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Upgrade from my Porlex?
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FoundlingOfDollar
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Jun 2013
Posts: 8
Location: Edwardsville, IL
Expertise: I live coffee

Posted Sat Dec 28, 2013, 1:17pm
Subject: Upgrade from my Porlex?
 

Hi all,

I've been using a Porlex hand grinder for the last year and a half to grind my espresso.  I'm about to upgrade my machine and I wonder should I upgrade my grinder as well?  Speed and effort is not an issue, I only make a few shots a day and cranking the grinder hasn't gotten old or tiring.  What I am wondering is would there be an uptick in quality from moving to an electric espresso grinder?  Is there an electric grinder under $500 that will drastically improve the quality of the shot, or is the effort and time the only strike against the Porlex?

Thanks,

Jordan
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moosepucky
Senior Member
moosepucky
Joined: 6 Jun 2009
Posts: 147
Location: USA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Pasquini Livia 90 auto
Grinder: Super Jolly - Forte BG -...
Vac Pot: Cona - Santos
Drip: Bodum - Chemex - Hario -...
Roaster: Hottop KN-8828-B
Posted Sat Dec 28, 2013, 8:01pm
Subject: Re: Upgrade from my Porlex?
 

You would need to spend a fair amount to get an electric grinder that will perform as well as your Porlex.

$500 will get you into a Baratza Vario which is a decent home espresso grinder (get the ceramic burr model).

$500 is not enough to get you into a commercial level espresso grinder.

If the time and effort is not an issue, I would suggest that you use your Porlex a little longer and save up enough for a nice commercial espresso grinder like a Super Jolly or one of the bigger Mazzer machines (if you have the room for one)
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TheSunInsideYou
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TheSunInsideYou
Joined: 16 Feb 2012
Posts: 206
Location: NJ and NYC
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Breville BES900XL
Grinder: Laranzato HC-600, OE LIDO,...
Vac Pot: Yama 3
Drip: Hario V60, Chemex
Posted Sat Dec 28, 2013, 8:17pm
Subject: Re: Upgrade from my Porlex?
 

moosepucky Said:

$500 is not enough to get you into a commercial level espresso grinder.

Posted December 28, 2013 link

That's not true. You can easily find a SJ in reasonable condition for 500 or less. The SJ would be a great choice.

If space is an issue, the Vario is an awesome option, but the Preciso would still be an improvement.

Honestly, if you don't mind hand grinding, I would go for the OE Pharos. You'd see a great improvement in your shots.

-Dave-
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FoundlingOfDollar
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Joined: 25 Jun 2013
Posts: 8
Location: Edwardsville, IL
Expertise: I live coffee

Posted Sun Dec 29, 2013, 7:51pm
Subject: Re: Upgrade from my Porlex?
 

Thanks, I'll stick to my Porlex for a while longer.  Does the OE really produce a more consistent grind?  It looks like it might remove some of the lateral movement in the burrs that I'm sure the slight wiggle in the shaft of the Porlex causes.  Right now I am using a very heavily modified EC-155, hoping to go up to an Isomac Venus soon.  Since I don't grind that many shots quality improvement would be the only reason for me to change grinders.
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boar_d_laze
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Joined: 21 Nov 2006
Posts: 731
Location: Monrovia, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Cimbali M21 DT/1 Junior...
Grinder: Ceado E92; "Bunnzilla"
Vac Pot: Royal Coffee Maker
Drip: Chemex + Kone; Espro Press
Roaster: USRC Sample Roaster
Posted Sun Dec 29, 2013, 10:06pm
Subject: Re: Upgrade from my Porlex?
 

It's great that you guys like your Porlexes, but let's not get crazy.  

The Porlex ceramic burrs stay sharp for a long time, and do a good job for their size; but size matters when it comes to burrs and the Porlex burrs are small.  Also, their mounting isn't particularly solid.      

The Preciso is a better espresso grinder than the Porlex, and a great deal more convenient.

The Vario is a much better espresso grinder than the Preciso.  It's not perfect, but it is, without a doubt, the best motor driven grinder under $500.

The Pharos is a much, much better espresso grinder than the Vario.  And while it really does produce a "more consistent grind," it does a lot of other important things much better than the Porlex as well.   Like all hand grinders, it's a slow PITA, but the construction quality is excellent; and the grind quality is "Titan" class in every way.  Good, big burrs in a rock solid mount, you see.  

The least expensive motor driven grinders which grind as well as the Pharos -- Quamar T48, and Fiorenzato Doge Conico -- cost close to $900.

BDL
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Burner0000
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Joined: 28 Jul 2011
Posts: 1,011
Location: Cambridge, Ontario Canada
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia, VFA Expres...
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Roaster: Behmor 1600 / Sonofresco
Posted Mon Dec 30, 2013, 7:18am
Subject: Re: Upgrade from my Porlex?
 

Both the Vario and the Preciso are great espresso grinders but with a 500 budget go big and get a Mazzer Superjolly used or new Macap M4 stepless.  The Baratza's have a ton of settings but a stepless is infinite. If your about to drop a lot of money on a new espresso machine then why not get a "final upgrade" grinder?
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zammie
Senior Member
zammie
Joined: 13 Nov 2013
Posts: 6
Location: Kuala Lumpur, MY
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Caravel
Grinder: Porlex Mini
Drip: custom pour over, Viet drip
Posted Tue Jan 7, 2014, 12:45am
Subject: Re: Upgrade from my Porlex?
 

TheSunInsideYou Said:

Honestly, if you don't mind hand grinding, I would go for the OE Pharos. You'd see a great improvement in your shots.

-Dave-

Posted December 28, 2013 link

+1 Since you don't mind hand grinding, the Pharos is the best performance/cost option IMHO. Big burr performance and no motors to worry about.

Since you only drink espresso (for now) the Pharos is ideal (stepless adjustment) and you can keep your Porlex for travel or drip in future.
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brianl
Senior Member


Joined: 1 Dec 2012
Posts: 409
Location: Chicago IL
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic (w/PID)
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Drip: chemex
Posted Tue Jan 7, 2014, 8:10am
Subject: Re: Upgrade from my Porlex?
 

Yeah, saying the porlex in even the same sentence as the Vario or Pharos should be a crime. ha

I would upgrade immediately. Since you like hand grinders the obvious choice is the pharos!
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