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[BBQ] Guru, and Digi [Q] and Stoker, oh my! Confsd

SomedayMommySomedayMommy Posts: 193
edited 11:29AM in EggHead Forum
Oh my dear lord - I have started research on a temp control, and I am BAFFLED and totally overwhelmed. I know that these products have been reviewed over and over, but I have yet to find a post looking for what I'm looking for. If I throw out what I'm looking for, could someone PLEASE recommend the brand and the model?

1. Fan which kicks on and off automatically to reg. temp
2. Excellent temp control throughout cook
3. Minimal - no lot of bells & whistles needed/wanted
4. The cheapest of the products that will do #s 1,2, and 3 above and is reliable and lasts. I WILL pay for quality, but the less I pay the better.

I mean, I literally want an automatic fan and a probe to measure dome temperature, and a simple control panel (I assume the control panel is always necessary for temp setting).

Thank you SOOOO much in advance!
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Comments

  • okjimmiedokjimmied Posts: 4
    This is the one I'm using and I love it. It keeps a very consistent temp and is very simple to operate. It also has a really nice LED temp readout that can be seen from quite a ways away.

    http://www.nakedwhiz.com/productreviews/auber/auber1.htm

    OKJIMMIED
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  • SomedayMommySomedayMommy Posts: 193
    Thanks!! And thanks to your post, I learned what the competitors are, too in the "simple" market. Looks like it will either be the Auber1 or the NanoQ for me!
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  • boston_stokerboston_stoker Posts: 794
    BBQ Guru makes the DigiQ as well as other models.
    http://www.thebbqguru.com/categories/BBQ-Guru-Controls-and-Packages/

    Stoker is another great product. You can control over Internet with your phone, but this may be a feature you do not want.
    https://www.rocksbarbque.com/

    In general, these are called power draft systems.

    Also, there are cubic feet per minute fan power options. 5 cfm is plenty. You do not need a 10 cfm.
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  • The Naked WhizThe Naked Whiz Posts: 7,780
    I would go with the BBQ Guru DigiQ if you want quality and simplicity. I think you will find over time that having a display is worth the extra money.
    The Naked Whiz
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  • N.E. EggerN.E. Egger Posts: 39
    I have the Pitmaster iq. Have used it on two overnight butt cooks along with a maverick 273. Had no problems and the temp stayed within 5* either way throught the cook.
    http://www.pitmasteriq.com/
    Glenn
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  • SomedayMommySomedayMommy Posts: 193
    THANK YOU! Great info...All the Qs made it easier - knowing that all the Qs are made by Barbecue Guru
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  • Grandpas GrubGrandpas Grub Posts: 14,226
     
    You will find most on the forum will mostly recommend the Guru products - DigiQ. This is a great product and using the Maverick ET732 (another $60) makes remote monitoring a real brease with the q2.

    The second most popular is the Stoker - more features and expandability.

    There are two new lower priced controllers available and both are getting very good reviews. Not a lot of forum people have purchased them but the folks that have bought are giving very high reviews. Again add the Maverick ET-373 and those lower priced controllers very nice.

    If you are sure you want simplicity, only contorl/monitor 1 egg and 1 meat then look at the q2 and or take a close look at the Aurber or iQue 110 (links are below). There are some posts about the Aurber and iQue 110 on the forum.

    Here is my take on the q2 and Stoker. Hope you find it useful in making your decision.

    Ton's of info on this can be found by doing a search.

    I have and use both the Stoker and DigiQ (q2). Both are great. If you are "only" going to monitor 1 meat and the pit it really doesn't matter which unit you get.

    If you take the time to read the manual on the Stoker it is as simple 2 use as the DigiQ (q2). If you are doing a second cook the same as the first, nothing needs to be changed on either unit. If you need a higher temperature on the pit and or a different meat temperature you need to push some buttons on either unit to get the new settings. Nothing harder than that.

    Beyond that, for me, the Stoker is a better choice. I can control multiple eggs and monitor multiple foods on almost any number of eggs at the same time. I can control all those items remotely on any device that has internet connectivity. The stoker can email and tweet the information if desired.

    If I have a temperature or pit probe go out for one reason or another on the Stoker I simply assign a different probe food or pit to control the blower. Ont he q2 you need to have a probe on hand or buy a new probe and wait for delivery.

    Service is great from both companies. It seems a phone call works best with the Stoker folks.

    Labor day I cooked brisket on the large egg using the Stoker and 2 Boston Butts on the medium using the q2. Obviously the q2 could only monitor 1 of the Boston butts. I then added 3 extra probes to the Stoker when went over to the medium egg and monitored the q2 cook. 1 probe for the pit and 1 probe each in the 2 Boston Butts.

    I then went into the computer and pulled up the Stokler program and monitored both cooks on the same screen. I could change any control settings on the stoker (the large egg) and monitor all probes with alarms on both eggs. The Stoker could not change the settings on the q2 obviously but it could monitor. My son turned on his Iphone and was also watching and could control the settings if needed. It turned out that I needed to bump the temperature on the brisket and that was done from my sons Iphone.

    If you think you will need to expand at some point in time and/or like techie stuff get the Stoker.

    I bought the q2 and then decided I wanted to play around with the temperatures via computer and ended up buying the Stoker. I haven't sold either one as of yet. For my use if I got rid of one of the controllers it would be the DigiQ.

    If you end up deciding you want the DigiQ then take a look at the Auberins controller. I have heard from several forum members who really like it. The overall cost was about $120. www.auberins.com
    Another Low cost controller is the iQue 110 again recommended by forum members. http://www.pitmasteriq.com/

    Hope this sheds a little more light with your search.


    GG
    [url][/url]
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  • SomedayMommySomedayMommy Posts: 193
    I was looking at both the Nano and the DigiQ (I guess "II" has been replaced with "DX"

    I am looking at the extra features, and I'm thinking - hmmm...a display, a meat probe, the ramp down?

    Sounding like it would be worth the extra $64
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  • SomedayMommySomedayMommy Posts: 193
    Thank you so much for the info!
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  • SomedayMommySomedayMommy Posts: 193
    Thanks! I pretty much had it narrowed dow to a Q or Auber...but thanks for the post!
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  • SomedayMommySomedayMommy Posts: 193
    A DigiQ DX with the 4 cfm fan (enough I hope?) and the 8ft probes. WOW. Amazing what happens when you put a cc# in and just click "order." Then you're like, "OMG! WHAT did I do?" :laugh:

    I'm sure I will be very happy with it, and I just hope I won't have an post-purchase dissonance!
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  • Carolina QCarolina Q Posts: 8,011
    Stacie, the cable that connects the blower to the DX controller is a bit less than 6' long. Which means the 8' probes are about 2' longer than you can use. I made that mistake with mine. The money doesn't matter, it's only $2-3, but it's just not needed. Unless you buy the 6' extension cord for the blower. And then, THAT is too long.

    Just cooked a butt using my DX though. Lit the lump, installed the blower, set the grid temp at 250° and clipped the temp probe to the dome thermometer. Put the butt in at 11PM Sat nite, closed the dome and went to bed. Checked the temp when I woke up Sun morning. Still 250°. Checked the meat temp around noon. Pulled the butt at 2. The ENTIRE time, it looked exactly like this... :)

    5542875829_d4e3d8bd5d_b.jpg

    But it probably would have without the crutch. :laugh:
    Michael 
    Central Connecticut 

    "Avoid at all costs that vile spew you see rotting in oil in screwtop jars. Too lazy to peel fresh? You don't deserve to eat garlic." Bourdain
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  • Bobby-QBobby-Q Posts: 1,993
    You can't go wrong with the Digi-Q. It is rock solid, easy to set, and it will run the temperature until you run out of lump.
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  • SomedayMommySomedayMommy Posts: 193
    Thanks! That's precisely what I went with!
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  • EggNeatoEggNeato Posts: 19
    Grandpas Grub, Thanks for the detailed information on the Stoker. After evaluating the options I think I'm going to go with the Stoker. I'm an IT guy and like the fact that I can monitor my cooks remotely so that was a huge plus for me. I also like the expandability as well.

    I was thinking if I get the 10ft cords I could possibly keep the Stoker in my garage and run the cords outside so I don't have to worry about it getting wet in the event of rain.

    I also saw a good deal on an ASUS WL-330gE portable router which is small and I'm hoping will work well with the Stoker. Using DD-WRT at the moment, but thinking of switching to Open-WRT soon.

    Looks like fun!
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