Dubbed the world's most advanced blender, Blendtec have reimagined how a blender should be controlled. In their vision they've decided to scrap all physical buttons on the unit and replace them with a large capacitive touch panel that operates all functions. So, does this alternative control method really fit a kitchen environment and is it more efficient?
The instantly noticeable thing about the loss of physical exterior buttons is that it yields a super clean design. The proudly designed and made in the USA, Blendtec Designer 725 is definitely deserving of its name, with its sleek blunt edges, that pair well with its gunmetal stainless steel enclosure. The design creates a kitchen appliance that becomes a super spectacle on the countertop and we think it's the most attractive blender we've ever seen. The 1725 watt, 3.4 peak horsepower commercial motor is located within the rugged plastic base, measuring 7 inches wide x 15 inches tall x 9.25 inches deep and weighs 13lbs/5.9KG. So can neatly be tucked under a countertop or in a cupboard corner - but why would you want to hide this design?
WildSide+ Jar & Twister Jar
The Blendtec WildSide+ jar (oz & cup measurements on the side), with air tight lid, gets its name because it has five sides, instead of the traditional four. This extra side and two vertical ridges added to the jar interior are supposedly meant to help prevent objects getting stuck inside the jar, something Blendtec are confident about as they haven't included a tamper. Whether this design is effective or not we can't really test, other than saying we haven't had any issues blending with the WildSide+ jar, so our gut feeling is that everything helps. Interestingly the 4 inch blade is blunt and not sharp, so if we accidentally rub our finger against the blade whilst drying the jar after washing up, it won't leave a mark. Instead the blade is very thick, apparently 80% thicker and ten times stronger than a traditional blender blade, so it uses pure density to blend. Our Designer 725 also came with the 16 fl oz/ half litre Blendtec Twister Jar, designed to blend thicker mixtures like humous and nut butters. Its twister lid has two pieces of plastic that run around the sides of the jar, made to be twisted counter-clockwise as the blender is running its cycle. This motion forces the contents from the side of the jar into the blade, and for thinner mixtures, a more traditional Mini Gripper lid is included. Both jars are easily mounted onto the motor base, no screwing or anything of that nature is required.
The extravaganza is the capacitive touch display. We were very excited to try this out, but we did have very real trepidations over whether this would become a gimmick and get very dirty from usage. As it happens, a touch display is easier to clean than knobs and buttons; just a few wipes and it's shiny and clean, and the same can be said for the entire motor base. After using the Designer 725 blender for a good month on a near daily basis, it became evident that the bright and clear touch display is not a gimmick. Because of how Blendtec have implemented this technology, it's refreshingly interactive and you actually feel like you have greater control, but somehow with more assistance than ever before. When we turn the Blendtec Designer 725 blender on via a luminous button from the touch display, we're met with a host of options. This user interface is well designed and is truly made for interactive use, with redeemable Blendtec rewards for the more blends you rack up, suggestions to spark your creativity via the full-text digital display and a new SmartBlend technology senses potential problems and advises the user of how to rectify them.
Performance & Modes
Six pre-programmed modes are selectable via the press of a virtual button; making smoothies, for creating salsas, making ice cream, creating whole juices, blending soups and cleaning the jar. Each mode has its own routines and displays remaining time on blends that Blendtec have implemented based on years of experience and research in an effort to create high quality produce from blending. We have no difficulty using the pre-programmed modes rather than selective pulsing and manual blending when applicable, as these get the job done all by themselves competently, but it would have been nice to have the ability to create our own modes too. The ice cream mode is frequently used on our Blendtec Designer 725; we enjoy Starbucks Frappuccino styled drinks and Starbucks actually make such beverages with Blendtec blenders in-store. Not surprisingly then, this unreservedly finely crushes thick ice and evenly distributes other ingredients for enjoyable refreshing Frappuccino styled drinks. We've also upped our juicing and smoothie game, experimenting with the recipes within the supplied Blendtec recipe book, and we've been impressed with the juicing and smoothie abilities we've witnessed. Some blenders just can't combine fruit and vegetables without human intervention, because of jar design and lack of power. The Designer 725 whips through all the different elements that can make a juice and smoothie, bringing everything together with no forgotten lumps left behind. It's a delicious and convenient way to make healthy and creative drinks.
So far we've made a wide range of things with the Blendtec Designer 725 blender, such as smoothies, whole juices, pancake mix, brownie mix, ice cream, cordial, humous, pizza dough, sauces and soups which this blender will heat up in minutes, via just blending. Our diversity in trying all these new and exciting combinations of flavours and textures, is all down to the included high quality and very straight forward Blendtec recipe book. It has a wide spectrum of recipes that definitely aid to spur your creativity and usage of the blender. All recipes are written for the Blendtec blender, so preparation is usually not required and all ingredients will go in at once. The method will even instruct you what mode your Blendtec blender should use, so everything is straight forward.
If you don't want to use the pre-programmed modes, you can manually manage the speed. The user can gently increase and decrease the power via 100-speed settings with their finger on-screen via a slider, and we found it to be very accurate and easy to use. As the speed is adjusted the blender illustrates which speed to use for stirring, chopping, mixing, blending, or pureeing. This pin precision control is helpful in the kitchen environment where flexibility and feel come into complex cooking areas, especially when adding incremental ingredients to something like a sauce, soup, etc. The pulse function also supports multi-speed functionality. One of the most challenging blends we've put the Designer 725 through, where it did stutter, was when blending a large quantity of seriously frozen banana on full speed, but the Blendtec met the task, and created creamy and healthy banana styled ice cream. Grinding grain is even possible, because the 1,725 watt commercial motor is so powerful. The motor base has superb rubber grips that keep the blender securely locked down on its resting surface and stop it from reverberating heavily even at fast speeds. The base has great ventilation and we've not experienced any heat issues, even when using it excessively.
This attractive audacious Blendtec Designer 725 Blender is probably the most consumer friendly blender on the market today. The touch display makes operation clean and easy and the design and top specifications create a masterful multi-purpose kitchen appliance, backed up with a superb eight year warranty.