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Fellow Ode vs Baratza Encore (2021): Should You Go For A Smart Or Basic Coffee Grinder?

Because we’re all stuck at home these days, many coffee drinkers have turned to home brewing to satisfy their caffeine cravings. If you’re one of them, then you’ve probably thought about upgrading your grinder so that you can bring your espressos and pourovers to cafe-level quality. Two amazing grinders you can look into are the Fellow Ode and the Baratza Encore, both well-loved by baristas and home brewers alike. To help you decide which one’s better for your coffee needs, here’s an in-depth comparison that takes their design, performance, and additional features into consideration.

Fellow Ode vs Baratza Encore Comparison Chart

ModelFellow OdeBaratza Encore
 Amazon productAmazon product
PriceAmazon productAmazon product
Burrs64mm flat burrs40mm conical burrs
MaterialsStainless steel burrs, aluminum body, plastic load bin and baseSteel burrs, glass-filled thermoplastic gears, plastic internal parts
Grinds Capacity80g142g
MotorSmart Speed PID motorDC motor
Auto-Stop FeatureYesNo
Grind Speed1,400RPM450RPM
Dimensions23.9 cm x 10.5 cm x 24.15 cm12 cm x 35 cm x 16 cm
Weight4.5kg3.1kg

Design

The Fellow Ode and the Baratza Encore are both well-built but sport very different looks.

Fellow Ode vs Baratza Encore design
The Fellow Ode (left) is sleek and stylish while the Baratza Encore (right) is durable.

The Fellow Ode is as stylish as they come, sporting an all-black matte finish and an ultra sleek silhouette. It’s not just about looks though because it feels sturdy too and boasts of little details that make the grinding experience extra enjoyable. For starters, its catching cup is magnetized so it clicks into place which feels quite satisfying. As for the massive knob that greets you up front, it’s as smooth as butter and feels very luxurious to rotate. And to keep things as classy as possible, the Fellow Ode keeps things quiet. It’s not silent but the little sound it makes is not annoying by any means and will actually add to the ambiance of your coffee corner.

As for the Baratza Encore, it’s not discreet like the Ode as you can tell by its huge hopper and slightly bulky body. But what it lacks in sleekness it makes up for with durability and functionality. Unlike its predecessors, it sports an improved gearbox which prevents jams and internal damage and allows for a quieter grinding experience. In addition, the Encore has a lower RPM and is usually used for medium to coarse grinds so you can expect to get plenty of use out of it. As for parts, the burrs are steel and the gears are glass-filled thermoplastic, both of which are strong and sturdy materials.

While the Ode and the Encore have very different designs, they do share something in common although it’s not exactly a positive thing. These grinders can get staticky and loose grounds tend to stick to them, making them quite annoying to clean. The Ode has a lever on the side that you can flick to knock off the particles but it’s not very effective.

Performance

The Fellow Ode is able to produce much more consistent particle sizes than the Baratza Encore.

Fellow Ode vs Baratza Encore performance
The Fellow Ode (left) has flat burrs while the Baratza Encore (right) has conical burrs.

The Fellow Ode has its top-notch 64mm flat burrs to thank for its amazing grinding performance but there’s something else that contributes greatly to its success. Powered by a Smart Speed PID motor, the Ode’s burrs are able to run at a consistent speed of 1,400 RPM. They never speed up or slow down despite fluctuating resistance in coffee beans, resulting in very even particle sizes. Fellow points out that other grinders don’t have this kind of technology and so their burrs tend to run at inconsistent speeds throughout the grinding process. This results in inconsistent particle sizes and ultimately bad tasting cups of coffee.

Which leads us to the Baratza Encore. Unfortunately, it does produce fines (dust-like particles) which are considered an inconsistency. However, the amount of fines on the Encore isn’t as bad compared to that of other entry-level grinders. Also, you can always use a sifter if you really can’t stand fines but it’s not a necessary step for the average user. Fines aside, the Encore is a respectable grinder and is considered one of the best in its price range. One of the best things about it is the fact that it lets you choose from 40 grind size options. This means that whatever your preferred brewing method, whether V60, AeroPress, or French Press, the Encore can give you the correct grind size you need.

However, it’s important to note that both the Ode and the Encore aren’t capable of grinding for espresso. While there are ways to make these models grind finer for espresso, you run the risk of shortening their lifespan and it’s just not worth it.

Additional Features

Both the Fellow Ode and the Baratza Encore have features that make the grinding process better.

Fellow Ode vs Baratza Encore features
The Fellow Ode (left) has auto-stop while the Baratza Encore (right) has a calibration system.

The Fellow Ode is proving to be one of the most clever grinders around because aside from its smart motor, it also has an auto-stop feature. This means you don’t have to stand around and wait for all of your beans to finish grinding as the Ode will automatically stop once it’s done. Another great thing about the Ode is its small footprint which should come as great news for those who have limited space in their kitchen. Just to give you a better idea of how compact it is, it takes up less space on your counter top than the typical toaster.

As for the Baratza Encore, it may be basic but it has a couple of special features up its sleeve too. For starters, it has a calibration system that allows users to adjust it just like how you would a commercial grinder. It’s the only grinder in its price range that has this feature so that’s a pretty sweet deal. In addition, its DC motor and gear speed reducers work in tandem to make sure that your beans never get too hot during the grinding process which could release precious oils.

Verdict

The Fellow Ode wins over the Baratza Encore for its smart technology and ability to produce consistent results.

Amazon product

If espressos are your drink of choice in the morning, we hate to break it to you but neither the Fellow Ode or the Baratza Encore can grind fine. But if your intention is to improve your pourover, AeroPress, cold brew, and French Press coffee, then both of these grinders will help do just that.

If you’re able to allocate a bigger budget for a grinder, we recommend the Ode over the Baratza because its smart technology is able to produce much more consistent particle sizes which plays a huge role in brewing good coffee. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that the Ode is the epitome of class and will look amazing in any coffee corner.

As for the Encore, it’s not a bad choice at all and is definitely one of the best in its price range. It’s not the most consistent grinder but it’s not a huge deal and can be easily forgiven given its affordable price tag.

FAQs

๐Ÿ“Œ Which one can grind for espresso, the Fellow Ode or the Baratza Encore?

Neither the Fellow Ode nor the Baratza Encore can grind for espresso. While there are ways to make them grind finer, you run the risk of shortening their lifespan.

๐Ÿ“Œ What’s so special about the Fellow Ode?

Baristas and home brewers love the Fellow Ode for its sleek design, luxurious feel, consistent performance, smart features, and compact silhouette.

๐Ÿ“Œ Is the Baratza Encore a good grinder?

Yes, the Baratza Encore is a decent grinder and is considered one of the best in its price range. Designed with 40 grind size options, you can use it for a wide variety of coffee drinks.

๐Ÿ“Œ Which one should you buy, the Fellow Ode or the Baratza Encore?

If you’re able to shell out more, we recommend the Fellow Ode although the Baratza Encore is a good cheaper alternative.

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Denise Jose

Senior Editor at Compare Before Buying. Researcher and yoga teacher passionate about article writing, photography, wellness, and mindfulness.