Opal Nugget Ice Maker 1.0 vs 2.0 – Differences/Similarities

Nugget ice is one of the popular types of ice because of its unique size and how great they work for beverages. The Opal Nugget Ice Maker is the most popular ice maker for nugget ice, but there are 2 main versions (the 1.0 and 2.0) and how do you know which one to choose? 

To save you time, I have put together all the differences and similarities of the Opal Nugget ice maker. so you can choose which version is best for you.

The Opal Nugget Ice Maker 2.0 is a newer, sleeker and more reliable machine

Both Opal Nugget ice maker models are great products. Both have their advantages and in this article we'll compare the similarities and differences between the two to help you decide which one to buy.  

There Are Actually 4 Different Versions Of The Opal Nugget Ice Maker

While the “Opal Nugget Ice Maker” and the “Opal Nugget Ice Maker 2.0” are the 2 most popular and widely sold versions of this device there are actually 4 different versions – 3 of which are currently available for sale.

The versions are:

In this article there

 
 
 
4.0
4.5
4.5
$718.66
$629.00$512.40
$$$
Connectivity:
Bluetooth
Connectivity:
WiFi (with Voice Controls)
Connectivity:
Wifi (with Voice Controls)
Warranty:
1 Year
Warranty:
1 Year
Warranty:
1 Year
Ice Production:
24 lbs/day
Ice Production:
24 lbs/day
Ice Production:
38 lbs/day
Ice Storage:
3 pound storage bin
Ice Storage:
3 pound storage bin
Ice Storage:
2 pound internal storage bin
Color Options:
Stainless Steel
Color Options:
Stainless Steel
Black Stainless Steel
Color Options:
Black
Release Date:
2015
Release Date:
2020
Release Date:
2022
4.0
$718.66
Connectivity:
Bluetooth
Warranty:
1 Year
Ice Production:
24 lbs/day
Ice Storage:
3 pound storage bin
Color Options:
Stainless Steel
Release Date:
2015
4.5
$629.00$512.40
Connectivity:
WiFi (with Voice Controls)
Warranty:
1 Year
Ice Production:
24 lbs/day
Ice Storage:
3 pound storage bin
Color Options:
Stainless Steel
Black Stainless Steel
Release Date:
2020
4.5
$$$
Connectivity:
Wifi (with Voice Controls)
Warranty:
1 Year
Ice Production:
38 lbs/day
Ice Storage:
2 pound internal storage bin
Color Options:
Black
Release Date:
2022
12/04/2022 12:33 am GMT

New Sleeker Appearance

Version 1.0

Version 2.0

Some major cosmetic changes happened between the 1.0 and 2.0 versions.

The main changes were a rounding of the edges, moving away from the square look if the 1.0 and giving it a sleeker finish.

Gone is the circle light at the center of the machine and there are new buttons and lights at the front of the machine giving you more functionality.

The 2.0 version also comes in a black steel look as well as a stainless steel color.

The Price Is Relatively Similar

While there is a price difference between the two models, it’s not really a big difference. Currently, the 1.0 model is available online through GE Appliances for $579, and the 2.0 is selling for $599. 

For a version that is much newer you might expect it to be a fair bit more expensive than the original version but it isn't.

For this reason alone I would look towards the 2.0 as a better buy than the 1.0. For an extra $20 you get a newer looking machine which has a variety of improvements over the original design.

Let’s take a look at what that extra $20 gets you in the new model. 

GE Profile Opal 2.0 | Countertop Nugget Ice Maker
$629.00 $512.40

The GE Opal Nugget Ice Maker version 2.0 produces up to 24 lbs of chewy nugget ice per day. Features built in WiFi and voice control and new LED display screen this is the most popular nugget ice maker on the market.

See Latest Price at Amazon See Latest Price at Walmart
12/03/2022 04:23 pm GMT
GE Profile Opal 1.0 | Countertop Nugget Ice Maker
$718.66

The GE Opal Nugget Ice Maker produces up to 24 lbs of chewy nugget ice per day. This is the original and most popular countertop nugget ice machine and it's the best one on the market.

See Latest Price at Amazon See Latest Price at Walmart
12/04/2022 12:33 am GMT

Both Machines Have Rapid Ice Production and Quick Start Times

One of the first things that people look for in an ice maker is how quickly the ice maker has the first batch of ice ready. This is where the two models differ from each other. 

While they can both produce the same amount of ice per day, the 2.0 model can have the first batch of ice ready in less than 20 minutes, whereas the 1.0 model can have the ice ready in less than 15 minutes. 

This is a minor difference and not really noticeable between the machines and honestly not worth worrying about too much.

The 2.0 Is A Quieter Machine

One of the biggest problems with the Opal Nugget Ice Maker was how loud it was when it was running. A lot of people complained about the Opal being noisy while it operated and in smaller houses this could be a pain.

One of the things that many people have noted about the 2.0 model is that it runs so much quieter than the first one.  

LED screen 

The new 2.0 model differs from the original model as it has an LED display screen for consumers to use. What’s so great about this display screen is that it is a smart screen. 

The screen lights up when it is in use and darkens itself when it’s not in use.

Unlike the first model that just had an LED button, the 2.0 offers a more sophisticated touchscreen full of buttons and information that let you know when water has run out, when the machine needs cleaning or is in cleaning mode – among other things.

Wifi and Voice Control vs Bluetooth Control

Perhaps one of the coolest differences between the two models is that the 2.0 comes with built-in wifi and voice control. 

The ice maker works by pairing the ice maker with the SmartHQ app that comes with the ice maker. Once connected, this app lets users monitor the status of the ice-making process as well as allows users to schedule when they want the ice to be made. 

The app also sends regular notifications about different updates or new features so users can keep up to date on their ice machine.

If that wasn’t cool enough, the ice maker can be controlled via Google or Alexa, so you don’t have to get up from the couch to press start. 

“Hey Alexa, start Opal” can be used to turn on the machine and “Hey Alexa, turn off Opal” can be used to turn off the machine without ever having to press an app or use a button.

You can also schedule when you want the machine to run so you can only have it on a few hours per day. The Opal Nugget Ice Maker doesn't cost much to run, but there is no point wasting electricity if you don't have to.

Self-Cleaning Process

While both models do have a self-cleaning process, users have noticed that the 2.0 model drains the water out of the water reservoir at a much faster rate. 

The 2.0 takes around 30 seconds to fully drain all the water, whereas the 1.0 model can take up to a couple of minutes.

If you want to learn more about cleaning, check out my guide on how to clean the Opal Nugget ice maker with bleach

Tray Tilts When Open vs Comes Out Completely

One difference users have noted is that the tray on the 1.0 version removes completely whereas the trap on the 2.0 version simply tips down when it is pulled out fully.

It can still be removed in order to clean the Opal Nugget Ice Maker properly (which you are meant to do every 2 weeks) but it's made to me more difficult to remove and doesn't come up with everyday usage.

Same Amount of Ice Made on Both Versions

Despite being released 5 years apart the ice-making capacity is the same in both models. 

The 1.0 model is capable of producing 24 pounds per day at 1 pound of ice per hour, which is an impressive spec. The new model, the 2.0, has the exact same capabilities as the first model. 

The 2.0 can also produce 24 pounds at 1 pound per hour.

The exception to this is the new Opal Dispense machine which can actually produce a whopping 38 pounds of ice per day. That's a little over 1.5 pounds per hour.

The downside of this machine though is the internal storage basket can only hold 2 pounds of ice at a time and then it turns itself off.

So if you want to take full advantage of making 38 pounds of ice per day you'd need to empty the machine every 1-1.5 hours.

Accessories and Features

Let’s take a look at the accessories that ice makers come with. Both models come with a drip tray; this tray is important as it prevents water from leaking into the rest of the appliance. 

Both models also have an ice scoop to fit the ice maker as well as UV water treatment pre-built into the appliance. 

Water tank

Both models of ice makers come with an additional water tank that attaches itself to the side of the ice maker.

On the GE Appliances website, both models boast about being able to produce three times more ice when this water tank has been filled. 

Side Tank for 2.0 Opal Nugget Ice Make
$123.60

This 0.75 Gallon side tank allows you to produce 3x more ice than the reservoir alone and can be easily attached to the Opal Nugget Ice Maker.

Buy Now at Amazon
12/03/2022 03:33 pm GMT

Batch Made Ice

Both models use the same technology when it comes to making ice. The Opal ice maker uses an innovative design that works by recirculating melted ice into the water reservoir. 

By doing this, the ice maker is able to avoid leaks and clumping of ice. Another benefit of this technology is that the ice maker automatically refills the ice when the levels are running low. 

However, some customers are frustrated with ice cubes sticking together in their Opal – this is a problem that happens with both versions as the ice bins are not insulated.

So far, the 1.0 and 2.0 are pretty much on par with each other, and it’s going to come down to the similarities between the two that will show which one is better. 

Durability

While there is no definitive answer on this it does appear that GE has learned a lot during the 5 years from the 1st version to the 2nd version and they have improved on the durability of the machine.

Early users of the 1.0 version or the version by FirstBuild had many problems with the machine which would cause it to break or not run properly.

It is still too early to tell but so far it seems like the 2.0 version is a more durable machine and is less likely to break or have issues.

Which One Should You Buy? 

Both models offer many great features, but for $29 more, you can choose the 2.0 model that has many cool hands-free features and a faster cleaning process. 

So in my opinion, the 2.0 is the one you should buy. 

GE Profile Opal 2.0 | Countertop Nugget Ice Maker
$629.00 $512.40

The GE Opal Nugget Ice Maker version 2.0 produces up to 24 lbs of chewy nugget ice per day. Features built in WiFi and voice control and new LED display screen this is the most popular nugget ice maker on the market.

See Latest Price at Amazon See Latest Price at Walmart
12/03/2022 04:23 pm GMT

If you still aren’t convinced then check out the best opal nugget ice maker alternatives that are available. Maybe you'd prefer a different brand.

Video Comparison

Sometimes I like looking at videos comparing the 1.0 and 2.0 editions. The below video shows the machines side-by-side but has a focus on the 2.0 version:

Below is a video by the same creator on the FirstBuild Opal Nugget Ice Maker which is the original Opal Nugget Ice Maker which is what the 1.0 is based off: