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Christmas Gift Guide

The Dacor Renaissance Double Wall Oven

Convection-baked biscuits

Biscuits sans convection

Dacor vs. GE

Premium convection

Broiled ham

Double convection broiling

Roast chicken, too

The chicken champ

With a $4,999 price tag, the mighty Dacor Renaissance 30" Double Wall Oven clearly isn't a casual purchase -- but how does its performance measure up against ovens that cost thousands less? Click through to find out.

Caption by / Photo by Colin West McDonald/CNET

Along with Dacor's oven, we're taking a look at the GE Profile Series Double Wall Oven, the LG SmartThinQ Oven, and the Samsung Flex Duo Oven. In this first test, we tracked each oven's temperature fluctuations while baking biscuits using equal convection settings. The Dacor did great, holding steady between 375 and 400 degrees Fahrenheit. The Samsung impressed us, as well.

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Turn those convection fans off, and you'll find that the ovens all run a bit hotter, arriving closer to the target temperature of 425 degrees Fahrenheit. The Dacor's average temperature was slightly on the low side here, but not as far off as the GE oven.

Caption by / Photo by CNET

In this graph, we're pitting the two double ovens against each other -- Dacor vs. GE. With convection turned back on, we baked biscuits simultaneously in the top and bottom chambers of each oven. Again, you'll see that Dacor did a great job, holding things steady around 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Caption by / Photo by CNET

We also made sure to convection bake two racks of biscuits in a single oven, one on top of the other. The ones on the left came out of the GE Profile Series, and you can see that the bottom rack isn't quite as brown. The Dacor's biscuits, on the right, are much more evenly cooked. This is strong evidence that Dacor's unique convection system is superior when it comes to efficient and effective circulation of heat.

Caption by / Photo by Steve Conaway/CNET

Next, using traditional settings, we moved on to broiled ham. For fast, effective broiling, most ovens recommend placing your meat just below the heating element, but Dacor recommends placing the meat a few racks lower. As you can see, this leads to a longer cook time -- but for what it's worth, it produced our taste testers' favorite cut of ham.

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We repeated the ham test several times, including this simultaneous double oven test with the convection fans on. The results were very consistent throughout each test -- Dacor took longer, and tasted better.

Caption by / Photo by CNET

Our final round of testing involved roasting whole chickens. The differences in average cook times actually aren't all that significant, given that no two birds were the exact same size.

Caption by / Photo by CNET

What is significant is how well those chickens cooked, and none of our ovens came close to matching the Dacor-cooked chicken, shown here. With crisp, evenly cooked, golden brown skin and juicy, succulent meat, the Dacor chickens were the tastiest things that have ever come out of our test kitchen.

Whether or not that kind of performance is worth $5,000 is up to you. For the rest of the details on the Dacor Renaissance, be sure to check out our full review.

Caption by / Photo by Steve Conaway/CNET
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