Hi, I am planning on purchasing either the Gen Cafe or Hot Top. How much noise to they make? Specifically, can you hear the "cracks" during the roasting process to help judge the degree of roast? Any recommendations about either? Rick
Rick, I've been using the GC for a few months now and love it. You can hear the cracks (1st and 2nd) and the machine is very durable (ref Eddie Dove's previous posts). I've heard good things about the HT as well but haven't used one myself. I'm just very satisfied with my GC. -- My home coffee roasting blog:http://homecoffeeroastblog.blogspot.com/Kevin
The Hot top is extremely quiet and it is very easy to hear the cracks.
Cracks are very easy to hear in the Hottop. Frank frankc12 Coral Mustang Wines www.coralmustang.com
I have roasted with a hot top for three years. IMHO it is a sturdy and reliable machine and 1st and 2nd cracks are easily distinguished with almost any coffee (except possibly very old greens...and who keeps those?) that you roast. On 1/17/07, Frank Coster wrote: <Snip>
People who have hottops love them. People who have gene cafes love them. People who have one don't have the other. Recommendation: Buy one. Or the other. You'll love it! On 1/17/07, Richard Ludlow wrote: <Snip> -- MichaelB
I don't own either but given the choice would go the HotTop for a couple = of reasons. IIRC cracks easier to hear in HotTop verus Gene Café. But = primarily a modified Manual HotTop will out perform a Gene Café should you = choose to want real profile control. (I wouldn't waste money on Digital model = HotTop) Plus I believe the HotTop sturdier construction. Kona Konnaisseur miKe mcKoffee URL to Rosto mods, FrankenFormer, some recipes etc:http://mdmint.home.comcast.net/coffee/Rosto_mod.htmUltimately the quest for Koffee Nirvana is a solitary path. To know I = must first not know. And in knowing know I know not. Each Personal = enlightenment found exploring the many divergent foot steps of Those who have gone = before. From: homeroast-admin [mailto:homeroast-admin] On Behalf Of MichaelB Sent: Wednesday, January 17, 2007 3:30 PM To: homeroast Subject: Re: +Gen Cafe aand Hot Top People who have hottops love them. People who have gene cafes love them. People who have one don't have the other. Recommendation: Buy one. Or the other. You'll love it! On 1/17/07, Richard Ludlow wrote: Hi, I am planning on purchasing either the Gen Cafe or Hot Top. How much noise to they make? Specifically, can you hear the "cracks" during the roasting process to help judge the degree of roast? Any recommendations about either? Rick
I own a Hot Top and agree with Mike. Hot top is a much sturdier design and now soon will be able to adjust profiles. Don't know if analog machines are still available.
I think a HotTop has better cooling than a Gen Café. I have a PID'd and manual switched HotTop. Mikes right, at 350 grams to 1lb, it tough to beat for profile control (unless one jumps into the = couple thousand dollar units). Home.att.net/~Scott.Harroff/FrankenTop.JPG
Just checked SM they do have the Analog model. Might be a saving if you get the 20% off the upgrade kit as another list member did.
scott. are you saying you can put a pound of greens into your hot top and it works? I thought they were rated at only around 8 ounce.. How does it turn out for you? Aaron
With the stock controller and stock profile, I wouldn't try a pound of beans unless one likes a 20+ minute profile and unfinished beans. With a PID, one can preheat to say 500 and run a profile that will finish one pound in 12 minutes-13 minutes. Its basically "always on" but I do roast a pound at a time that way when I do 'give aways'.
<Snip> Rick, I did the same analysis myself awhile back. I ended with the GeneCafe and have been very happy with it. That being said, I've never been able to hear first crack because the machine is somewhat noisy, although I can hear second crack clearly. This is exactly the opposite of the Zach & Dani's I started with. I have a friend who has a HotTop (after I got him interested in roasting), and you can hear both cracks clearly. As others have said, the HT cools better than the GC, but I like the better control the GC gives you out of the box. I'm no longer into spending big bucks and then tearing the machine apart just to kluge in what I think should have been there to start with. YMMV. You won't be unhappy with either one. Frank Parth
Rick, People love their Hottops and people love their Gene Cafes. I do not have a Hottop, so I really can't comment objectively on its usability. I do have a Gene Cafe, so I can comment on it; I will do my best to be objective. Since I have been using profiles with the Gene Cafe, I have been able to hear both 1st and 2nd crack clearly; haven't missed one yet and I am half deaf. An important note is that all of the other roasting cues are readily available too, as I am sure they are with the Hottop, bean color, smoke, smell, and time. The exhaust port / chaff collector serves me very well by concentrating the smoke, smell and cracks. Do remember that the Gene Cafe is ~$495.00 and the new programmable Hottop (profile ability) is quoted to be at least twice that price. You can however buy one of the less expensive Hottops (in the same price vicinity as the Gene Cafe) and modify it; not really an option for me because I just don't know that stuff, but there are many talented people on this list that could help you do so if you needed it. I have had my Gene Cafe for just over 4 months and have roasted 204 batches totaling 109 pounds. I am NOT easy on the Gene Cafe. I preheat it, stop it at a chamber temperature of 300 degrees, load the beans, run the roast to completion, stop the unit, remove the drum and cool externally, reload and hit start; I don't let it cool in between batches. I have done up to 18 consecutive batches using this method. I hope this helps ... Respectfully, Eddie -- My Home Coffee Roasting Blog and Profiles for the Gene Cafehttp://themeyers.org/HomeRoast/On 1/17/07, Frank Parth wrote:">http://southcoastcoffeeroaster.blogspot.com/Sweet Maria's List - Searchable Archiveshttp://themeyers.org/HomeRoast/On 1/17/07, Frank Parth wrote: <Snip>
I've used the GC for about 4-5 months, and I find it very easy to use, and transformative to my roasting experience. BUT with all racket the beans make in the roasting chamber I have difficulty hearing 1st crack (and since I prefer lighter roasts, 1st is the only crack there is). Must have been all those concerts at the Fillmore and Winterland back in the '60s... Roger Sierra Madre, California
Roger, Visit my blog and try the profiles. I believe you will never miss another 1st crack. Eddie -- My Home Coffee Roasting Blog and Profiles for the Gene Cafehttp://themeyers.org/HomeRoast/On 1/17/07, Roger Lebow wrote:">http://southcoastcoffeeroaster.blogspot.com/Sweet Maria's List - Searchable Archiveshttp://themeyers.org/HomeRoast/On 1/17/07, Roger Lebow wrote: <Snip>
Agreed. I roast 2/3 lbs / 310 gm as my max HT weight, which it handles = very well. DJ
I have a Gene Cafe and I'd be happy to not have it. It's something I'd sell in a heartbeat if I could. I don't have the control I'd like to have, the batch sizes are a little small for my liking, and I'm concerned about its durability. These are all things I knew before I bought it, and thought I might get over or learn to work with, but after 6 months, I'm longing for simpler days. --Derek -- http://www.novernae.comHome of the Wandering Sloth