The AEG DB6120-U is a solid steam iron. It's not the most powerful on the block, but it packs just enough steam to get the job done. It's also available in a couple of colour ways: boring blue and white or lairy neon green.
We were impressed with its many neat design touches, such as the traffic lights that tell you when you're ready to iron. But if you are looking for pure ironing power then look elsewhere.
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Browse the pictures that accompany this review and you'll see two radically different-looking irons. One is blue and white and boring. The other is black and neon green, and anything but boring. We tested the latter and weren't huge fans of the colours, especially the way it's applied in little patches of the reservoir, so it looks like tiny people have been paintballing inside. All the same, it made a refreshing change from the design of most irons, which hasn't changed much in decades.
The design is followed through with attention to detail in most places. For example, the cord (neon green, naturally) attaches to the iron body via a small ball at the back of the heel. The ball contains a two-colour indicator light that turns red or bright green, for stop or go. If you're one of those people who can never remember whether the light comes on when your iron/oven/whatever is ready or when it's not ready, you'll know what a godsend this traffic light system is.
Controls are simple and well-placed: buttons for both steam shot and water spray sit under your thumb, well positioned but it's hard to see which is which sometimes. While the body of the iron is home to the temperature control dial and an anti-calc button, the sort where you heat the iron and then unplug it and press the button (over a sink) to flush out any limescale deposits. Unusually, there's no control for the level of constant steam, instead this is automatically set when you select the iron's temperature.
The AEG also has an auto-off function. The iron turns itself off automatically when unattended. It senses movement and switches off after 30 seconds when left still in horizontal or sideways position, 8 minutes when vertical.
The AEG has a small fill hole under a flap, so it comes with a jug. This is the one area that's a let-down in terms of design because ours came with a white jug that looked out of place alongside the love-it-or-loathe it bright green and black.
Aside from that, the design features are well-thought out. As well as the traffic light system, we liked the fact that the auto-off function beeps for a moment, to let you know that it is powering down: a good reminder to stop checking your Facebook messages and get on with the ironing.
Ironing performance is mediocre. It doesn't offer as powerful a steam performance as some irons. So it gets the job done, but it doesn't do all the work for you, you'll have to work a bit harder than you would with a more powerful model. But it's small and agile, and feels pleasantly light in the hand.
The design includes a good groove above the soleplate for ironing around and under buttons. The only annoyance comes at the last hurdle: the power cord wraps neatly around the base of the iron when you're done… but there's no clip to hold it in place, so you'll have to tuck the plug in, not good enough for an iron at this price.
Maybe. The AEG is small and agile, like a Mini: not the best performer but powerful enough to get the job done. If you're after a workhorse, consider the Bosch TDA7060GB or Tefal Ultimate Anti-Calc FV9640 instead, these are the SUVs of the ironing world.
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A lightweight, agile steam iron with a love-or-loathe it design, also available in boring blue and white.