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Akorn vs Ceramic


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Hi all,

I have had my Akorn for a year or 2 now and thinking about replacing it with a Vision Ceramic (from sams club.. the B-series). I'm Curious what those of you who have made the switch think... 

 

Is it worth the $$$ to upgrade to ceramic? Does the food come out "That much better"?

 

What other comments? 

Thanks!

 

(Also posting in "Kamado cooking and discussion" area)

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I did the switch to a Primo about a year ago with no regrets. I think the ceramic is easier to control and is more stable at temp. I liked my XL so much that I added the Jr. a couple of months ago.

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My akorn butts, ribs and briskets are every bit as good as those done by several friends who have BGEs.  I could just be a better cook, but I doubt it.  

 

It's the difference between driving a Kia and an Audi.  Is the ceramic nicer?  you bet.  Is it better quality? sure. will it last longer?  probably, as long as you don't drop it.  It's also harder to move around if it doesn't have a permanent spot.   Just depends on what you want.  If you want ceramic and can afford the extra bucks, get it.

 

 If you don't miss the money, I'm sure you won't regret your upgrade.  on the other hand, 2 or 3 hundred bucks can buy a lot of pork and lump. :-)

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You're almost always going to get a "yes" from those of us who either went the route you're traveling or just got a ceramic and probably a "no" from those who've got an Akorn that they are currently happy with. I bought my Akorn three years ago and used it religiously until this past Christmas when it finally broke down to the point I no longer wanted to use it. The hinge failed just after the warranty expired and I didn't want to sink any more money into it.

I settled on the Akorn because it's what I could afford but wanted a BGE. I came here, got educated, and this past spring I upgraded to a Kamado Joe Big Joe. The Akorn was a stepping stone for me, with its limited accessories, low price point, and product support, I feel it's an entry level kamado. When I got a Kamado with the capacity I wanted and a true racking system, I found myself expanding beyond just BBQ and doing complete meals on the Joe. I found myself venturing outside of my comfort zone and using the kamado to more of its potential.

In closing, I'll say that I enjoyed my Akorn and am glad I bought it; the Akorn got me to where I am today. I've got some parts to repair it and really need to get on that, there is no discernible difference in flavors between the Big Joe and the Akorn so I'll keep it for smaller cooks and extra capacity. If you have the means, have both; you won't regret having two cookers and the flexibility that comes in doing so!

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You're almost always going to get a "yes" from those of us who either went the route you're traveling or just got a ceramic and probably a "no" from those who've got an Akorn that they are currently happy with. I bought my Akorn three years ago and used it religiously until this past Christmas when it finally broke down to the point I no longer wanted to use it. The hinge failed just after the warranty expired and I didn't want to sink any more money into it.

I settled on the Akorn because it's what I could afford but wanted a BGE. I came here, got educated, and this past spring I upgraded to a Kamado Joe Big Joe. The Akorn was a stepping stone for me, with its limited accessories, low price point, and product support, I feel it's an entry level kamado. When I got a Kamado with the capacity I wanted and a true racking system, I found myself expanding beyond just BBQ and doing complete meals on the Joe. I found myself venturing outside of my comfort zone and using the kamado to more of its potential.

In closing, I'll say that I enjoyed my Akorn and am glad I bought it; the Akorn got me to where I am today. I've got some parts to repair it and really need to get on that, there is no discernible difference in flavors between the Big Joe and the Akorn so I'll keep it for smaller cooks and extra capacity. If you have the means, have both; you won't regret having two cookers and the flexibility that comes in doing so!

You should have called about the warranty.

 

SUPERIOR 5 YEAR WARRANTY
Char-Griller’s 5-year burn and rust-through warranty is among the best in the grill industry. Most grill brands stand behind their products for 1-year. At Char-Griller, we build durable products that last beyond the first grilling season.
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Why the double post?

Look, this is but a rhetorical post. Only you can tell if the differential is worth the investment. And the only way you'll ever figure this out is to buy the Vision and cook on it.

What you're asking for is someone's opinion. Opinions are like noses. Everyone has one and they all smell.

Nobody here has the same consumption function as you. I repeat, only you can make this decision. So do your homework and just do the deal that works best for you.

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You're almost always going to get a "yes" from those of us who either went the route you're traveling or just got a ceramic and probably a "no" from those who've got an Akorn that they are currently happy with. I bought my Akorn three years ago and used it religiously until this past Christmas when it finally broke down to the point I no longer wanted to use it. The hinge failed just after the warranty expired and I didn't want to sink any more money into it.

I settled on the Akorn because it's what I could afford but wanted a BGE. I came here, got educated, and this past spring I upgraded to a Kamado Joe Big Joe. The Akorn was a stepping stone for me, with its limited accessories, low price point, and product support, I feel it's an entry level kamado. When I got a Kamado with the capacity I wanted and a true racking system, I found myself expanding beyond just BBQ and doing complete meals on the Joe. I found myself venturing outside of my comfort zone and using the kamado to more of its potential.

In closing, I'll say that I enjoyed my Akorn and am glad I bought it; the Akorn got me to where I am today. I've got some parts to repair it and really need to get on that, there is no discernible difference in flavors between the Big Joe and the Akorn so I'll keep it for smaller cooks and extra capacity. If you have the means, have both; you won't regret having two cookers and the flexibility that comes in doing so!

You should have called about the warranty.

 

SUPERIOR 5 YEAR WARRANTY

Char-Griller’s 5-year burn and rust-through warranty is among the best in the grill industry. Most grill brands stand behind their products for 1-year. At Char-Griller, we build durable products that last beyond the first grilling season.

I thought about it but I don't really see Char-Griller retroactively honoring the warranty. My Akorn had a 1 year warranty, the new ones are now five. I don't expect them to honor it so I haven't called, plus I need to contact lowes to pull my receipt since I bought it with a Lowes card.

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I loved my Akorn and as some have said it is a great entry to kamado cooking. I moved from the Akorn to a KJ BJ for a couple of reasons. Is there a difference between the Akorn and a ceramic? I find that for me and my needs there was.

 

(Just a minute...putting on my flame resistant suit) 

 

- Easier to control temperature - Once you get it where you want it will be rock solid until you start running out of fuel

- Vents settings for temp "X" are repeatable and more dependable (for me anyway) than my old Akorn

- I find on my BJ I get a much cleaner tasting smoke for low and slow cooking than I could on the Akorn - I chalk it up to a larger fire in the BJ than a very small smoldering fire in the Akorn for the same cooking temp

 

Then there are other potential considerations such as nice to have items.

Larger grill size = larger two zone cooking areas 

Rack system and other cooking surfaces

 

As I believe CC has been saying there are a lot of variables and personal preferences that go into making the decision to go with a ceramic kamado. Mostly what I find is that with a ceramic I get a much more enjoyable cooking experience with easily repeatable results.

 

(Ok I just finished putting on the helmet...fire away)

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I was gifted an Akorn for my birthday, I've had it for about a month now and so far I love it. It replaced a Weber kettle that was on it's last two legs, I'm not joking, it was really down to two legs. I also have an indirect stick burner that I use, but I've found that I use it much less than I used to now that I have a Kamado style grill. I don't know much about the vision brand, but as far as KJ, BGE, and Primo (I have friends and family that have those brands) they are certainly superior to the Akorn in terms of build quality and fit and finish. However if you take care of your Akorn and don't do a ton of 700 degree cooks on it, I imagine it will last a long time and at $200 it's hard to pass that up. As far as the cooking experience goes, I would say any differences between the Akorn and other Kamado grills is nil. Like the others have said, just use your judgement and your budget. If you really want a ceramic and can afford it go that route and be done with it, if your budget doesn't allow it jump on the Akorn at Walmart for $200 and get a big piggy jar to toss some loose dollars in from time to time and when it's time to replace the Akorn crack open the piggy jar and get yourself a top of the line ceramic.

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I am very happy with my recent upgrade to ceramic (Kamado Joe) from Weber Kettle...But, the truth is, I also loved my Weber for 30 years and cooked some damn good meals on that thing...That said, I'm not looking back and my only regret is I didn't do it sooner  -- I am taking a great deal of pleasure from this new toy (and I have to admit that for me, most of the "value" is intangible in the form of pleasure and enjoyment :) )...but...As others have said, only you can determine what level of value that will be derived and whether it's worth the $$$ outlay to derive that value.

 

In the broad scheme of things, these are high-class problems...Have fun with your decision process.

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I loved my Akorn and as some have said it is a great entry to kamado cooking. I moved from the Akorn to a KJ BJ for a couple of reasons. Is there a difference between the Akorn and a ceramic? I find that for me and my needs there was.

 

(Just a minute...putting on my flame resistant suit) 

 

- Easier to control temperature - Once you get it where you want it will be rock solid until you start running out of fuel

- Vents settings for temp "X" are repeatable and more dependable (for me anyway) than my old Akorn

- I find on my BJ I get a much cleaner tasting smoke for low and slow cooking than I could on the Akorn - I chalk it up to a larger fire in the BJ than a very small smoldering fire in the Akorn for the same cooking temp

 

Then there are other potential considerations such as nice to have items.

Larger grill size = larger two zone cooking areas 

Rack system and other cooking surfaces

 

As I believe CC has been saying there are a lot of variables and personal preferences that go into making the decision to go with a ceramic kamado. Mostly what I find is that with a ceramic I get a much more enjoyable cooking experience with easily repeatable results.

 

(Ok I just finished putting on the helmet...fire away)

No need to put on the flame resistant suit. The OP asked for honest opinions and you gave yours in a thoughtful and reasonable manner. And this coming from a thoroughly satisfied Akorn owner with no plans to move to ceramic.

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I got my Akorn just to get into kamado cooking and learn the basics. I fully intend to upgrade to a KJ Classic when the next road show comes to town in a few months though! Mostly as others have said the reliability of vent settings being consistent to a certain temp and ease of cleaning it was well.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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If you have mastered temp control on the akorn then temp control on a ceramic should be like cruise control. There are pros and cons as already mentioned here. I cooked on an akorn for about a year and then upgraded to a primo XL. No regrets even though i did love the akorn. it does come down to what you want. It's a big chunk of change. Think about it, go touch some and think some more. You'll come to the correct conclusion regardless of how you go.

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I acquired the akorn opposite of most, I started with a vision classic b, had that for a year, moved it to my brothers lake house and replaced it with a BGE for my home, then a few months after that I purchased the akorn. I have taken the akorn to Scout camp twice, multiple campouts and to our deer camp, I also use it for overflow at home. They all produce amazing food. I find the 2 ceramics slightly easier to maintain a constant temp but only slightly. I don't think you will regret purchasing a vision classic b.

I will use the Nike Slogan "just do it".

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