN cook on gas without electricity.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I'm also debating between the two. Gas would cost much more because I don't have gas readily available
    (don't have a gas line either) . I currently have an induction wok (Cooktek) and electric cooktop. The only issues I have with a smooth cooktop, whether it be an electric or induction is that the pans slide around while moving the food around inside the pan. It drives me crazy! It's also impossible for me to keep the surface scratch free. I would never give up the induction wok, however -- it's the best!

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    My house was built during the Nixon administration. It has a 50amp circuit for the stove.

    You're not going to find an inexpensive 36" induction range. Aint gonna happen.

    You need to ask a better question: how many cooktop elements do I need? Do I need 1 or two large ovens? Would I be ok with two smaller ovens like the GE 2-in-1?

    My Mom had cabinets under her 42" Thermador cooktop. She changed them to (deep) drawers. This worked better.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    adh673 - Here is a photo of an induction cooktop in a non-contemporary/non-modern kitchen. The induction is 36" over a 30" oven so our cabinet maker made the necessary adjustments to the top drawers on either side.

    Yes, a 48" gas range would look great in an old historical home but I think there are ways you can still have that old charm look, even with induction. Our house is very old, 1790s, so obviously I wasn't aiming for a period accurate remodel.

    I went through the same decision - gas or induction. I made a list of pros and cons of each and induction easily won out. I've been using the induction for 9 months and there is no doubt that induction was the right choice for me.

    Overall view of kitchen:

    {{gwi:1388953}}

    Closer view of cooktop with oven below:

    {{gwi:1388954}}

    Adjustments made to drawers on either side of cooktop/oven.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Wow- spectacular kitchen. The induction does go very nicely in the room. I'm a believer.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Another induction believer here.
    Additional added benefit to induction- when not in use, the cooktop serves as extra counter top. I often have a cutting board to the side as I cook. Since the cooktop doesn't get very hot you can easily use it for prep.

    Super easy clean up

    Don't worry about the DIVA. I have contacted them several times with questions and the director of tech emails me immediately with an answer. Service is provided by whomever is in your community that services other induction cooktops.

    The only negative comment that I have is that the touch pad is finicky. If you accidentally brush it you can turn the zone up or down without knowing. I wish the touch pad was off to the side where it can't get wet or be touched accitdentally.

    I think that the pot size thing is not an issue. My pots regularly are over or under an inch or so. Honestly, do you have pots that are so tiny as to not cover most of the small zone or so big as to exceed the larger zones by several inches? I take the drip pan from my oven, straddle 2 burner zones on the same generator while making gravy without problem.

    CUT FROM EMAIL FROM DIVA 8/2009 "
    "- An internal electronic problem may occur if you use a griddle plate (or a large pot) to bridge two elements powered up by different inverters (generators). In other words, the electronics may fail if you, let's say, bridge the 9" element on the left and the 11" element in the center, because they are powered up by separate inverters. There should be no problem if you try bridging the two elements on either your right or left section."

    I definitely vote for drawers everywhere!!!!!

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    We did a complete house reno almost 3 years ago now. I got all new kitchen appliances. I had never had gas before so was in a quandry too. I use my cooktop a lot, I mean a lot!!! And when I cook, I want an appliance that is reliable under all situations.

    In the end, I decided on gas, mainly because of the cost factor. ALTHOUGH, if you buy a top end professional gas cooktop and compare the price to a top end professional induction cooktop, not much difference.

    I had my gas cooktop for all of 2 nights and I was already aggravated to no end. I made a pasta dish and the water to cook my pasta took longer to boil than with my old coil electric cooktop. Second night, I made a stir fry. Sides of the vessels got too hot. Anyhow, I carried on and by the end of that week, these were my observations.

    Handles on my cookware got so hot, I had to use oven mitts to hold them. That never happened with my old coil cooktop, no matter what kind of recipe I cooked.

    Heat where you stand and in the kitchen overall was significant, enough to be uncomfortable.

    The flame produced too much heat on the sides of the pot and now with some recipes, the food burned there!!!

    Control at the simmering end was much less than ideal.

    And by the end of the second week, I hated to go through the kitchen. I swore at that gas cooktop every time I went past it.

    And within the month, I changed it out for a 36" Viking induction cooktop. The store I had dealt with purchasing the gas cooktop was very good about taking it back and selling me an induction cooktop instead.

    AND, I have never looked back. Control of heat is simply phenomenal. Nothing can touch it at either end of the spectrum. It performs at a top level day in and day out, no matter what cooking method or recipe I am making. Stir frys are not a problem either. I have a very good quality wok that is flat. And for those who don't have perhaps that same quality wok and are worried about burning, get yourself a silione hotmat and put it under the wok when in use. Yes, you can use silicone mats under your cookware.
    Easiest appliance to clean in the kitchen.

    Looks smart, no matter what style house you have.

    Mine has no noticeable noise as others have mentioned.

    Each element on mine is on its own circuit so they never cut out or lose the power they were set at. They do not share power. And because of this, you will never have any electrical or internal problem with a Viking cooktop if you put a griddle over more than one of the elements.

    No problem whatsoever with size of pots. To make sure, I phoned Vikings consumer help line before I actually ordered. They said any size pot up to 2 to 3" over the size of the actual element was fine. I do a lot of canning, have no problem putting 16 quart stockpots on those elements.

    You never have to worry about using small pots on an induction cooktop unless they are so small that they would cover less than 1/4 of the surface of the element.

    Yes, you will need a 50 amp or 60 amp service, so factor that in. Was not a factor to me, my son is an electrician.

    Yes, you do need induction compatible cookware. Most of mine was, I bought a few more pieces. And on that topic, I always recommend you go to a restaurant supply store and buy commercial. You will get a far superior product at half the price. I recommend Browne-Halco for both saucepans, stockpots and frying or saute pans.

    The fact that you can not flame a pepper to me is absolutely silly. Do you use that on a regular enough basis that this is an issue period? If it is, like use your barbecue folks!!!

    And keep in mind that you get what you pay for. Paying a bit more in the short run usually pays for itself and more in the long run. Figure out which appliances you will use the most and put most of your budget there. And don't be silly and think all of your appliances must be the same brand name. Instead, choose the same finish....so all black, all stainless steel, all white.....whatever.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I have the Kenmore induction range slide-in and have not upgraded the service to 50 amps yet. I did have someone look at it and I have the proper wiring so it should not be a big job or expense. The electrician told me that 50 amps is required if all burners are on plus the oven and warming drawer which has not ever happened yet.

    I will agree with redforever about the heat that gas burners give off. When I cook on my mom's gas stove the heat smacks me right in the face. Of course she has no range hood -- maybe that makes a difference.

    I will say for boiling anything you can't beat induction. It is ridiculously fast.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    redforever, before helping others pass judgement on "gas" in general you should probably share info on which gas range you had for your misadventure with fire cooking. Not all gas burners are created equal.

    We just converted from a standard electric smooth top to glass, since we've literally cooked 1 meal on it I won't pass judgment or give info yet. In our case, 80+ year old house with a very small electrical service we likely couldn't have gone with a large induction...and we weren't looking to be limited by cookware options.

    We already had gas service to a furnace, so we just had to run an extension line through an unfinished basement...quick and economical. If we went with something that needed a 50-amp circuit we would have had to look at upgrading our primary electrical service, this would have cost a fortune more than the price we paid to extend the gas line.

    If you have electric water heater and/or electric heat it may be very difficult to run a high-power induction range. If you already have gas for those other appliances, then it is easy to add gas to an "electric" kitchen.

    One advantage of gas is that it you may, at most, only have to run a line back to the meter...but you would never have to upgrade from the meter to the utility. This is not the case with electrical.

    If you already have gas and you have a 200-amp+ electric service, then you can truly weigh your options. If you are having to upgrade either to a new gas line or to larger electrical, then gas *may* be cheaper...as if you convert major appliances (furnace/water heater) to gas then the gas company will often fund the installation of the gas line for you.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I am toying with this same question. I am remodeling my kitchen. I have cooked with gas for many years. Currently, I have a Viking gas range that I love. If I change to induction, I would have to relearn how to cook. Additionally, by keeping my Viking, it would save me a few thousand $, which is not trivial to me. So I am not switching. When my Viking dies, I will probably change to an induction range or cooktop with an oven under. Not sure..... Not there yet.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I have the best of both worlds - a 15 in Wolf induction and a 15 in mutifunction gas ( you can also get it with two burners)
    and then the steamer that I love.

    I haven't figured out posting yet but maybe someone can help me post pictures

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    datura - do you use photobucket to store your photos? Here are the instructions posted by buehl from the "Read Me If You're New to GW Kitchen" thread. Hopefully that will help. I'm looking forward to seeing your pics.

    * Posted by buehl (My Page) on
    Sun, Jan 24, 10 at 8:12

    There are two ways to post a link:

    Using the provided boxes below the "Message" box:

    1. Insert the link in the Optional Link URL box

    2. Type in the description or name of the item being linked in the Name of the Link box

    3. If this is a new Post, then you won't see these two boxes until you "preview" your message.

    To insert a link inside the "Message" box,

    1. Copy the following into the "Message" box where you want it:
      <a href= http://www.XXX/>Description</a>;

    2. Next, replace the http://www.XXX/ with your link

    3. Now, replace the Description with the description (words) you want displayed with your link.

    With either method, you will see your link when you "preview" your message

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Food and Wine magazine-
    Interview with Richard Blais
    One.Midtown Kitchen, Atlanta

    If you could upgrade one piece of equipment in your kitchen, what would it be?
    I'd trade the gas burners for induction. Getting rid of gas burners is another wave of the future.

    Chef Ferran Adria at El Bulli near Barcelona - dubbed by Britain's Restaurant magazine as the world's greatest table - pioneered molecular gastronomy which delves into the science behind the food.
    He said that such inventions should not be seen as science fiction, adding that he could not believe his eyes when in 1992 he saw his first induction cooktop, which heats the pot rather than the plate for more efficient cooking.

    Here's a picture of his test kitchen with commercial induction range in the background.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Commercial induction range

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Good for Richard and Ferran. But I cook as well on gas as I sew on my treadle sewing machines, and I'm not about to give up either anytime soon.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Or your horse? or the outside toilet? or the handpump by the sink? or the washboard?

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    xipper wondered which gas cooktop I had before I changed it out for my induction unit.

    It was the Viking 36" Professional series cooktop. I just found that the heat control I had presumed I would have with gas was not there, and I hated the residual heat buildup in not only the kitchen but also in the cookware. My old 20 year old Thermadore coil electric cooktop was a far superior product to that gas cooktop.

    It was not a problem to run the gas line to the kitchen either. We have gas for both our furnace and hot water heaters. Actually, we also have a line to our barbecue on the backdeck.

    Our kitchen is almost right above our furnace. I have kept the gas line intact, just turned off. If or when we ever do sell our present house, the new owners will have the choice of which they prefer.

    But for me personally, I would never go back to gas. Just was not for me.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    adh673 - I went from gas to induction in a heart-beat! My house dates from 1913. The previous update to the kitchen was done in 1983 (not by me) to a white formica kitchen, which was extremely well designed and very hard to improve on :) Anyway, I really wanted induction for several reasons: I had cooked on gas for 20+ years, and never felt comfortable with the open flames. I worried about pot holders catching fire since I had to hold the pot handles with the pot holder to stir things (as mentioned by others, with gas, pot sides and handles get very hot). I really liked the idea of not heating up the kitchen while cooking. The smooth top also functions as added counter space. And the clean up couldn't be easier. As someone else said higher up in the thread, you can put a silicone mat under pots. You can also spread paper towels to catch oil splatters and just throw them away after cooking, with no risk of fire! The only thing my DD misses is toasting marshmallows over the gas flame :)

    I've now used my Kenmore induction range since August, and really love it (and my new kitchen, too). I have the Kenmore range, a Frigidaire refrigerator, an Electrolux DW, and GE Profile MW. All are SS/black, so blend in (an added bonus, which I didn't realize when I bought these appliances, is that with the exception of the GE, all are made by Electrolux). My brother gave me a new set of induction-capable pots (from Costco) for a recent big birthday, and I've bought a few more from Home Goods at reasonable prices. I love the speed things heat up at, as well as the really really low simmer for such things as melting chocolate.

    Here's a photo:

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    We went with a Viking all induction 30" with 4 burners/hobs in the spring of 2006 when we re-did our entire kitchen in an old world look. They were relatively new then. We absolutely love it. Had an electric cooktop before. Talk about an upgrade!

    The only downside has been reliability. Starting last year, we began having problems with the burners. First one side went out and the parts were replaced. Then the other side went out and the parts were again replaced. The cooktop was well past the one year warranty when it started having problems. The good news is that Viking has fixed everything at their expense with the exception of a $100 labor bill.

    Now the real kicker. The most recently repaired burners just went out again. But the great news is that Viking has just agreed to replace the entire cooktop with a new one at no charge to us!! That's pretty unbelievable but I'm obviously very pleased that Viking is standing behind its product. I've been dealing with a Viking distributor who then sends an email to my local service people. The guy at the distributor has been extremely prompt, curteous and helpful, to say the least. There's been no fuss, no muss.

    Hopefully our new one will have a better track record. They are expensive.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    country style, No, I don't have an account. I need to get one but other things keep getting in the way. I need a few more hours in the day.

    I remember that link and keep thinking I'll get a few minutes to go thru it.

    Thanks for trying to help me. One of these days!!!!!

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I was watching a repeat of "Big Chef" the series where the chef of the #2 restaurant in the world, The Fat Duck, tries to develop a new menu for the Little Chef restaurants found near motorways throughout Britain. Induction was all one saw in his test kitchen. These were cooktop units not ranges with ovens below.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    This is the most helpful thread on the topic!

    Cooking Qs:
    1. What do you notice about simmering a large stock pot of soup on your induction? Good outcome? Is it like convection cooking, you reduce the time and temperature?

    2. Christmas time candy cooking...I make fudge and caramels for gifts. What differences do you notice with induction for candy making?

    3. Holiday meals....do you boil 10 pounds of potatoes and simmer a large pot of gravy on those small burners without a problem?

    Thanks in advance!

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    This is old world euro look. I am not sure if you can get this in the US.

    LaCornue is a beauty and comes as induction. This is what I would do if you are looking for induction and old euro look.

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Kaismom, you got it- those european inductions are beautiful. Anyone know if they can be imported/serviced in US?

    I was out looking at gas ranges today- now after reading the new posts on this thread, Im back on the fence! Argh! I really think induction would be best, but I'm really a sucker for the pro-range look.

    Thanks for everyones responses. Back to rethinking...

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I am totally thinking of induction but I am worried about using the pressure canner and other canning pots. Do you have experience with this. What do you do? Do you have to purchase new canning equipment?

  • 14 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I remodeled a kitchen 7 years ago and put in a gas unit. Loved the way it operated, however cleanup was a bear. Also didn't have a good installer and kept smelling gas. Had to have someone repair the line.

    This new home, new remodel we installed a GE Profile Induction. I'm really liking it. It's so much more responsive than the old electric cooktop AND it's faster than my old gas range too. You do have to get used to "cooking by number". but I was happy to teach my 10 year old son to cook on it. "Just dial to #4 and make your egg." It's safer to me since there's no open flame. Clean up is 100 times easier.

    It's fast w/boiling water, works w/my flat bottomed wok for stir fry, able to set to really low simmer settings.

    No pretty blue flame to look at, but no tough messes to try to scrape off the cooktop either.