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on 6 March 2008
I have very hard water, and my old Rowenta kettle took its regular descalings on the chin, giving me years of faithful service before finally leaking too heavily from its viewing window for me to ignore the signs. (It was probably stuck together with limescale and courage by the time I got rid of it.) So I opted for this new Rowenta Prelude in the hope that it'll also do me proud. I boiled it several times before using it and haven't experienced any problems with aftertaste.

This kettle is quite an unusually large shape and size: it reminds me strongly of a family-size vacuum flask. It's 9.5 inches tall (a fair bit taller than the usual squat designs) and 6.5" in diameter. Its large capacity of 1.7 litres is great if you often need a fair quantity of boiling water. It handles well: it feels very well-balanced, solid but not heavy, with a comfortable handle and accurate pouring. It's also ultra-easy to replace on its base. There are enormous viewing windows on either side so it's easy to see how far you've filled it, particularly when it's turned on and the internal green light comes on. One quibble is that the fill indicator marks on the viewing windows (0.5L, 1 Litre, 1.7L max) are a bit small and I can't read them properly. It boils half a litre (enough for 2 mugs of coffee) in under a minute, and switches off precisely.

The flat lid flips vertically when you press the opening button on the top of the handle, so that the lid hangs vertically, half-way in and half-way out of the kettle. This takes some getting used to, but it does provide enough space to get the tap in to fill the kettle. The more I use it, the more I like it, although returning from holiday I couldn't remember how to open the thing! The button opening is very convenient if you want to re-fill immediately after boiling, as you completely avoid prising open the lid and possibly scalding yourself on the escaping steam. Also the spout is large enough to fill from the tap too. The on/off lever is tucked away at the base of the handle, which I personally find a minor fiddle trying to locate in my bleary-eyed mornings, but no doubt I'll get used to that in time.

Living with constant limescale, I'm impressed with the manufacturer's recommendation to descale regularly using simple white vinegar, as this seems to be doing a good job and will save me from buying the specialist descaler stuff! The lid comes off completely so you can access the whole of the inside when cleaning (the diagram for how to remove the lid is stamped on its underside). The mesh filter in the spout is a bit delicate and fiddly to unclip, but can be wiped clean in situ if necessary. The brushed stainless steel body disguises water marks fairly well, and a brisk rub with a damp cloth is recommended to take off any stains. Personally I use white vinegar on a kitchen towel to rub down the outsides, then a damp cloth to remove the smell and buff it dry, and this works better with my limescale problem.

All in all, when I first got this kettle I was a bit shocked and disappointed at its size and quirky features, but I've quickly grown to like it - quite a lot, actually.
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on 9 January 2008
I bought this one because we have a green and white kitchen and thought the green light would look cool - and it does!
Our previous kettle which was of the plastic jug variety, with the element visible in the bottom, was about 15 years old and looking quite frankly disgusting, but it was quiet. I can't understand why these new hidden element kettles are so noisy, it sounds as if it is about to boil from the word go; the noise level varies with the amount of water in it so the more water there is in it the quieter it is.
It has viewing windows either side which is handy, and has a 360 degree base - again v. handy.
It took my wife a good few minutes to work out how to open the lid; there is a contoured switch on the top of the handle which looks as though it is part of the aesthetics but it is the lid release!
We live in an extremely hard water area and we always use filtered water, but it still scales up on the bottom plate - I just swish some vinegar around it once a week to clean it.
Reading the above you would assume I hate it, but I don't, it looks great and boils water v. fast - recommended.
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on 6 December 2007
I have had this kettle for nearly 2 weeks now, and I have no complaints at all, the green illumination is super, its nice and different to all those blues and reds out there.
It isn't too heavy when full and pours beautifully.
I luckily had no problems with any resin as mentioned in other review.
Its not the quietest kettle, but at the same time, isn't the noisiest either!
Oh and the funky automatic lid opening is so handy!
All in all, I would recommend this the right price!
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on 16 March 2008
Im obviously a fussy kettle buyer because I saw loads of kettles I didnt like before choosing this one.

So why this one?

Firstly, it looks smart with a nicely balanced shape.
The finish is easy to rub clean with a dry cloth.
It pours beautifully with no drips.
The lid opens by pressing a button.
And for a little gimmick, the kettle lights up when you switch it on.
And to show Im not shallow and just impressed by looks, it boils a cupful of water faster than I can find a clean cup and put a teabag in it.
Oh,and an important factor for me, compared with other similar steel kettles, this one weighs so much less.

What more could you ask for?

And 2 Years Later.... Now it's 26/4/2010 and the lid wont stay closed!

There are 2 small plastic lugs which the lid swings on, and they are are still intact.
However a teenager was let loose on my kettle (put some water in it, shock horror, hard work!)
and forced the lid the wrong way so that it fell off and damaged the tab which springs the lid open/closed.
So while the kettle still boils etc it fills the room with steam and wont switch off.

Nevertheless, I havent seen another kettle that I prefer so have just bought the same one again. So still recommended. But keep teenagers well away.

EDIT December 2013

RIP the Kettle. It just died. Changed the fuse, shook it a few times, banged it on the work top, but it wouldn't come back to life.
Have replaced it with Sage Soft Opening kettle by Heston Blumenthal. Very pleased with it.
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VINE VOICEon 1 December 2007
Just bought this kettle. It arrived next day on Super Saver delivery.

I always thought a kettle should be an easy purchase, however we are on our 3rd in as many years, due to them breaking or not fulfilling basic functionality.

Anyway this is very smart (if you like brushed chrome). The green illumination brightens a dark corner of the counter without being too intrusive.

The kettle is tall but stable with a good capacity of 1.7L
It pours nicely and does not leak.

It took about 6 boils to get rid of a the manufacturer resin inside so beware of that.
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on 18 December 2008
Received this kettle the day after it was ordered (credit to Amazon for their fast delivery as usual)and already I love it.
It is sleek and smooth and looks as though it should cost far more than the currant price on this site.
The automatic lid opening is great and works exactly as it should. When closed it leaves a lovely flat finish to the top and adds to the overall elegance of this kettle. This also makes it easier to fill through the spout as there are no handles or sticking up bits to get in the way.
Works like a dream and is slightly quieter than my old Breville kettle. Also seems to boil faster and switch off quicker, though that may be because my old kettle needed descaling.
The spout pours very precisely with no spillage and unlike the plastic kettles the water seems to stay hotter for longer.
One final plus is the green light! It's very pretty and much brighter than the usual blue or red. I know I'm sad but I actually found myself watching the water swirl around in the green hue for pure viewing pleasure! Most importantly, for those that are energy concious, the light only comes on whilst boiling so unlike some other kettles you aren't slowly paying to keep a light on in the window of your kitchen appliance!.
I can't think of any bad points with this item and highly recommend.
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on 12 April 2009
Rowenta Prelude Illumination Kettle, Stainless Steel, 1.7 Litres i bought this kettle last year and was very pleased with its looks and performance, but 12mths on one of the little plastic nodes that the lid rests on has broken off and the kettle is useless as the lid just falls into the kettle. Am now looking to buy a new one very poor value for money.
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on 20 April 2008
The kettle is a nice design and has a reasonable footprint (many of the kettles currently on the market are "quite fat"). The green illumination is absolutely lovely and very funky - it also makes a great change from the majority which are blue. However it does have a couple of flaws: firstly it's incredibly noisy and sounds like it's boiling from the moment you hit the switch; secondly the lid doesn't open completely it only pivots in the centre which makes cleaning it out, and even filling it unnecessarily fiddly.
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on 22 June 2009
I have had this kettle for around 10 months now and although it works like a kettle should, the lid has started to go RUSTY!
Yes, all around the rim of the lid is rust and I will be returning the item forthwith.
You'd think that this day and age they would get something as basic as this correct!
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on 3 November 2009
We bought our original kettle via Amazon.

After approx 10 months the kettle developed a leak (from the lower area where the plastic joined the metal / illuminated area) and the leak was all over the electric base and our worktops.

It is thought that the plastic and metal expand and contract at different rates and eventually the adhesive wears away resulting in a leak.

Amazon were brilliant. I emailed them, and with no hesitation they offered and sent a replacement and even the packaging & p&p to return the faulty item.

We are trying out a second one and hope that Rowenta have realised there is a fault and have resolved it on this latest model.

Otherwise the kettle is very stylish, boils very quickly (if a touch on the loud side, the noise starts instantly and finishes instantly).
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