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Thread: The best possible grinder for the lowest possible money.

  1. #1
    Senior Member FineGrind's Avatar
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    The best possible grinder for the lowest possible money.

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hi,

    I am wanting to know the maximum amount of money I have to spend on an electric grinder to get the best possible flavor in the cup. I am not after bells and whistles. I own a pharos hand grinder and do not want to step down in quality of grind which I believe is quite high with the Pharos. Is it $800 minimum. Is it $1000. I would appreciate absolute honesty in terms of amount I have to spend.

    Thank you.

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    Senior Member David8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FineGrind View Post
    Hi,

    I am wanting to know the maximum amount of money I have to spend on an electric grinder to get the best possible flavor in the cup. I am not after bells and whistles. I own a pharos hand grinder and do not want to step down in quality of grind which I believe is quite high with the Pharos. Is it $800 minimum. Is it $1000. I would appreciate absolute honesty in terms of amount I have to spend.

    Thank you.
    Best bang for buck. I would say either the Breville Smart Grinder <$200 (I think). Or preferably, and the much better grinder in my opinion would be the Compak K3 Push (or touch). You can get the K3P for around the $500 price. Anything above this probably won't improve grind quality all that much, just speed.

    David

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    Senior Member FineGrind's Avatar
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    Is the only difference between a 58mm and a 68mm conical burr the speed in which the coffee is ground?

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    Senior Member David8's Avatar
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    The best possible grinder for the lowest possible money.

    I'm not the best to answer that. But I believe so. On the other hand, you're looking at a lot more $$ for a conical. Both the K3Push/Touch and the mazzer Mini are all flat burrs.

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    Site Sponsor coffee_machinist's Avatar
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    If what you need is an electrified Pharos, the only thing I can think of would be a Versalab M3 which is serious money, around $2000 last time I checked.

    The reason I say this is because with the Pharos you have two things - a large conical burr spinning very slowly, and the ground coffee falling straight into a container. No other electric grinder really replicates that better than the Versalab, but opinions differ on whether it's worth the money, given that it is such a niche product - similar in many ways to the early ergonomics and design issues people raised with the Pharos.

    What I'm getting at is that IF there is any validity to the whole conical / flat burr debate (I think there is) and you are prepared to accept nothing less than the grind quality of the Pharos, may I suggest a cordless drill as anything else will likely be a disappointment.

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    Senior Member flynnaus's Avatar
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    It is hard for us to judge; only those that own a Pharos would be able to advise on which grinders might produce equivalent or better quality, assuming they have tried a range of grinders. I am guessing you will need to spend in excess of $1000 as the Pharos uses a high end conical burr set. You would be starting from around $2000 to get into the high end conical grinder range.

    I think it might be best to go along to a Espresso machine specialist with a showroom and a good range of grinders and see for yourself. Take along your Pharos to compare.

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    Senior Member David8's Avatar
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    The best possible grinder for the lowest possible money.

    Wow. Out of my league here... Is the Pharos really that good? I may have to buy one. =D

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    I think to replicate a slow big conical, you'd have to buy a slow big conical such as a Kony/Robur/K10 or similar.... It's not difficult to spend in excess of $2k for this gear.

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    Senior Member NakiChap's Avatar
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    For what its worth I own a Pharos and a K3 touch

    In the cup the pharos produces are far better espresso for me

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    Senior Member flynnaus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Talk_Coffee View Post
    I think to replicate a slow big conical, you'd have to buy a slow big conical such as a Kony/Robur/K10 or similar.
    That's what I thought but how close would a top-end flat burr grinder ( eg Compak K6 or K8, Macap M4D, Mazzer Supper Jolly, Major), come to the higher end conicals in grind quality?

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    enjoy black coffee JamesM's Avatar
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    Baratza Preciso ~$330 rrp, will kill any flat-burr mazzer across entire range.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JamesM View Post
    Baratza Preciso ~$330 rrp, will kill any flat-burr mazzer across entire range.
    That's it. Out with that Major-E...

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    Re: The best possible grinder for the lowest possible money.

    It's that good?? Happy to provide my Preciso for any shootouts

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    To get similar results from an electric the best value would be the Wega 8.6 which is basically a Compak K10 rebadged and can be picked up for under $2000. There is no other large, conical burr grinder in this price range and there is certainly nothing that will compare with the Pharos at the price the OP wants to pay.

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    Senior Member NakiChap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JamesM View Post
    Baratza Preciso ~$330 rrp, will kill any flat-burr mazzer across entire range.
    I have read that the baratza heats the grinds did you notice this ?

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    Senior Member Vinitasse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cadan View Post
    I have read that the baratza heats the grinds did you notice this ?
    Any grinder will heat the grinds to a certain extent... afterall you camnot grind without friction and friction equals heat. In short grinding bursts... i.e. typical home usage... heat should not be much of a concern.

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    Senior Member insomnispresso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flynnaus View Post
    That's what I thought but how close would a top-end flat burr grinder ( eg Compak K6 or K8, Macap M4D, Mazzer Supper Jolly, Major), come to the higher end conicals in grind quality?
    For me I like the Pharos over the Super Jolly but maybe some would argue they pull different types of shots..

    @OP, if you did consider one of the large conicals I know I'd have my eye on the electric doser!! Grind retention on regular dosers sux! Is it blasphemy to say Pharos is ahead in this regard?!

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    Senior Member flynnaus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by insomnispresso View Post
    Grind retention on regular dosers sux!
    I believe doserless grinders also retain grounds (in the chute) in the same way as doser grinders do. I've never had a problem with a doser that a simple mod didn't fix. From what I know of the Pharos, there is no waste caused by grounds retention.

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    Senior Member insomnispresso's Avatar
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    Sorry to be more clear I am referring to the chute between the burrs as the doser, you are referring to the doser itself?

    I got the impression from those CSers with Konys that it's a better situation than the doser version but it's obv not my personal experience... Yet

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    Mazzer E and manual grinders have the same chutes, and retain a fair amount by design. The bigger the grinder, the more it retains, the Robur-E is the worst offender due to the massive chamber and buildup behind the anti-static mesh. That's what I was saying above - not comparable to the Pharos in that regard.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JamesM View Post
    Baratza Preciso ~$330 rrp, will kill any flat-burr mazzer across entire range.
    I'm surprised this comment didn't get more responses... really? That seems like a pretty massive claim to me. Anyone care to share comments?

  22. #22
    Senior Member chopinhauer's Avatar
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    For around a $1000 you can get some pretty decent larger flat burr grinders second hand, including the Mazzer Major. BUT if you are of the view conical is better than flat then there is nothing motorized (which is not very second hand) in this category. So the only option of getting the equivalent and probably better grind for this money (assuming you are of the view that only conical will do) is stay manual but move up in class; viz. the yet-for-sale HG One grinder. Here is the link HG one | tools for building better coffee

    But naturally you'll have to wait for this grinder to go on sale, and if you are sceptical, for it to be proven.

  23. #23
    Senior Member insomnispresso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rick_bond View Post
    Mazzer E and manual grinders have the same chutes, and retain a fair amount by design. The bigger the grinder, the more it retains, the Robur-E is the worst offender due to the massive chamber and buildup behind the anti-static mesh. That's what I was saying above - not comparable to the Pharos in that regard.
    Thanks! Now I am 100% clear on what I read previously!! sigh.. Maybe one day the perfect grinder will hit the market

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    Quote Originally Posted by galumay View Post
    To get similar results from an electric the best value would be the Wega 8.6 which is basically a Compak K10 rebadged and can be picked up for under $2000...........There is no other large, conical burr grinder in this price range..............
    Macap M7K, and possibly others.

    I think from the tone of the question, the OP will want to run a real life side by side comparison between his bench mark and any contenders, in an understanding trader's show room, to make absolutely sure he gets what he wants.

  25. #25
    Senior Member insomnispresso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fresh_Coffee View Post
    Macap M7K, and possibly others.

    I think from the tone of the question, the OP will want to run a real life side by side comparison between his bench mark and any contenders, in an understanding trader's show room, to make absolutely sure he gets what he wants.
    You can do that??



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