IN THE CUP review of Helor Flux (106) vs Orphan Espresso Pharos v1.1 (has aluminum bolt covers)
more depth with the Helor Flux (Mazzer 0186C 71mm conical burrs) vs. the OE Pharos v1.1 (68mm conical burrs ?Italmill brand?). I really can't tell as my palate and vocabulary are amateur-hour at best.
Globally overall: Siskel and Ebert Two Thumbs Up and enthusiastically for the Flux AND for the Pharos.
LONG VERBOSE REVIEW VERSION:
This is not blinded testing because the espresso machine used is Olympia Express Cremina and I hate drinking cold espresso. It takes time to make consecutive shots on the Cremina as there is no three-way relief valve like on E61 machine. Also I don't like espresso from E61 machine vs. Cremina (former less flavor separation and richness). And I have to cool grouphead after each shot pull from the OE Cremina to get same starting grouphead external temperature 170F.
All other variables same: same tamp pressure, same grinds feel-between-fingers, same initial grouphead start temperature (170F), same preinfusion time, same ramp up time to 3 bar THEN same peak pressure, same declining pressure profile and same brew ratio. I have Gabor's pressure piston rod kit for the Cremina and external grouphead thermometer installed suggested by "erics" post few years back. Around five minutes allowed between espressos to evaluate after taste and then palate cleansed with soft water. Detailed tasting notes taken for each (full amount) espresso consumed. So far I evaluate: acidity, overall taste, individual flavors detected, balance, body, and aftertaste.
Beans used [Chicago's Dark Matter "Get the F#$%& Out of Bed" (4 days post roast) and Dark Matter "Giant Steps" (11 days post roast)] are both new to me. I should have used well known to me Paradise Roasters "Classico" but ran out 3 weeks ago. I chose Dark Matter as in area of their Chicago Mothership cafe visiting friend two weeks ago and then parents in past week. And because I am getting bored of Classico which I have been drinking since 2009. I wasn't planning on getting a new grinder (Helor Flux/106) prior to two weeks ago. Former owner of Flux stated around 10kg used so should (?) be broken in. Pharos v1.1 I have owned since 2013 and have at least 40 pounds beans through it..
Flux preferred by a continent length (not just country mile). This was main reason I was looking for replacement to the Pharos v1.1.
Both have effectively zero retention with use of Ross Droplet Technique. BUT Pharos requires lots more work to get all grinds out (FIXED with Pharos V2.0 or full "voodoodaddy" mods).
Both with no visible clumping. However I Weiss Distribution Technique all grinds b.c. I enjoy making espresso and I make so few per day and b.c. it gets me more in touch with the coffee.
* Speed of grinding:
15.5 grams medium and dark roasted bean: Pharos smacks Flux (OE Pharos 10 seconds or 1.6 grams per second and Helor Flux 55 seconds or 0.3 grams per seconds). I am turning crank arm at speed that on the Pharos visually approximates "Prairiedawg" Kafetek Monolith Conical v1.0 (I have used past five consecutive Chicago-Milwaukee get togethers). I am not
turning the handle on the Flux at my usual as fast as possible. Hence 55 seconds required to fully grind 15.5 grams. This time in line with TomC (moderator) review of same grinder.