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Does anybody know the new Breville BCG800 (Smart Grinder)?
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iDrinkCoffeeCanada
Senior Member


Joined: 17 Feb 2009
Posts: 165
Location: Milton, Ontario, Canada
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: LM GS/3 MP, Speedster,...
Grinder: Versalab, Robur E
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos
Drip: Technivorm KBT-741
Roaster: Diedrich IR-12
Posted Mon Feb 14, 2011, 2:32pm
Subject: Re: Does anybody know the new Breville BCG800 (Smart Grinder)?
 

We just got our first shipment of the BCG800 in recently and have been using it for our drip grinding.  

It seems to be doing ok in this capacity and it is an improvement over the previous Breville Conical burr grinder.  Breville has exceptional product design in terms of ease of use and aesthetics.

As for espresso; it is not suitable for non pressurized portafilters in my opinion and certainly cannot be compared in grind quality to the Baratza Vario.  On the finest setting possible I was getting 17-20 second shots on an E61 machine.  There was also a fair amount of clumping.  

SJ

 
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JVBorella
Senior Member
JVBorella
Joined: 29 Oct 2007
Posts: 1,166
Location: northeastern CT.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Speedster, Strega, Cremina
Grinder: K10 WBC, Bunnzilla
Vac Pot: Hario NCA 3 & 5, Mitzudash
Drip: Hario Wooden Neck/Buono
Roaster: Hottop KN-8828P/B
Posted Mon Feb 14, 2011, 4:17pm
Subject: Re: Does anybody know the new Breville BCG800 (Smart Grinder)?
 

iDrinkCoffeeCanada Said:

As for espresso; it is not suitable for non pressurized portafilters in my opinion and certainly cannot be compared in grind quality to the Baratza Vario.  On the finest setting possible I was getting 17-20 second shots on an E61 machine.  There was also a fair amount of clumping.  

SJ

Posted February 14, 2011 link

 If you read through that Coffeesnobs thread you will see that there is a free shim kit available if your grinder can't grind fine enough to get good espresso pours. Folks over there are using it with everything from a Linea on down so it will most certainly produce good results with a non pressurized p/f if set up correctly.

Check out the second page of the C/S thread for the post from a Breville tech describing the kit last Nov.

 
John
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iDrinkCoffeeCanada
Senior Member


Joined: 17 Feb 2009
Posts: 165
Location: Milton, Ontario, Canada
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: LM GS/3 MP, Speedster,...
Grinder: Versalab, Robur E
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos
Drip: Technivorm KBT-741
Roaster: Diedrich IR-12
Posted Mon Feb 14, 2011, 5:30pm
Subject: Re: Does anybody know the new Breville BCG800 (Smart Grinder)?
 

JVBorella Said:

If you read through that Coffeesnobs thread you will see that there is a free shim kit available if your grinder can't grind fine enough to get good espresso pours. Folks over there are using it with everything from a Linea on down so it will most certainly produce good results with a non pressurized p/f if set up correctly.

Check out the second page of the C/S thread for the post from a Breville tech describing the kit last Nov.

Posted February 14, 2011 link

I will give it a read and check it out.  Like I said, I am very impressed with the styling of the grinder and the ease of use.  There are little things that Breville designers do better than anyone else like their cord with the easy grip plug and I like the gasket on the bean hopper lid.

I'll report back with my findings.

SJ

 
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Yann
Senior Member
Yann
Joined: 1 Dec 2002
Posts: 230
Location: Wellington (New Zealand)
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: La Marzocco GS/3
Grinder: Mazzer Kony-E
Posted Tue Feb 15, 2011, 4:15am
Subject: Re: Does anybody know the new Breville BCG800 (Smart Grinder)?
 

I don't think you could get the Mahlkonig Vario and the K30 confused, so I was very definitely referring to the Vario Home.

I have no idea what kind of reputation Breville has in the states.  Here it makes the usual off the shelf products home appliances that are relatively inexpensive and do a relatively good job.

Here the Vario retails for NZ$869 so roughly US$655.  I picked up my Breville for NZ$200, so US$150.  Obviously Mahlkonig and Breville are in different leagues, but for what I was looking for the Breville looked to do a similar job for fraction of the price of the Vario.  Not saying the Vario is a bad product, just that for me it will do the job I want it to do nicely at a price that is a little more palatable.

So far for what I have used it for it has been great.  Grind adjustment is easy, grinds a nice range, the hopper locks securely, the display is easy to read, grinds are nice with no clumping.  I mainly use mine for plunger and for my swiss gold as I leave espresso grinding for my Kony.

There seem to be a lot of respectable people on the Aussie Coffeesnobs forum who are happy with their ones, with a notable problem with the espresso grind which can be solved with the addition of some shims.  But for my use it does a great job (thus far) and I'm happy with it and the price I paid.

Yann
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ge7243
Senior Member


Joined: 6 Mar 2010
Posts: 52
Location: Virginia
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Pavoni Europiccola;...
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Drip: Bodum 3-cup press
Posted Tue Feb 15, 2011, 5:23am
Subject: Re: Does anybody know the new Breville BCG800 (Smart Grinder)?
 

I trust you aren't forced into using whatever dose the grinder thinks is appropriate? I have a feeling that would get old quick..

Am also curious about the adjustability in the espresso range when you use the shim kit. Seems some of the Australians have gotten surprising results, though.
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CrimsonScythe
Senior Member


Joined: 15 Feb 2011
Posts: 1
Location: Norway
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Tue Feb 15, 2011, 7:34am
Subject: Re: Does anybody know the new Breville BCG800 (Smart Grinder)?
 

Seattle Coffee Gear reviewed this grinder yesterday:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JlPU-97ik18
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randytsuch
Senior Member


Joined: 11 Jun 2009
Posts: 578
Location: LA, Ca
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Expobar Office with...
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Roaster: Customized Alpenrost,...
Posted Tue Feb 15, 2011, 9:33am
Subject: Re: Does anybody know the new Breville BCG800 (Smart Grinder)?
 

Yann Said:

I don't think you could get the Mahlkonig Vario and the K30 confused, so I was very definitely referring to the Vario Home.

I have no idea what kind of reputation Breville has in the states.  Here it makes the usual off the shelf products home appliances that are relatively inexpensive and do a relatively good job.

Here the Vario retails for NZ$869 so roughly US$655.  I picked up my Breville for NZ$200, so US$150.  Obviously Mahlkonig and Breville are in different leagues, but for what I was looking for the Breville looked to do a similar job for fraction of the price of the Vario.  Not saying the Vario is a bad product, just that for me it will do the job I want it to do nicely at a price that is a little more palatable.

So far for what I have used it for it has been great.  Grind adjustment is easy, grinds a nice range, the hopper locks securely, the display is easy to read, grinds are nice with no clumping.  I mainly use mine for plunger and for my swiss gold as I leave espresso grinding for my Kony.

There seem to be a lot of respectable people on the Aussie Coffeesnobs forum who are happy with their ones, with a notable problem with the espresso grind which can be solved with the addition of some shims.  But for my use it does a great job (thus far) and I'm happy with it and the price I paid.

Yann

Posted February 15, 2011 link

About once every week or two, someone posts that they are thinking about buying a Breville espresso machine and ask if they should buy it, or they have already bought one, and how to get better shots from it.

Answer to first question is always no, 2nd is to help as much as possible with this machine,  or to tell them to return if possible.

So, I think the opinion of some people on this forum is colored by Breville espresso machines.

As for thier grinder, have you pulled any shots with it?  Wondering it it works OK for espresso or not. Obviously, a Kony will be better, but am curious if you could pull a decent shot with the breville.

At it's price point in the US, $200, it would be good buy if it does espresso reasonably well.
The Vario, at $450 new is quite a bit more, the Preciso at $300 is closer, really the Virtuso at $225 is the direct competition from Baratza, price wise, but the Virt is not considered an espresso grinder.

Randy


Randy
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Frost
Senior Member
Frost
Joined: 26 Jul 2007
Posts: 2,105
Location: Sierra
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Isomac Venus
Grinder: Lelit PL53
Roaster: Poppery I w/variac, MET, BT
Posted Tue Feb 15, 2011, 8:59pm
Subject: Re: Does anybody know the new Breville BCG800 (Smart Grinder)?
 

It would be nice to see a good hard nosed review of this grinder and the Preciso for espresso grinding. I will remain hopeful but skeptical. "25 grind settings from Press to Espresso" does not sound like it will give the range of adjustment precision for espresso. This level of detail I could not find in the Coffeesnobs thread; how many seconds in pull difference from one grind setting to the next? What range of settings is really available for espresso?

In addition to precision and accuracy of fine grind settings, the better espresso grinders have solid burr carriers that do not flex or allow the burrs to shift under the load of bean grinding. When you are grinding far more course for drip or press, a minor burr carrier flexing is in the noise level for effect on grind consistency. For the fine grind of espresso, even a slight flex in burr alignment during grinding will substantially affect grind consistency.        

While the TreSpade conical burrs don't get much consideration here, they cut about every corner to make an inexpensive espresso grinder but managed to deliver where it counts in this area.  To me this is the competition for this price class. There is also the Cunhil Tranquilo. These are espresso grinders unlike the Virtuoso.

...Hopeful but skeptical....
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jbb
Senior Member
jbb
Joined: 20 Sep 2009
Posts: 135
Location: Riverside, CA
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: silvia v2, la spaziale s1v1
Grinder: rocky, b. vario
Posted Wed Feb 16, 2011, 11:29am
Subject: Re: Does anybody know the new Breville BCG800 (Smart Grinder)?
 

As somebody about to pull the trigger on a B vario, would anybody counsel waiting until a clearer picture on the capabilities of this grinder emerges?  The price is great, but, as others have pointed out, only 25 settings covering press to espresso?  also, not withstanding the aussie posts, the comments on how it does for espresso at this point seem spotty.  

The vario would not be my "dream grinder".  but for the immediate future i need one grinder to handle both drip/vac pot and espresso, and in this regard the vario seems like a very practical choice that would be a step up (in terms of grind quality) from my Rocky.  The only downsides I've heard are it may not be a grinder you bequeath to your grandchildren, and a few negative comments on static.
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JVBorella
Senior Member
JVBorella
Joined: 29 Oct 2007
Posts: 1,166
Location: northeastern CT.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Speedster, Strega, Cremina
Grinder: K10 WBC, Bunnzilla
Vac Pot: Hario NCA 3 & 5, Mitzudash
Drip: Hario Wooden Neck/Buono
Roaster: Hottop KN-8828P/B
Posted Wed Feb 16, 2011, 11:57am
Subject: Re: Does anybody know the new Breville BCG800 (Smart Grinder)?
 

Seems that you could bias the Breville either way (coarse or fine) with the factory shim kit. If I was only using it for vac pot/drip & espresso I'd set it up to give more choices on the fine end. It was also mentioned in the C/S thread that the grind selector could be set between marks making it close to stepless.

 
John
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