The EI30SM35QS's sensor cooking mode proved adequate. The setting overheated our test food by 7°F, which is significant. However, we found the temperatures across our cooked potato to be fairly even.
The convection setting was exceptional when it came to baking cookies. The tops of our test cookies came out perfectly uniform, and we saw little to no difference between the tops and the bottoms of the cookies.
The EI30SM35QS is whisper-quiet during normal operation, and only slightly obnoxious when using the exhaust vent. We recorded a sound level of 46.5 dB during normal operation, and 61.2 dB when using the exhaust vent.
The only thing it lacks is extras
Considering its premium price, you'd expect the EI30SM35QS to be filled to the brim with every bell and whistle. Sadly, that's not the case. This Electrolux is pretty spartan in the features department. Don't expect to find any temperature probes or custom recipe menus here. If you find such things confusing, the EI30SM35QS will be a welcome addition to your simplified kitchen.
Don't mistake simplicity for stinginess, though, as the EI30SM35QS still has most of the cooking options and modes you would expect from a modern microwave. It also includes a multi-cooking option for complex dishes, as well as a multi-function humidity sensor for automatically determining a dish's doneness.
It's rare for a microwave to do badly in our water heating test, so we're a little surprised by the EI30SM35QS's poor showing in this area—which is also the main reason this microwave didn't score even higher. Our room temperature cup of water failed to reach the target temperature of 208°F after four minutes, and that's too long to wait for tea.
We reheated a portion of macaroni and cheese using the EI30SM35QS's default power levels. The resulting reheated food was evenly cooked. In fact, only one portion showed a noticeable temperature difference.
The defrost setting was fast, taking an average time of 5:30 minutes. However, it was slightly underpowered, and about 10% of our test food was still frozen once the cycle was complete.
Our sensors are picking up some excellent performance
This microwave proved to be consistent—if a little underpowered—cooker, and that's where the EI30SM35QS shines. Fancy features are always welcome, but we prefer good performance over convenience any day.
The EI30SM35QS's low, 900-watt output was evident in its sluggish water heating and defrosting performance. Fortunately, the microwave's stellar humidity sensor mode and the evenly-cooked food it produced made up for the lack of raw power.
The convection setting was also better than most. It won't be able to bake a cake (shame on you for trying!) but our test cookies came out almost perfect.
A good deal even at full price
If you're looking for an upmarket over-the-range to match your existing Electrolux oven, the EI30SM35QS is an easy recommendation. It's also a great choice if you use your microwave for more than just reheating and defrosting, as its sensor settings and convection option make this Electrolux capable of cooking a full meal.
That doesn't mean there isn't competition. If you couldn't care less about convection cooking, there is always the similarly-priced GE PVM9179SFSS.
Alternatively, if you don't mind a little aesthetic inconsistency in your kitchen, the Sharp R-1874 offers similar performance at a slightly lower price. But if you're set on this Electrolux, you'll be happy know we found it on sale for as low as $469.
Meet the tester
Aside from reviewing ovens and cooktops, James moonlights as an educational theatre practitioner, amateur home chef, and weekend DIY warrior.
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