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Breville BCG800 or Baratza Preciso???

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  • Breville BCG800 or Baratza Preciso???

    I could use some help. I recently purchased a Breville BES840. I am still at the early learning stage with this machine. I have a Breville BCG450 which has served me well for drip coffee. I modified it so it would grind finer. I bought some nice freshly roasted beans locally. I find I really have to fill the basket (using the single wall) and tamp quite hard. I am enjoying the results, but I think a better grinder would be a big help.
    I have narrowed my search (I think) to the Breville Smart grinder or the Baratza Preciso. I can purchase them here in Canada online with a 10% discount since I bought my 840 at the same place. The price would be $180 for the Breville and $287 for the Baratza. I did for a while also consider the Ascaso i1 for about the price of the Baratza.
    Any comments or suggestions would be appreciated. But please don't laugh at me. My wife has already done that when she caught me using a magnifying glass to compare my grounds to a sample from the grinder where I bought my beans. Yea, it likely did look funny.
    Thanks for your input.

  • #2
    Definitely wont laugh at you - but if you are prepared to spend the money, the Baratza is a far superior grinder. The Baratza is more on par with the Mazzer Mini/Compak K3 and the breville is more on par with the sunbeam grinders.
    Do you use single-wall (un-pressurrised) or double -wall (pressurised) baskets? If you're not using the single wall ones (the one that you can see lots of holes from the top and bottom of the basket) then combining the use of those with a Baratza grinder will improve your shots outta sight - provided you're using fresh coffee (not coffee from the supermarket)

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    • #3
      Thanks for not laughing, my wife does that enough with my recent "obsession". Yes, I am using the single-wall basket. The instructions that came with the BES840 said to use them with fresh ground coffee, while the double wall was for pre-ground. I buy my beans from a local place that roasts them daily. I can even ask for a specialty bean and have it roasted after I order. I also make regular coffee with an Aeropress and also drip or pour over. The BCG450 could be kept for that if changing grind or bean type is an issue.
      My wife doesn't mind me spending a bit of money on my hobby, just not too much. I did tell her it is cheaper than a girlfriend. That is a true statement --- right???

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      • #4
        Sorry, I should have also said that comparing to Sunbeam is meaningless to me. I am not aware of Sunbeam grinders being available in Canada. We do get some Sunbeam products here, but not the grinders. When you say Sunbeam, I sort of think on par with Quisinart. I had one of those, but it was louder than the engines at work. I'm not sure of the model number, but it should have been called the Quisinart Static. I almost had to scrape the grounds out of the container.

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        • #5
          The smartgrinder is a good grinder for the money. Makes good coffee for me. Has jamespbeasley actually used one?

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0DT7zmoQOJI

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          • #6
            Richard,
            Jamespbeasley has used not 1 smart grinder, but 3. First one ground fine enough, but the burrs ground against eachother so I took it back. 2nd one the burrs oscillated instead of grinding straight, so the grind was quite bad - you could taste it - so I took it back. 3rd one didn't grind fine enough so I had to put shims in. To make it grind fine enough the burrs rubbed more than the first so I took it back and got a refund.
            I then got a 2nd super jolly - and far out did my coffee improve. I've since used friends mazzer minis and seen the Barbara in shops and they grind and taste quite similar.
            The smart is good for the money - if you're lucky enough to get one that grinds fine enough without the burrs grinding eachother to death.
            But the key is - FOR THE MONEY. If you can afford to spend an extra $100 for the baratza, you will get more value out of the extra $100 than the first $187 you spend.
            Worth in reliability and longevity alone - let alone grind quality.

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            • #7
              Btw - the Seattle coffee gear girls are entertaining - and its nice to watch lots of gear in action - but that's about it. Watch a few videos of the way they make coffee and you'll see pretty quick they don't really know what they're doing.
              I wouldn't take their evaluations with many grains of salt.

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              • #8
                Ok, I didn't wait long enough to get a lot of advice. The price of the Preciso dropped on a one day deal. I paid $270 Cnd for it. (our money is close to par with U.S.) For a price like that, I felt it was a lot more grinder for a bit more money. I should have it before the weekend. Now I will have to figure out how to dial it in for espresso. I will keep the old Breville for the Aeropress.
                Thanks for the comments.

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                • #9
                  Congrats Jetfly - you made the right choice!!

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                  • #10
                    Re: Breville BCG800 or Baratza Preciso???

                    Nice, I also have a Preciso.

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                    • #11
                      Thanks,
                      Now any advice on how to dial it in???

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                      • #12
                        I'd have to say through trial and error. The Preciso is brilliant for any kind of coffee brewing. The grind consistency, speed, and low grinds retention makes it unbeatable for the money spent. Experiment with it

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