This is the coolest grinder you can have in your home - if not the most practical or the best value.
Positive Product Points
The grinding mechanism is the same as the regular doser version of the Mini. The only difference with this product is the doser, so that is the subject of this review. For a review of the grind quality, etc. please read any of the reviews on the regular Mini.
The chute is great. There is no issue with static or buildup in the chute itself. Itís very easy to clean in comparison to the doser version. The single, double, and manual switches are a nice feature.
Negative Product Points
Itís expensive! You are paying for what is the ultimate coffee geek grinder. The electronic doser is timer rather than volumetrically controlled. That means that the grinder will not dose consistently Ė especially if you mess with the fineness of the grind often. This isnít so bad once you dial it in, assuming you leave it. If you are in a commercial environment or need to pull shots in quantity or fast, the regular doser version is cheaper and more appropriate.
I was looking to buy the regular Mini and was shopping around when I noticed the electric version was available. I may have still bought the regular version if it was available without the timer. Iíll admit Ė I spent the extra money because I like gadgets. Letís face it Ė the electric version is not giving you $250 of improvement over the doser version. You are buying this for the additional control and because itís cool. The grind is identical. You can justify it by saying you will waste less coffee, but you wonít Ė at least not $250 worth.
The grind was set pretty well from the factory and required little adjusting, but the dosing system was a different story. It started out doing a two gram single dose, and I had to do some cranking to get it right. Then I adjusted the grind again and suddenly was dosing an additional two grams. If you can dial it in and leave it youíll be fine. Otherwise use the manual button. I decided not to repeat the process on the double dose (yet).
The cord coming out of the button panel looked pretty low rent to me. I came to appreciate it when it came time to clean the Mini E out. Being able to remove the top of the chute without tools is genius. Thing is, you donít need to do it often, because there isnít much build-up in the chute.
I gave this grinder an overall rating of 9 because of the quality of the grind and because it works great assuming you use the manual button or donít change your grind/bean type often. It has almost everything you could want, except volumetric dosing. If you had volumetric dosing, you wouldnít be able to use the manual button to get exactly the amount of coffee you want ground on the spot. If you are one that likes to tweak, you probably donít care. I do have to mark it down for usability because of the dosing inconsistency. Essentially, two of the three buttons are useless. It is a terrible value. If you had a Mini with a standard on/off switch and could buy the conical doser chute you would have this grinder for much less without any real loss of functionality. Come on, aftermarket people!
I purchased this grinder from Whole Lotta Latte. It shipped the next day and UPS had it to me in three. It arrived safely in what I consider to be an over-packed container. You could have fit four Minis in that box! This is the first grinder I have purchased solely for espresso. I own the Saeco Static Demon MC2002 (which I use for my drip coffee). It worked like a charm right out of the box. It was the only place I saw that had it. I would definitely buy from them again, maybe even when I get a new machine this summer.