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Sage Smart Grinder Pro / BCG820

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I've seen a few threads on the Smart Grinder which sounds like it had its problems (burrs need shimming and so on) but very little on the newer version. My wife bought me one for Christmas and it'd be interesting to see the experience of other owners. It's probably a bit low-userbase for mods and so on, but I'll mention what I know:

 

It's very similar to the Smart Grinder (BCG800). The main differences are much more fine-control over the grind (60 settings vs 25), the ability to manually adjust burr distance with a screw, 0.2s increments for dosing and the ability to program dosing times, and the ability to pause a grind in process.

 

It is available at John Lewis and Lakeland for £200. I think my wife picked it up for closer to £160 after various voucher offers and so on.

 

There are other little neat features like the ability to start the grind by "nudging" a button putting the portafilter into the holder.

 

I don't have any points of comparison in terms of performance, but I'd be happy to post some photos of grind consistency at different settings if anybody is interested? Can anybody shed some technical light or comparison against other similarly priced grinders.

 

The following tech specs from Sage's website:

 

 

  • Grinding Mechanism
     
     
    Stainless steel conical burr grinder
  • Adjustable Grind Size
     
    60 grind settings
  • DosingIQ
     
    Dose automatically adjusts as you tweak your grind size
  • Hands Free Operation
     
    Hands free dosing directly to your chosen filter and handle
  • Automatic Dosing
     
    Dose adjusts for number of shots or cups selected
  • Hopper Capacity
     
    450 gram
  • Removable Storage Hopper
     
    Included
  • Additional Features
     
    Air tight hopper, large LCD screen, grinds up to 12 cups
  • Included Accessories
     
    2 Porta-filter cradles suitable for 50-54mm filters and 58mm commercial filters, air tight grinds container, cleaning brush
  • Construction
     
    Stainless steel with plastic hopper
  • Voltage
     
    220 - 240 Volts
  • Wattage
     
    165 Watts
  • Warranty
     
    2 Year Repair or Replacement

 

 

 

There is also a (generally positive) thread on Coffee Snobs Australia forum that I found which provides some more detail.

Edited by qpop

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There is also a (generally positive) thread on Coffee Snobs Australia forum that I found which provides some more detail. Unsure if posting the link would be against the rules so I won't

 

We're a liberal bunch here , go for it.

 

How are you finding it?

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Well my only point of comparison is pre-ground and a Hario Mini hand grinder.

 

I'd say it works well. Minimal mess thanks to dosing, has a portafilter holder and also a sensible jar thing for dosing for aeropress etc.

 

The grind seems consistent, both coarse and smooth, but as I said I have no comparison point in the £200ish arena. It certainly looks nicer on the side than the cheaper Baratzas, in my opinion.

 

I've updated the original post with links to the thread.

 

I'm not sure what a reasonable test to put grinder through its paces but I guess a demonstration of finest, coarsest, and somewhere in the middle?

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Looks a hell of a lot better than the previous edition, wish they'd state the dimensions on the Sage site and (conical) burr size though.


Beans, beans the musical fruit, the more you drink, the more you... *tremors uncontrollably* 😬 

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If you like I can measure my grinder when I get home. I've not investigated the burrs yet so I'll take some pictures too if I can get them out.

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If you like I can measure my grinder when I get home. I've not investigated the burrs yet so I'll take some pictures too if I can get them out.

 

I managed to find out the measurements from Whole Latte Love - http://www.wholelattelove.com/products/breville-bcg800xl-smart-grinder

 

Just curious as to what the burr size is as well as the motor power, as I'm in the market for a grinder than can do brewed (and the odd espresso) very well and just narrowly missed out on a Baratza Virtuoso for a great price.

 

From new, The Virtuoso and the BCG820 ('Breville Coffee Grinder'?) are at around the same price point.

 

In the cup quality is paramount for me but wonder if the Sage grinder can do the biz as well.

 

Hear ye, hear ye! Is there anybody with experience of both grinders in question out there??

Edited by Beanosaurus

Beans, beans the musical fruit, the more you drink, the more you... *tremors uncontrollably* 😬 

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Turns out the burrs are just shy of 40mm according to SCGs review of the older versions of both grinders:

 


Beans, beans the musical fruit, the more you drink, the more you... *tremors uncontrollably* 😬 

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Note: The review in the video link above is for the Virtuoso 586 (Preciso Burrs) vs the older BCG800 Smart Grinder.


Beans, beans the musical fruit, the more you drink, the more you... *tremors uncontrollably* 😬 

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Got it, love it, neewbie opinion admittedly but cannot fault it's accuracy and consistancey.

 

I've got a Virtuoso now haha, haven't had much time to do an A/B test with my Rocky but first impressions are okay.

 

Louder operation, but fast grinding, and nice results in the cup/


Beans, beans the musical fruit, the more you drink, the more you... *tremors uncontrollably* 😬 

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Well my only point of comparison is pre-ground and a Hario Mini hand grinder.

 

I'd say it works well. Minimal mess thanks to dosing, has a portafilter holder and also a sensible jar thing for dosing for aeropress etc.

 

The grind seems consistent, both coarse and smooth, but as I said I have no comparison point in the £200ish arena. It certainly looks nicer on the side than the cheaper Baratzas, in my opinion.

 

I've updated the original post with links to the thread.

 

I'm not sure what a reasonable test to put grinder through its paces but I guess a demonstration of finest, coarsest, and somewhere in the middle?

 

So what's your verdict after a few weeks to play?

I'm waiting on delivery of the Smart Grinder Pro, having chosen it purely on aesthetics compared to anything else at this price point

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After a hiccup on my part I may add this is working really well. So easy to single dose if you want or get a load setting and fill the hopper, repeats are accurate on my tests. Thought it wasn't capable of grinding lighter roasts but once I worked how to use the adjustable top burr properly grinding without any issues now. I like it size and noise level, with a 2 year warranty to boot can't complain, is the mignon worth £75-90 more?? Probably but like the OP I got mine for about £170 with deals etc so I would then say it is certainly a better buy than a mignon.

I like the design ele,ents that have been thought through on this too, the little bean/grind container that fits exactly under the doses if you wish to grind and store. The lack of grinds being spurted all over the place when dropping into the PF and the removable hopper. Someone who knows grinders thought about this and had a lot of input in it's design Ii would say.

 

It would be interesting if someone who uses a high-end grinder tried this as they would quickly point out it's pros and cons.


Isomac Alba

Elektra Grinder

Flat Whites only baby.

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After a hiccup on my part I may add this is working really well. So easy to single dose if you want or get a load setting and fill the hopper, repeats are accurate on my tests. Thought it wasn't capable of grinding lighter roasts but once I worked how to use the adjustable top burr properly grinding without any issues now. I like it size and noise level, with a 2 year warranty to boot can't complain, is the mignon worth £75-90 more?? Probably but like the OP I got mine for about £170 with deals etc so I would then say it is certainly a better buy than a mignon.

I like the design ele,ents that have been thought through on this too, the little bean/grind container that fits exactly under the doses if you wish to grind and store. The lack of grinds being spurted all over the place when dropping into the PF and the removable hopper. Someone who knows grinders thought about this and had a lot of input in it's design Ii would say.

 

It would be interesting if someone who uses a high-end grinder tried this as they would quickly point out it's pros and cons.

 

Good feedback,

 

The Sage Smart Grinder (non pro, but the same burr set) was reviewed on this site by members who have extensive experience. It is considered a step up over grinders like the MC2 in terms of quality, but overshadowed by the Mignon in this department.

 

It may be a better buy than the Mignon when it comes to usability specifically, with nice design tweaks and features. But to many where it matters most is in the cup, and the Mignon is the better grinder there. It is of course almost £100 more, so budget considerations may well come in to play.

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Good feedback,

 

The Sage Smart Grinder (non pro, but the same burr set) was reviewed on this site by members who have extensive experience. It is considered a step up over grinders like the MC2 in terms of quality, but overshadowed by the Mignon in this department.

 

It may be a better buy than the Mignon when it comes to usability specifically, with nice design tweaks and features. But to many where it matters most is in the cup, and the Mignon is the better grinder there. It is of course almost £100 more, so budget considerations may well come in to play.

 

Totally agree with you, was very close to buying the mignon but the price difference overcame my tight Scots' nature:)


Isomac Alba

Elektra Grinder

Flat Whites only baby.

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Great to know that there are companies making great looking products that are user friendly as well as delivering. So many shiny looking things are good for just looking at from a distance

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Great to know that there are companies making great looking products that are user friendly as well as delivering. So many shiny looking things are good for just looking at from a distance

 

Too true.


Isomac Alba

Elektra Grinder

Flat Whites only baby.

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Yeh I got John Lewis to price match Harts of Stur, the price is back up t £199 though, just felt John Lewis was a safer bet if anything goes wrong.


Isomac Alba

Elektra Grinder

Flat Whites only baby.

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No probs at all, easy to use easy to clean, doesn't take up a lot of space and quiet compared to my old B2C grinder


Isomac Alba

Elektra Grinder

Flat Whites only baby.

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I am more and more tempted to get this grinder. Does it retain much when single dosing? It looks like the grinds drop vertically from the burrs rather than being flung sideways down a chute like most others (including the mc2).

 

john Lewis would be a safe bet as returns are straightforward.


ECM Technika IV Profi (WT-WC), ECM S-Automatik 64, Aeropress, Aergrind

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I almost get out what I put in bar - 0.1 - 0.2g when single dosing, If I fill the hopper output is similar, I would presume that that is an acceptable amount.


Isomac Alba

Elektra Grinder

Flat Whites only baby.

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That's not a fair way to reduce retention though - you'd need to strip it down and clean it out completely an then put a single measured dose in - and see what comes out.

 

Your method probably has 3g retained already (on a good day), you put 17g in and get 3g of retained plus 14g of your dose out - with the other 3g of your dose being the fresh retention.

 

Open it up and strip it down and clean it... It's the only way.


Lots of everything: machines, grinders, roaster, beans, tampers, baskets, blah, blah

However - Too much is never enough!

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