Go beyond the popcorn button

The Panasonic NN-SE982S Genius Prestige Countertop Inverter Microwave Oven adds a touch dial for easy operation. The versatile appliance has a number of convenient features.

Does much more than popcorn and frozen dinners.
Does much more than popcorn and frozen dinners. Panasonic

The microwave has become one of the most easily identified appliances in the kitchen. Which is pretty impressive considering that its most recognizable feature is that it is a rectangular box with buttons on it. Updates across the years have given the ubiquitous appliance a series of not-always-so-distinctive design enhancements, but as we all know, appeal goes beyond skin deep.

Microwave technology has come a long way since those one-trick ponies of the past. While the popcorn button is in little danger of becoming outdated anytime soon, additional convenient features make the microwaves of today more efficient at creating meals that are more varied than ever before.

The Panasonic NN-SE982S Genius Prestige Countertop Inverter Microwave Oven looks to continue the tradition of design enhancements inside and out. Featuring a touch dial with a blue LED backlight, the microwave offers a control layout that is intuitive, but more importantly, it controls advanced functions.

The microwave features sensor cooking that detects the amount of steam and adjusts cooking time and power level accordingly. It also has the capability to modulate the power output, creating a system that can supply consistent heating. (Most microwaves repeatedly turn on and off the magnetron to approximate a given power level.) Additionally, the microwave includes a keep warm setting as well as a turbo defrost mode. And yes, there is a popcorn button.

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