Weber EG-1 or Kafatek Flat MAX2 SLM?

Grinders are one of the keys to exceptional espresso. Discuss them here.
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#1: Post by TeslaBB »

I like light and medium-light roasts. Espresso and pour over. I have owned a slayer modded BDB for nearly 4 years. In that time, I have used the OE Pharos and Niche Zero. The Niche really struggles with light roast. I usually end up putting the Pharos in a leg lock and wearing gloves to turn some fine grind light roast espresso. I use a Commandante c40 strictly for pour over and does well for Tetsu Kasuya V60 recipes. I have realized the limitations of these grinders (for espresso especially) and I have narrowed my end game grinder to two choices:

EG-1: I'd opt for a second burr set for $150 more. It's available now.
core burrs- great espresso, not punishing, all-arounder, good pour over
ultra burrs- great pour over, but have to burr swap

Flat Max2 SLM burrs: Dec 2023 wait
SLM burrs- can really push light roast espresso, forgiving (for 98mm), good for pour over but favoring espresso?

Being that I drink all light roast and medium-light roast, I think the shuriken LM would be better for my espresso preferences. I would like to try 1:1 shots since I like syrupy concentrated shots. I don't think the core burrs can push light roasts to that extreme. On the other hand, I don't think the SLM will produce the quality of pour over like the ultra burrs. I like acidity, but sweetness equally. I am not chasing "battery acid" in the words of Brian Quan.

I have never tasted anything besides conicals. I think I will be amazed by either of these grinders. If you had the choice, which would you prefer and why? There are trade offs between both grinders. I would appreciate any first hand experiences with both grinders especially. Thank you.

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#2: Post by mborkow »

You should check out the Kafatek forum where these two grinders are often compared. For my money, Max2.


#3: Post by erik82 »

This is going to be pure personal preference. I prefer 80mm burrs as they're a bit more versatile and less finicky. And with the EG1 you can use CORE, SSP LU/HU and Ditting Lab Sweet burrs.

I use the EG-1 with SSP burrs for both espresso and pourover. With darker then medium roasts for espresso it does perform a bit less but still very good. For pourover the SSP burrs will blow your Commandante away and you'll start to love even more as it'll be so much more complex and clean.

In the end it's splitting hairs and it purely depends on YOUR preference. Both will do a superb job.


#4: Post by Quester »

I've had both.

My EG-1 was an early one. Although, I did try the newer CORE burrs (pin conversion) when they came out. One of the big advantages of the EG-1 is the ability to easily switch burrs and simply align by feel with your fingers. I also enjoyed being able to access and clean the grinder chamber easily. I found the replaceable wiper fins fiddly.

The MAX is simple and utilitarian. I think the SLM burrs are more forgiving than the SSP LU burrs it originally came with. My SLM burrs do produce a surprising amount of fines which takes a small toll on clarity and separation. Switching burrs is not complex, but it takes time, and you must be meticulous.

I have no experience with it, but have you also considered a Lagom P100?

TeslaBB (original poster)
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#5: Post by TeslaBB (original poster) »

I have considered the Lagom P100. I like that it is 98mm and available in May. I guess I would have a hard time choosing a single burr set. The shurikens are proprietary to kafatek and I was really interested in the SLM. I should also consider ease of use and consistency. The core burrs are supposed to be extremely forgiving as several people have described producing consistent shots they would rate 8 out of 10. After joining the kafatek forums and doing some lurking, it seems several members use an EG-1 and the ultra DB-2 burrs exclusively for pour over. SLM burrs apparantly are favorable for shorter turbo shots. SSW burrs are for longer shots with more body at the expense of less clarity. It seems Kafatek is designed for those who know exactly what they like in an espresso and it will do that very well, and it can produce good pour over.

If you wanted ultra high clarity for pour over and for espresso at the cost of difficulty dialing in:
98mm SSP high uniformity- espresso $2650
98mm Brew Burrs- Pour over $2650


All arounder:
core burrs- 8/10 espresso and pour over consistently
ultra burrs- incredible pour over
total price: $4100

Favor light roast espresso, most forgiving 98mm:
Kafatek Flat MAX2- was in stock yesterday for Dec 2023...not anymore.
SLM- turbo shots, 1:1, great espresso, good pour over


I am leaning towards EG-1. I would find it difficult to wait a year (or more) for a flat max2 with the current grinders I have. I also understand I do not have an extremely refined palate. I am not Brian Quan, James Hoffman, or Lance Hedrick. I would probably prefer something that would give me more clarity, but not so much to the point to where I waste a lot of good beans trying to dial in. Every now and then, I do get a great shot on a light roast with my OE or even rarer from the Niche. That's with: RDT, WDT, bottom paper filter, and porcupress. I think my OK grinders have taught me decent puck prep and dialing in techniques. I do find it interesting that I rarely see an EG-1 for sale. It seems to be that the EG-1 with ultra burrs are the king of pour over...even in Kafatek forums. If someone's palate changes and prefers more clarity for espresso, they still keep the EG-1 for pour over. I think I've just talked myself into the EG-1


#6: Post by Starspawn2318 »

Thats a pretty good breakdown.


#7: Post by erik82 »

Very nice breakdown. You can't go wrong with either and the Workflow of the EG-1 is also superb with the blind shaker.

I can tell you the EG-1 with SSP burrs performs really well for espresso with medium and light espresso roasts (I don't really use very light filter roasts for espresso). Much better then what I anticipated so you can use one burrset for everything. I did change back to the original burrs a couple of times and have my Commandante but I still prefer the SSP burrs for espresso. Only with those anaerobic processed beans that need a ridiculously fine grind I take out my Commandante as the SSP burrs can't do that (but I hate the taste of those things so no worries for me).


#8: Post by michael »

Slightly used Kafatek max grinders with SLM burrs come up for sale on the kafatek forum and on HB; although not the latest and greatest, you can make great 1:1 and other espresso with these burrs

Lurk around the two sites and see what you can find 8)

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#9: Post by Elliot »

I had a MAX SLM and currently have a Kafatek MC5. The MAX is clearly a top of the market grinder, no doubts.

I found it to be a little too unforgiving for someone who is not a perfectionist. I've actually been considering selling the MC5 and getting the Weber. Where I landed, and I could be off, is that I value the clarity of the flat burr but don't want the exacting nature of 98mm burrs. Sometimes "best" is really hard to categorize. I think smaller (still big by all measures) flat burrs may be the best option for me.

Now, to toss out something else... I know someone locally with the M4 and in very limited usage, it produces really good coffee and seems forgiving.


#10: Post by chris_n »

i use these grinders for espresso:

eg-1 w/ core, ultra, LS
nautilus w/ HU

none of these can do 1:1 light roast particularly well. I had heard that the max SLM was the way to go for this so that's what I went with! we'll see if the internet is right come september :)

i think for your use case, eg-1 with both burrsets will be absolutely perfect! down the line you'll still be able to get other burrsets (via ssp) to further extend the capabilities of the EG-1!