LG LDE4415ST review: LG fumbles with fast-cooking features

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MSRP: $1,799.00

The Good The easy-to-use LG LDE4415ST electric range with a roomy double-oven range nails basic features like fast boiling and even roasting.

The Bad Some of the oven's speed cooking features and baking results don't live up to the hype that a $1,799 price tag promises.

The Bottom Line This LG range handles basic cooking tasks with ease, which makes it a strong contender for a place in your kitchen. Just don't rely on all of its speedy, specialized cooking modes to make you a better home cook.

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7.0 Overall
  • Design 7
  • Features 6
  • Usability 8
  • Performance 7

LG seemed to have two adjectives in mind when the appliance manufacturer designed the LDE4415ST electric range: big and fast. The appliance, which has an MSRP of $1,799, has two oven cavities that have a combined capacity of 7.3 cubic feet, which makes it the roomiest oven we've seen at CNET Appliances. And if that wasn't enough, LG equipped the LDE4415ST with "Speed" settings that are designed to cut down on cook times.

The basic features on the LDE4415ST cook food well. The roast chicken was downright glorious, and the UltraHeat burner boiled water in a snap. But LG once again fumbles with the addition of bonus features that harm rather than help. As I saw with the LDE4415ST's gas counterpart, the LDG4315ST, specialized cooking modes produced varied, disappointing performances that didn't live up to the LG's promises of improved, efficient cooking. And the LG Smart Oven app compatible with the LDE4415ST is limited in its capabilities.

Once you strip away the bells and whistles, the LG LDE4415ST is a solid range that covers basic cooking well. Opt for this model if you prioritize the flexibility that double-oven cooking brings or find yourself needing to cook chicken in a hurry (hey, it happens). If not, consider a simple, single-oven range such as the $949 Samsung NE59J7630SB.

Range has big, bold LG look

Other than sharing the bold, blocky features that characterize LG ranges, the LDE4415ST doesn't stand out much from similar stainless-steel-covered ranges. This 30-inch-wide model features wide, curved oven door handles and equally sturdy knobs to control the burners. The back panel contains cooking modes on the left, a digital display in the center and the number pad for the ovens, on/off buttons and oven timers on the right side of the display.

The smooth electric cooktop has four burners and a warming zone in the back center of the cooking surface. The front left and right burners contain double and triple heating elements, respectively. Though it's nice to have the option to add a little extra power when you are cooking something in a large pot or pan, the knobs to control the multiple-element burners are confusing. The controls for each element contained in one burner are packed into one knob, so it's tricky to figure out how many elements you have engaged for one of these burners.

The most impressive design aspect of this LG model is its double ovens. Usually, double-oven ranges have a narrow top oven cavity that's ideal for dishes like casseroles or pizzas and a larger cavity below for cooking roasts, poultry and other larger food items. The LDE4415ST, however, defies convention by making the ovens closer in size with 3 cubic feet of space in the top oven and 4.3 cubic feet of space in the bottom oven. This design is like having two smallish ovens in one unit, a boon for folks who often cook big meals. But the LDE4415ST presents an interesting problem, one which I've experienced with other large double ovens, such as the Kenmore Elite 97723: You have to take a pretty deep squat to remove food from the bottom oven since it's so close to the floor. This is when the gliding rack LG includes with the LDE4415ST comes in handy -- the rack slides out of the oven similar to a dresser drawer, so you don't have to reach in as far to get your food.

LG equipped each oven cavity with its own settings and features to provide different cooking experience based on which one you use. Both have the following cooking modes: bake, warm, pizza, self clean and Easy Clean. But only the lower oven contains LG's ProBake Convection system, a feature in which a heating element around a convection fan warms the air as it circulates throughout the oven, so you can't use convection in the upper oven (we've seen similar systems with names like pure, true or European convection on high-end ranges such as the Dacor ER30DSCH). Like other LG models we've seen, the upper oven contains an infrared broiler, which uses ceramic plates to apply a high level of heat to food. The lower oven, however, has a traditional coil broiler.

The range's connectivity to LG's Smart Oven Android app rounds out the oven's features. This feature was also included in the LG LDF4315ST. I didn't like the limited capabilities of this addition because the app uses NFC (near-field communication) to communicate with the oven rather than Wi-Fi, which means you have to hold your smartphone or tablet right next to the oven for the two to connect. The app only allows you to change oven settings such as time or temperature unit rather than set temperatures from a distance. The app is still the same, so you can read more about my reaction to it here.

Convection baking, speed-cooking modes dampen otherwise good performance

The LG LDE4415ST does well when it comes to the most basic jobs that you want an oven to complete. Take the oven's boiling performance, example. The UltraHeat Power Boil burner, aka the front left burner, brought 112 ounces of water to a rapid boil in an average of 9.47 minutes, a respectable time when you compare the LG to other ranges.

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