Stove tops are available in four major varieties: gas, electric smoothtop, electric coil and induction. The decision depends mainly on safety, price and cooking needs.
Professional cooks prefer gas stove tops because they can control the flame to rapidly increase or decrease the temperature. Home cooks generally prefer electric smoothtops because they are less expensive, and still offer even heat distribution. Electric smoothtops are easier to clean and less dangerous, but they do not operate in power outages like gas ranges.
Electric coil cooktop ranges are the cheapest, existing in a price range of $399 to $1,649. Electric smoothtop ranges vary in price from $549 to $3,599, while most gas cooktop ranges cost between $469 and $3,149. Price ranges vary depending on the type of oven bought as well. Induction cooktop ranges are the most expensive, costing between $1,699 and $2,999, according to CNET.
As of 2015, the best budget gas range, according to Good Housekeeping, is the GE JGB800SEPSS for $1,200. The best budget electric range is the Samsung FE-R300SX for $700. The best budget induction range is the Frigidaire FPCF3091LF for $1,849.