The GE Profile PHP900DMBB is an induction cooktop with four heating elements that range in size from 6 to 11 inches, each with 19 distinct power settings. Unlike conventional gas and electric cooktops, induction models are much more energy efficient. They come to temperature faster and stay cool to the touch because they transfer heat directly to cookware, rather than indirectly heating cookware with a burner. However, induction cooktops often cost more than other electric cooktops, and they require cookware made of magnetic material, such as cast iron or stainless steel.
Professional tests give this GE model excellent marks; it boils water quickly and offers precision temperature control for tasks such as simmering sauces. Users confirm these results, noting that the controls are simple and the cooktop is easy to clean. A couple of users complain of a slight buzzing noise during use, and we read a few complaints about durability. One user says the cooktop is easily scratched, another reports three breakdowns in three years, and two describe control board failures that would have cost more to fix than the original purchase price. If you don't think the benefits of induction balance out the drawbacks, consider a standard electric cooktop like the top-rated LG LCE3081ST (*Est. $1,100).
We found the most thorough review of the GE Profile PHP900DMBB at ConsumerReports.org, which includes this cooktop in its latest tests of electric, gas and induction models. Each cooktop is tested on its speed at boiling water, its ability to melt and hold chocolate without scorching and its ability to hold tomato sauce at a steady simmer. We found a total of 50 user reviews for this cooktop at Buzzillions.com and Amazon.com. The 2012 Home Appliance Study by J.D. Power and Associates provides general information about consumer satisfaction with the GE Profile brand.
ConsumerReports.org rates about 50 gas and electric cooktops, including the GE Profile PHP900DMBB. Each cooktop is tested for its performance on both high and low heat. A handful of user reviews are also available.
Review: Cooktops and Wall Ovens, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, As of July 2012
Buzzillions.com has about three dozen reviews for the GE Profile PHP900DMBB, pulled from a variety of other review sites across the web. Users give the cooktop 4.6 stars out of 5 on average, praising its simple controls, quick heating and easy cleanup. The one negative review comes from a user whose cooktop suffered multiple breakdowns in the first three years.
Review: GE Profile 30 in. Electric Induction Cooktop in Black PHP900DMBB, Contributors to Buzzillions.com
About 15 users at Amazon.com give the GE Profile PHP900DMBB an overall rating of 4.5 stars out of 5. Users praise the cooktop's fast, responsive heating and easy cleanup, and one is thrilled that the kitchen stays cooler. However, some are annoyed at the need for magnetic cookware, and we also saw a couple of reports of costly breakdowns within the first few years.
Review: GE Profile CleanDesign: PHP900DMBB 30 Induction Cooktop, 4 Induction Elements -- Black, Contributors to Amazon.com
4. J.D. Power & Associates
In this survey, more than 3,800 consumers rate different brands (but not specific models) of ranges, cooktops and ovens. The GE Profile brand earns an above average rating of 788 points out of 1,000, and is rated "better than most" in every category except price.
Review: 2012 Laundry Appliance Satisfaction Study and 2012 Kitchen Appliance Satisfaction Study, Editors of J.D. Power and Associates, July 18, 2012