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The Best Sonic Ice Maker Yet?
Nugget ice, also called Sonic ice is beloved for its soft and crunchy texture.
It’s actually a bit of a revolution in drink ice – for three different reasons:
- Sonic is soft, chewable and offers a pleasant mouth feel.
- Sonic ice is very porous, so it absorbs your drink to maintain a consistent flavor to the last drop.
- Sonic ice cools a drink faster than any other kind of ice, except perhaps shaved ice.
If you love Sonic nugget ice, then the GE Profile Opal 2.0 is one of the best ice makers you can invest in.
The Opal’s high-quality stainless steel build presents a stylish yet functional design that gives your kitchen’s countertop an attractive look.
Though it is a bit larger than a typical portable ice maker, this unit is smaller and lighter than its predecessor.
The GE Profile Opal 2 is very user-friendly, too. Setup is simple, and you will love how silent this ice maker is.
Operation is handled via three buttons on the control panel that control the unit’s status.
With a built-in filtration system, you will always get clean and fresh ice.
The GE Opal does not require a dedicated water line input and uses high-end ice-making technology to provide ice that is far softer than ordinary ice cubes.
The included non-insulated bin can hold up to three pounds of nugget ice at a time, enough to serve 10+ drinks.
One of the most interesting things about the Opal ice maker is its WiFi connectivity to the SmartHQ app, which lets you monitor and control the unit from anywhere in your home.
The Opal nugget ice maker comes with a 1-year warranty and is backed by the excellent reputation of General Electric.
Keep reading to learn more about the GE Profile Opal 2.0 – our favorite Sonic ice maker yet.
Pros and Cons
- Does not require a dedicated waterline
- Durable build
- Sleek attractive design
- Quiet operation
- Provides smart alerts and remote control over WiFi
- Not cheap
- Relatively heavy
- Startup takes a while, but after that fresh ice flows fast
The GE Opal nugget ice maker comes with a host of features that provide a premium experience to the user.
Let’s see what this recently-updated ice maker has to offer.
This ice maker is built from stainless steel that runs across its flat surface to give it a durable, utilitarian appearance.
It is more durable than most other models which tend to be made of plastic.
Moreover, you can choose from two stainless steel finishes, regular stainless and black stainless steel.
The unit has a stylish and modern design that improves the overall look of your kitchen.
Measuring 16.5 by 13.4 by 17.5 inches, the Opal ice maker is designed to sit on the counter.
There is a removable ice storage bin that can keep almost three pounds of ice at a time.
All in all, the sleek design helps the GE Opal 2.0 ice maker fit nicely into the décor of any kitchen.
The top panel of the Opal ice maker is equipped with buttons and indicators that make operation simple and easy.
While the original Opal ice maker was equipped with a backlit round button, the newer version uses text-based status indicators. This makes it easier to understand what’s happening.
To the right, there are three buttons: power, light, and clean.
The power button helps in turning the unit on and off while the clean button puts the machine in cleaning mode.
Lastly, the light button lets you adjust the interior ice bin light by selecting high or dim illumination settings as per your choice.
Additionally, there are other indicators including Making Ice, Add Water, Defrosting, and Cleaning, located on the left side of the machine.
You will also find a backlit Wi-Fi backlit icon indicator to keep you informed whether the unit is connected to your home/office network or not.
Premium Auger-Based Ice Making
The Opal uses the same sonic ice-making technology as its predecessor.
It involves taking ice flakes from the chilled cylinder and compressing them into small and chewable ice nuggets.
The unit takes about 15 minutes to start making ice nuggets and produces approximately one pound of ice per hour.
This is 24 pounds of chewable nugget ice every day.
Side Holding Tank
While the original model required you to purchase a separate side tank, the Opal 2.0 comes with a side tank that magnetically sticks to the side of the machine.
The extra tank allows you to make three times more ice without you having to fill the water reservoir frequently. This feature makes the ice maker a great choice for a party.
Another interesting feature of this ice maker is the automatic refill that allows the excess water from melted ice nuggets to drip back into the reservoir for ice making.
This feature makes sure you don’t run out of ice nuggets for gatherings.
Easy assembly, effective design, and status indicators ensure ease of use.
The Opal ice maker is designed to make lives easier with its user-friendly operation.
The buttons help you control the settings, while the indicators keep you informed of the action your ice maker is performing.
All you need to do is fill the water reservoir and press the ice-making button.
Thanks to the removable bin, you can carry ice into another room.
While most ice makers tend to make noise during operation, the Opal ice maker 2.0 is extremely quiet.
You won’t even know even if it’s there.
One of the coolest features that make this unit stand out is its connectivity to the SmartHQ app.
While the original Opal model offered Bluetooth connectivity, you can now use WiFi to connect the Opal ice maker 2.0 with the app.
This means you don’t have to be near the ice maker to make an adjustment.
The built-in 2.4GHz Wi-Fi radio allows you to interact with the appliance when you are out of the home – or to get the ice making started for tonight’s party.
You can check the filter’s status and schedule when your ice maker will start making ice.
Moreover, it lets you to turn the internal light on and off according to your requirements.
The sleek design with a weight of 38 pounds makes this ice maker a portable option.
This allows you to move it around without any struggle.
Lots Of Accessories
You will find multiple accessories in the package to improve the overall experience.
There is a clear scoop to easily take the ice, an owner’s manual to help you with the installation and use, a drip tray to collect the dripped ice or water and keep the ice maker tidy, and a quick start guide to operating the unit like a pro.
Opal Nugget vs. the Competition
A comparable competitor to the GE Opal 2.0 is the NewAir Nugget Ice Maker.
Here is a detailed comparison between the two models to help you make an informed decision.
Both the GE Opal Nugget Ice Maker and the NewAir Nugget Ice Maker come from reputable ice machine brands.
Built from stainless steel, both units feature a countertop design that enhances the appearance of your kitchen.
They also both use similar premium ice-making technology to make nugget ice that is soft and delightful to chew.
One of the major differences between these models is the start-up time.
While the Opal 2.0 requires 15 minutes to prepare a batch of ice nuggets, the NewAir Nugget Ice Maker can give you a scoop of ice in only 12 minutes.
The aesthetics of the Opal is better than the NewAir, in our opinion.
Additionally, the Opal is relatively silent compared to its competitor.
However, the NewAir Nugget Ice Maker produces more ice than the Opal ice maker and features a much larger storage bin that can hold 4.8 pounds. This makes the NewAir more suitable for larger parties and gatherings.
Finally, when it comes to the price, the Opal is definitely more expensive than its counterpart.
Issues & Concerns
Though the GE Opal nugget ice maker is packed with features and delivers excellent performance, there are still some issues and concerns.
15-Minutes To Make Ice
The GE Opal makes ice slower than its competitors.
This unit requires at least 15 minutes to prepare the first batch of nugget ice and can produce just one pound of sonic ice oer hour.
So, if you don’t give it enough time to get started before your guests arrive, there is a chance you may not be able to meet your crowd’s need for ice for a while.
That said, the WiFi / smartphone app make it easy to start the ice making before you leave work. So it’s easy to work around this limitation.
Though this is an upgraded version with improved features, the GE Opal 2.0 is an expensive ice maker.
But if money is not an issue for you, this is the best sonic ice maker you can buy for a typical home.
Another concern about this unit is the regular maintenance.
You’ll need to clean it every time you use it, for consistent performance.
Care and Maintenance
Proper care and maintenance ensure you have plenty of clean, chewable ice all the time.
It not only keeps the unit functional but also upholds the performance in the long run.
Here is what you should do for regular care and maintenance of the GE Opal ice maker.
- To keep the unit looking good, make sure to clean it once per week.
- Clean the exterior using a soft cloth dampened with soapy water.
- Make sure to clean the bin’s interior at regular intervals.
- Inspect the unit for oil spots, loose wires, and corrosion.
- Keep the unit in a dry place.
- For thorough cleaning, mix five cups of water with one tablespoon of household bleach and pour the solution into the water reservoir. Press the “clean” button to start the cleaning process and wait for three minutes. Once the cleaning is done, drain the water completely. Then fill the reservoir with fresh water and press the button. Repeat the process three to five times with fresh water.
On top of the special features, the Opal nugget ice maker is backed by a solid warranty.
GE provides a limited warranty of one year on this product.
The warranty covers the repair and replacement expenditures for defects in materials and workmanship.
- Dimensions: 17.5” x 16.5” x 13.43”
- Weight: 38.0 lbs.
- Material: Stainless steel
- Ice per day: 24 pounds
- Ice per hour: 1 pound
- Power: 20V AC; 60 Hz; 2.5 A
- Storage capacity: 3 pounds
- Wi-Fi connectivity: Yes
Where to Buy
If the GE Profile Opal Sonic Ice Maker 2 fits your bill, you can find it online at Amazon.com.