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850 of 857 found the following review helpful:
Has lots of options, and makes very good breadJul 15, 2003
By Henry Perkins
[Between 4 and 4.5 stars]
The Panasonic SD-YD250 is pretty much the state of the art in bread machine technology in mid-2003. It's one of the larger units around with a 2.5 lb. loaf capacity. This size will also eat up your counter or cupboard space: you need just under 14" of width and height, and 10" of depth, so keep that in mind when you order.
The bread consistency is excellent. It's even pretty good in the "rapid" mode, though the results are a bit better in the standard bake mode so that's what I generally use. Also, the "rapid" mode for whole wheat or multigrain bread is 3 hours (vs. 5 hours standard), so it's not like you can start the machine at the beginning of a meal and expect completed bread before you leave the table. The fastest full cycle -- "rapid" bake mode for white bread -- is 1hr 55min.
The SD-YD250 is quieter than most earlier bread makers; however, you'll still hear the clicking and whirring as it mixes and kneads the dough. It's a neat idea to wake up to the smell of freshly-baked bread but the machine isn't quiet enough to run in the bedroom unless you're a VERY sound sleeper.
The options for this machine include the following:
o basic/rapid bake
o immediate start/timer delay
o white/whole wheat/multigrain
o sandwich (soft crust)
o crust color light/medium/dark
o raisin (pause and beep to add fruit or nuts)
o dough knead without bake
o bake without dough knead
Note that not all of these options can be combined. For instance: you only get crust color selection for white bread, and sandwich mode for white and whole wheat; multigrain bread always has a dark, tough crust (although the bread inside the crust is moist and well-textured).
The container inside really is nonstick (based on my not-so-lengthy use since I bought it) and the kneading blade does very little damage to the finished loaf. Ease of use and cleanup are both excellent.
Bread results are quite sensitive to variations in the ingredients in either weight, consistency, or age. Always use fresh BREAD flour and fresh yeast (bread machine yeast recommended) and the right amount of salt, sugar, and flour. The recipes in the included book specify flour weight in units like 16 3/4 oz., so it's HIGHLY RECOMMENDED that you get a digital kitchen scale for good results. Note that this will require still more counter space.
Summary: a very good machine, but you'll need a fair amount of counter space and attention to details to get the best results from it.
553 of 565 found the following review helpful:
Panasonic RulesApr 23, 2002
By Anthony T. Curtiss
You get what you pay for in this world and the Panasonic SD-YD250 is a perfect example. Quiet as a mouse. No jumping around the counter and whining and improperly mixing as a Breadman we purchased (and returned) did. Had another Panasonic for 8 years. Decided to replace it when the pan seal failed and we checked out the cost of a replacemtnt pan (not realizing we could replace just the paddle mechanism/seal.) Thought we could get by on the cheap with the Breadman. Wrong. If you are looking for a rock solid, flexible unit that turns out a perfect loaf time after time (up to 2.5 lbs), this is your bread machine. The automatic yeast dispenser is a great feature, particulary if you use the timer. Spend the [money].
393 of 401 found the following review helpful:
No problem with the Oz and really outdoes the PhilipsJun 13, 2003
By Timothy Spears
I purchased this machine as a replacement for a Philips bread machine I've had for a couple of years. It's the third bread machine I've purchased for myself, and had bought its predecessor (the SD-250) for my Parents some time ago. My Philips packed up (the bread tin broke away from its base), and they don't make spares, so I have to throw the whole machine in the bin - definitely won't buy another Philips anything. My parents have been most impressed with the Panasonic, and it's been personally recommended to me by other people, so after reading all the reviews on Amazon.com I decided to buy one.
So, to the point, I'm thoroughly impressed with this machine. It is solid and quiet. I took the first loaf I made with it and sliced it to find an absolutely even loaf (even from the 1:55 rapid mode). All the other machines I've had have had some level of streaking or unevenness in the bread.
As for all the other criticism of the recipe book for its use of weight rather than volume measurements for flour, it is a far more accurate way of measuring flour for any baking. Also the manual has since been updated (no doubt as a result of these criticisms), and now shows the approximate volume equivalents in all the recipes.
654 of 674 found the following review helpful:
SD-YD250 lasted only 9 months : I cannot get warranty help.Sep 11, 2006
By Walter L. Smith
This is just for the record, and to prepare you for a disappointment if you have my bad luck. My first Panasonic breadmaker gave me about 12 years of good service and just slowly died of old age; I had no complaints. I was just sorry to see it go. I bought this new model breadmaker (SD-YD250) last December (2005). It has been producing SUPERB bread (about two a week, wheat or cinnamon-raisin). I have been immensely pleased with this machine. But now it has just suddenly failed. The manual is useless when it comes to trouble-shooting, and the website is a gigantic run-around: I think there is no help at all for Panasonic breadmakers on the Panasonic web site, though it takes some time to find this fact out. But now I am getting quite a run-around trying to get some action on the warranty. I am disappointed with Panasonic. I had thought they were a better company. It could be that I am just a very unlucky person, but I thought I would put my experience on record.... (Panasonic automatically sends me to a repair facility which says it does not repair breadmakers, and also says I should contact Panasonic....I am locked in a loop!)
181 of 183 found the following review helpful:
One of the bestDec 06, 2004
The SD-YD250 does not revolutionize bread makers, but it has significantly better features than most of its competition:
- Thick pan: even rising and baking, good crust
- Thin, flat blade: the loaf slides out and you don't need to fish the blade in it.
- Yeast dispenser: contributes to a very even loaf, and makes timer operation more reliable by preventing early yeast activation
- Whisper quiet operation: even while kneading wholewheat loaves this machine's noise level is amazingly low. The loudest noise you'll hear during the whole process is a few clacks from the yeast dispenser.
- Recipes give volume (easier) and weight (more accurate) amounts for flour.
- Supports slightly larger loaves than most machines (2 1/2 instead of 2 lbs)
Having used other machines before I was surprised how effortlessly baked loaves slide out of the pan, probably because of the flat blade and the good quality pan.
Also, the crust color is perfectly even from top to bottom, whereas on most other machines I've used the crust is darker at the bottom near the heating element and lighter at the top, another benefit of the thicker, better quality pan.
Finally, Panasonic makes spare parts available.
This is a well-rounded, high quality machine at a very reasonable price. You will not be disappointed.
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