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Thecoffeenerd
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Posted Thu Jan 30, 2014, 2:40pm
Subject: How to test TDS in coffee?
 

I'm wanted to buy a TDS meter for my coffee. Do you just stick the tip in a cup of coffee to test the TDS? Or how is it done? Is there a temperature range to test?

 
"You can't make good coffee, without good coffee" -Thecoffeenerd
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CoffeeLoversMag
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Posted Tue Feb 4, 2014, 7:12am
Subject: Re: How to test TDS in coffee?
 

I have read about TDS Coffee meter.  There is 3-in-1 combo that measures temperature, conductivity and total dissolved solids. It is ideal for measuring brewed coffee TDS. It determines the extraction and strength for specific coffee. However, this is intended only for drip coffee and will not work for espresso.

With regards to how it is used, an instruction is being stated on the manual of the instrument. Just follow the instruction on how to do it.

 
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hankua
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Posted Tue Feb 4, 2014, 11:29am
Subject: Re: How to test TDS in coffee?
 

There's a link to a roaster who explains the different meters and how to calculate the results. Maybe someone can post it here. If I recall correctly, tds meter, refractometer (visual and digital), and VST coffee refractometer. The visual refractometer is the least expensive and VST the most expensive. The non-coffee versions use brix and are available with different scales. We use a digital version at work to measure corn syrup, just put one drop on the sensor and wash with distilled water when finished.

I've got a TDS meter but never put in coffee. In the lab where I work all turbid samples are gravity filtered thru paper or glass circles before using a colorimeter.
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Thecoffeenerd
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Posted Tue Feb 4, 2014, 5:13pm
Subject: Re: How to test TDS in coffee?
 

Is there a least expensive way to measure the actual TDS % of my coffee, say with a digital hand helf refractometer?

 
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hankua
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Posted Tue Feb 4, 2014, 6:19pm
Subject: Re: How to test TDS in coffee?
 

Found the link:
Click Here (blog.paradiseroasters.com)
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DavecUK
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Posted Wed Feb 5, 2014, 5:56am
Subject: Re: How to test TDS in coffee?
 

I just don't know where to start....

The only rational way that makes any sense for testing coffee is to taste it.

TDS - conductivity based (useless)
Refractometer - also useless

The above 2 instruments readings are meaningless in telling you anything useful about the coffee, because of the way both of them work and their inability to measure the interaction of a number of complex compounds/conditions that greatly affect the taste of coffee. I don't know when or how all this stuff got started, but seems to have become a shared belief (even by the SCAA) akin to religious faith.
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hankua
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Posted Wed Feb 5, 2014, 7:58am
Subject: Re: How to test TDS in coffee?
 

Dave are you saying the VST coffee specific refractometer is useless? If it gives repeatable readings wouldn't it be useful for calibrating coffee gear? In the lab where I work we have control charts for all our instruments with either standards or control beer. The charts are calculated with 25 data points over a period of time on all three shifts. If the instrument in in control, the results are considered valid. My assumption is the VST meter can be held to this type of standard control verification.
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Thecoffeenerd
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Posted Wed Feb 5, 2014, 10:12am
Subject: Re: How to test TDS in coffee?
 

I've seen that website actually. Any where I can find a handheld Refractometer like the one in that link for cheap? Like under $200?

 
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DavecUK
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Posted Wed Feb 5, 2014, 10:27am
Subject: Re: How to test TDS in coffee?
 

hankua Said:

Dave are you saying the VST coffee specific refractometer is useless? If it gives repeatable readings wouldn't it be useful for calibrating coffee gear? In the lab where I work we have control charts for all our instruments with either standards or control beer. The charts are calculated with 25 data points over a period of time on all three shifts. If the instrument in in control, the results are considered valid. My assumption is the VST meter can be held to this type of standard control verification.

Posted February 5, 2014 link

Yes, that is exactly what I am saying, no it wouldn't be useful for calibrating coffee gear. As far as the lab scenario goes your not comparing apples with apples.

However, people will market anything and claim anything if it gets your money!
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emradguy
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Posted Wed Feb 5, 2014, 10:42am
Subject: Re: How to test TDS in coffee?
 

Thecoffeenerd Said:

I'm wanted to buy a TDS meter for my coffee. Do you just stick the tip in a cup of coffee to test the TDS? Or how is it done? Is there a temperature range to test?

Posted January 30, 2014 link

I'm really curious why you're interested in this.  Most of your past posts have shown you are reluctant to purchase good quality beans.  You continue to report tests where the coffee is horrible, yet seemingly fail to realize, you're shooting yourself in the foot before you start.  I think most recently, you reported poor results using preground coffee from dunkin' donuts.  When I read posts like that, I can't help to wonder...what did you expect?

I'm not trying to be harsh on you, but rather, would really like to understand why you don't seem to realize how much you can up your game by getting better beans.  If you want to have brown colored milk, you can mix chocolate in it or sh!& - guess which one's going to taste better?  I know that's an extreme example, but I think it's a concept you should seriously consider.

...or maybe I'm totally wrong, and you've only been posting these tests you do, and are using good beans the rest of the time?  If so, I apologize.

 
.
Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
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