People say blade grinders are terrible for coffee. But, what if you only want to make fine grinds in small amounts quickly? Krups F203 vs Krups GX 4100 are some blade grinders that are actually quite reliable for grinding coffee. They are some options that you can definitely consider.
This article will discuss everything about:
- The design and build quality of each coffee grinder here
- The performance & grind quality of these Krups grinders
- How much coffee beans that each of these units can handle at once
- The things that you have to pay attention to regarding the cleaning
- The warranty terms of Krups F203 vs Krups GX 4100
- Which grinder that is more recommended for grinding your coffee
Design and Appearance
Krups F203 and Krups GX4100 are blade grinders. Although they are mostly marketed as coffee grinders, they don’t look too different from those regular grinders that people use for shredding herbs and spices in kitchens. These blade grinders are fast and simple to use, while being more affordable than the likes of Baratza Encore Vs Virtuoso.
Even though it is possible to use the same grinder for all grinding tasks, such as grinding herbs, spices, nuts, fruits, and coffee, you should never do that. One of the biggest problems is that the flavors will stick to the blade and wall of the grinder, even after a thorough washing. As the effect, using the same grinder that you use in the kitchen for grinding your coffee will yield strange flavor. Use a dedicated grinder for your coffee.
Each model here has an oval-shaped body. The overall dimensions of Krups F203 vs Krups GX4100 are quite similar, except for the weight. Krups F203 is slightly lighter than Krups GX4100. Each of them has a safety mechanism which will shut off the blade if the lid hasn’t been closed. This is a useful feature because nobody wants to get hit by a rogue coffee bean that escaped through a partially open lid at high speed.
There are differences in the aesthetics. Krups F203 comes with a glossy black finish, whereas Krups GX4100 comes with a brushed stainless steel finish with a black plastic base. Both models have clear, transparent plastic lids, so you can monitor their contents easily.
Both models here are armed with highly durable stainless steel blades. These blades are very sharp and sturdy. However, they will indeed get worn and dull after some time. They should be able to last for one or two years, but these blades are not replaceable. So, you will need to buy a new grinder once the blade is dull.
Neither model has a grind level selector. After all, these are not burr grinders, so you can’t really adjust their grind levels.
Each model here has a pulse button for operation. Press the button and keep it down for as long as you want, and the grinder will work continuously until you release the button. Since there is no grind level selector, you won’t be able to achieve a uniform grind – unless you just want to go for a very fine grind, which can be achieved simply by grinding long enough.
There is no timer. This is a slight inconvenience because such a simple blade grinder shouldn’t require much manual control. A timer that can turn off the grinder automatically will allow you to do other things while waiting for your coffee to be ground. To be fair, though, Krups F203 and Krups GX4100 are quite fast, so you won’t need to keep that button pressed down for too long.
These blade grinders are cheap and very budget-friendly. Naturally, we don’t expect them to come with the highest build quality. Such products are meant to last temporarily, and they will need to be replaced once they are broken. However, there is still a notable difference between Krups F203 and Krups GX4100.
Krups F203 has an interior that is made of plastic. There are two problems with this material. First, it is not very durable; it can get damaged by sharp objects, such as tiny jagged rocks that somehow come with your coffee beans. Second, oils tend to stick to plastic stubbornly, so it will be a bit more difficult to clean.
Krups GX4100 is better because it actually has a stainless steel interior. Only the black lines on the outside are plastic. The stainless steel interior is far more durable. It won’t get damaged easily by rocks or the edges of the cut coffee beans. In addition, the stainless steel interior is easier to clean.
So, how is the actual performance of Krups F203 vs Krups GX4100 in grinding coffee? Well, in general, they are good. They both are able to transform coffee beans into very fine grinds within 1 minute. If you want to get coarser grinds (though this is not very recommended with these grinders due to the lack of uniformity), you only need 30 seconds or less.
One potential issue with both Krups F203 and Krups GX4100 is heat. This is the case with pretty much any blade grinder. The blades create lots of friction, and friction generates heat. The longer you grind, the more the heat accumulates. Excessive heat is very bad for coffee because it will release the oils and flavors prematurely and create bitter taste.
On the good side, some users have found an effective trick to reduce the heat. Simply freeze the coffee beans in your refrigerator for some time before grinding. This will ensure that the coffee beans won’t get scorched too much during the grinding process. The resulted coffee will have better flavor.
These blade grinders are good if you just want to make fine grinds, such as for a moka pot, aeropress, or espresso machine. The fine grinds will make coffee with good, tasty flavors. Some people do use Krups F203 and Krups GX4100 for making medium or coarse grinds for pour-over or French press, but in this case the results won’t be as great as if you use a burr grinder.
For home use, you actually don’t need a large capacity. Most coffee grinders for home use have a capacity of 3 – 8 oz. It will already allow you to make a few cups of coffee.
Krups F203 vs Krups GX4100 have a similar capacity. Each of them can grind up to 3-oz of coffee beans at once. Yes, they are on the low side. The recommended ratio for making espresso is one ounce of coffee per one cup of water. So, one grinding cycle at the full capacity with either model will allow you to get enough coffee for three cups.
Keep in mind that you shouldn’t run multiple grinding cycles continuously. This will generate too much heat, and will reduce the coffee quality significantly. So, when you want to run another grinding cycle, you should wait for a few minutes to let the grinder cool down first.
Maintenance and Warranty
Cleaning your grinder after every use is very important for both the longevity of the unit and the quality of the coffee. You don’t want stale ground to stick on the blade and then get mixed with your next cup of coffee.
To clean either model here is very simple. Just unplug the power cord and use a brush to remove all particles from the blade, wall, and lid. Then, use a damp cloth to wipe those parts. Next, use a clean cloth to dry them, and you are good to go.
The lids of Krups F203 and Krups GX4100 can be detached and washed. Make sure to use warm water with a mild detergent when cleaning the lid. The rest of the grinder, however, should not be submerged in water.
Each model here comes with a 2-year limited warranty. As usual, the warranty will only cover manufacturing defects, and not normal wear and tear. Damage from abuse, neglect, or improper use are also out of the question.
May I Use a Blade Grinder?
In general, burr grinders are more recommended. Burr grinders are specially designed to process coffee beans in the best possible ways. They can grind coffee with far more uniformity and consistency – two very important factors for quality coffee. However, if your budget is very limited, getting a good quality blade grinder is fine as long as you know its limitations.
As mentioned above, the blade can easily accumulate heat. And heat is bad for your coffee. You don’t want to expose your ground coffee to heat before the actual brewing process. To prevent overheating, you should avoid grinding continuously for more than a minute.
A blade grinder won’t be able to deliver medium or coarse grinds in consistent, uniform sizes – this will result in sub-par coffee flavor. However, if you only use fine grinds, a blade grinder can still deliver good enough results.
Krups F203 vs Krups GX 4100
Between the two, Krups GX 4100 is more recommended. It has a stainless steel interior, which is more durable and also easier to clean. Hence, it is more likely to last longer.