How Do Flatbed Microwaves Work?

How Do Flatbed Microwaves Work?


Flatbed microwaves work slightly differently to the traditional turntable technology.

In the classic turntable models, the microwaves were emitted from an antennae on the side of the machine. The waves bounced randomly inside the oven. This partly explains why some items would not always cook or heat up evenly.

In machines with flatbed technology, the microwaves are emitted from beneath the flatbed base via a rotating antenna.

The microwaves will still bounce around the inside but at slightly different angles to the traditional turntable.

Therefore cooking times between the turntable style and the flatbeds may differ slightly.

What Are Flatbed Microwaves?

As you may have gathered from above, flatbed microwaves are those that use flatbed technology rather than rotating turntables.

They are a relatively new technology which can sometimes mean they cost more than traditional models but prices are becoming more competitive as more machines hit the market.

Are Flatbed Microwaves Any Good?

The manufacturers of flatbed microwaves claim that there are two main advantages to this technology:

1 – There is more cooking space within the microwave as you the turntable is not taking up space

2 – They also claim that these types of microwaves cook more evenly.

There are also a few other notable additional advantages in flatbed microwaves. The most significant one is not having to clean the turntable which can often be tricky.

They also often have several of the same features of the traditional microwaves. Like traditional machines, some of them also combine several functions e.g. microwave, oven and grill into one machine.

The Best Flatbed Microwaves

Below are some of the best flatbed microwaves.

Russell Hobbs RHFM2363B – Best Flatbed Solo Microwave

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The Russell Hobbs RHFM2363B is a great choice if your looking for a flatbed microwave. It has a great sleek black mirrored finish coupled with 800Watts cooking power and a diamond cavity to cook more evenly and reduce the chance of cold spots.

The mirrored door finish gives the RHFM2363B a great appearance though visibility during cooking is reduced and fingerprints are easier to see. Nonetheless it gives the machine a high grade look that is likely to upgrade most kitchen work-tops.

With a 23 litre capacity this will be perfect for smaller households rather than large families. Though it would also do well for everyday heating and cooking purposes.

Easily the best feature though is the flatbed technology. If you need to regularly cook large dishes in the microwave, a flatbed machine can accommodate them where as the old style turntables can’t take them.

The flatbed technology can also heat dishes more evenly particularly so in this Russell Hobbs RHFM2363B model due to its diamond cavity. The diamond cavity composition gives better microwave distribution by improving the reflection of the microwaves inside the machine. This means food is cooked more evenly saving you the headache of reheating your food to get rid of cold spots.

As with any purchase, there a few drawbacks to consider. The first mentioned previously is that fingerprints are easier to see on the mirror finish door meaning more regular cleaning. Though this is hardly a deal-breaker, it is something to bear in mind. In addition, it will need to be placed at least 20cm from a wall so consider this as well as the dimensions (51 x 43 x 31 cm) when thinking about where it would go.

When all is considered however, the Russell Hobbs RHFM2363B is an awesome flatbed microwave if you’re looking for power, convenience and a sleek design.

Key Benefits

  • 800 Watts of power for quick and convenient cooking
  • Mirror glass finish for a sleek and glossy feel
  • Internal diamond cavity structure provides effective microwave distribution for better cooking
  • Dimensions: 51 x 43 x 31 cm

Panasonic NN-DF386BBPQ 3-in-1 Combination Microwave Oven – Best Flatbed Combination Microwave

The Panasonic NN-DF386 is one of the best machines on the market and our pick for the best flatbed combination microwave.

This model is sleek and precise from the exterior finish to the way it cooks your food.

ThiThe NN-DF386 is a microwave – oven – grill 3 in 1 combination which gives you a lot of flexibility for what you pay. The pull down front door gives it a more traditional oven feel whilst also allowing you to cool down dishes on it – useful for smaller kitchens.

The flatbed feature means there’s plenty of space inside (23 litre capacity), perfect for everyday use.

The Inverter Technology means that dishes are cooked evenly throughout avoiding unnecessary reheating.

To take care of all your cooking needs this model is equipped with six different cooking settings for  chilled or frozen meals, fresh or frozen vegetables and rice or pasta. A particularly handy feature is the built-in sensor that means you cook food without having to enter the time, power level or weight.

The controls are very user friendly and straightforward to use. Nonetheless if you struggle the instruction manual has plenty of useful guidance.

The model also comes with a wire rack for the grill and an enamel plate for the oven.

The flatbed base makes cleaning very easy which is always a bonus.

This Panasonic model delivers a great all-round and versatile appliance that also looks brilliant.

You can read more our full list of the best flatbed combination microwaves here.

Key Benefits

  • 3-in-1 combination (Microwave – oven – grill)
  • Large capacity, perfect for large dishes
  • User friendly controls for no hassle use
  • Dimensions: 39.6 x 48.3 x 31 cm
  • Wattage: 1,000 watts