All Clad has a non stick cookware line that is made primarily in China. Their model classification is different from the one you get on the standard nonstick version. As a result there is now a lot of confusion on what it all means. One common confusion is the difference between All Clad Ha1 vs NS1. To the untrained eyes they both look the same. However, if you take a closer look, you will see that the shape differs greatly.
All Clad Ha1 vs Ns1 Set Quick Summary
|Categories||All Clad HA1 Cookware Set||All Clad NS1 Cookware Set|
|Colors||Hard Anodized||Hard Anodized|
|Metal Utensil Safe||No||No|
|Weight||Mid Weight||Mid Weight|
|Stove Top||All Stove Top Including Induction||All Stove Top Including Induction|
|Warranty||Lifetime Warranty||Lifetime Warranty|
|Country of Manufacturer||China||China|
|Thoughts||All Clad most popular nonstick cookware. However, the odd shape makes it difficult to cook in. They are the only one in their series with this design.||This is a copy of All Clad mainline series. It looks to be the exact same, just that its made with Hard Anodized aluminum. All around, it functions better than the HA1 and its recommended over the HA1 series.|
|Reviewed Cookware||HA1 10 Piece cookware set||NS1 10 Piece Cookware Set|
All Clad Ha1 vs Ns1
If you look at the two skillet side by side, the construction are nearly identitical. They are both made of hard andodized aluminum and they have a stainless steel base. But they key thing here is how the shape differs. Both the pots and frying pan are different in shape.
Ha1 Cookware Shape
The frying pan on the HA1 resembles the shape of a traditional french skillet with a straight edge. These type of pan are great for tossing food, however the tall side makes it difficult to turn food with a spatula. The taller side also prevents evaporation of liquid. The thickness of the sidewall also seems unusually large for some reason. It makes it look “Fat”. There is also no rolled lip on the pan so liquid is very difficult to pour.
For the pots, it has a weird curvature to it. The base is wider than the rim. Usually manufacturer make the base smaller than the rim to save money on manufacturing. However, All Clad did it the other way. I wonder why, the narrow opening just makes it more difficult to cook in. This odd shape is only available on the HA1 series. All Clad stainless Steel line uses a completely different shape.
Ns1 Cookware Set
On the NS1 cookware set, the shape of their pot and pans are the same as the main stainless steel version. On they frying pan, the sides are lowered and the lips are rolled. This makes it easier to turn food with a spatula and pour liquid. All Clad has basically perfected the skillet. Any deviation from this design is basically a step back.
For the pots, those share the same shape design as those of traditional stainless steel line. Straight with a curved lip. This design is simple and it works. It is a lot better than the narrow opening of the HA1 pots.
The lid is also different between the two. On the HA1 you get a glass lid. While its nice to look in, once it steams its useless. I would be more worried about it shattering. The NS1 uses a metal lid. Those are durable and you dont have to worry about it breaking.
Price wise, they are about the same. The NS1 is a little bit more expensive . However, I would gladly pay the different simply because its more functional. What I see on the ha1 series is cost cutting measures. That reduction in pot size looks to me like they are just trying to save money on metal. In the end, it just makes it difficult to cook in. The NS1 looks to be a copy of their traditional cookware. Which is an all around good design and you get a metal lid. I dont know why the ns1 cookware is getting harder to find though.
All Clad Ha1 vs Ns1 Shared Features
Hard Anodnized Aluminum
Anodizing is the process of increasing the oxide layer on metal. You can see a lot of video of people doing this online. They pass a electrical current to the metal in a bath of water. The end result is a different color metal. You can also affix different material to the outer layer of the metal. A lot of the copper plated stuff you see is just that. They were anodized with copper powder to give it that color. However, these coating is not permanent and overtime it will wear out.
Hard Anodnized Non stick pan looks like it was just coated with a non stick finish. There are claims that it is more durable than traditional teflon. I can be wrong about this though. Check the Wikipedia Link for more information about anodizing.
Stainless Steel Base
This feature is very interesting. Typically a Stainless Steel base is not preferred because stainless steel is a poor conductor of heat. However, they seem to have gone this route to make two things possible.
1) Prevent warping. Since stainless steel is harder than aluminum it is not as prone to warping as much.
2) Induction capability. Induction stove top is the new craze nowadays, I guess they are trying to appeal to a larger market.
I personally would prefer a fully cladded aluminum pan but I think they are trying to cut cost with this line.
Dish Washer and Oven Safe
These are both great features that these pans share. You can clean it easily with the dish washer so that quells a lot of complaints about cooking. Finishing off the food in the oven is also safe due to the metal handle.
They still have the painful handle. It seems like All Clad is very stubborn about this handle even though loads of people complain about it. I personally call it the Mark of All Clad. Once it is burned onto your hand, you have the Mark of All Clad.
All Clad Ha1 vs Ns1 vs D3 nonstick vs T-Fal
I personally believe its better to just buy the mainline stainless steel cookware. They are more durable and the stainless steel lining wont wear out. As with all non stick pan, once the coating go, it needs to be replaced. There is no way around it. You can buy a cheap T-Fal Pan and be done with it. However, if you like All Clad performance and design, than these pans are worth it. You can even get their mainline cookware with a nonstick finish. However, those are quite Pricey.
I hope you like the All Clad Ha1 vs Ns1 comparison, If you would like to see more, please visit our Pots and Pans Review page.