I recommend it as a starter roaster, and it may be the only one you will ever need.
Positive Product Points
Price, fast roast time, easy to see beans, simple operation. Easy to clean.
Negative Product Points
Small roasting chamber. Too much plastic
I decided to start with the Fresh Roast after months of indecision, and reports of quality control problems on the Heathware Precision. It didn‘t hurt that Russ, at Coffeebeancorral.com was offering the Fresh Roast starter kit (which included 6 pounds of beans) for the low price of $75 with a 30 day refund period if you sent the roaster back because you didn‘t like it. I figured what have I got to lose? Russ sent it out the same day I ordered it and it was here in three days. Operation of the machine has been pretty darn good so far. It roasts very quickly, less that six minutes total per batch even if you like a dark roast. At 2.5 oz per batch, It is possible to roast almost half a pound in less than 20 minutes ( which I would like to point out, equals the output of the very expensive Alpenrost in the same amount of time).I have had no problems so far in back to back roasting of three batches at a time. One caveat, because of the speed of the roast, first and second crack are almost on top of each other so watching the beans carefully during the roast is a must. It may take a few batches to get it right for your set up/tastes since any current flutuation, extension cord etc, will be magnified in the Fresh Roast. Chaff collection is excellent and the collector is easy to clean, as is the rest of the machine. I did notice that the dial seems to be a little off on my machine. It clearly starts the cooling cycle before the dial is actually advanced to the cool cycle and this led to an under roast with one batch that I was experimenting with. If you need to add extra time to a roast I recommend putting the dial way back into the roast cycle and then manually advancing it to cool when the beans look right. My other criticism is too much plastic and kind of a loose fitting assembly.