Chocovision Revolation Delta. I recently purchased the Chocovision Revolation Delta. Choosing the right machine was difficult for a number of reasons. I was driven to start a small chocolate business, but wanted a machine that would grow with me. I also had a number of functions in mind, and it was difficult to piece together (from websites and reviews by users) what machine would complete all the necessary functions at a somewhat affordable price. I was repeatedly advised by those more experienced to start out somewhat small and avoid buying a bunch of expensive and fancy equipment until it was more clear what was needed. After I lot of deliberation over which small-medium machine would be best, I chose to go with Chocovision for their good track record, reputation, and customer service (there is a 1-yr. warrantee on parts and service).
Ease of Use. The Delta is very user-friendly and comes with a DVD with instructions for use. These are not very detailed, and I have yet to try very technical functions, like programming the coordinates for specific chocolates, but it does not seem like that will be difficult. Basic tempering functions are super easy, fast (less than one hour), and effective – it seems to hold temper perfectly, at least for a couple of hours (I haven’t tested it at longer intervals). Initially, I thought the the 3lb. minimum capacity of the machine was a drawback for times when I wanted to experiment with recipes or make small batches. I have found, though, I could not even fit 3 lbs. in at the beginning. I was confused by this, and thought that maybe I should add more chocolate as it melted. I decided, though, to continue with that amount (approx. 2 lbs.), as that was really all I needed. It worked fine for tempering, the result was great, and it was the right amount of chocolate for the project. I hope that when I do need a larger amount (the machine is supposed to process up to 10 lbs. of tempered chocolate) it will do that as well. The Delta is extremely easy to take apart and clean, as there are not a lot of complicated parts or systems. It takes up a fair amount of room on the counter top (18 in. by 18 in.) and is heavy. It is portable, but definitely a bit of a project to move around. You also have to have at least 6 inches of clearance around it while it is running. I have many questions about future use of the machine, including how long I can leave it running with tempered chocolate and whether it is really okay to use less than 3 lbs.
Efficiency. I have used the Chocovision Revolation Delta for dipping truffles, and it works very well. I like the way the bowl rotates, allowing for a quick and even coating of the ganache. I have also dipped out chocolate and used it to coat and then bottom molds. This works fine, but it is extremely messy and difficult to get all of the excess chocolate back into the bowl. The space in which to do it is just not enough, plus it is shaped like a crescent and does not easily accommodate a rectangular mold with corners. I have been doing most of the dumping onto a baking sheet and scraping it off later. It also works to then set the baking sheet onto a table top vibrator (I have the small $150 one from Chef Rubber). Because of this frustration, I can anticipate wanting a bigger machine with a rotating wheel and basin. But I suppose that is why folks move to these bigger machines as they become successful.