End game grinder: EG-1, Kafatek MC4 or Flat Max? - Page 2

Recommendations for buyers and upgraders from the site's members.
sunnynights123 (original poster)

#11: Post by sunnynights123 (original poster) »

Haskens wrote:I have a Monolith Max from the 2020 run (still with the SSP LU burrs). It's a superb grinder, great for espresso but also does a really good pourover. I don't really have much by the way of complaint after almost two years of use (and I'm quite critical about my coffee kit, I had a couple big criticisms for my old Niche, and have a lot of criticisms for my DEPro).

This is super helpful. What was your experience from going from Niche to Max? also what were your criticisms for the DEPro? I am just about to order one! (I've seen and research lots online already!)

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#12: Post by N6GQ »

So I have played with a few of the grinders on your list.

I do almost exclusively lightly roasted east african beans, FWIW.

The first in the list was a Monolith Flat/SSP - its not on your list but I bring it into the loop for a reason. I used it for a few years, and loved it. Really loved it.

After that I got a Monolith MAX. Love that grinder too, but the Flat and Flat MAX are definitely different.

Once I had those two on the counter I got a Niche Zero, because everyone said they were the best thing since sliced bread and I wanted to try more darker roasts which is where the NZ is supposed to accel.

Well, after using the NZ it was clear it was not for me. The espresso was muddy, without clarity, without flavor, just overall bad compared to my two Monoliths. I tried to like it.

Then I sold my Flat/SSP because I didn't think I really needed two large flat titans sitting next to each other.

I would characterize the above as follows. The NZ is not for me - muddy, without clarity, and boring. Monolith Flat/SSP has significant clarity and great mouthfeel. The MAX has much more clarity than the Flat/SSP, with some loss of mouthfeel.

The differences between the NZ and the Monoliths was stark - I sold the NZ. I can't overstate that difference. I imagine part of it is the fact that the NZ is a conical and the two Monoliths are flat - and I wish I had an MC4 to compare against the NZ to see how much of it is conical vs flat and how much of it is burr alignment, burr geometry, etc.

Anyhow, all the above are my own thoughts and experiences, take them for what they're worth - zip.

Personally, I really enjoy the Monoliths and would highly recommend them. Denis is a great person and easy to work with, and is very approachable. I have not used an EG1 but imagine its a fine grinder. I might actually like to try an HG1 at some point in time as well.

Best of luck in your journey...
LMWDP #614

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#13: Post by Zaneemomo »

I have an EG-1 with both burr sets. My current preference is the ultra burrs for both pour over and espresso. However the core burrs also produce excellent tasting grounds. Roast my own, mostly Africans and Centrals, primarily city to city+.
I am very satisfied with both the grinder and with Weber's customer service.

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Team HB

#14: Post by luca » replying to Zaneemomo »

Could you please explain how the cups that the two burr sets produce differ.

According to Weber, the Core burrs are "perfect" for pour over, whilst the Ultra burrs are "ultimate" for pour over:

https://weberworkshops.com/collections/ ... /eg1-burrs

I didn't find that particularly informative.
LMWDP #034 | 2011: Q Grader Exam, Brewer's Cup #3, Australian Cup Tasting #1


#15: Post by Quester »

I've owned all three. Two of those grinders can be configured with various burrs. For the EG-1 there are three that Weber offers--DB1 Core, DB2 Ultra, DB3 Base. For the MAX, there are four burrs offered by KafaTek--SLM, SMD, SSW, and a new course burr. To say nothing of the SSP burrs it initially used.

So this question is a lot about burrs. But with any grinder of this quality, it's more about beans and skill.

Finally, I can tell you the MC4-Duo is well suited to a wide range of beans. In my experience, it's a mistake to over-associate it with medium or darker beans.

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#16: Post by Zaneemomo »

The ultra burrs coffees taste slightly cleaner, flavors a little better defined, but also a slight loss of body. The pour overs are outstanding, some of the best I've ever had. For espresso, it's still a work in progress. At first I couldn't pull a decent shot at all. They were fast, spritzy, and channeling a lot. I reduced the espresso machine's pump pressure, and kept grinding finer, now I'm at the point where the shots are consistently good. But the shots are definitely not as full bodied as with the core burrs.

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Team HB

#17: Post by luca »

Thanks for the update, Eric.

FWIW, people who are commenting on the Max, could you please specify which burrs it has. I'd argue the burrs are probably far more important than the actual grinder, and experience with the old SSP LU probably isn't very informative to the new kafatek manufactured burrs.
LMWDP #034 | 2011: Q Grader Exam, Brewer's Cup #3, Australian Cup Tasting #1


#18: Post by Haskens »

The niche was a solid espresso grinder, but as someone else mentioned here it did tend to have muddy flavours, particularly for pourovers - I found the pourovers from the niche terrible. What struck me about the max initially was how much wider the drinkable shot range was - i.e. when dialing In a bean, even when the shot ran super fast or slow for my initial grind, the coffee it produced was not only drinkable but also still very tasty. Other than that the clarity, or separation of flavours from the max is on a different level.

As for the DEPro, my main issues are around build quality and materials, and business practices. Build quality is pretty poor for the price that you pay - my previous machine was an Italian E61, and even being mass manufactured, the stainless steel body and materials all felt a lot more premium and better put together. Whereas on the decent the mirror lip edge is jagged and noticeable, the drip tray cover and the drip tray are often wonky (decent justifies it by saying these are ceramic parts and one should expect variations), to the point where the covers don't line up and ther s nothing I can do to make the front of my machine look like it's straight. The legs are often bent - mine are but I didn't want to pay for shipping a new set. A lot of fuss is made about customer service being great from decent, but in my experience with them it seems people confuse accessibility with great customer service. I have other hobbies where I have to deal with niche companies for expensive tools and so I'm familiar with what actual great customer service is. And my issue with their business practices is how they rely on unpaid customers to build and maintain their software and the regular updates, do not compensate them, and if this is brought up, they create crowdfunding pages ("buy so and so a coffee for all the work they do!"). Also, because most of the issues with the machines are hidden behind closed forums (the diaspora, and the decent forum) it gave me the impression that the machines had fewer issues than they do. I could go on and on, but I'll leave it at the fact that my interactions with the company hqve left a poor taste in my mouth.


#19: Post by tompoland »

Full respect for your opinion regarding the Decent. Fortunately my experience has been the polar opposite. Quality components, on point customer service. Super reliable machine. But two people can have different experiences and form different opinions so all good there.

I dont understand "hidden behind closed doors" though. There are massive threads on all major coffee forums. 2,786 posts on the Decent on the Australian CS forum and we'll over 1,000 posts on this most esteemed forum. Maybe I'm missing something?
Some people drink coffee to wake up, I wake up to drink coffee.