Want to Step Up Your Grind?: Stepless vs. Step Grinders

What’s the difference between stepped and stepless grinders? First — what are these styles of grinders? You know how serious we are about coffee grinders and how they are arguably the most important piece of equipment you’ll need to choose. Find out about these different styles of grinders, what they’re best suited for and why they might be the right fit for you.

Grinder Type Stepped Stepless
What is it? These grinders have preset notches, which enable you to easily switch between disparate grinds.Rather than guess where you’re setting the grinder for espresso, then drip coffee and then back again, you’ll have referential numbers and settings to work from. Stepless grinders are for those of us who want the fluidity to choose our grind with an infinite amount of options.These grinders have no reference points, as a result, but enable to more finitely dial in your grind.
Coffee Preparation If you often grind for different coffee preparations (from espresso to coffee press), a stepped grinder is a good choice because you’ll have marked settings to reference when you’re switching between these highly disparate grinds. You’ll need to dial in less and ultimately waste less coffee. The stepless grinder will definitely give you the ability to grind for every type of coffee prep. However, when it comes to going from a drip grind to a espresso grind, it won’t be as easy to find that perfect grind that you had originally been using.With an infinite amount of settings, you’ll have a more difficult time going from one preparation to another. If you grind for primarily one coffee preparation, or only occasionally switch to a different style, this is a good choice.
Brand Examples

  • Rancilio Rocky
  • Baratza Encore
  • Breville Smart Grinder

  • Nuova Simonelli MCI
  • Mazzer Series
  • Macap M4

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