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Weight Based Grinding Becomes Reality: Baratza's New Thing (Exclusive)
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Alfonso
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Posted Tue Apr 19, 2011, 6:15pm
Subject: Re: Weight Based Grinding Becomes Reality: Baratza's New Thing (Exclusive)
 

I need one of these!

I dont really mind grinding into a bin.  In fact I prefer it.

grinding into a bin lets me break up all the clumps by shaking the grinds, and its easy enough to distribute well into the portafilter!
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webgelato
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webgelato
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Posted Wed Apr 20, 2011, 2:36am
Subject: Re: Weight Based Grinding Becomes Reality: Baratza's New Thing (Exclusive)
 

Seems like a RGBI to me.
(Really Good Bad Idea)

I see no significant advantage (in time and convenience) over a precise 13$ scale beside your grinder, or under the chute. And the scale works for a portafilter too...
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andys
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Posted Wed Apr 20, 2011, 3:11am
Subject: Re: Weight Based Grinding Becomes Reality: Baratza's New Thing (Exclusive)
 

Like you, I'm a fan of Baratza, and this looks like a nice system. But while you're at the show, your should be fair to Bunn and review their already-existing weight-based grinder (definitely not appropriate for espresso, of course).

 
-AndyS
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MarkPrince
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Posted Wed Apr 20, 2011, 3:51am
Subject: Re: Weight Based Grinding Becomes Reality: Baratza's New Thing (Exclusive)
 

andys Said:

Like you, I'm a fan of Baratza, and this looks like a nice system. But while you're at the show, your should be fair to Bunn and review their already-existing weight-based grinder (definitely not appropriate for espresso, of course).

Posted April 20, 2011 link

This is the first time I've heard of, or seen this grinder. The datasheet doesn't give much details, but it looks like

- not suitable for cupping
- not suitable for single cup brewing
- not suitable for espresso
- not suitable for small volumes of any sort
- requires using Bunn only brewers (the filter holder container looks integral to how the system works)

I'm not going to the SCAA show, but even if I was, I'm not sure it's a candidate for review or reporting on.

That said, I stand corrected that the Baratza solutions were not the first weight-based dosing grinders. However, they are the first weight based dosing grinders to address the needs and demands of most specialty coffee people asking for weight-based dosing for most of the points above.

Mark

 
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MarkPrince
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Posted Wed Apr 20, 2011, 4:01am
Subject: Re: Weight Based Grinding Becomes Reality: Baratza's New Thing (Exclusive)
 

I knew most of the negative (or critical) comments would come from espresso only folks. And of course, that's just natural - not being able to grind directly into a portafilter that is actively being weighed is a stumbling point for people who only do espresso and not much else re coffee.

But there are many folks using these grinders for a wide variety of purposes. For every one person who's measuring into the hopper exactly 19.2g of coffee (for their espresso) or 28.5g (for a 3 cup siphon), there are 99 people who are filling the hopper full with a newly bought bag of coffee.

Weight based dosing in this design is meant for those 99 people. If the 1 person who pre (or post) weighs their PF doesn't want to buy it, that's okay. But for the other 99 out of a 100, this grinder (or accessory) has the potential to dramatically improve coffee with regards to consistency and repeatability. It takes guesswork out of the equation, and for the many users who do occasionally weigh their coffee (yet keep the hopper full) it eliminates a step, unless they're brewing espresso.

And that's the other key. The Preciso and Vario are great espresso grinders, but they are also equally great drip and press and siphon grinders. I don't know what the percentage of Vario / Preciso users do use their grinder for brewing methods besides espresso, but an educated guess says its definitely the majority of buyers.

Anyway, food for thought for those comments saying this is a "really good bad idea" or "if it ain't broke, don't fix it". It's not only about espresso. Cuppers want accuracy too. So do people brewing 8 or 10oz manual drip. so do those who are brewing 3, 4 or 8 cup press pots. So do those who are brewing 3 or 5 cup siphons.

And, if you want to eliminate another appliance on your counter, it's a viable solution too for espresso purists. I don't much like pouring from the grinds bin into a portafilter (it can occasionally get messy, and defeat the purpose of weighing if you lose some ground coffee) but it still exists within the grinder and gives you down to 0.2g or better accuracy.

Mark

 
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BoldJava
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Posted Wed Apr 20, 2011, 5:07am
Subject: Re: Weight Based Grinding Becomes Reality: Baratza's New Thing (Exclusive)
 

MarkPrince Said:

I knew most of the negative (or critical) comments would come espresso only folks...

Weight based dosing in this design is meant for those 99 people. If the 1 person who pre (or post) weighs their PF doesn't want to buy it, that's okay. But for the other 99 out of a 100, this grinder (or accessory) has the potential to dramatically improve coffee with regards to consistency and repeatability...

Mark

Posted April 20, 2011 link

I have sat with my thoughts on this concept for the past day. I only do espresso on weekends.   During the week, I meticulously weigh the vacpot, pourover, and Espro weights.  I am lost without a scale.

If someone is filling the hopper full now (the fold of 99 -- hyperbole, I am sure), I don't think they are going to pay $150 to begin weighing it if they have already chosen to not use a $15 scale.  I think the Baratza line is fantastic -- great company, products, and after-sale service.  I just don't feel this particular add-on will get traction.  

Great idea but I am unsure of its viability as a product line.  Call me 'questioning,' but hardly negative or critical.  Time will tell.

B|Java

 
"On the trail for the goats' grail..."

Dave Borton
St Paul, MN
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webgelato
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webgelato
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Posted Wed Apr 20, 2011, 7:54am
Subject: Re: Weight Based Grinding Becomes Reality: Baratza's New Thing (Exclusive)
 

I got your point, Mark, and feeded my thought.

True, I was standing from an espresso only point of view (mine actually). From there it seems a good idea, but far from being revolutionary. At least not enough to beat the 10 times cheaper tiny-scale. For other methods I enjoy (Press, Syphon) i would consider a device with a slicker look. For now it looks like a professional DIY system.

It's surely true that this device will give better results to anyone : wife, kids, grandma, etc... using an already tuned one.
But as BoldJava outlined those 99 people will not turn by themselves to this kind of grinder. It would be more likely a coffee purist that will lead them to it.  

This would be more a big step to the 'lazy coffee geek' or 'the not so purist espresso lover', where the hassles of precise measurements is made once or twice and then forgotten.

For them (as for me) it would be very interesting to check the difference in precision, repeatability and taste between Vario and Vario-E. Timer vs. weigh.

Luc
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Intrepid510
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Posted Wed Apr 20, 2011, 11:35am
Subject: Re: Weight Based Grinding Becomes Reality: Baratza's New Thing (Exclusive)
 

I really like this, and am excited that Baratza made a device that is going to work with their lower end grinders as oppose to just making the new version of the Vario. This will allow me to easily upgrade my grinder to something that will give me some of the features that I would enjoy in a Vario, namely preset grinding and easily allowing my wife to feel less intimidated about making herself espresso.

I do understand the undercurrent of ambivilance by others out there, mainly Vario owners. A current Vario owner is not going to be able to add anything to their current grinder and it really isn't enough to, I think, make someone sell their grinder and buy a new one. The timing feature allows people to tune their grinder to the correct dose. So while the Vario-E is a step-up, it's small in my observation.

So while not quite revolutionary, it's a great boon for those of us on a budget that couldn't or wouldn't afford a Vario or believed we needed these features.

My only thought is how is Baratza going to get the word out to their product owners that don't frequent places like this? I am sure anyone that has spent $200.00 plus dollars on a grinder would be interested in this product, as I think they are a little more partial than your average coffee drinker.

 
Less water, more grounds.
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kschendel
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Posted Wed Apr 20, 2011, 1:06pm
Subject: Re: Weight Based Grinding Becomes Reality: Baratza's New Thing (Exclusive)
 

BoldJava Said:

If someone is filling the hopper full now (the fold of 99 -- hyperbole, I am sure), I don't think they are going to pay $150 to begin weighing it if they have already chosen to not use a $15 scale.

Posted April 20, 2011 link

You might be surprised what people will pay for the ability to have something done for them, and to avoid having another gadget on the counter or in the drawer.  Just look at super-auto sales!
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MarkPrince
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Posted Wed Apr 20, 2011, 1:54pm
Subject: Re: Weight Based Grinding Becomes Reality: Baratza's New Thing (Exclusive)
 

I remember when the Vario was first announced and priced. There was a lot of reaction over the price. "No one who's a casual home coffee fan is going to pay $450 for a grinder" was a common comment. But Baratza has sold thousands and thousands of these grinders, many of them to more casual home coffee folks.

I suspect the $150 price for the M/V/P attachment Esatto will probably be a relatively easy sale to maybe 5, 10% of the current owner base; I think for the Preciso it might be higher since the Preciso is a really good grinder to begin with, and screams for a digital timer (or weight based) addition.

For existing Vario owners - Varios have a pretty good resale value, I wouldn't be surprised to see an increased number of them here in our BST forum and on eBay in the coming months as some people sell and "trade up".

Mark

 
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