In all my prior experiences with crock cookers I had no real luck I just didn't like them. My wife however really like the convenience and the way they cook. I must admit I like this one a little better, it may simply be because it isn't round. I never liked the shape of the ones we had before because you would have to basically choose your meal by what will fit. This one is much better it is nice large oval shape and it holds plenty. I bought it due to the shape alone, and I am very pleased with it, this should be the standard design for crockery cookers. It's very well made and easy to clean. The West Bend seems to heat much more quickly than the unit that it replaced in my home. I also like the stainless steel look I like stainless and other easily cleaned surfaces. I have noticed a slight discoloration in the past few weeks but I think it is a heat discoloration. Time to Heat Great heating times, it heats quickly and holds the temp where you set it with out a lot of ups and downs. Cooking Performance Awesome performance even cooking no cool spots or burning on the bottom. The slight discoloration I noticed I believe comes from the heating element being around the sides instead of the bottom. I have no complaint with this since I believe that's why it cooks so well and evenly. Ease of Cleaning Very easy to clean you can was the crockery normally and the outside of the unit wipes clean with mild normal household cleaning products. Ease of Use Very easy to use it's super simple like any other crockery cooker. Design Awesome design I bought this unit due to its design. Durability I have had no problems with the unit since I got it about 4 months ago.