Buying Guides

Bonavita Scale Review: Our In-depth Product Overview

In our Bonavita Scale Review, we assess how this capable performer stacks up against newer models. Read on to see if it can still make a good brew!

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A good coffee scale will help you brew coffee with precision, but is the Bonavita Rechargeable Scale the right one for the job? I’ve used dozens of coffee scales, and while I find this mid-range unit to be a decent option for pour-overs, it’s not without its imperfections. Read on to learn why and find out what we recommend instead.

Bonavita Scale Review

Key Takeaways

  • The Bonavita Rechargeable Scale is built for accuracy with its fine 0.1g increments and is a good choice for pour-over coffee making, but it might not be the best fit for espresso drinkers.
  • This user-friendly scale boasts a sleek, water-resistant design, but the reliance on an older micro-USB charging method may feel like a step back when compared to the more current offerings in the market.
  • While this scale performs reliably, the scale’s lack of automatic espresso modes and a non-slip mat suggests that there may be better-suited scales for home brewers, with models like the Timemore Black Mirror Nano providing a more versatile brewing experience.

Things To Consider Before Buying This Bonavita Scale

There are plenty of coffee scales on the market. To choose the right one, there are a few things you need to consider.

How Much Coffee Do You Want To Make?

Coffee scales work best when you’re making single cups or small pots of coffee. They aren’t practical for some larger coffee makers, so if you plan to make coffee for a small crowd, these might not help you as much.

Bonavita’s scale offering caps out at a maximum weight of 2kg, so also keep that in mind when brewing in bulk.

How Easy Is It to Recharge?

You can forget about AAA batteries with this model! This scale comes with an internal battery that charges with the included micro-USB cable. The AC adapter isn’t included though, so you’ll have to provide that one yourself.

Do You Make Espresso?

If you do, you might want to skip this one for a few reasons. The scale’s circular platform isn’t the friendliest surface to balance your machine’s portafilter on, so it’s not that great for measuring dry coffee grounds.

It’s not the most compact scale either, measuring 7 inches deep, which limits its use to measuring shot weight on the machine’s drip tray.

Maybe Bonavita realizes this limitation too, because this scale doesn’t bother with automatic espresso modes. All you get is a regular manual mode and an automatic one for pour-overs.

Bonavita Scale Overview

Bonavita currently sells the USB-rechargeable model BV02001MU, not to be confused with the nearly identical BV2100SC, which uses AAA batteries.

We think it looks pretty sleek despite its plastic build. The casing has a nice matte finish and is water-resistant, and the stainless steel weight platform is easy to wipe down. It’s a welcome, if a bit retro, design in a sea of square slabs.

The Bonavita measures weight up to 2000g, in increments of 0.1g, which makes it good enough for most coffee brewing applications. Charging duties are handled by the included micro-USB cable, which plugs into the back of the unit.

Using this scale is a breeze thanks to the legible buttons and the back-lit LCD that shows weight and time readings. There’s also the ability to switch between grams and ounces, though you serious coffee folk know that the latter isn’t as precise.

There aren’t a lot of extra features, with just an automatic pour-over mode which we’ll talk more about later.

Features and Benefits

Here’s a more detailed look at what the Bonavita rechargeable scale offers:

This video is of its non-rechargeable twin with more modes, the BV2100SC. Everything else is the same!

Capacity and Precision

As mentioned in the overview, this model can weigh things up to 2000g, in increments of 0.1g. The response time is better than older models like the Hario V60 scale, but more premium offerings like the Acaia Pearl are still noticeably quicker.

Water Resistance

Like that matte finish on the surface? It’s a unique nano-coating that helps prevent water damage. And while we wouldn’t dare try it ourselves, Bonavita claims that you can shake and dry water-logged units that show instability issues, suggesting some robust electronics inside.

USB Charging Capability

Scales powered by AA or AAA cells are becoming less and less commonplace. Bonavita’s updated model has charging duties handled by a USB Type A to Micro-B cable, but you will need to provide the power adaptor yourself.

An important thing to note is to use one that is 5V / 2A, or you run the risk of severely shortening your scale’s battery life. That means no quick chargers!

One thing that would’ve been nice was the use of USB Type C because Micro-B cables just aren’t as commonplace as they once were.

Extras (or Lack Thereof)

For a midrange-priced scale, I was surprised at the lack of accessories and features.

Protective Accessories

The package comes with a plastic cover that makes traveling with the scale a bit easier, but it’s not one you can use while brewing.

It would’ve been great if Bonavita threw in a heatproof, no-slip silicone pad for the scale. Not only would it make things easier to use, but it would have protected the load cell better from possible ‘scale drift’ issues over time.

A close-up of the back-lit LCD, and the protective plastic cover
Image Credit: Youtube/

Automatic Brewing Modes

This scale comes with just two modes: ‘REG’ for Regular, and ‘POUR’ for Pour-over. You can cycle between ounces and grams for both modes.

REG is your standard scale mode, where you will have to press TIME and TARE manually. You’re in this mode if you see a small letter “R” on the left-most side of the display.

Image Credit:

POUR is an automated mode for use in Pour-overs where the scale automatically resets to zero when you place your brewer and cup on it. Then the time starts automatically when you add water to the coffee. This mode is represented by a small letter “P” on the leftmost side of the display.

Note that the scale only automatically tares ONCE, so you will have to manually press TARE again after you add the coffee.

Image Credit:

And that’s it. Nothing for espresso, which I find a bit weird because the older version (BV2100SC) that uses AAA batteries comes with five automatic modes: four for espresso and one for pour-over, in addition to the manual mode.

The BV2100SC (also known as the Auto-Tare Bonavita Scale) looks completely identical, down to the water-resistant coating, so make sure you know what you’re getting.

Auto-off Setting

By default, the scale turns off after 180 seconds when not in use. But with a few key presses, you can change this to 60 or 120 seconds, or disable it altogether!

I think the latter is a great option for cafes with a busy pour-over bar. It’s also nice that there’s a hard on/off switch if you just suddenly decide to bypass the wait and turn the scale off to conserve power.

Specifications List

And for your reference, here’s a handy list of this scale’s features and technical specs:

Unitsgrams (g), ounces (oz)
DisplayLCD with backlight
Auto-off Feature60, 120, 180 seconds, or disabled (180s by default)
Operating ModesREG mode (regular), POUR mode (pour-over)
Power SourceRechargeable battery with USB Micro-B cord
Ideal Operation Temperature50° - 85° Fahrenheit (10° - 30° Celsius)

Alternatives and Conclusion

Functionally, there’s nothing wrong with the Bonavita Rechargeable Scale (BV02001MU). It’s responsive and easy to use and is a good choice for a busy pour-over bar, where the auto-off options give the user a lot of flexibility.

But for the home brewer? This scale lacks a lot of creature comforts like a non-slip mat and automated espresso brewing modes. Its build also limits its use as a dedicated espresso scale.

If you make a lot of espresso, consider the similarly-priced Timemore Black Mirror Nano which is a true multi-purpose scale with a small footprint and USB-C charging. For a premium-priced option, it’s a toss-up between the Acaia Pearl or Lunar, depending on which size works for you better.

As it stands, the Bonavita Rechargeable Scale is a capable performer upstaged by newer and more feature-rich options. It’s an easy get if you find it at a deep discount, but for retail pricing, we’re left wanting a bit more. I’m giving this scale a 3.5/5 — not bad, but not the best for the price.

Happy Caffeinating!

Bonavita Scale Review: Our In-depth Product Overview
Bonavita Scale Review

Uncover precision in brewing: Explore our Bonavita Scale review for insights into its accuracy and efficiency in coffee making.

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