Mahlkönig X54 Home Coffee Grinder Review
You have probably seen a Mahlkönig grinder in your favorite coffee shop, even if you didn’t realize it. This Swiss based manufacturer has been famous for their iconic EK43 Grinder as well as their successful E80S Grinder model. Recently, Mahlkönig has entered the home market, with their X54 Home Grinder. This is an all rounder model, with 54mm burrs, that can grind anywhere between espresso, pour over, and french press. Shown below is the heart of the X54, the stainless steel 54mm flat burrs.
The Looks and Features of the X54
There is no mistaking, that the X54 is part of the Mahlkönig lineup. With it’s cylindrical shape and unmistakable portafilter holder, this is a genuine Mahlkönig. The X54 has a curved display, showing several timed recipes, and a round control knob. The control knob changes the timed recipes, and turns the Wifi on or off. This grinder also comes with a magnetically attached grounds tray, which is a nice touch. As mentioned, the portafilter is unmistakably from the house of Mahlkönig, and it is very robust. It can be switched out for a different plate, which is meant to accommodate a grounds catching cup. Finally, the X54 has a chute which is both removable (it’s on a ball joint), and angle adjustable.
Portafilter holder vs Blind Plate
Curved Display with round control knob
Chute on ball joint for adjustability
X54 configured with blind plate for catch cup
X54 configured with portafilter holder
Engineering and Design
Upon opening up the X54, and seeing how it was designed and assembled, I gained more respect for this grinder. What I always like to see are foolproof designs, so that one can only reassemble the grinder the correct way. For example, the gear box is keyed, so it only fits one way. Same goes for the gear box cover. The gear box cover is held onto the gear box with 3 philips screws, and the planetary gear box itself is screwed onto the “sun” gear via two screws.
Gear box calibrated: burrs abut at 1
Motor, Speed, Noise, and Safety
Perhaps a downside of the X54 is the relatively low powered motor. At 120 watts, and turning at 1050 rpms, this motor feels a little under dimensioned compared to the robustness of the rest of the grinder. Even so, it performs its work flawlessly and quietly, grinding at about 1 gram per second for espresso. I like that the motor, gear box, and upper housing are removable by detaching two cables, making access into the cavity of the grinder easy.
Something I really appreciate about this grinder, and similarly the Eureka Specialita, is its quietness. This X54 is truly a quiet grinder, which is great for the early riser, who doesn’t want to wake up family members. In my tests so far, the 54mm burrs grind espresso at about 1 g/s, so a dose takes about 16 seconds.
Finally, this grinder includes a nice safety feature, in the form of a reed switch! As shown in the bottom right photo, the reed switch has to be made, in order for the grinder to grind. The only way for this switch to be made is if the top cover is on, and the bean hopper is mounted, so that no little fingers can make their way near the burrs. Hats off to Mahlkönig for thinking of this safety feature!
Mahlkönig logo and top cover
Motor with view of declumper
Top view of installed burrs
On/Off switch and fuse reset
Results: retention and grind quality
This grinder does provide a nice fluffy and fine grind, ideal for espresso. However, I did have to calibrate the gear box, to have a little more resolution in dialing in the grind. The declumper itself is a white piece of thick rubber, that looks like a tongue. It does a good job of declumping and removing static, however I wonder if it inhibits the coffee grounds from exiting the grinder. The reason is because initial retention tests show high retention of 2.5 grams. But this may also be due to the grinder requiring the weight of beans from above to push down through the burrs. Single dosing may therefore not be this grinder’s forte.
– Dimensions: 190 mm x 425 mm x 280 mm
– 120 Watt motor, turning at 1050 rpm
– 54mm stainless steel flat burrs
– Weight: 5.1 kg
– Wifi and app
– Automatic standby
While is is a nice grinder as it is, I do have a couple of things I might have done differently. Instead of including a wifi module and app, I probably would have opted for a slightly larger motor, just to have it dimensioned a bit stronger. Omitting the exchangeability of the portafilter holder plate for the blind plate would also have saved some manufacturing costs, to be able to offer this grinder at a lower price. I do not know how often consumers will be exchanging plates, or connecting to their grinder via the Wifi app to check the shot counters.
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