Interesting new format for the First Look. It might be a good idea to come up with a new name for the new format so that people know the difference, down the road. The actual First Look strikes a nice balance between explaining the features and educating us about homeroasting. On the other hand, it could be useful to separate the two (i.e., write a straightforward article about homeroasting and link to it from all reviews of homeroasting machines). While you're not giving the product a rating of any kind, it's actually a very good resource for someone who would be in the market for such a machine. In fact, it convinced me, as a user of corn poppers, to give these specialized machines a fresh look (once some money suddenly lands in my lap).
My main criticism of this First Look, though, is that it's not as well-edited as most other pieces on CG. The advantage is that it's less polished (rawer) than other reviews. But there's a number of things that could be rewritten to be clearer and there's a few obvious typos. Really, it's not a complaint as having a prompt and fresh First Look is in many ways nicer than having to wait a long time before getting a well-edited Detailed Review. But it's worth mentioning.
I agree with the above comments re editing . I am about to buy one of these roasters here in Australia almost based on the article. Other articles on other sites however do say the same thing exactly. We can't all justify the expence of a 500KG a day roaster, but also we would idealy not like to be compromising every roast with a pop corn maker that cheats the beans of at least some of their potential . Pop corn is not a big thing here in Australia, and rather than buy one, and then upgrade later, I think I'll buy the machine you have reviewed. Thanks
I thought that this was not only a good review, but a very fair one. I have roasted on an iRoast before (the original not the "2") although I do not own one, and it was nice to hear about the improvements from the first to the second, and also to hear what the second still lacked. I was unaware that if you unplugged the roaster the profiles would stay, that's a very nice add-on. (Very frustrating to find that out the hard way on the 1).
... The actual First Look strikes a nice balance between explaining the features and educating us about homeroasting. On the other hand, it could be useful to separate the two (i.e., write a straightforward article about homeroasting and link to it from all reviews of homeroasting machines)...
Better late than never!! Having gone through the gamut of the Hearthware Gourmet, Precision, i-Roast, and i-Roast 2, the i-Roast 2 is a lot quieter than its two oldest siblings, making it more difficult for someone who has not actually heard first crack previously to actually detect it. It seems to roast a lot better than the i-Roast, meaning more even roasting with much less over roasting - this has more to do with technique and the learning curve is relatively short. If one had the choice between the i-Roast and the i-Roast 2, then the 2 is the preferable buy. It does have more flexibility in allowing 5 temperature and 5 times, but that is not all that significant. Whether one is willing to buy it has more to do with convenience versus cost. There are less expensive alternatives. The major question about all the Hearthware roasters so far has been durability and that is still in question with the 2.
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