Thursday, September 8, 2011

Oven review: P760SS Pythagora

What is it?

The P760SS Pythagora a built-under, double oven made by Baumatic.  It's all silver and cooks stuff, a lot of stuff as it happens.

Installation, Specification and Features

It's a hefty piece of kit and required some equally hefty foreign labourers to put it into place.  I must admit, shouting at them loudly while gesturing with my hands didn't help but eventually they managed to fit it in.  Although it doesn't specifically say in the manual, the builder did install a separate sheet of stainless steel on either side to protect the wooden cabinets the oven had been installed into.

The dimensions are H715 x W596 x D545.
The aperture required to fit the oven into place is H717 x W562 (to 565) x D560.

Apparently, it's got an A-rated energy efficiency class.

The top oven holds 36 litres while the main oven holds 53 litres.  I suggest you don't fill to the top with liquid.  It may damage it.

It requires an electrical supply connection of a 20A double pole switched fused outlet with 3mm contact gap and has a rated voltage of 230 vac 50hz.  Its maximum rated input is 4.12kW.  If you know what any of that means, then you're preeminently qualified to install it yourself.  If you don't, like me, pick up the phone, get someone else to do it and sit on the settee watching Jeremy Kyle while that someone else electrocutes themselves.  Much safer and much more fun, it has to be said.

There are twin cooling fans so when the oven is turned off, the fans rapidly cool it down.  The (removable) doors are triple-glazed.


There are four dials on the front of the oven and a central LED display.  Confusingly, the controls are different between the two ovens.

The right-most dial operates the functions of the top oven.  It either acts as a temperature guide by turning to the required temperature or by clicking past the max temperature, other functions can be selected such as the grill.  If the oven is NOT being used, the second dial from the right comes into play with a grill fierceness indicator that goes up to 11.  As everyone knows, 11 is so much more hotter than 10.  The oven part goes up to 230C.

The bottom oven is a little more conventional.  Being fan-assisted with top and bottom heater 'bits' (I apologise now for using technical jargon but 'bits' is the correct term), there's a fair few combinations of fan, top or bottom heating bits that can be turned on or off.  In complete deference to the top oven, the second left dial operates the function while the left-most dial operates the temperature, up to a whopping 250C.  That's like, nearly as hot as the Sun. 

There's a small orange heating light on either side of the dials that is lit to indicate the oven is coming up to temperature.  It goes out when the desired heat has been reached.  A nice touch.

The timer has got five buttons that do ... something.  One is to set the timer, I know that for sure.  One of them sends a spring-loaded jack-in-a-box into the face of the operator as a fun, practical joke.  Remember to load it back up for the next unwitting victim.  The others could launch missiles for all I know.  The LED display helpfully flashes 00:00 all the time but apparently, by pressing a certain combination of buttons, the current hour and minutes will be magically brought to life.  Isn't modern technology just brilliant?  It will even count down and sound an alarm. 

Our Experience

It looks very stylish and fits in wonderfully with the decor of our kitchen.  We've gone for dark oak fascias and the silver oven with its black doors complements it nicely.  If the oven were a person, it would be Dawn French.  Pretty, cuddly and makes a damn fine curry.

The top oven and grill gets the most use, no doubt about it.  The grill heats evenly and unlike our previous Beko, there doesn't seem to be any 'dead-spots'.  So with a full pan of bacon, for example, there's none of that musical baconry where it all has to be shuffled around just so everything is cooked at the same time.  This is good when trying to make amends with angry builders and a round of breakfast sandwiches is called for by way of apology.

It's a swine to clean though and ours still has bits of last years' meals in there.  In particular, the gap between the door and hinge is a magnet for all things food related.  I don't know of any oven that IS easy to clean.  Employ a minion to do it for you.  Much easier.

The ovens are really quite spacious and I can quite easily fit a large roasting tin with a domed lid into the top one.  In our re-enactment of Hansel and Gretel, the wicked witch fit quite comfortably in there.  I say comfortably but really, she died a horrible painful death which is not something they tell you about in that classic childrens tale.  Still, the oven never missed a beat, which was nice.

The main oven can provide heat from all directions and I've used the very bottom of it to cook some quite authentic pizzas.  You know, char-coaled.  It gets really hot too which is a good thing for an oven.  It takes a while to get to maximum cooking temperature, I'd say between 5 and 10 minutes.  In most recipes requiring an oven, the first thing they say is to pre-heat the oven.  It's common sense but that's the problem with common sense; it's not that common.

Bad Bits

The bottom two metal runners in the top oven, used for guiding the grill pan into place, have a metal screw in them and thus rendering that height setting unusable.  There's plenty of others but still, there's been a few occasions where I didn't want such an intense heat so near the grill but not so far away as to cook by association. 

The top oven controller dial is a bit weird.  It'll work on its own to power the oven but switch to the grill and you have to remember to THEN turn the dial next to it as well.  Also, the grill heat seating is bi-directional while this one has a stopper so you have to rotate it back all the way round to turn it off.  Faffy, unnecessary and at first, confusing.

The interior light on the top oven has stopped working.  They don't last forever I suppose but at least this one lasted two years.  The manual helpfully provides easy-to-follow instructions to fit another one.  Don't be tempted to do the typical man thing by throwing out the instruction book with the words, 'I don't need that, I know how to work an oven, I'm not stupid you know'.  That's because you *are* a man and you *are* liable to break things at a later date so swallow that masculine pride and keep the manual in a safe place.  There's a good boy.


We love our Baumatic P760SS Pythagora (although we just call it 'oven'), I have to say.  It fits in well with the kitchen decor we chose, it's easy enough to operate once you get the hang and it does what it says on the tin; cooks stuff.  We've had no issues with reliability, except for the top oven light bulb going and even so, Baumatic's after-sales service is really good after having issues with an overhead extractor fan of theirs.  They couldn't do enough for us.  It's spacious, gets up to temperature quickly enough and cools down just as easily.  What more needs to be said?

Unfortunately, we paid for it as part of a whole kitchen package but a little digging around on the net shows it can be bought for anything from £750.00 upwards.  Quite expensive but the quality really shines through.  Recommended, definitely.

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