The first iteration of the Fellow Ode Brew Grinder is well-regarded in the domestic brewing world. However, that’s not to say it isn’t without aspects that could be improved. So now, the company Fellow has launched the second-generation Ode Brew grinder.
On immediately taking the new Fellow coffee grinder from the box, you could struggle to see any difference between the new version and the original. Aesthetically, they look virtually identical – but does that mean the changes implemented are as subtle? And do those changes improve the grinding experience and quality of the finished beverage?
Let’s look at the Fellow Ode Brew Gen 2 to see just how it differs from the original and whether it’s worth considering the upgrade.
Fellow Ode Brew Grinder Gen 2 vs. Gen 1 – What’s New In The Gen 2?
New Ode Gen 2 Burrs
The original Fellow Ode has a solid reputation for the quality of its grinds – they are consistent among several brew methods, including drip coffee, French press, and cold brew. There is an issue, though. Many users noted that it isn’t able to grind fine enough using lightly roasted coffee beans.
Check our review of the original Fellow Ode Brew Grinder.
Like the upgrade’s aesthetic, at first glance, it is hard to see how the new Ode Gen 2 burrs offer an improvement – look at the adjustment dial, and you will still see that it has 31 steps. The difference is under the hood, with newly designed interlocking flat burrs featuring two-stage grinding geometry, allowing them to grind more finely than the original burr set.
If you want a further upgrade, you can invest in higher-end SSP burrs, but they are more expensive than the original and generation two burr sets. In any case, the new burr set is so superior that you will probably not need to upgrade.
One thing to note is that the Ode Gen 2 burrs, although able to grind more finally, are still not designed for espresso brewing.
Coffee Quality – Fellow Ode 2 Burrs vs. Original Burrs
If you weren’t entirely satisfied with the flavor profiles produced by the burrs of the original Fellow Ode, you would likely find significant improvement with the upgrade. Across the range of different brew methods you can grind for, you should have balance, sweetness, and medium clarity. Finer grind settings also increase extraction yield, you can have a more complex cup of coffee.
The balance is the real game changer, as the new burrs will produce excellent coffee with several roast levels and bean types, from light roasts to dark roasts and specialty coffee.
In contrast, the original burrs produced high clarity with more acidity but lacked the finer range for the lighter roast specialty coffee.
New Anti-Static Technology – Less Mess, Lower Retention
One of the biggest issues with the original Fellow Ode was the grind mess it created.
To counter this, the company has added antistatic technology. It works. If you pour coffee grounds from the catch cups from the original and the new generation, you will notice significantly more static mess from the coffee grounds in the original Fellow Ode.
Not only that, but grind retention is also improved. On the original, the grind knocker releases seemingly continuous grounds when you use it. However, far fewer grounds emerge with the upgrade’s grind knocker.
Other Small Changes
Larger Hopper Capacity And Larger Catch Cup
The second generation has a 100g capacity bean hopper – a 20% improvement on the 80g of the original. That allows you to brew larger batches of coffee before refilling it. Because of that, there is also a larger catch cup for larger batch brews.
Catch Cup Lid, Markings And Beep
The lid of the catch cup also has a better fit than the original. Meanwhile, under the lid of the fellow Ode, the markings have been slightly altered to specify the cupping range. Finally, the first generation beeps when you start and stop grinding. Some users find that annoying, and it has been removed in the newer version.
Is It Worth Buying Fellow Ode Gen 2?
If you’re in the market for a new grinder for filter coffee, the Fellow Ode Gen 2 is well worth considering. It offers a straightforward workflow and excellent grind quality across brewing methods, while the machine retains the sleek aesthetic of the original.
Yes, the price is higher than many entry-level grinders. However, compared to many higher-end grinders, it produces to a similar standard for particle distribution of ground coffee.
Is It Worth Upgrading From The Original Fellow Ode Grinder?
The main reason to upgrade is the new burr set, despite other subtle improvements. If you are a light roast drinker, you can buy the new burr set separately and use them in the generation one machine – a good option if you’re happy with most aspects of the original, but would like higher-quality coffee. Similarly, the more expensive SSP burrs can also be used in either machine.
Given that the changes are subtle aside from the burr set, and the aesthetic is almost identical, we recommend buying the upgraded burr set if you have the original machine rather than spending more on the brand-new generation.
How To Replace the Gen 2 Burrs Into The Gen 1 Fellow Ode Grinder?
If replacing the burr set sounds daunting, it needn’t be. The straightforward process requires minimal tools, including a Phillips head screwdriver. It involves removing the correct parts of the machine, starting with the dial and ending with the static burr. You then add the new burr set and replace the parts in the correct order.
If you doubt how to do this, the Fellow Ode website has detailed step-by-step instructions accompanied by an in-depth video tutorial.
The second-generation Fellow Ode is a great example of an improvement thanks to the manufacturers listening to the feedback they have received from their customers. While the aesthetic is almost identical to the original, both subtle and more obvious changes help the quality of the workflow and the coffee produced. Of course, it is the latter point that is the most important. To that end, the improved burr set significantly improves on the original thanks to the new burr set.
The second-generation Fellow Ode is an excellent machine if you don’t own the original. However, the burr set offers such an improvement that we highly recommend buying it separately and enjoying higher-quality coffee if you have the original machine.