Although the Optimus H-5210 Infrared Quartz Heater isn't included in any recent professional tests, this heater has more positive user feedback than other radiant heaters. Owners say it works very well as a personal heater as long as you stay within a few feet of it. Compared to most space heaters, the Optimus H-5210 Infrared Quartz Heater is efficient, consuming only 400 watts on low and 800 watts on high. Because it doesn't have a fan, it's a quiet unit, but it doesn't output heat as quickly as a space heater with a fan. Like all radiant heaters, the Optimus H-5210 Infrared Quartz Heater gives off a bright glow and can be hot to the touch when in use. If you need to heat an entire room, a convection heater with a fan like the Lasko 755320 Ceramic Tower Heater (*Est. $75) is a better choice.
Optimus space heaters aren't included in the comparison tests at ConsumerReports.org, Slate.com or the Good Housekeeping Research Institute, but there are plentiful user reviews for this model at retailer and review websites. We found comments from owners for the Optimus H-5210 Infrared Quartz Heater at Amazon.com, Northern Tool and Equipment, RateItAll.com and Epinions.com. We also found brief editorial reviews at Cheapism.com and Real Simple magazine.
Review credibility: Excellent ConsumerReports.org tests and compares 20 space heater models using six criteria including effectiveness of heating both a whole room and an individual one, fire safety, ease of use, noise and surface heat. The Optimus H-5210 is the only heater editors specifically warn consumers not to buy.
Review: Space Heaters, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, August 2012
Review credibility: Excellent In ConsumerReports.org's testing of 20 space heaters, the Optimus H-5210 was the only electric heater to set a test cloth on fire. They say that in test conditions, the H-5210's heat sensor did not turn the unit off, and as a result, it ignited the flammable material. The manufacturer says it has fixed the issue, however ConsumerReports.org still considers the unit a safety risk and has asked the Consumer Product Safety Commission to recall it.
Review: Optimus H-5210 Space Heater Poses Safety Risk in Consumer Reports Tests, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, Sept. 7, 2012
Review credibility: Very Good About 525 reviews at Amazon.com give the Optimus H-5210 Infrared Quartz Heater an overall rating of 4.1 stars out of 5. Owners say the heater does a great job as a personal heater, and a few say it can warm a small room. Complaints here are mostly about breakdowns and its limited ability to heat beyond a few feet.
Review: Optimus H-5210 Infrared Quartz Radiant Heater, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of November 2012
4. Northern Tool and Equipment
Review credibility: Good Nearly 90 owners rate and comment on the Optimus H-5210 Infrared Quartz Heater at Northern Tool + Equipment's website. The heater receives an overall rating of 4.7 stars out of 5. A majority of users say they would recommend this heater to a friend. One negative review states that the on/off switch is awkwardly placed.
Review: Optimus Infrared Quartz Radiant Heater, Model H-5210, Contributors to Northern Tool + Equipment, As of November 2012
Review credibility: Fair Cheapism.com provides recommendations for best cheap space heaters. The Optimus H-5210 is named a best bet, but the ranking appears to rely on user reviews from other sites. It doesn't appear that the author has personally evaluated this heater.
Review: Cheap Space Heaters, Raechel Conover, October 15, 2012