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Haven't received my Vario yet and was wondering about other choices
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Discussions > Espresso > Grinders -... > Haven't received...  
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KaraLynn
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Nov 2010
Posts: 153
Location: London, Ontario
Expertise: Just starting

Drip: Cuisinart DCC-455
Posted Thu Feb 24, 2011, 8:37pm
Subject: Haven't received my Vario yet and was wondering about other choices
 

I was waiting to exchange my Virtuous for the Vario.  Since I've read new comments on the site but was wondering about ones in the price range such as compak K3, Macap M4C doser or doserless or mazzer Mini ET4(?).  

I haven't the slightest clue of expresso yet so I don't know what doser or doserless means or any terms having to do with grinding for expresso.  Just wanted to get the grinder now and then the expresso machine later.

Is the Vario still best of choice over some like I mentioned in the same ball park of price?  They are supposed to sending it Monday so now I wanted to make sure as I don't know what I'm doing yet and don't want to bother them with another exchange, only you guys when I'm getting ready to pick an expresso machine.

Any comments?

Thanks,

Karalynn
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Dripp
Senior Member


Joined: 11 Oct 2004
Posts: 143
Location: Ohio
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Andreja Premium
Grinder: Baratza Vario and virtuoso
Vac Pot: Bodum Chambord FP
Drip: Behmor Brazen
Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Fri Feb 25, 2011, 3:47am
Subject: Re: Haven't received my Vario yet and was wondering about other choices
 

In my opinion, yet. Still the best choice. I just went through this decision process and received mine a couple of weeks ago, and I couldn't be happier. Great grind consistency, produces excellent espresso. I told  a co worker about the Vario, and he liked what he read so much he ordered one with the expectation of replacing his mazzer mini. He also is quite happy with his.
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KaraLynn
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Nov 2010
Posts: 153
Location: London, Ontario
Expertise: Just starting

Drip: Cuisinart DCC-455
Posted Fri Feb 25, 2011, 8:20am
Subject: Re: Haven't received my Vario yet and was wondering about other choices
 

Thanks so much for your reply.  It helps tremendously.  I start looking at different grinders on websites and get all confused again mostly because I wanted to have it for expresso down the road and I haven't the faintest clue about anything to do with grinders or expresso machines so this makes it difficult.  Guess I'll leave it as it is.  Thanks again.
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Dripp
Senior Member


Joined: 11 Oct 2004
Posts: 143
Location: Ohio
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Andreja Premium
Grinder: Baratza Vario and virtuoso
Vac Pot: Bodum Chambord FP
Drip: Behmor Brazen
Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Sat Feb 26, 2011, 4:51am
Subject: Re: Haven't received my Vario yet and was wondering about other choices
 

KaraLynn Said:

I start looking at different grinders on websites and get all confused again.

Posted February 25, 2011 link

I'd venture to say that we all do the same thing.
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KaraLynn
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Nov 2010
Posts: 153
Location: London, Ontario
Expertise: Just starting

Drip: Cuisinart DCC-455
Posted Sat Feb 26, 2011, 6:10am
Subject: Re: Haven't received my Vario yet and was wondering about other choices
 

I can just imagine how much harder that is when you know what you're looking for.
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fwtechwiz
Senior Member


Joined: 19 Feb 2010
Posts: 530
Location: Fort Wayne, IN
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Evolution
Grinder: Hario Skerton
Posted Sat Feb 26, 2011, 7:55am
Subject: Re: Haven't received my Vario yet and was wondering about other choices
 

KaraLynn Said:

I haven't the slightest clue of expresso yet so I don't know what doser or doserless means or any terms having to do with grinding for expresso.  Just wanted to get the grinder now and then the expresso machine later.

Posted February 24, 2011 link

Just thought I would try and explain some terminology... first, I know it's nitpicking, but the word is espresso, not expresso.  (Though you would be surprised at what great deals you can find by searching Ebay and other sites for "expresso"!)  On to doserless/doser.  A doser is a small catch bin mounted under the grind chute that collects the grinds.  A lever is used to dispense grounds into the portafilter basket (the little metal cup that holds the coffee) by thwacking it back and forth a few times.  Doserless is just that.  Without any catch bin, the grinds just fall out into mid air and land directly into the portafilter.  A doser is a matter of convenience, as it reduces the mess.  But some models can retain a lot of ground coffee in the nooks and crannies of the doser, which leads to a lot of waste, IMHO.
You'll see a lot of discussion about burrs.  They come in two basic shapes, flat and conical.  They are a matched set, one is fixed, and one is mounted on a shaft that turns and pulls the beans into the tiny gap between the two burrs.  Conical burrs are shaped like a cone, and are said to give a better grind consistancy than flat burrs.  That depends greatly on the construction and design of the rotating burr.
If the design leaves a lot of wobble, the consistancy will suffer, giving you some big chunks, some nice medium ones, and some fine powder, which is not a good thing for espresso grind.  The more consistant the grind size, the better the extraction.
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KaraLynn
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Nov 2010
Posts: 153
Location: London, Ontario
Expertise: Just starting

Drip: Cuisinart DCC-455
Posted Sat Feb 26, 2011, 8:33pm
Subject: Re: Haven't received my Vario yet and was wondering about other choices
 

I can't believe I made that spelling error with espresso.  Thanks for letting me know.  I appreciate you explaining this doser/doserless bit to me.  At least I have a bit of a clue now what this is.  Now, this leads to another issue with the Vario having flat burrs.  Have you looked at the design of it and if so, what's your opinion?
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TheMadTamper
Senior Member


Joined: 2 Nov 2010
Posts: 1,246
Location: US
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Salvatore SES; Izzo Duetto...
Grinder: Compak K10 WBC, K8 Fresh,...
Drip: /Pod: Bunn MCP
Roaster: /Other: Blender - BlendTec...
Posted Mon Feb 28, 2011, 10:15am
Subject: Re: Haven't received my Vario yet and was wondering about other choices
 

KaraLynn Said:

I can't believe I made that spelling error with espresso.  Thanks for letting me know.  I appreciate you explaining this doser/doserless bit to me.  At least I have a bit of a clue now what this is.  Now, this leads to another issue with the Vario having flat burrs.  Have you looked at the design of it and if so, what's your opinion?

Posted February 26, 2011 link

All the grinders you mention use flat burrs.   Conical burrs generally come in two varieties: Very cheap grinders, and very (very) expensive (and very, very large) grinders.  I wouldn't start worrying about that sort of thing until you get into sky's-the-limit price points (and counter space.)  Depating the merits of a K30 and a Robur is meaningful.  Debating the merits of a Mini and a Robur is not, they're in entirely different price, size, and weight categories. Suffice it to say that both designs can deliver excellent grinds, though conicals tend to emphasize certain flavors while flat emphasizes other flavors based on the shape of particles it produces (elongated versus non.)

I have a Compak K3 (one of the ones you listed), as well as a K10 (a massive commercial conical grinder that costs 3x the Vario or K3 and requires its own table to fit it on due to running out of counter space :) )  I like my K3, I use it for my stocked hopper usage with a single blend, and I use the K10 for single dosing my special blends.  I've never tried a Vario, and I've heard some people prefer the grind quality of the Vario, and some prefer the K3.  It's a great grinder, produces excellent shots, and (so far) is a very reliable workhorse.  The difference in quality of shots between the K3 and K10 however is staggering.  So is the difference in price, size, and presence. :)  Both would beat most cafe coffee paired with good beans.  The top end grinders would rival competition level & top tier cafes in skilled hands. So Vario/K3 class grinders are capable of providing excellent cafe quality coffee or better.  The huge class grinders are capable of providing top-tier coffee.  You'll be more than fine with ANY of the grinders you listed.  You'll have more real kitchen counter space with the vario, while the K3, Mazzer, and Macap will be a bit more robust for the long-term.
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KaraLynn
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Nov 2010
Posts: 153
Location: London, Ontario
Expertise: Just starting

Drip: Cuisinart DCC-455
Posted Mon Feb 28, 2011, 1:38pm
Subject: Re: Haven't received my Vario yet and was wondering about other choices
 

That was a very detailed and technically well explained post.  Thank you so much.  Having not seen many of these grinders I wasn't thinking about counter space which is limited at this time.  So I guess I will be okay with the Vario and I very much appreciate the time you took to explain all of this.
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SteamPunk
Senior Member
SteamPunk
Joined: 4 Feb 2011
Posts: 47
Location: Hamilton, Ontario
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Izzo Alex Duetto2,  VFA...
Grinder: Compak K3 'touch'
Roaster: Behmore 1600
Posted Fri Mar 4, 2011, 5:28pm
Subject: Re: Haven't received my Vario yet and was wondering about other choices
 

I don't know about the others, not having actual first hand experience, but I chose the Compak K3 "touch"
which is doserless, don't know why the need for having to clean out a doser, or dealing with residual stale grinds?
The Compack stays vitually clean after a grind, even the shute is self cleaning.
Very little clumping.
Anyhow, so far I'm happy with the choice and price!
Was also informed about the Vario, being good, but only recommended if frequently needed to alternate between
different types of coffee beans.
Don't cheap out on the Grinder!
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