In a hurry? Our top choice is the Barazta Encore.
If you want to immediately step up your coffee game, getting a burr grinder is the easiest way.
But how do you choose an entry-level burr grinder?
The Baratza Encore and the Capresso Infinity are two of the most popular entry-level burr grinders.
So, let’s look at the Baratza Encore vs Capresso Infinity debate and declare a winner.
I’ll give you a rundown of each one, then pit their features head to head.
Let’s jump in!
Baratza Encore vs Capresso Infinity: Comparison Chart
A Brief Intro for the Baratza Encore
Barazta is an American company that has been around for more than 20 years.
But the best part? They only make grinders.
And it’s paid off. They have won numerous awards over the years.
And the Encore conical burr coffee grinder is probably the most popular Baratza grinder.
It features a high-quality plastic resin body with ABS tinted plastic for the hopper and grounds container.
The burrs are top of the line and made from stainless steel. That gives you durability and consistency for a long time.
(I’ve had an Encore for nearly 4 years and have used it daily with zero complaints.)
It has 40 grind settings and an easy on/off switch with a pulse grinding button on the front.
Someone looking for their first conical burr grinder. Or for someone getting into the world of home brewing.
- The stainless steel burrs are durable and precise, giving you consistent and reliable results
- 40 different grind size settings mean you can accurately dial in your grind for any type of brew
- The high-quality plastic resin body means you don’t have to worry about the coffee grinder falling apart
- A budget-friendly grinder for its class gives you all the Baratza quality at a reasonable price
- The burr design is a little dated at this point, so you’ll see some reduction in consistency with heavy use. (But regular cleaning and maintenance help keep your burrs healthy for longer.)
- No automatic shutoff, so you’ll have to manually turn it off when the beans are finished grinding
A Short Discussion on the Capresso Infinity
Capresso has been around since 1994 and is a subsidiary of Jura AG in Switzerland.
They make Euro-style coffee makers, grinders, water kettles, and milk frothers.
But don’t let their range throw you off. Everything they make is high-quality and worth considering when buying a grinder.
The Infinity is their high-end burr grinder with a plastic resin base and ABS plastic for the hopper and container.
Capresso Infinity grinder features 16 different grind sizes and has up to a 60-second grind timer switch with a pulse grinding button.
Maybe the best feature is the slow RPM while grinding. Slower RPMs while grinding reduce friction in the beans. That means your beans won’t warm up while grinding (which can change your extraction while brewing).
The Infinity conical burr grinder actually has the slowest grinding in its class.
A beginner looking for a budget-friendly burr grinder. Or for a casual coffee drinker who wants an entry-level grinder.
- 16 grind size settings in 4 categories give you plenty of control over your grind
- The steel burrs are durable and will last for many years, giving you consistent results
- The grind timer is great for setting and forgetting while you prepare your brew
- Slow RPMs means your beans will stay a good temperature for extraction
- It’s not as consistent at the coarser grind settings, so you’ll find grinding for French Press or cold brew a little difficult
- The burrs are hard to remove, making cleaning tough
A Head-to-Head of the Baratza Encore and Capresso Infinity
These are two entry-level burr grinders. They are perfect for beginners or casual drinkers wanting to upgrade their grinder.
But what sets them apart?
Let’s take a look at a few features and declare a winner for each one.
How Different Are The Quality And Design?
Both the Encore and Infinity are made with high-quality plastic resin bodies and ABS plastic hoppers and containers.
Both have steel burrs that are similarly designed.
Baratza Encore coffee grinder, though, has a sleeker and slimmer design. More like the grinders you might find at your local shop.
The Infinity has a quirkier design that’s pretty short and squat.
That said, design is a pretty personal thing, so it’s hard to declare a winner.
Honestly, it’s a tie here. I prefer the sleek and thin design of the Encore to the Infinity, but with the two being so similar in their build quality, it’s a personal choice.
How Many Beans Do They Hold?
The Encore features an 8 oz bean hopper with a 5 oz grounds container. If that doesn’t mean much to you, then just know that it’s more than enough for a pot of coffee or for single doses.
In fact, Baratza even says that their grinders are best suited for single-dose grinding.
Baratza does, however, have an accessory for the Encore that attaches to the hopper and adds another 9 oz.
The Infinity has a slightly larger bean container at 8.8 oz, but it has a smaller grounds container at only 4 oz.
Capresso doesn’t claim anything about doses. But the small grounds container lends itself better to single doses instead of big batches.
The other thing to consider is the design of the grounds container. The Encore has a tall and thin container, while the Infinity has a shallow and wide container.
In my opinion, it’s much easier to pour ground out of the Encore container than the Infinity container.
I’m choosing the Encore. The grounds container is larger and easier to pour from. And the ability to increase the hopper size to 17 oz is great for someone who wants to fill the hopper and grind it out later.
How Do They Perform?
Full disclosure: I’ve had an Encore for almost four years. I bought it when I was a barista because it was the best value for how much I wanted to spend.
And almost four years later, I still use it every day with no complaints or issues. And with regular cleaning and maintenance, its grind quality is the same as the day I bought it.
But you don’t have to just take my word for it, Barazta grinders consistently rank among the best on the market.
The Infinity has had some issues with grind consistency, especially at the coarser grind settings.
Consistency usually refers to the number of fines that get into your cup.
You usually see fines at the bottom of your mug when your coffee starts to have a thick texture.
Another thing is that the Infinity holds a lot of grounds in the chute that don’t fall into the container.
That means when you pull the container out, a lot of coffee grounds tend to end up on your counter.
Certainly is the Encore. There are plenty of stories out there of people having their Encore grinders for 10+ years and still loving them. That kind of quality for the price is hard to beat.
What Are The Grind Settings Like?
This one is pretty simple: the Encore has 40 different grind setting, just like Baratza Virtuoso+.
And it makes a consistent grind when grinding for cold brew all the way down to espresso.
Capresso Infinity burr grinder has 16 settings across 4 categories: extra fine, fine, medium, and coarse ground coffee.
What does this mean for you?
Well, if you’re a coffee lover getting into the world of home brewing and want to start dialing in your grinding, then you absolutely want more size options. The more, the better.
However, if you’re a casual coffee drinker who doesn’t want to get into the science of grind sizes, then having only 16 settings is actually plenty.
The Encore takes this round. Having 40 different size settings is incredible for the price and quality of this class. It gives you so much control over your morning brew that it’s hard for anything to beat it.
How Easy Are They To Use?
This round is a little tricky.
Both the Encore and the Infinity have two switches: on/off and pulse grinding.
However, the Capresso Infinity grinder has up to a 60-second timer switch. That means that you can turn your grinder on for any amount of time up to 60 seconds. After that, the grinder shuts off.
The Encore only has on/off. That means you’ll have to manually turn off the grinder once your beans are finished grinding.
You’ll know when your beans are done grinding when the Encore starts to sound like a ringing telephone.
Does having a timer really make things easier?
Yes and no. While it’s nice that there is an auto-shutoff, choosing the right amount of time for your grinding can be tricky.
Your grinder will either run too long, or you’ll have to stand there pulse grinding until your beans are finished.
The Encore doesn’t have this problem, but if you end up forgetting about your beans, then the grinder will continue running until you remember.
I’m going to say the Infinity for this round. Only because forgetting about your beans is totally plausible (I’ve done it plenty of times). Having the auto shutoff is nice for those situations.
My Final Verdict
These are two entry-level grinders.
But really, they aren’t that similar when all is said and done.
The obvious choice for the best coffee grinder is the Baratza Encore.
The price difference isn’t actually that big, and the quality and consistency you get from the Encore is well worth the little extra you have to pay.
That said, you should go with the Capresso Infinity if:
- You need to stay under budget
- You don’t care as much about dialing in your grind size
- You’re looking for your very first burr grinder
But you should choose the Baratza Encore if:
- You want to get into the science of grind size
- You’re looking for the best possible value in a grinder
- You’re looking to upgrade from a blade grinder or cheaper burr grinder
In all honesty, I believe the Barazta Encore to be the best possible value for your money. It’s as close as you can get to a perfect grinder without having to spend outrageous amounts of money.
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