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Thread: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

  1. #1
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    Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Which should i go for and why? It will have to mate with a Gaggia Classic PID (with a view to an upgrade in the next 6-12 months) and will be replacing a Gaggia MDF (due to a combination of a broken doser and upgraditis).

    what are your recommendations?

    cheers :D

  2. #2
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Well,

    Basically the Rocky is an MD40 Commercial Grinder in a handsome jacket and the Challenge is a dead-set domestic grinder and probably the most capable espresso-only grinder in this class due to its having micro-metrical adjustment of the grind settings. The Rocky on the other hand, has stepped adjustments albeit relatively small ones. You will probably wear the Challenge out in a few years whereas the only thing to wear out on the Rocky will be the burr plates, which are replaceable and very economical to do so, not sure about the Challenge in this regard.

    Hope that helps a bit,

    Mal.

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Cant you get the doser fixed/replaced? I wouldnt think that would be too expensive.

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Lucinda, I think you missed the critical symptom here - upgraditis. Theres only one cure for that, and it isnt fixing the doser..... ;)

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    stretch your budget to a commercial quality stepless grinder and you wont look back. any grinder with steps is always going to plauge you.

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Quote Originally Posted by muppet_man67 link=1181310676/0#4 date=1181366177
    stretch your budget to a commercial quality stepless grinder and you wont look back. any grinder with steps is always going to plauge you.
    I disagree. If the steps are small enough its no issue....Stepless is great as well...Each has pros and cons...

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Quote Originally Posted by 2muchcoffeeman link=1181310676/0#5 date=1181366543
    Quote Originally Posted by muppet_man67 link=1181310676/0#4 date=1181366177
    stretch your budget to a commercial quality stepless grinder and you wont look back. any grinder with steps is always going to plauge you.
    I disagree. If the steps are small enough its no issue....Stepless is great as well...Each has pros and cons...
    ok maybe thats a bit general. but are the steps small enough on a rocky? Ive heard people say they make about 5 seconds difference in a pour.

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Im happy enough with the steps on the Macap.

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    ok maybe thats a bit general. but are the steps small enough on a rocky? Ive heard people say they make about 5 seconds difference in a pour.
    More like 7 to 10; or at least it was on mine. I used to keep a whiteboard nearby so that I could keep notes on how much I needed to dose up or down. In the photo, the schematic means dose leve, rap to settle, then "dose up slightly."

    The thing that people never really talk about is that there is usually massive variation due to dosing. Sometimes when I have too much coffee around and it is starting to stale, I do a little test to see how consistent I can be. I have gotten it down to about a two second window for a given volume across five or six shots, which Im quite happy with.

    I dont think that theres any real benefit to be gained in being able to adjust your pour times to more than a resolution of about two seconds for a given dose and extraction volume because I struggle to believe that anyone is really that consistent in dosing.

    What I do find nice at the moment is being able to adjust my grind to get the same volume/time extraction, but with different amounts of coffee in the basket. This is something that I have been trying ever since I pulled some shots with Klaus Thomsen, last years WBC and he did so by dosing his relatively lightly roasted blend down a fair bit. It brought out a lot of sweetness and a fair bit of acidity. Almost like some sort of fruit juice. On the other hand, sometimes I will get a darker roast and want to dose it up to make a chocolatier base for a cappuccino. Of course, I dont think that thats something that anyone would really be doing as soon as they buy their machine - there are enough variables to get under control normally!

    Cheers,

    Luca


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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Ive had my Rocky for a few years now and that has NEVER been an issue... The vast majority of my shots are pulled within a second or so of where I want them and the few that fall outside this are no more than 2-3 seconds outside of where Im aiming. No need to go making a mountain out of a molehill in my view :-? You get used to dosing up or down slightly as adjustment dictates, Ive lost a lot of dexterity in my hands and strength in my arms due to a series of strokes and its not an issue for me.

    Mal.

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    7-10 seconds is a very sick Rocky IMHO....more like 3....

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Luca - I see you have some of the selection 9 up on your board.

    I got some of that this week from a local roaster over here in WA - very fragrant.

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    If its a case of upgraditise, is the rocky really that much better than the MDF? wouldnt you be better off going to a pricier grinder or fixing the gaggia?

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Must be an old photo...I spy a Silvia.

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    repair is not an option - i dismantled the thing as soon as it broke and there were 2 pieces broken: one end of the spring had cracked, and the plastic around the screw on which it was mounted had shattered. there was absolutely no way to DIY a repair, and the replacement parts would be far too expensive to source :(

    It still works, but its giving me the poops already, and its only been a week. the lever has no return and it doesnt seem to work as well as it did - i need to do heaps more flicks to get all the grinds out...


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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Quote Originally Posted by early_morning_ link=1181310676/0#14 date=1181472985
    repair is not an option - i dismantled the thing as soon as it broke and there were 2 pieces broken: one end of the spring had cracked, and the plastic around the screw on which it was mounted had shattered. there was absolutely no way to DIY a repair, and the replacement parts would be far too expensive to source :(

    It still works, but its giving me the poops already, and its only been a week. the lever has no return and it doesnt seem to work as well as it did - i need to do heaps more flicks to get all the grinds out...
    convert it to dozerless. ;)

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky


    When I had to choose a good quality espresso grinder a few months ago, I had narrowed it down to some machines with the flat burr sets, like a Mazzer.

    As it turned out, my wife wouldnt hear of a tall structure like the Mazzer mini in our small kitchen, so I went with the Rancilio Rocky, as it has the same grinding "technology" but was a lot smaller, dimentionally.

    I have not personally tested the Iberital Challenge, but Im informed by this group that it is a noisy grinder.


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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    yes it is noisy. Id never really thought about it but since I got a super jolly, my parents are using my iberital. (cause I wanted fresh coffee when I went round) I thought I had rocks in it the first time I used it in a couple of weeks. then I realised thats just how it sounds.

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Hi guys, thought that Id catch up on this thread:

    Grendel, yep, selection 9 ... but that photo was taken about a year ago, when I still had my silvia/rocky combo.

    Mal, 2mcm its interesting to see that there has been some very mixed feedback on the rocky all over the internet. It would be interesting to actually do a study on it to work out what the average distance between steps is.

    tempestv8, muppet_man67, yep, the iberital challenge sure is noisy! Actually, greg kaan got a sound meter of some description out a year or two ago and measured the mazzer mini and the lux, which sounds similar. Turns out that they emit the same decibels, but the pitch of the lux et al is much higher and, so, more objectionable.

    Cheers,

    Luca

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Quote Originally Posted by Veneziano Caffe link=1181310676/15#18 date=1181613064
    Hi guys, thought that Id catch up on this thread:

    Grendel, yep, selection 9 ... but that photo was taken about a year ago, when I still had my silvia/rocky combo.

    Mal, 2mcm its interesting to see that there has been some very mixed feedback on the rocky all over the internet. *It would be interesting to actually do a study on it to work out what the average distance between steps is.

    tempestv8, muppet_man67, yep, the iberital challenge sure is noisy! *Actually, greg kaan got a sound meter of some description out a year or two ago and measured the mazzer mini and the lux, which sounds similar. *Turns out that they emit the same decibels, but the pitch of the lux et al is much higher and, so, more objectionable.

    Cheers,

    Luca
    Agreed Luca- I find the Challenge a tad "fingernails down the blackboard"....Good grinder though ;)

  21. #21
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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Quote Originally Posted by Veneziano Caffe link=1181310676/15#18 date=1181613064
    Mal, 2mcm its interesting to see that there has been some very mixed feedback on the rocky all over the internet. It would be interesting to actually do a study on it to work out what the average distance between steps is.
    Yep,

    Good idea Luca.... A "Shoot-out" would be worthwhile to do across a spectrum of "stepped" grinders. Personally though, I think it is more a matter of becoming used to the grinder one owns. I know in my case I subconsciously adjust the dose/tamp to achieve the shot Im looking for but in a straight out test with all else being equal, Id reckon the step-change effect on timing would be about 5 seconds with my Rocky. Its been a while since Ive taken any notice of it though :-[,

    Mal.

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Yep Mal...mine is about 5 seconds or perhaps a little less between steps. I might use weighing method and the same beans one day and do measurements with the same tamp.

    Cheers

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky


    On the weekend, I dropped in at my bro-in-laws for a first hand look at his Iberital Challenge in action.

    All I can say is that all those people who say that the Iberital Challenge is a noisy grinder (and that includes myself!) are, in my opinion, plain wrong.

    The Iberital Challenge is no noisier than the Rancilio Rocky, according to my ears. The pitch is higher, but the noise levels are pretty much the same.

    I was expecting very high noise levels, but it wasnt any different to my Rocky, so if anyone is concerned about buying an Iberital because of its noise levels, well, they should be just as concerned with a Rancilio Rocky.



  24. #24
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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    Gday tV8,

    Yep, you could be right there... It might be a case of the Iberital/Lux type of grinders just have the noise in an audio spectrum that is more annoying to the human ear... and probably for cats too ;D, I remember when I had the Lux and started it off both cats would head for the hills, neither of them worry about the Rocky though 8-)

    Mal.

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky


    I had a laugh!

    Yes, I didnt have a sound meter to measure the db levels, although its true that the Iberitals pitch is higher than the Rockys.

    I wonder whether a doser would help to muffle the sound, i.e. most people may be comparing a doser Rocky with a doserless Challenge.

    Looking at the grind quality on the Iberital, it did not seem to have any clumping issues, and I would have been 100% happy with the result, coming from a Rocky owner. ;)

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    Re: Iberital Challenge Vs Rancilio Rocky

    I find them both loud too. Personally I like the Ibertal because it is cheap($340) and the stepless adjustments are great. I really do not like stepped grinders because I always need the inbetween step. It might just be subconcious, but that counts. If I was going to splash out I would go for a Compak K3 touch. Its pricier($550) than the rocky, but you get what you pay for. I just dont think the Rocky is $110 better than the Ibertal.



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