The Unsung Eureka Atom Pro for Brew

Grinders are one of the keys to exceptional espresso. Discuss them here.
LewBK

#1: Post by LewBK »

Since I've been using this grinder for over a year now and rarely see any posts about it or reviews of it, I feel comfortable discussing it. I think it is an excellent brew grinder with very uniform grounds and a unique unimodal style 75mm burr set Eureka calls its "long-cut" burrs that resemble the EK43 burrs in their geometry. However, the Atom Pro was marketed originally as an all-purpose grinder. It can do espresso and I just had an excellent shot from it today, but I don't think ultimately it's right for espresso. The grinds are too unimodal so it is difficult to achieve adequate pressure except at the finest settings. You can produce excellent shots with it--some of the best I've ever had--or disastrous ones with zero pressure. So, it lacks consistency, especially since once you go truly fine enough to get pressure the range of adjustment is too limited.

But on the brew side for pourover the Atom Pro is consistently excellent, as good in my opinion as the Commandante hand grinder, as I've used that for brew as well. I also know, having swapped out a stock set of Eureka Atom burrs in place of the Atom Pro burrs for a few months, it is much better for brew than the standard 75mm Atom burrs. The gain I got in grind range control for espresso with the stock Atom burrs was not enough in my opinion, and I wound up putting the unimodal Atom Pro burrs back in the grinder. I am happy with it as a brew grinder. Retention with the blow-up hopper for brew is minimal. The motor is a powerful 900 watts, and this thing is built in the old style like a tank, but has a relatively modest footprint. It has virtually no electronics, which is a downside if you want to time doses instead of weighing single doses. It is an upside if you worry about things breaking, electronics being a common and expensive to replace weakspot. The blow-up hopper holds 300 grams of coffee. Overall, I think it is an excellent option that is rarely discussed. If anyone wants to add their experiences with it or has questions, please feel free to chime in. I am not really up to posting photos right now, though.

buckersss
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#2: Post by buckersss »

I also have had this grinder for about a year. Happy to see another thread on it.

I took the little governor screw off on the side of the dial - it's removable by a very tiny Allen wrench. Be careful not to lose it whilst removing it if you do this. It can absolutely grind fine enough for espresso. I have choked my 9bar machine plenty of times. I don't believe there is any merit to the notion that this machine can't grind fine enough.

I have had some very tasty shots from this. Lately though not so much. However that may be because I've either used acidic coffee or bad coffee. I'm only making espresso btw.

I don't use the blow up hopper. It creates a mess inside the hull. I tap on the top of the neck to get the grinds out. Normally within 0.5. Sometimes over, as grinds get stuck. That said I've opened it up 4 or 5 times and there is very little inside. I lined the chute with parchment paper on the top to help the grinds slide out more easily. I also took out all clump crushers. Grinds are maddeningly fluffy, no competition compared to my Ceado. Adjustment knob is not my favourite, but you know what your getting with eureka.

I too bought the regular atom burrs. Arriving shortly, i haven't swapped them yet. I have toyed with selling lately. Buying the regular atom burrs was somewhat of a hedge. While I have not used the traditional atom burrs yet, at this point if I sold, I think I'd buy a Lucca 75, a mythos, or an MDJ (but that's god ugly). Im at a bit of a cross roads with this. I'm not sure how much I'd get if I'd sell, so maybe not worth it. However, I have a lever on the way, and this would be nice to experiment with. In general i like having the option to throw in the unimodal burrs from time to time. They are 40% bigger than 64mm unimodals/MPs. That said it feels like a waste to keep it if I'm not using the unimodals, and I may as well give it a nice home.

I'm perplexed as to the motor, I have the 120v NA version. It has 8amp draw on the bottom sticker. Inside the grinder I see a sticker on the motor that indicates 8amp draw. It spins without beans at around 6.5 amps or 750-800watts. With beans it jumps to almost 1000w. So 8amp draw seems fair. This figure is also what I have seen advertised about the motors for the mythos.


Edited below:
Interestingly enough the atom 75 lists a 10amp draw on the bottom of the grinder for the 120v version. I was told the atom 75 spins up without beans at 7amps, 840watts. So a higher draw than the atom pro without beans. This doesn't for sure mean the atom pros motor isnt better though. Eureka "assured" me the motor on the atom pro is in fact better, but stopped short of explaining the discrepancy. I'm still skeptical. That said I'm sure it's fine to use with the traditional atom burrs, given that it looks like what's in the mythos non-low rpm variants.

My taste buds are certainly not to be taken to the bank, but I find this grinder has a high amount of clarity. While lately I have gotten shots with poor body out of it, I have in the past succeeded to get shots with nice texture from it - even though I know the burrs aren't designed for that. It's been hard to recreate my successes with it, I will say that. Those successes have been very memorable though.

LewBK (original poster)

#3: Post by LewBK (original poster) »

Good to see another Atom Pro user here. I have removed the governor screw as well, but still find it harder to dial in for espresso than brew like pour-over. Have you tried it for brew? I think it really excels in that department.

buckersss
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#4: Post by buckersss replying to LewBK »

I don't have any drip equipment other than French press. And I've only done that a few times, but I think I ground too fine.

I got this off of the kaffee-nitz forum I think. The dial is not accurate for espresso. I think I used around 12 or 13 for french press. The burrs on mine chirp close to around 20 when I make it all the way around if I recall correctly.




What dial numbers do you normally use for brew methods other than espresso?

LewBK (original poster)

#5: Post by LewBK (original poster) »

I'm usually using between 9 and 12 for drip/pourover, depending on the coffee. 10 or 11 is often good.

Acavia

#6: Post by Acavia »

This seems to be a good grinder for both, but why is the motor so powerful? My Ditting 804 with bigger burrs and more capacity has a 500 watt motor.

LewBK (original poster)

#7: Post by LewBK (original poster) »

Regarding the motor power, my impression is it is that powerful for a commercial setting. It chews through beans of any roast quickly. Yet the grinder is also designed for single dosing. It is sort of a strange hybrid platypus of a grinder that works-for brew. But I would say it is surprising to hear the motor is more powerful than a Ditting. Perhaps bukersss is right, and Eureka is overstating its power.

buckersss
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#8: Post by buckersss replying to LewBK »

I have a Ceado that is almost double the weight of the Eureka. It only draws about 5 amps / 600amps. When I turn the motor off the burrs keep spinning for almost a whole minute. Watts isn't the whole story. I think it helps to keep weight in mind as well.

jlw

#9: Post by jlw »

Interesting. I had not looked at this as I always assumed it was designed for espresso! I usually have 3 or 4 different beans at one time I am using for pour-over and am presently using a Forte BG and single dosing, but am interested in larger burrs and easier adjustment.

LewBK (original poster)

#10: Post by LewBK (original poster) »

The adjustment range for brew and pour over is wide and easily repeatable on the Atom Pro. That is not the case unfortunately for espresso in my experience as the adjustment range is too narrow and much harder to dial in consistently.