Breville Smart Grinder Pro

8

Price

9.0/10

Grinder Quality

7.0/10

Grind Consistency

7.0/10

Grind Range

7.0/10

Ease of Use

8.0/10

Cleaning Ease

9.0/10

Appearance

9.0/10

Durability

7.0/10

Grind Speed

8.0/10

Grind Noise

9.0/10

Pros

  • Quiet
  • 60 default grind settings
  • Stepless (technically 600+ grind sizes)
  • Great for espresso
  • Easy to clean
  • Removable grounds tray
  • Two magnetic portafilter holders
  • Great value
  • Good for drip

Cons

  • Grind timer is not an accurate way to dose
  • Grounds container lid is not airtight
  • Durability is questionable
  • Plastic smell post-grind
  • No good for French Press

The days of manually grinding my coffee with a hand crank grinder are over. After using the new Breville Smart Grinder Pro for a couple weeks now, I'm pretty blown away.

It didn't start off so pretty though.

After only one day of using my new grinder, it had already stopped working. I couldn't believe it.

$250 and a week of waiting for the delivery and I already had to send it back to Breville. Fortunately, it was a relatively smooth (and free) process, but I still had a sour taste in my mouth. And unfortunately it wasn't from a bad shot of espresso.

Then My Replacement Came

It's working like a charm. In fact, it's way better than I was expecting.

I don't come anywhere close to the finest grind setting and I have beautiful shots of espresso. I adjust the grinder by one level of fineness or coarseness, and the change isn't even visible to the naked eye. It's definitely apparent in my espresso shots though.

Go down one level on the grinder, the shot time is reduced by about 5 seconds. OK, so I haven't quite measured how much shot time is affected, but it's ever so slight. To me, this is a great thing.

Then, I had to get it replaced again

In August of 2015 I got my second unit replaced due to the burrs locking at finer grind settings. This was a major bummer, especially after my replacement came and was still having the same lock-up issues.

This may just be an issue with some of the units, but I think in general the Breville Smart Grinder Pro doesn't do well with lighter roasts at finer settings (10 and under).

Update December 2017

I'm still on my third unit (as of December 2015) and it has been holding up pretty well without the burrs locking up.

However, I still hold my breath every time I grind for espresso, especially with lighter roasts.

Here are some tips I've found to prevent issues:

  • Try not to use old coffee beans, especially if they are lighter roasts
  • Adjust the burrs with coffee beans in the hopper while running the grinder
  • Grind in small increments. e.g. run the grinder for a few seconds, pause, then run it again
  • Try not to run the grinder with an empty hopper

By doing these 4 things, your Smart Grinder Pro will last longer.

The Step-less Step

The Breville Smart Grinder Pro is technically a stepless grinder, but it still has the clarity of a step grinder.

Let me explain…

By default, there are 60 grind settings displayed on an LCD screen on the front grinder. These grind settings are labeled 1 to 60, but when you turn the dial to adjust the grind, you aren't definitively on 40 or 41 for example, even if it displays this on the screen.

In reality, you could actually be between 40 and 41 somewhere, as there are no notches that the burr grinders settle into.

Think of stepless grinders as Pi. You could be on grind setting 3.145926535 even if it's displayed as grind setting 3.

Video Review

Smart Grinder vs. Smart Grinder Pro

I could tell you the differences between the Breville Smart Grinder (old version) and the Breville Smart Grinder Pro (new version), but I've already done this in the video review above.

So let me show you:

Breville Smart Grinders

  • Name
    Name of the coffee grinder
  • Grind Settings
    How many different grind sizes can the grinder produce?
  • Type of Grinder
    Burr or blade grinder?
  • Dosing System
    How does the grinder dose the coffee that's dispensed?
  • Hopper Size
    Size of the hopper?
  • Magnetic Grounds Tray
    Is there a removable magnetic grounds tray?
  • Grind Pause
    Can the grinder be paused mid-grind?
  • Adjustable Upper Burr?
    Can the upper burr be adjusted for additional grind settings?
  • Breville Smart Grinder
    Name of the coffee grinder
  • 25
    How many different grind sizes can the grinder produce?
  • Conical Burr (Stainless Steel)
    Burr or blade grinder?
  • Brew Strength Selector
    How does the grinder dose the coffee that's dispensed?
  • 1 lb.
    Size of the hopper?
  • Is there a removable magnetic grounds tray?
  • Can the grinder be paused mid-grind?
  • Can the upper burr be adjusted for additional grind settings?
  • Breville Smart Grinder Pro
    Name of the coffee grinder
  • 60 (plus additional 540)
    How many different grind sizes can the grinder produce?
  • Conical Burr (Stainless Steel)
    Burr or blade grinder?
  • Timer
    How does the grinder dose the coffee that's dispensed?
  • 1 lb.
    Size of the hopper?
  • Is there a removable magnetic grounds tray?
  • Can the grinder be paused mid-grind?
  • Can the upper burr be adjusted for additional grind settings?

Is This The Best Value Grinder Out There?

Right now, I'm not sure if there is a better value home grinder out there. There are just way too many grind settings on the Breville Smart Grinder Pro for it to cost so little in comparison to comparable grinders.

If anything, the Lido 2 or 3 by Orphan Espresso is probably the best value grinder. Don't let the fact that they are manual fool you either. These grinders are said to grind extremely fast!

I should have a review for one of the Lido grinders coming in 2016.

Have a Favorite Coffee Grinder? Share By Commenting Below!

Until there is a grinder that comes along and does a better job than the Breville Smart Grinder Pro is currently doing, I'm sticking with it as my go-to grinder.

Sure, I'm concerned it might break down after the 1 year warranty given the fact that I already had a dud, but when it works it really works. I'm willing to take the risk.

Why? Because for now the alternative is grinding by hand…something I hope to never have to do again (unless I'm on the go).