Author Topic: The Meater - Review  (Read 579 times)

Gilwell

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The Meater - Review
« on: July 23, 2017, 04:49:40 PM »
Background: Had my SI2 for about 2 1/2 years (love it) and been smoking for about 35 years.

I was an original backer of the Meater and I received my single unit about a month or so ago. I hadn't planned on waiting so long to try it out, but there were a couple of minor things the Meater folks forgot to mention. 1. Not ALL IOS products are supported. 2. No app is available for the Amazon Fire tablet. I spent ages trying to pair the Meater probe to my old iPad 2 without any success. I emailed them and they told me the iPad 2 wasn't supported. So I asked about my Fire tablet. I was told that currently there was no app for it - but maybe some day!
I asked whether they could be more specific but they never bothered to reply. I've found that there customer support is pretty hit or miss -  sometimes they  respond, sometimes they don't. Oh well...
So I did a little research and found that there was a way to load Google Play Store apps on Amazon products. Go online and search for the Meater APK file. Download to your computer hard drive. Hook the Fire tablet up to your computer via a USB cable. Copy/paste the APK file onto the Fire tablet. Then install the file and then the Meater app is ready to go! Sounds complicated but actually took less than 5 minutes.
So yesterday I prepped a turkey breast and stuck the Meater probe into it. Put the breast into the SI2 and set it to 250. Turned on the Fire tablet and, sure enough, it recognized the Meater. I set the app up for Turkey Breast and stepped back into the house. Everything was great until I closed the front door. NO SIGNAL!!! Open front door. Connection reestablished. Close door again - no signal. Now, from my recliner to the SI is about 10'. It was 97 yesterday in Alabama so leaving the door open was NOT an option!
Then I remembered reading about using other portable devices in conjunction with the Meater. So out came the old iPad and sure enough it could receive the WiFi signal from the Fire tablet. Only bad thing was the Fire tablet needed to stay out in the front yard!
The Meater app tries to estimate when the meat will be cooked. Right now that feature isn't very accurate. I had the target temp set at 165, but at 162 the app told me the turkey breast was ready! Then it told me the meat was now resting - which, of course, it wasn't. When the probe registered 165, I went out and checked the breast with an instant read thermometer. 165 was accurate where the Meater probe was but the other side showed 158-160 (the breast had fallen on its side and the Meater probed side was closest to the heat). So I gave it about another 15 minutes.
Obviously this is where you folks waiting on the 3 probe units will benefit.
It was nice not having to thread wires down the smoke hole. However, on over night cooks I will stick to the Maverick. And I probably wouldn't leave my tablet outside in bad weather.
The app lets you see a real time graph of your cook. The graph showed me what I've always known - the SI2 has about a 30 degree swing either side of the set temp. Not a big deal to me and my food is always great.
I will give the Meater a few more tries but right now it seems more of a novelty than anything.
* Oh, the turkey breast was great, by the way!

Jim

Limey

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Re: The Meater - Review
« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2017, 04:58:45 PM »
Totally needless complexity IMO. I often don't even bother to use my Auber. Thanks for the update Jim, you have saved me some $.
Roger from the Florida Keys.
Two SI#3s, both with switched bypass and Aubers(different locations), Viking, Jenn Aire & five TEC infra red grills. Recently acquired UDS.

old sarge

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Re: The Meater - Review
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2017, 11:31:30 PM »
Welcome to the forum Jim. And your review/write-up of the Meater should prove valuable to those trying to decide of they should get one.
David from Arizona
SI 3D
CS 066 (retired to my son's home)
Lodge Sportsman Grill
Weber kettle
Ducane Meridian 42 inch Grill
US Army 70 - 95

SconnieQ

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Re: The Meater - Review
« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2017, 11:38:19 PM »
Thanks for the review! I backed the Meater block, so hopefully some kinks might get worked out before that ships (if ever). The bluetooth of the single probes seems to work poorly from reviews I've heard so far. Even though many of their updates highlighted the bluetooth distance. Hopefully the wifi/cloud version of the blocks will resolve that. I'm more concerned about the accuracy and durability of the probes and the electronics. With all of the wifi options out there, bluetooth doesn't interest me anymore, even though I put up with my Maverick dropping the connection constantly if I get too far away.
Kari from Madison WI "77 Square Miles Surrounded by Reality"
SI Model #1 with "Libby the dog" poultry skin eating accessory
Weber Smokey Mountain (are we still friends?), Weber Kettle Grill (stop complaining WSM, I still have a chance)
Anova WiFi Precision Cooker (sous vide)

TmanEater

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Re: The Meater - Review
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2017, 10:04:16 PM »
I still enjoy my HeaterMeter (http://smokinitforums.com/index.php?topic=2765.msg22315#msg22315) and have built a few extras for sale/backup. I also got into the Meater kickstarter campaign and am still waiting for my meater block and multiple probes. I can't believe they are nearly 2 years beyond their target. I'm still curious to see the product though. More time will tell.
Smokin Newbie starting Dec. 2014... Learning Lazy-Q As Fast as I can!
Smokin-It 2, HeaterMeter PID
Monitor my live smokes at http://bbq.tonylyne.com

Tony from Marion, IA

Libohunden

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Re: The Meater - Review
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2017, 11:27:40 PM »
I've got a HeaterMeter that Tony built for me, and I have to say, I love it. I had an Auber but it was a piece of junk IMO and I sent it back. HeaterMeter far exceeds anything that I know about. For just a wifi thermometer though, I also like DM's fireboard. I've thought about getting one but just can't justify the cost since I have a HeaterMeter already.

Looking forward to hearing how the block turns out.  I think the meater is a great idea, once the bugs are worked out.
Smokin-it #3, Napolean Prestige Pro 500 Grill, Anova WiFi Precision Cooker (Sous Vide)
The Woodlands, Texas