In this guide, we'll be comparing the Mahlkonig E65S vs K30 Vario Air. We're discussing these espresso grinders in detail to help you decide which one is right for you or your business.
You're going to discover...
- The features that the Mahlkonig E65S and K30 Air have in common.
- Which unique features make these grinders different and what they mean for you.
- How to choose the grinder best suited to your business or individual needs.
This is a top-choice espresso grinder for making professional espresso drinks at home, in an office, or in a medium-volume cafe. With premium technology for total consistency, it's the grinder for specialty coffee shops and anyone who can benefit from a high number of programmable recipes.
Mahlkonig K30 Vario Air
Also perfect for homes, offices, and medium-sized businesses, this espresso grinder comes with a high-power fan to keep the grinder cool all through the day. Pick this model if you want to make consistently excellent espresso in a slightly higher-volume shop without missing a beat.
If you want to learn about our favorite commercial espresso machines that we recommend to our customers they can be seen on the Majesty Coffee School buyer's guide.
Flat Steel Burrs
The new Mahlkonig E65S comes with the same durable flat steel burrs as the Mahlkonig K30 Air.
A flat burr grinder crushes the coffee beans between two flat, horizontally-oriented grinding discs and produces coffee particles that are uniform in size.
When the coffee is brewed, the uniformity of the particles will promote even extraction and balance flavors.
Flat burr grinders are great options for enhancing the sweetness as well as the deeper notes in the espresso.
The greater the diameter of the burr, the fewer rotations necessary to grind the coffee beans. Fewer rotations, less heat generation.
Temperature control is important because too much heat between the motor and grinding friction can damage the flavor of the coffee.
The large 65 mm burrs in the E65S and the K30 Air help to ensure that these grinders won't rapidly produce an excess of heat. Simple and effective.
Grind on Demand
On-demand grinders have the advantage of delivering the freshest espresso for the best extraction results.
The E65S and K30 Air grind the coffee directly into the portafilter, which keeps oxidation in check and ensures that the delicate flavors aren't compromised.
If you're looking for a grinder that will make the greatest impact in enhancing espresso flavor, an on-demand feature is often part of the package.
Stepless Grind Adjustment
You'll find stepless grinders in many high-end coffee shops. The stepless system allows baristas to adjust the grind to any fineness setting, as opposed to stepped grinders that give you preset notches to work within.
That being said, it can be a little trickier to find yesterday's specific grind setting without the notches, but the trade-off is better control and the ability to dial in the grind with absolute precision.
What you'll get with stepless grind adjustment is the freedom to customize the fineness and create the ultimate espresso every time.
Busy cafes are always looking for little ways to improve efficiency. That's why many choose hands-free grinders like the E65S and K30 Air.
The grinder will actually hold the portafilter and start automatically when you set the portafilter in place.
This means that you can grind and perform other pressing tasks at the same time. If you're big on multitasking, you'll get plenty of use out of this feature.
The E65S has different dimensions than the K30 Air that may make it optimal for squeezing into tight spaces.
With a 19.5 cm width, 58.3 cm height, and 28.3 cm depth, the E65S is slightly taller but slimmer than the K30 Air (the K30 Air is 24 cm wide, 55 cm high, and 32 cm deep).
The differences are small but potentially significant depending on your espresso setup.
One of the improvements Mahlkonig made with the E65S is a faster grinding speed.
The K30 Air can grind on average about four grams of espresso per second. In comparison, the E65S can grind up to seven grams of espresso per second while maintaining about the same RPM (approximately 1,350 to 1,650 RPM).
Keep in mind that the speed of the grinder will also depend on the fineness of your settings. The coarser the grind, the quicker it will be.
If you're looking for a grinder with a larger hopper, the K30 Air wins out over the E65S.
The K30 Air has a 3.3-pound hopper that can support a business through a midday rush. But with a hopper that can hold about 2.6 pounds of coffee beans, the E65S isn't too far behind.
However, the E65S hopper isn't interchangeable with other Mahlkonig hoppers like the K30 Air, which can come with a shorter hopper to reduce the total height of the machine to 44.5 cm.
Another aspect of temperature management in the E65S and K30 Air is a fan system that will cool down the grinders while they're in use.
As an updated model, the E65S comes with a fan system that will only run when the motor is running, which is one element that makes the E65S a more eco-friendly grinder.
Both of these grinders have powerful cooling systems that will keep the coffee well ventilated and assist you in getting the best flavors from the coffee.
Stepless Grinding Operation
On the K30 Air, there is a locking mechanism that you'll twist and tighten to hold the setting when you find the right fineness on the adjustment collar.
The E65S comes with an updated locking mechanism in the back of the machine and an easier-than-ever selector that swivels back and forth on the adjustment scale.
Both systems will allow you to fix the grind setting in place, though the E65S is designed to be a bit simpler.
Programming on the Digital Display
The digital display on the E65S is significantly different from the K30 Air's digital display. For one thing, it's bigger, which can be a little easier to read.
Programmability is also going to be different. The K30 Air is a bit more basic, though it's highly functional as you can easily program single and double doses through the digital display.
With the E65S, you have the option of programming six separate dosages to get creative with different coffee profiles and save your recipes. You also have the choice of grinding continuously if you prefer.
What remains the same about the dosage programming is timing—you can program both of these grinders with high precision in .10-second increments.
Mahlkonig E65S Adjustable Spout
The adjustable spout in the E65S means that you can use any size portafilter without needing to worry about unevenly dispensed grinds.
If you're switching to a larger portafilter, simply reposition the spout so that the coffee will be ground into the enter of the portafilter basket.
You can also remove the spout completely, which makes it headache-free to clean.
Mahlkonig E65S Clump Free Grinding
Part of the redesign of the E65S is a new mechanism that will break up clumps to distribute fluffy coffee into the portafilter.
Clumps can make the coffee more dense in certain areas of the portafilter, which can have a detrimental effect in the extraction process.
The more evenly distributed the coffee is in the portafilter, the more balanced the flavor of the espresso can ultimately be.
These grinders come pretty close to each other in price. As always at Majesty Coffee, we strive to bring you the best prices for the newest technology in espresso equipment.
We offer the Mahlkonig K30 Air in Black or White to match your decor for $1,900 and the new-and-improved Mahlkonig E65S in Black for $2,200.
So Which Should You Buy?
Choosing between these grinders may be a little difficult as they're fairly similar in many ways. Let's do a quick overview and determine which machine is better suited to different applications.
These grinders can both be great for home users and medium-volume coffee shops, cafes, restaurants, and businesses with high standards for espresso quality.
With its larger hopper and fairly constant fan function, the K30 Air can potentially suit an environment with a slightly higher volume.
With its array of dosage settings, clump reducing technology, and strategic upgrades like the adjustable spout, the E65S might be the optimal solution for more specialized businesses and coffee shops.
For the best prices online, check out the Mahlkonig E65S and K30 Air here on Majesty Coffee...