Overall I am delighted with this purchase, which I bought to supplement my meagre two electric hobs on my Baby Belling mini-cooker. It is light and small (about 32 x 34 cm) and sits securely on four rubber-based feet. It has a wide range of temperatures, from a gentle 60C right up to a scorching 240C, and also has an optional timer. The first thing I cooked on it was a chilli, and I was extremely impressed with its responsiveness, ably handling the initial frying and browning, through to the gentle simmering, with ease. This thing is easily as responsive as gas - you can see the effect almost immediately of turning the temperature control up or down.
And of course it is so easy to clean, being a perfectly flat ceramic surface which (apart from directly under the pan) remains cool during cooking.
So those are the positives, but here are three gripes I have, which collectively knock off one star for me:
My number one gripe, as has been mentioned by a couple of other reviewers, is the loudness of the beep. Even though I was ready for it, it still made me jump when I plugged it in and it beeped unexpectedly. Every single press of a button generates an equally noisy beep. Worse, simply removing a pan from the hob whilst the unit is cooking causes it to beep incessantly every couple of seconds until the pan is replaced. Although I am getting used to it now, I am sure that sooner or later I'm going to have to unscrew the base, and locate the source of the beep so I can destroy it, which should make for more relaxing cooking.
My second gripe is that the temperatures can only be adjusted in increments of 20 degrees C. This is just about sufficient, but increments of 10C would have allowed more control, especially for attaining *just* the right simmering temperature. However, it's not a major gripe as 'fine tuning' can still be attained by shifting your pan to the side so that not as much energy is hitting the base of the pan. I'm sure we've all done this before on electric and gas hobs, so in that regard it's no different.
And thirdly, I naively thought this thing would be silent for the most part, but apparently these things have to maintain a cool temperature inside, so it has quite a noisy internal fan that kicks in as soon as the cooking is started, sounding a bit like starting a PC. To be fair that noise is dwarfed by the noise of frying (and of that damned beep), and there's nothing too annoying about the sound of a fan.
Also - not really a gripe - but it is confusing to me that there seem to be two modes for adjusting the heat, and I don't understand why, and the instruction manual doesn't allude to this at all. Firstly there is a setting labelled "Heat" with levels from 1 to 10. Then there is the "Temperature" setting (as mentioned above) with 10 settings of 60C through 240C. They both appear to have the same affect, unless I'm missing something.
But before one is put off by these negatives, one should take them in context. This slice of induction cookware comes in at under fifty quid (have you seen how expensive some induction hobs can be?), and is a fantastically useful appliance, particularly for those with small kitchens where space is limited. It is as responsive as gas, and cheaper to run than an electric hob. Without the loud beep I would be tempted to give this a 5-star rating at this price. With the beep, it's still worth it in my opinion.