Last Updated: August 2017
The ideal cup of coffee begins with the right grind. The right burr grinder for home use can make all the difference, and two models you may want to consider for your own kitchen are the Gaggia MDF and Baratza Virtuoso. Either one would be an excellent choice, which is why we would like to offer an in-depth analysis of both to help guide you in making your purchase.
Table of contents
- Gaggia MDF Features
- Baratza Virtuoso Features
- Design Comparison
- Performance Comparison
- Durability Comparison
- Price Comparison
- Which is the best?
Gaggia MDF Features
The Gaggia MDF 8002 Burr Grinder is designed to make home grinding easy and efficient. Some important features of this grinder include:
- 50-mm tempered steel grinding burrs, which allow for the most even grinding possible at any setting
- 34 individual grind settings
- Gear reduction system for extremely quiet operation and the elimination of static buildup
- Impact-resistant coffee container and hopper
- Pull lever dosing system that dispenses coffee directly into the filter holder
Baratza Virtuoso Features
The Baratza Virtuoso Conical Coffee Grinder provides a stately appearance, and is known for its grind consistency, Its features include:
- Professional-grade 40-mm conical burrs to provide even grinding on any setting
- Efficient DC motor that keeps beans cool to preserve their flavor
- Speed reducers, which ensure a smooth bean feed, slowing the machine to 450 RPM to reduce noise and eliminate static
- More than 40 individual grind settings, making this grinder easily adjustable for everything from French press to espresso
- Innovative burr calibration system that increases the range of grind
- 60-second timer allows for easily repeatable grind times
Gaggia MDF vs Baratza Virtuoso Comparison
There is a great deal of difference between these two models as far as design goes. You will be proud to show off either one, as both of these appliances work well with nearly any type of kitchen décor.
- The Gaggia 8002 MDF Burr Grinder comes in solid black with a smoke-tinted plastic hopper and grinding window. It is gently rounded on top and in front, yet contains straight, even lines in back and on the sides. The design is very pleasing to those who are interested in saving space, yet do not want a grinder with overly simplified features
- Users will find the Baratza Virtuoso contains the look of a more professional grade appliance at a fraction of the cost. The shiny, black exterior is offset by stainless steel accents and smooth clear lines that greatly add to its aesthetics. The large, cone-shaped hopper contains a sculptured metal top for an added touch of elegance.
Of course, there is more to be concerned with than just appearance, as it is also important to choose a coffee grinder that can stand up to repeated usage. When comparing the two, it seems that the Baratza Virtuoso has numerous advantages as far as performance goes.
- Users of the Gaggia MDF report that it does take some practice in order to come up with the perfect grind, which can vary based upon the type of beans you are using. There is also a learning curve associated with using the doser. In fact, many people continue to have issues with the doser and elect to forgo using it altogether.
- The Baratza Virtuoso on the other hand produces such even, consistent grinding that many reviewers claim that it is in a class all by itself. The reason for its consistency is a combination of its efficient DC motor and electric gear speed reducers that feed beans in smoothly while also reducing noise, heat, and static.
A coffee grinder is likely to be a major investment that you will come to rely on for service day in and day out. As such, it only makes sense to choose a grinder that will provide you with dependable service over the long haul. Fortunately, both of these grinders fit this bill rather nicely.
- Many consumers who purchased the Gaggia 8002 MDF grinder remark that they have gotten 10 years or more of regular use with no mechanical issues. Even those who were used to professional grade grinders claim this machine more than lived up to their expectations.
- Similar reports were given for the Baratza Virtuoso as far as durability goes. However, there is one problem that does seem to occur quite frequently, and that involves the grinder knob falling off. Many users have had to superglue this knob in place in order to keep that from happening.
Both of these grinders are comparable in price, The Gaggia 8002 can be found online for anywhere from $230 to $250. The Baratza Virtuoso can be priced as high as $330; however, there are typically money-saving specials that bring the price down significantly, often to about the same price range as the Gaggia 8002. Free shipping is typically available for both models when ordering through Amazon Prime.
Here is an overview of how each grinder fares in the various categories.
- Design- When placing these two grinders side by side, the Baratza Virtuoso wins the design category hands down. This grinder has a commercial grade appearance that is head and shoulders above that of the Gaggia 8002.
- Performance – The Baratza Virtuoso wins again for performance, as this grinder has become synonymous with consistent grinding.
- Durability – The Gaggia 8002 has an edge when it comes to durability, due to its extended lifespan and the fact thtat there are virtually no issues such as knobs falling off.
- Price –The Baratza Virtuoso can be somewhat pricier unless you are able to locate a deal. If you happen to find a special offer, the two are nearly identically priced.
Which Grinder is Best?
If you are looking for consistent, smooth performance and an overall eye-catching appliance, the Baratza Virtuoso would be the better option. On the other hand, if you prefer a durable machine that is somewhat less expensive, your best bet would be the Gaggia 8002 MDF.
Either the Gaggia 8002 or the Baratza Virtuoso will help you take your coffee grinding efforts to the next level. In the end, your decision will likely be based on whether performance, or durability are your highest priority.