Grinder upgrade choice vetoed, seeking advice for runner up

Recommendations for buyers and upgraders from the site's members.
Thewolfiest
Posts: 35
Joined: 7 months ago

#1: Post by Thewolfiest »

I know that this type of post pops-up often so thank you ahead of time. I am hoping to upgrade my grinder from a Niche Zero. We are moving to our first home and I wanted to take this as an opportunity to make a large grinder upgrade. I have tried my hardest to do my research and make my own decision. I had settled on the Kafatek MC6. I gave my wife one full veto for aesthetics as this will be in the kitchen...and unfortunately she chose the MC6, citing it as looking like a microscope for a science experiment (which I mean is exactly what we're doing) but you know a veto is a veto. I have been researching and debating for a few months total now, but I am feeling super stuck and would love some advice.

I drink 1-3 shots a day, either straight espresso, long black, filter 2.0, etc. On the weekends usually some flat whites and cortados for the wife and myself. I mostly enjoy medium to dark roasts. I prefer the chocolate nutty profiles, ever seeking for that cup of cake or candy bar in a cup. However, I do enjoy experimenting with light roasts when I see something extra funky or beans are gifted to me. I don't really plan on doing pour over with this grinder but it is something I have thought would be fun to be able to experiment with. The grinder is/will be paired with a Flair 58 and a Micra.

I have found, as many tend to mention, that flavors the Niche produces can be quite muddled, however I quite enjoy the body. It is very hard to pick any distinct notes from my beans. I am getting nice balanced tasty shots but it all kind of eventually tastes similar (absolutely could be user issues, I won't claim to be an expert). My biggest desire with a new grinder is something in that doesn't sacrifice too much body but does let me begin to pull distinct flavor notes (increase in clarity).

My current runner ups are the P64, Key Mkii, and recently the Zerno

Key Pro:
-Aesthetics (wife agrees)
-I know I enjoy conicals
-seems easy to clean
-I kind of like the stepped grind adjustment
-RPM adjustment
-Magic/blind tumbler set-up

Key Con:
-May not do the best with light roasts?/have the clarity I seek
-lots of conflicting info about customer service
-paper clip wiper blade seems it could be annoying

P64 Pro:
-Swappable burrs at the popular 64mm
-grind direct into portafilter (could be a nice change)
-adjustable rpm
-Mizen burrs seems neat (ES+Omni)

P64 Con:
-Re-alignment post cleaning or swapping
-potential shimming
-personally am not in love with aesthetics (could not be an issue though)

Zerno Pro:
-Blind burr carrier
-64mm choices
-Pre-breaker
-Solid alignment post cleaning or swapping
-Vertical flat burrs (to my understanding this is a pro?)

Zerno Con:
-No adjustable rpm?
-Also not in love with the look/seems long
-seems to be still evolving quite a bit

That, so far, is what I have got. I would love any and all feedback, suggestions, user experiences/comparisons etc. I am hoping to look for some people in my area to maybe check them out in person but until then this seemed like a good step.

Thank you again!

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DanielCroft
Posts: 79
Joined: 11 years ago

#2: Post by DanielCroft »

I have a Key mk1 and I think the automatic WDT is great, yeah it's a paperclip type thing but it works really well. I have an EG-1 to compare it to and the key grind WDT-ness is clearly better coming from the key. The mk1 key can also have more or less fines depending on the grind speed in my experience. Not sure if the mk2 is the same but that affects your clarity as well.

On WW support, I think their support is great, their product development & marketing is the problem. They set expectations at a certain level that they don't (or can't?) meet.

WW stuff I currently own:
Key
EG-1 v1 (already sold actually)
Moonraker
Unifilter
Spring clean
Mirror

The problem with the approach WW takes with marketing is that there are objective metrics related to the products they make that a focus on form fails to impact or address.

#opinions

chipman
Posts: 1165
Joined: 16 years ago

#3: Post by chipman »

Your comment is almost exactly the same as my experience with Weber. i have both the EG1 (first generation) and an original Key. The seemingly (mickey mouse) paperclip has worked flawlessly for the 1.5 years i've had the Key. My few times dealing with customer service has also been good. i usually got a email the following day concerning my issue.

Capuchin Monk
Posts: 1192
Joined: 14 years ago

#4: Post by Capuchin Monk »

Thewolfiest wrote: My current runner ups are the P64, Key Mkii, and recently the Zerno

Key Pro:
-Aesthetics (wife agrees)
-I know I enjoy conicals
-seems easy to clean
-I kind of like the stepped grind adjustment
-RPM adjustment
-Magic/blind tumbler set-up
Zerno RPM is not adjustable, it's fixed at 900. :(

ShotClock
Supporter ♡
Posts: 411
Joined: 3 years ago

#5: Post by ShotClock »

I'd add the p100 and Versalab M4, and maybe EG-1 to your list. Never used either of them, but they seem to have a lot of fans. I'd also personally be wary of the key. Some seem happy, but it seems to be a bit of a lottery, at least with the first version. Not sure if the second version has been around long enough for a solid consensus to have formed yet, but something to be aware of.

Maybe you could get a shortlist together and show them to the boss? She might not think there's a huge amount in it, aesthetically speaking... Mine refers to the Monoliths as microscopes, but doesn't seem to bother too much. Other than that, you seem like an ideal candidate for a monolith flat or flat max, with SLM burrs. Medium roasts are quite excellent, even Italian coffees like Saka work superbly with these burrs. I think that most of the body is in the coffee and roast rather than the burrs. I have also found that it is vastly superior to the conical for brewed coffee.

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CarefreeBuzzBuzz
Posts: 3837
Joined: 7 years ago

#6: Post by CarefreeBuzzBuzz »

The Diamond Grinder - a full carrat - comes with a veto override purge chute. Just remove the veto override and hand it to your wife,reinstall the purge chute, the and then order the M6.

Have you shown her the Etsy add ons such as leather top plates and wooden funnels made by @Cannonfodder here, and told her she can pick the colors?
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pizzaman383
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Joined: 13 years ago

#7: Post by pizzaman383 »

If looks are important you might want to consider Titus Grinding
https://www.facebook.com/titusgrinding/
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“Taste every shot before adding milk!”

Primacog
Posts: 821
Joined: 2 years ago

#8: Post by Primacog »

Sounds like you want a conical grinder with more flavor separation than the zero. Gave you considered the femobook? The reviews by lance hedrick and the coffeechronicler seem good and it looks good to me and yet Costs quite reasonable. It spins at almost the rate hand grinders spin at which is said to be good for conicals..
LMWDP #729

erik82
Posts: 2105
Joined: 12 years ago

#9: Post by erik82 »

Thewolfiest wrote: P64 Pro:
-Swappable burrs at the popular 64mm
-grind direct into portafilter (could be a nice change)
-adjustable rpm
-Mizen burrs seems neat (ES+Omni)

P64 Con:
-Re-alignment post cleaning or swapping
-potential shimming
-personally am not in love with aesthetics (could not be an issue though)
The P64 shouldn't need shimming or alignment after cleaning or a burr swab. That's the whole point of this grinder in contrary to most other grinders.

Thewolfiest (original poster)
Posts: 35
Joined: 7 months ago

#10: Post by Thewolfiest (original poster) »

erik82 wrote:The P64 shouldn't need shimming or alignment after cleaning or a burr swab. That's the whole point of this grinder in contrary to most other grinders.
Upon review I don't think alignment was the correct term. i was more so referring the constant commentary I see on the zero/chirp point moving.
pizzaman383 wrote:If looks are important you might want to consider Titus Grinding
https://www.facebook.com/titusgrinding/
I have seen titus in my interent travels. I have also heard they are quite the pretty penny would be an amazing choice but it may be just outside of my price. Quite similar to the veraslab no?
CarefreeBuzzBuzz wrote:The Diamond Grinder - a full carrat - comes with a veto override purge chute. Just remove the veto override and hand it to your wife,reinstall the purge chute, the and then order the M6.

Have you shown her the Etsy add ons such as leather top plates and wooden funnels made by @Cannonfodder here, and told her she can pick the colors?
Love this, at that point might as well just shell out for a Titus, not tell her, and beg forgiveness upon arrival. However I did actually convince her to take another look with the all black, wood accents etc. Carefree, do you have any experience with the Max vs. Mc5/6?
ShotClock wrote:I'd add the p100 and Versalab M4, and maybe EG-1 to your list. Never used either of them, but they seem to have a lot of fans. I'd also personally be wary of the key. Some seem happy, but it seems to be a bit of a lottery, at least with the first version. Not sure if the second version has been around long enough for a solid consensus to have formed yet, but something to be aware of.

Maybe you could get a shortlist together and show them to the boss? She might not think there's a huge amount in it, aesthetically speaking... Mine refers to the Monoliths as microscopes, but doesn't seem to bother too much. Other than that, you seem like an ideal candidate for a monolith flat or flat max, with SLM burrs. Medium roasts are quite excellent, even Italian coffees like Saka work superbly with these burrs. I think that most of the body is in the coffee and roast rather than the burrs. I have also found that it is vastly superior to the conical for brewed coffee.
Was considering the Veraslab and the flat max. They both are little outside how much I was hoping to pay. The flat max would most likely end up pretty strictly espresso. However I am curious how the experience switching between brew methods is?