The Chocolate Life

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FBM Aura

The table top continuous tempering machine

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Comment by Julie Ehrentraut on May 13, 2013 at 7:34pm

Thank you Clay for explaining the difference between the 2 machines for me.  I am also having some problems learning how to temper my chocolate without a machine.  I would like to learn how to manually temper in the event I need to in the future for any reason (machine repairs etc.)  I have been told to ask you if you could post something on the home page on tempering.  I am using a semi-sweet chocolate from Callebaut as it is the ONLY one I can find that is allergy-free (no soy, dairy etc.). I have been reading that you should temper it at the same temps. as dark chocolate but the more I read the more variation in temperatures I see for dark chocolate.  Can you help me at all with this?  I believe the chocolate I am using is 65%.

Comment by Clay Gordon on May 13, 2013 at 5:05pm

Julie -

The Chocolab isn't really more advanced than the Aura, it was just built for a different user - it's larger and accepts more accessories. Underneath, they both use the same technology and have the same level of quality engineering and materials. The Aura is the Chocolab's sidekick, not its distant cousin.

The Aura has a 4kg capacity working bowl that can temper 10-12kg per hour of chocolate (as long as you put chocolate in the bowl to replace what you take out as you are working). The Aura has a compact bench top form factor with the features you expect from a professional machine: built-in vibrating table (removable), measured depositor, and more. The Aura is a great machine for when space (and budgets) are tight and you want to move up from batch tempering to a continuous tempering machine. The Aura is great for producing a mix of work - dipping, molds - where production volumes are straining the capacity of a batch temperer but not so high that you need more automation (like an enrober belt or some other accessory) or a larger bowl.

The Chocolab is for workshops that need a lot of versatility but don't have the space - or the budget - for multiple machines. From most manufacturers, you need to get a machine with a 25kg working bowl if you want to fit it with an enrober belt and a 45kg machine if you want a mold loader. The Chocolab has a 12 kg working bowl but can accept both an 18cm-wide enrober and a mold loader (flood and scrape). It also comes with a truffle turntable. The 12kg working bowl can temper 35-50kg of chocolate per hour. There is nothing else like it on the market that comes close to the versatility and performance of the Chocolab - at any price.

One other thing to consider is that all FBM machines are made to order. This means that they can be customized to meet your particular requirements if you need something special FBM builds what their customers need; the don't sell what they already have manufactured that's sitting in inventory in a warehouse.

As you might be able to guess, I am a bit biased when it comes to FBM versus Pomati and other brands. One of the reasons I chose FBM over both Selmi and Pomati is that I think they are much better engineered and built. FBM introduced continuous tempering technology to the artisan/craft confectioner back in 1977 and was the first to introduce all-digital controls back in 1997. FBM is clearly the innovation and price leader. You can pay more for less, or less for less.

Another reason I chose FBM is that they were the only company willing to work with me on a worldwide basis. Meaning I can offer FBM machines to ChocolateLife members everywhere but France and Italy where there are existing dealer networks. ChocolateLife members are entitled to 10% discounts off list price on FBM machines.

:: Clay

Comment by Julie Ehrentraut on May 10, 2013 at 12:21pm

I am looking at getting my first tempering machine and have been trying to narrow down my options.  I have been thinking of this Aura machine by FBM, the Pomati T5 or the Chocolab.  I know the Chocolab is a more advanced machine compared to the other 2 but I thought it might be worth looking into the cost comparison as I will not be buying a bigger machine for some time.  Do you have any experience with any of these machines?  What are the pros and cons from one versus the others?  Any help you can give would be greatly appreciated.

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