Femobook A68 is probably one the most interesting grinder releases this year. It’s being released in November.
It’s rare to see a completely unique and innovative design among burr grinders, but this has it.
It’s a 68 mm conical burr grinder, and it looks like the 1Zpresso K Max had a child with the Lagom Mini or Weber Key.
The company is based in Taiwan, and some employees have previously worked for 1zpresso, so the expectations are pretty high.
Disclaimer: I received a review unit for free, but the company has had no influence on review/editorial process.
About the brand
Femobook is a new brand on the scene.
The first product, the A68 (named after the size of the burrs), looks a lot like an 1Zpresso product.
However, the company insists that this is an independent brand, even though there has been some confusion surrounding the matter.
The information I got from the brand rep (who previously worked for 1Zpresso) is that the owner is a friend of a previous executive at 1zpresso.
I have heard a similar story about the Kingrinder brand, which produces grinders eerily similar to 1Zpresso.
Judging from the design of the Femobook A68, it looks like the company also has access to the same manufacturing facilities as 1Zpresso and maybe even some designers.
The Femobooks calibration system is identical to the unique design used on the brand-new 1Zpresso X-Pro.
- Unique design: The grinder uses magnets in all the places where regular grinders use screws. This makes for a very fast and enjoyable disassembly process. You can take the grinder apart for deep cleaning in 1-2 minutes. It’s very simple and intuitive. I wish all grinder manufacturers did this. It’s a game-changer!
- Low retention: The grinder doesn’t have a chute; instead, the ground coffee falls directly from the burrs and into the catch cup. This makes for extremely low retention. Practically speaking, this is “zero retention”, even though you occasionally might need 0.1 or 0.2 grams.
Update: When I initially tested the grinder, I used only light/medium roasts. However, after trying the grinder with a dark/traditional espresso roast a few times I realized that quite a bit of static is produced, which leads to big amounts of retention in the chute area. RDT is definitely necessary in this scenario.
- Fluffy grounds: The grinder also produces exceptional fluffy grounds since there’s no chute, declumper, or impeller to mess up things. The Baratza Sette has probably been the previous “king of fluffy grounds,” but IMO, Femobook A68 beats it by a tiny margin.
A68 Flavor profile
Femobook A68 is built around a set of huge conical burrs. These burrs are different from other 68 mm conical burrs on the market. Design-wise they look similar to the burrs used in the Comandante and K-Max, except being a lot bigger and having 8 spokes, instead of 7.
This burr set produces full-bodied espresso shots with decent flavor clarity and a nice balance. I have been comparing it to the 1Zpresso K-Max in the testing phase, but the A68 was consistently better.
Regarding manual brew, the reverse has been the case; I preferred K-Max in testing. It does produce a relatively clean and nice cup of coffee, though. Especially considering it’s an electric, conical burr grinder. This can be explained by the low RPM of the grinder. It’s only barely faster than a hand grinder. If I had to guess, I would say that it’s somewhere around 80 RPM.
The main downside of the Femobook is that it comes with a huge power supply, similar to the Lagom Mini and Flair 58. This is an issue if you use the grinder on your kitchen counter with no place to hide it.
However, you can probably hide the big plastic square away conveniently if you have a dedicated coffee bar/station.
Many people would find the logo too obtrusive on an otherwise striking design.
If you want a unique, high-quality, easy-to-use conical burr grinder, then the Femobook A68 is worth checking out.
It’s not perfect, but it manages to get a lot of things right, even being best in class in terms of retention, workflow, and the purely functional aspects of design.
➡️ For more details: Check out my YouTube review.
➡️ The Femobook will be available for pre-order from the 1st of November on this website.