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The Difference Between Doser and Doserless Grinders

The Difference Between Doser and Doserless Grinders

People who absolutely love coffee and cannot live without it are aware that nothing beats a cup of freshly-brewed coffee with fresh ground beans. Coffee is food for the soul. It is one of the best reasons to be alive.

A large number of the population cannot function in the morning without their daily cup of coffee. We have nothing against this. In fact, we completely understand where your coffee obsession may be coming from.

However, brewing the best cup of coffee takes time, patience, and loads of practice. What many people do not realize is that brewing the perfect coffee also requires technique and knowledge.

Making coffee is an art. Not everyone has mastered this yet. You must try different grinding techniques and learn the difference between the various coffee machines out there.

Whether commercial or home-based, coffee grinders play an important part regardless of what kind of coffee setup you may have. However, coffee grinders differ from each other.

The two most popular ones are doser and doserless grinders. In this article, you will learn about the different types of grinders, along with some other things that must be kept in mind when trying to make top-notch coffee.

The Difference Between Doser and Doserless Grinders

coffee grinder


In a nutshell, what is the difference between doser and doserless grinders? Doser grinders come with a container that catches the coffee once it has been grounded.

The bottom end of the container contains a doser mechanism. This separates the coffee grounds into different, similar-sized compartments.

By flipping a lever, one dose of coffee grounds is put into the container you want. This could be put in a drip-machine filter basket or an espresso machine portafilter.

On the other hand, doserless coffee grinders use a chute to put coffee grounds directly into a container. You can decide the amount of coffee that needs to be put in by working the power switch of the grinder.

This allows you to control exactly how much coffee is dispensed. However, you will need to know exactly how much coffee to grind without the help of a measure.

Doser Grinder vs Doserless Grinder

coffee grinder

Dosers are used on espresso grinders so that coffee is grounded using high-volume accounts. This means that it does not need to be ground for every shot. This helps save time as you can make the maximum number of drinks you want without the machine slowing down.

However, the coffee’s flavor may not be top-notch. Since the coffee is pre-grinded, the top of the coffee is vulnerable to the surrounding air for a longer period of time. This oxidizes the coffee oils.

It will take you approximately 20-minutes to notice that the coffee has oxidized. This results in the flavor of the coffee being half as strong.

A doser grinder can be of great help, given that you can use all the previously ground beans before they oxidize. If it is left out for more than 20-minutes, you must toss it out, especially if you want to enjoy the flavor of your coffee. If you do not throw it away, your espresso shot will have a dull flavor and barely any crema.

Doserless grinders are another kind of grinder. They are also known as on-demand grinders. The best part about this is that the doserless grinder is a low-waste machine.

Moreover, each shot of espresso comes with a wonderful flavor because the beans are freshly grounded. These grinders are also quieter and faster, which is why they are being adopted commercially and in households.

You may find more on-demand grinders than doser grinders simply because they can make a number of cups of espresso in a short period of time.

Advantages of Doser Grinders

Mazzer Kony Electronic Commercial Coffee Grinder

Mazzer Kony Electronic Commercial Coffee Grinder

Here are the advantages of doser grinders:

1.    Clean and Tidy

Doser grinders come with grounds containers. This means that they have different sets of moving parts as opposed to doserless grinders. The ground coffee does not fall out of the doser and dirty the countertop.

2.    Less Static

Doser grinders do not allow much static when grinding coffee beans. Even though there is some amount of static, it is far less than doserless grinders.

3.    More Coffee Grinds

When you are filling the bucket, sometimes extra coffee grounds get dispensed. However, you do not have to worry. Usually, you can open the chamber and throw the grounds in so that it can be used in the next dispense.

4.    Flexibility

If you are running a commercial business, you will be well aware of when your rush time is. This could be at 8.30 am or at 1 pm.

Regardless of the time, you will know when to grind off the correct amount of coffee. You can keep this ready for rush time so that it is easier to cope with the influx of customers.

5.    Low Cost

Compared to doserless grinders, dose grinders will cost less, keeping in mind the burr size and motor wattage.

Disadvantages of Doser Grinders

doser grinder

1.    Stale Coffee

A doser grinder does not grind coffee into a portafilter. This means that you may end up grinding way too much coffee.

The leftover coffee runs the chance of becoming stale. There is a setting that allows you to grind the coffee for a number of seconds so that the ground coffee can be used for a double shot of espresso.

The coffee can then be dosed out of the doser. All you have to do is pull the doser so that the grinds come out clear.

Keep in mind that each coffee bean will grind differently, depending on the setting. This can affect the grind time. Hence, it is best to experiment and figure out what works best for you.

2.    Effectiveness of the Doser

When it comes to doser grinders, the vanes sweep all the coffee right out of the doser. This leaves behind grinds that need to be brushed out to completely clean the area.

You must look for a top-notch grinder that comes with an efficient sweeper to get rid of all the coffee grinds.

3.    Coffee Dosage Varies

Dosers come with vanes that divide the amount of ground coffee into compartments. The vanes usually dose 6.75 grams of coffee. However, this only happens if the doser is half full.

If the doser is not half full, the grams of coffee can vary. Keep in mind that the normal dose of coffee should be approximately 7 grams.

Advantages of Doserless Grinders

Nuova Simonelli MDJ On-Demand Commercial Coffee Grinder

Nuova Simonelli MDJ On-Demand Commercial Coffee Grinder

Here are a few advantages of doserless grinders:

1.    Grind as Much as You Need

Unlike dose grinders, you can grind as much coffee as you need with doserless grinders. This means that if you make 2 cups of coffee in the morning, there will not be much coffee waste gathered up in the doser.

This helps those who want their coffee to be fresh at all times. No more drinking stale coffee.

2.    A Variety of Brewing Techniques Can be Used

In the doserless grinder, the portafilter guide can be removed. This is a metal ring located below the sprout where the ground coffee escapes. Here, you can place a container.

This method allows you to grind coffee beans in a variety of coffee brewing techniques, including drip and French press. The leftover coffee can be stored in an airtight container and put into the refrigerator.

Disadvantages of Doserless Grinders

doserless grinder

Here are a few disadvantages of doserless grinders:

1.    Constant Adjustments

The grind settings in doserless grinders can only be changed when the burrs are spinning, and the motor is on. Otherwise, the burrs will clog because of the coffee grinds, making it more difficult to produce a fine grind. In fact, this problem is common in most espresso grinders.

Most doserless models need three hands to deal with this. While one hand will need to push the front button-down, the other will need to push down the step adjustment holder. Finally, the third hand will rotate the hopper in an attempt to reset the settings.

To make things easier, all you need to do is change the front push button on the model you are using so that it does not need to be continuously withheld to allow the grinder to work.

2.    Takes Longer to Make Espresso

Since you have to grind every single espresso shot, you will take much longer to make a couple of espressos. Moreover, when you are grinding the coffee into the portafilter, it is losing a couple of degrees of temperature every minute.

This may not seem like a big deal, but the truth is that it is affecting the taste of your coffee. As an alternative, you can grind all available espresso beans and put them into a container. Then, put the coffee in the filter compartment of the portafilter with the help of a scooper. 

3.    Can be Messy

Doserless coffee grinders can be super messy. This is mainly because the portafilter tends to overfill, or the grinds pop out of the filter basket during the process of grinding the coffee.

The static electricity causes the coffee grounds to go astray, falling in every direction. However, if you do not care about the counter and can quickly wipe it down each time this happens, the doserless grinder can suit your purpose.

Flat Burrs or Conical Burrs- Which One Should You Get?

grinding discs


While this may be a rather difficult question to answer, keep in mind that both burrs can produce wonderful coffee that you will fall in love with.

Flat burrs have the ability to spin faster. This means that coffee is made faster.

Moreover, the flat burrs allow the coffee to be heated quickly and the grinder to work faster as well. This makes flat burrs a wonderful option for small to medium cafes that need to serve coffee to their customers quickly, and time is short.

Once they press the button, the coffee will be ground up quickly. However, there will be some noise that you will have to deal with.

On the other hand, conical burrs are slower. Their slow speed means that they produce coffee slower, and less heat is generated in this process. Hence, households with a larger family or big cafes with a huge clientele can benefit from conical burrs.

If you need to grind fifteen pounds of espresso within an hour, you need specialized equipment that can move at your pace and keep up with the volume. However, that’s not the only requirement- it should also be able to produce great ground coffee that does not have any charred flavor.

When figuring out what burr would best be suited to your needs, consider the daily pounds of coffee that you will consume. Moreover, keep an approximate estimate of the number of coffee grounds that will be produced in an hour.

How Big Should a Burr Be?



  • A medium-sized café can do well with a 63mm conical burr. This means that even with an influx of people, it will be able to handle 8 to 15 pounds of coffee every single day. You could choose the Kony in this case.
  • A large case would require conical burrs of 71mm. This means that more than 15 pounds would be produced in one day, with a huge influx of customers coming in for the daily fix of caffeine.


  • If you are planning to get a flat burr to use at home or to use in a small café, 50 mm of burrs will work perfectly. This means that you will be preparing lower than 25 coffees in one day.
  • If you are operating a small to medium-sized café, you should choose the 64mm burrs. This means that lower than 8 pounds of coffee will be divided over 24-hours. You could opt for Super Jolly in this case.
  • A medium to large-sized café would require 83mm of flat burrs to function. This means that 8 to 15 pounds of coffee are divided over the duration of 24-hours with bursts here and there. In this case, the Major would work well.
  • For a big café, a 100 mm+ flat burr will do the job. However, keep in mind that this will be applicable to a café producing more than 15 pounds of coffee every day for every grinder they have.

When Should Burrs be Changed?

espresso grinder

Burrs should be changed when they become dull. However, we cannot provide you with an exact date of when this will happen. It differs from one burr to another.

The coffee you use will predict how fast the burr will become dull. For example, even though darker roasts can be ground easily because of their soft texture, they cause clogging in grinder burrs.

On the other hand, lighter roasts can be difficult to grind. This is because they have a higher content of water and are denser by texture.

The burr you use, whether conical or flat, will depend on how fast they deteriorate. Keep in mind that the geometry and steel of the burr both play an important part in determining this.

Usually, a 64mm burr that is flat will start to dull after it has ground approximately 800 pounds of beans. An 83mm burr can produce more than 1400 pounds of coffee. After that, it will become dull.

If you want to test the sharpness of your burr, drag your thumb on the teeth of the burr. The burr can be considered sharp if it cuts your fingernail.

However, if it fails to cut the nail and simply slides across the teeth of the flat burr, you can safely assume that it has become dull.

The Difference Between Stepped vs. Stepless

grind adjustment

Coffee grinders are known to be stepped or stepless. If you want to figure out the difference between the two, all you have to do is notice the adjustment of the grind.

You must check to see if there is a pin on the grinder that requires you to pull it out of a lever that needs to be pushed so that the grind can be adjusted.

If the grinder has steps that are already present that you need to use to alter the grind, it is safe to assume that you are dealing with a stepped grinder.

The best part about stepped grinders is that unless they are moved intentionally, these grinders cannot move by themselves. This means that the grinder will stay put unless you change it yourself.

However, the grinder can only be adjusted gradually. You will need to adjust it to point A or B but will not be able to put it at a spot between A and B.

Basically, you have to compromise some amount of control if you are looking for reliability. Modern grinders are made in a way that the steps are close together. In this case, you cannot differentiate between points A and B.

Stepless grinders, on the other hand, have loads of adjustability. The machine does not have any limitations, which means that you can opt for any particle size.

This is a huge advantage for coffee lovers who want to brew the ultimate cup of coffee. The only disadvantage is that the tiniest vibration of the grinder or an incidental push of the grind adjustment can lead to you having to say goodbye to your ultimate setting.

You need to figure out if this is a deal-breaker for you. If you want your coffee to be absolutely perfect, you will benefit from a grinder that is stepless. This will allow you to have control over all your operations.

However, if you are more anxious about getting the maximum number of coffees out as soon as possible, a stepped grinder will do you good. It all depends on what you are searching for!


coffee grinder

All these factors can help you understand the difference between doser and doserless grinders and stepped and stepless grinders. After all, if a coffee machine is equipment that you will be using every day, you must understand how it functions.

You may be a little hesitant to get an espresso grinder because of the money it will cost you, but remember, you must serve good coffee. It is important that you invest in the correct equipment for the job and ensure that you meet the expectations of those around you.

If you are looking for a cheaper option, perhaps you can get a couple of espresso grinders to spread the load. You could opt for a light roast coffee maker and a dark roast coffee maker.

If you are unsure at any point, consult a technician who will be able to guide you better. Remember, listen to their advice as they only want what’s best for you.

They will recommend you a coffee maker that is perfect for your needs and will produce the best coffee you have ever had. As long as you understand the difference between doser and doserless grinders, you are good to go!

Cafe Last is a one-stop shop for all your coffee equipment needs online. Browse our range of brands and products today!

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