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Baratza Vario owners... how are things?

Postby itch808 on Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:38 pm

So the Baratza Vario has been out now for a couple months now, how are owners liking it so far? Any new reliability issues? Does anyone have buyer's remorse and wish they had opted for something else?
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Postby weiv on Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:49 pm

I love it.
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Postby nixter on Mon Sep 21, 2009 6:21 pm

Awesomeness incarnate.

On the way home from buying the Vario I had a minor panic attack wondering if I'd needlessly spent 5+ bills on a new grinder when I had a perfectly functioning NS Grinta at home. Turned out to be the best money spent on the this stupid hobby so far. All the stuff you hear about it are true. Small footprint, high quality grinds, low retention, quiet (I think Jon disagrees with quiet though). The timer is great too.
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Postby gj91 on Mon Sep 21, 2009 9:42 pm

Thanks for helping me blow $500 bucks too. I am going to buy one this week. I got a mazzer mini and not happy with it. If I would have noticed the price of the Vario I would have gone with it instead. Should have done more research. Trying to avoid the temptation of a Robur or K30.
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Postby nixter on Mon Sep 21, 2009 10:15 pm

I too was all set to go the used large mazzer route. I'm glad I didn't as those things are designed for commercial environments and that's way overkill for my needs as well as probably bit of hassle if you're making a couple shots a day.
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Postby espressme on Mon Sep 21, 2009 11:35 pm

Hi Gang,
I own a Mazzer and a Faema MPN. The Vario is my daily user. I could even use it for the charity gigs i do.
The big boys are very good but the Vario and my Cremina are a great pair. I got mine from Orphan Espresso.
-Richard
richard penney LMWDP #090,
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Postby dialydose on Tue Sep 22, 2009 11:14 am

gj91 wrote:Thanks for helping me blow $500 bucks too. I am going to buy one this week. I got a mazzer mini and not happy with it. If I would have noticed the price of the Vario I would have gone with it instead. Should have done more research. Trying to avoid the temptation of a Robur or K30.


I think he is referring to Canadian. US is only $429, and there are (or at least were) deals out there to get it under $400. Theft at that price!

With respect to my Vario, I could not be happier. Mine came perfectly calibrated from the factory (range for espresso to press pot) so I didn't have to adjust anything. I think as the burrs have seasoned a little it has helped. I now have mine set up for timed grinds for both my wife and I. She prefers slightly less coffee (about 1.5-2 grams less). The third setting is for my press pot grind. Timer is awesome. I also love that I can tweak the time/grind on the fly. Essentially as I need to grinder finer for aging beans I can bump up the time by a few tenths of a second or so to get the same weight.

Long story short, the more you use this grinder, the more you will love it. I keep the M4 at the office and use the Vario at home for all methods.
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Postby Couloirman on Tue Sep 22, 2009 1:01 pm

any complaints about it not being stepless? has anyone not been able to properly dial in the grind for a lever machine because the difference between grind settings is too large?
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Postby itch808 on Tue Sep 22, 2009 4:31 pm

It's GREAT to hear such happy owners! One thing bothering me is I hear such great words and opinions but I haven't seen the grinds it produces. And since trying a shot directly made from it isn't feasible I looked up some reviews and found this one:

http://theotherblackstuff.ie/machines/r ... o-grinder/

From the looks of his pictures the espresso and french press grind are both disappointing! The huge clumps and static are more blows to the Vario. Is this guy's unit a lemon or are his results somewhat typical. If I go with a Vario should I expect a lot of dust in my french press grind. I haven't read anything that mentioned large flat burrs are incapable of producing a coarse grind w/o fines.

The odd thing is that in Orphan Espresso's google video of the Vario, the outputted grounds look so fluffy and static free. Is there this much variance in the Vario (lol!)????
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Postby dialydose on Tue Sep 22, 2009 6:13 pm

itch -

A couple things. One, his review was from March. Could have had a preproduction model, but certainly was before the upgrades. Could certainly alter his opinion. He clearly did not calibrate his. Also, consider the source and methods used before drawing any conclusions.
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