Sorry for the wait - it's been bedlam here.
The LR is a revelation to me. Where it was stupidly easy to bang off good shots on the L1, the LR is an entirely different beast - and one that's forced me to be more rigorous in my coffee making.
Previously I never bothered weighing or distributing the grounds before a shot - just grind at roughly the right amount, tamp and go. That worked well on the L1 and you'd have regularly great coffee.
With the LR I've started to experience something I haven't had to deal with in a while - channeling.
This is because of the higher pre-infusion pressure.
The LR rewards patient prep work. So while I'm still not weighing my beans (not much point on the E10, but I'm eyeing off a potential change in grinder to accomodate single dosing) I'm more careful about dosage by overdosing slightly on the grind and using a dosing sweep to get it close enough to the right volume.
As well as that, I have a tiny whisk that I've been using to perform WDT. (Reiss is working on producing his own specialised distribution tool - I'll let you know how that goes when I have a chance to try it.)
Together this has decreased the incidence of channeling and increased shot quality.
That said - I'm getting better results out of light-medium-medium roasts than I am out of medium-dark-dark roasts. The darker roasts tend to clump more, have harder to control fines and channel more frequently.
I prefer light-medium/medium roasts, so I'm on the right curve for this machine out of the box.
If you prefer darker roasts, the answer is pretty simple - adjust the secondary regulator pressure downwards and you'll get a pressure profile closer to that of the L1. You'll have less volume and reduced nuance, but you'll get the most out of those dark chocolate/tobacco flavours.
Here's the thing tho - even the fast shots seem to have a lot of body, and a pleasing looking crema.
While I must admit that I've struggled to get used to the new machine, it's also highlighted how complacent I became with the L1.
KK - thank you for your beans, I've enjoyed them enormously. Some very nice cherry flavour in there that I really appreciate!