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  1. #11
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    Really helpful conversation going. I know you guys are right about getting set up with multiple grinders. If I do end up getting a Gaggia Baby and find myself annoyed switching back and forth, I may get a dedicated Preciso for it.

    A feature that drew me to the Vario-w is the memory settings for grind amount. I feel like that would really be handy at the farmers market while making pour overs. No guessing or taking the time to weigh, just press the button and back to work while it grinds. I would even consider getting two Vario-ws if I find it seems overused for that feature. Anybody know if the Vario really puts out a consistent amount when programmed? Would you value that feature too?

  2. #12
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    The Vario W is weight based and should be spot on (within .1~ gram) every time. Mine is the original timed grinding Vario, which is fairly consistent, but certainly not on par with a weight based system. Good thing with weight grinding is you'll get the same amount every grind cycle regardless of changes in grind setting, which isn't the case with timed grinding.

  3. #13
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    The best deal I've found for the Vario-w is on Amazon right now. An individual seller has one for $412 with shipping, new in the box, won it at a raffle. Not gonna get better than that, right? Even if I waited for one to come up refurbished on the baratza website, it'd still be like $450.

    **A new concern I just dug up is that at Seattle Coffee Gear they claim the grind isn't course enough for a french press. Anybody hear that? Experience that?
    Last edited by Redswing; 04-03-2014 at 10:44 PM.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redswing View Post
    The best deal I've found for the Vario-w is on Amazon right now. An individual seller has one for $412 with shipping, new in the box, won it at a raffle. Not gonna get better than that, right? Even if I waited for one to come up refurbished on the baratza website, it'd still be like $450.

    **A new concern I just dug up is that at Seattle Coffee Gear they claim the grind isn't course enough for a french press. Anybody hear that? Experience that?
    You can still grind for coarse, but the Vario burr set is meant for espresso, same reason why "espresso" only grinders aren't good for coarse either, even though you can grind for that. Baratza sells a different steel burr set that's meant for coarse and gives it top notch grind quality, you'd have to create the franken-Bunnzilla or something like the EK costing thousands to get anything better then a Vario with steel burrs. But you lose espresso grinding with the steel set.

  5. #15
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    I don't know what planet some of these people are from, but I've had NO problem getting fantastic coarse range grinding from my Vario. To each his own I guess, but in a real world setting I doubt you would see MUCH difference in those two burr sets in the cup. I'd be more concerned with a good drip unit, choice of filter, water quality... things that will actually make a difference. The 1% nerds that frequent CoffeeGeek, Home-Barista, etc. that are consumed by water temperature to .1/degree, ground coffee that is within .1/gram tolerance might "believe" those burr sets are night/day, but doubtfully so all things considered.

    FWIW I sure as hell wouldn't trust the opinion(s) of the Seattle Coffee Gear nerds. They only seem to know what they read and hear from others.

    *Keep in mind you can calibrate the Vario to maximize potential at opposite ends of the spectrum if needed.

  6. #16
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    check out the video review on seattle coffee gear at this link, right at about minute 3:50. Baratza Forte AP All Purpose Grinder - Ceramic Burrs | Seattle Coffee Gear

    they have the Baratza Forte with steel vs ceramic burrs in a grind comparison test. The steel burrs definately ground a lot more coursely, though i suppose you could adjust the ceramic to some thing similar if that's what you wanted?

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redswing View Post
    check out the video review on seattle coffee gear at this link, right at about minute 3:50. Baratza Forte AP All Purpose Grinder - Ceramic Burrs | Seattle Coffee Gear

    they have the Baratza Forte with steel vs ceramic burrs in a grind comparison test. The steel burrs definately ground a lot more coursely, though i suppose you could adjust the ceramic to some thing similar if that's what you wanted?
    Yes you can calibrate in either direction, but based on my use there is no need. For press I'm nowhere near the coarsest setting. Likewise, for espresso range I'm nowhere near the finest setting either.

    No offense to your post, but I personally will never bother to watch anything the chicks at SCG have to post. They're about as useful in the coffee industry as one leg in an ass kicking contest.

    I would like to have a Forte grinder, but the Vario is so good as is and of course much cheaper I just can't justify it.

  8. #18
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    shadow...hilarious, i laughed out loud. i'm green enough where i wouldn't have picked that out, but i can see it now that you say it. i just haven't found a site with as large of a pool of product videos. any suggestions?

    the part of the video i am referring to is straight forward, imho. grind samples set right next to each other, the particle size on the coursest setting is clearly different from ceramic to metal. though maybe they are unitentionally misleading due to their one legged attempt at the ass kicking contest?

  9. #19
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    I can understand the grind difference between both burr types, but I don't buy for one minute that the steel burrs are a must to achieve very good coarse range grinding from the Vario, etc. They (and others) can point out the differences till they're blue in the face, but it doesn't make either any better in the cup. Coffee is like anything else, very subjective and open to debate. Like most things, there is no right or wrong, just what you (or customers) prefer.

    For quite some time I used a Nuova Simonelli Grinta grinder for decaf espresso on a commercial level. Sure wasn't meant for that application, but it's what I had and was determined to make it work. Was terribly slow, taking 18-20 seconds per 14 grams, had large steps between settings, had quite a bit of slop due to coarse burr carrier threads and had a terrible hopper/upper burr design that allowed beans to sit on the upper burr ledge and go stale. I made it stepless, tightened up the thread slop and created a funnel that fit in the hopper to allow single dose grinding with no retention/stale issues. Those efforts combined with fresh decaf coffee allowed me to churn out some killer shots that many customers disputed as being decaf because of the high quality. Point I'm trying to make is take what you have or can afford and simply make it work in your favor.

    SCG does have a ton of video content, but they have always seemed too biased on what they sell. WholeLatteLove is probably no better. I've seen some videos from Chris Coffee that were much more educational compared to the rookies in the industry.

  10. #20
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    I just bought the Vario-w, supposed to arrive in a few days. Pretty pumped, I can't wait to experience the difference between my department store grinder and this one.

    (there were two on amazon for around $400, one disappeared...anybody on here buy it?)

 

 
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