Check out the new SR 540 Extension Tube – a great new accessory to move the coffee a little better and increase the batch size.
The New Control Panel:
First slot on LCD: Fan Speed – settable from 1-9. 1=low 9=high.
Second slot on LCD: Heat/Power – settable from 1-9. 1=low 9=high.
Third and fourth slots on LCD: Time – settable from 0.1 – 20 minutes. During cool mode it will display C.3, C.2, or C.1 as it moves through the cooling process.
The control panel has been significantly simplified. To change a field on the LCD display: PRESS the turn knob, display will then flash the setting you have selected. PRESS again to select the next setting. TURN the knob to adjust the setting. All in real time. Beyond that, you have just two buttons – On/Off and Run/Cool.
- Easy and fun; glass chamber ensures that coffee beans are highly visible throughout the roast
- Quickest of all home coffee roasters
- Simple design, yet highly adjustable – great for both newbies and master roasters
- New improved control panel – more customizable settings
- All settings adjustable during roast
- Roasts about a quarter pound of raw coffee beans
- Convenient chaff collector is very easy to clean
- One year warranty; manufacturer is very helpful
Basic Use Instructions:
- Weigh out 4.25 ounces of green coffee beans, or 4 scoops. With this machine, results are fairly sensitive to batch size, so dependent on voltage, ambient temperature, coffee type, and your roast preferences, you may want to decrease or increase by up to 1 ounce in either direction. However, for most users 4.25 ounces usually works well; it is the best place to start.
- Plug the machine into a standard polarized 120-volt outlet. Be sure that no other appliances are drawing from the same circuit – this will decrease the power available to your roaster.
- Pour beans into the roast chamber, then set the roast chamber into the machine, then set the chaff collector on top of the roast chamber. Use care to ensure that pieces are fitting together properly. This machine is top-heavy and users sometimes drop and break roast chambers and chaff collectors (if you do, don’t worry – we have replacement parts!).
- Set Fan speed to “9” and Power to “5”. Set timer for 15 minutes. Total roast time is generally between 6 and 15 minutes depending on settings.
- Hit the Run button. Coffee beans will gradually begin to move more and more as they lose moisture and weight.
- As soon as you start seeing good movement (usually 1-3 minutes), increase Power to “9”.
- You should now be on “Fan:9 / Power:9”. This setting will get you close to 1st crack, but too much movement prevents adequate heat build-up, so it is necessary to gradually reduce fan speed to push the roast up through 1st then 2nd crack. It is important to keep some movement; try turning Fan speed down 1 notch, and if beans are still quickly flying around, turn it down 1 more. If beans stop moving, turn it back up and wait approximately 1 minute before turning it down again.
- Typically, the roast will progress like this: At Fan “8” beans should start 1st crack (depending on variables such as ambient temperature, voltage, etc), and as you gradually decrease speed after each minute (approx), at Fan “6” you will be approaching a medium roast, and at Fan “5” you will hear 2nd crack and begin moving into dark roast.
- Hit Cool button when you reach your desired roast, and turn Fan back to “9” – remember to turn the fan speed back up to maximum to ensure that beans cool quickly and do not continue roasting!
1 year warranty on the base, 6 months on the roast chamber and chaff collector, directly from FreshRoast. After 30 days from purchase customers are responsible for shipping the roaster into their repair center. They will fix and return it. Out of warranty repairs are similar but do have a cost. FreshRoast is more than fair for any in or out of warranty items. And also let us know if you are having any issues – we are happy to help!
Please visit the Home Roasting Supplies website for more warranty information: https://homeroastingsupplies.com/warranty
Support Email: [email protected]
GUIDES TO USING THE FRESHROAST SR540 HOME COFFEE ROASTER:
- Instructions on coffee roasting with the FreshRoast SR540.
- Video on coffee roasting tips using the FreshRoast SR540
- Download Product Manual
- General guidelines and tips for home coffee roasting
Check out our home roasting resources for more tips and tricks!
Ron Burghardt (verified owner) –
I love my SR540 . It is great to have all these adjustments to get your coffee just the way you would like it .
I’m new to this and I believe this is the coffee roaster to learn on and have some fun with .
Seems like you can do more adjustments with the SR540 then most others roasters that are out there so you can tweak it just the way you like it
I bought the SR540 2 years ago. It has worked great and very easy to use. Unfortunately it just quit working(Thus 4 stars and not 5)!! I Bought another roaster off of Amazon, and it was worthless and totally ruined my beans. it is being returned. with that said, I am going to purchase a new SR540 as soon as I post this review.
Anna Carter –
I have the SR 500, very similar to this one. So easy to use and very little venting is needed. I set it on my range top and turn on my exhaust fan. Very rarely sets off the smoke alarms 😅 The only drawback is it’s a bit top heavy and the parts don’t lock on. Best to disassemble before moving.
The SR540 is awesome! This is the first roaster I have owned and its super easy to use.
I would definitely recommend buying it. I have never burnt a batch of coffee and the flavor is amazing.
Robert L Combs (verified owner) –
I have been using the sr540 for about a week now. This is my first roaster and first attempt at any type of roasting. I have already started tweeking profiles to get better results. The tip sheet that Burman included was of great help and a good starting guide. The roaster draws a lot of watts so try not to have anything drawing power on same circuit when roasting. It does smoke so it needs to be vented. If you like good coffee and like to tinker this roaster rocks. What I look forward to is tasting my way around the world of coffee. With this roaster and Burmans coffee the journey has begun. Oh, Burmans site gets 5 stars too!
Dan Fullmer (verified owner) –
I have been using Fresh Roast roasters since their first one which was pretty primitive. Fresh Roast, Fresh Roast Plus, SR500, and now the 540. I currently have two SR500’s which I use to keep 2 families in coffee. I just included the SR540 into the rotation and I love it!. No more black beans. I would usually get a few black beans in my roast, but no more. The only suggestion I would have for the 540 is to automatically shift to fan speed 9 when you hit the cool button, (which is pretty nit-picky). I have worn out many roasters and as my SR500’s eventually give up, I will certainly replace them with 540’s. By the way, the support from Fresh Roast is top notch. I highly recommend these roasters.
George Brown (verified owner) –
I have really enjoyed roasting coffee with the SR540. It has been fun to fine tune my coffee preferences through trial and error. This roaster allows you to dial in your coffee to exactly the way you want it roasted.
Additionally, I have been beyond impressed by the customer service of Burman Coffee Traders. The glass chamber in my roaster broke, I sent an email to Burman, and within a week they had fulfilled the warranty and I had received a replacement part.
GNCOFFEE (verified owner) –
I am on my third Fresh Roast roaster. Fresh Roast Plus, Fresh Roast 500 and now Fresh Roast 540.
They last about 3-4 years roasting a lot of coffee. The life of my Roasters is about 900 to 1200 roastings… Each roasting produces enough for 3-4 pots of coffee at our preferred strength.
I agree with others, the 540 should kick the fan on full when it enters the cooling mode…..
As a note – the same bean under different roasting conditions and ambient temperature and humidity when roasting can have a drastically different flavor.
Also, first time roasters – don’t do it in the house….. while coffee smells delicious – roasting does not…
Michael Kullman –
I have been using the SR500 for several years and recently upgraded to the SR540. While the additional controls and temperature display option are nice, the biggest improvement by far is the slighltly larger roasting chamber which seems to promote more even roasting than the previous SR500 (no more burned beans). That alone makes this a worthwhile upgrade IMO. Great roaster for the money.
Luis Franco –
I’ve already roasted about 6 batches of beans with my SR540 and what I really like about it is its ability to consistently repeat roasting profiles (this is something I couldn’t really do when roasting on my cast iron pan). I have Burman’s BCT Espresso blend down to a science and I’m getting the best espresso shots I’ve every had – at home! I suggest that you document your settings and keep an eye on the built-in temperature readout (it definitely helps you achieve consistent results because as I am learning, even ambient temperature can affect your roasts slightly). For my Espressor lovers out there, pick up a few pounds of the BCT Espresso blend and try these settings (thank me later, 4.25 ounces, F=Fan, P=Power):
Start: F9, P5
@2:00 – F9, P8 (temp ~350F)
@4:00 – F9, P9 (temp ~375F)
@5:30 – F7, P9 (temp ~400F)
@7:30 – F6, P9 (temp ~430F)
@8:45 – F4, P9 (temp ~455F)
@9:45 – Cool, F9
First crack will happen around 6:00, second crack around 9:00. Let sit for an entire day before brewing; I make a couple batches at a time which last me about a week; it starts tasting even better after day 4 (you will see some oil coming out of the beans which is NOT a bad sign, just a sign that you’ll need to brew these in less than a couple weeks for optimal flavor). I’m currently having A LOT of fun developing a City/City+ roast for French Press. You won’t regret getting it from Burman, these guys are awesome and provide EXCELLENT customer care!
Jesse A Bey –
I have SR540 works great ( for past 2 yrs) no need for another at this time but, would purchase the SR580. The cup size looks great
Robb (verified owner) –
Great machine for beginners especially. It’s my third roaster, and I wish I had started here. Even if you go through tons of coffee, I would suggest starting with SR540, even though it only roasts 1/4 pound at a time. Learn your chops with this inexpensive and easy-to-use machine, then, if you enjoy roasting and develop some skill, step up to a larger, more heavy-duty roaster for big batches. The best features of this roaster for beginners are the easy-to-use and easy-to-understand controls and the great view you have of the beans while roasting. Don’t buy a roaster that’s opaque or hard see into. Until you’re a pro, you’ll want to see how the beans look while they roast.
My SR540 has worked great for three years. I disagree with the roast guide and most suggestions above regarding power. Don’t use full power, especially not at the beginning of your roast cycle. I rarely need Power 9 to get through first crack. I start on Fan 7, Power 4 for the drying phase (4-ish minutes) at 350-370 F, then go for something like Fan 6, Power 6 or 7. That usually gets to 420-430 F where first crack will happen. Don’t listen to anyone who gives precise instructions, times and settings. Every green coffee bean is different in size and density. Some of them crack early, about 400 F, some crack later at 425-430 F. Try different beans from around the world. This roaster is great. Play around with your own roast times and roast profiles. You can accomplish your preferred roast profile with most any coffee beans. The SR540 is definitely best for medium roasts. You can easily do dark roasts, too, but I roast those outside because they always set off the smoke detectors indoors. Very light roasts can be difficult with this machine, but anything from light-medium roast to dark is bang-easy. Most medium roasts will take 7 – 9 minutes, not including cool down phase (3 minutes). Dark roasts will be longer. Be sure to give your roaster the recommended 30 minutes cool down between roasts. It’s a home roaster, not an industrial-grade furnace.
What an incredible pre-Christmas gift (I walked in before they wrapped it). The SR-540 is an awesome machine and easy to use, especially when following the SR-540 Tip Sheet that came with the roaster. My family takes coffee coffee seriously and the first roast was almost my instant banishment. But once I calmed down and followed the Tip Sheet (and freelanced a little) my second roast was spot on. And given that the first batch was a bean from Panama (my home country) I did not want to poorly represent this wonderful coffee. I am keeping a log so that I can “master” the medium roast. 2021 will be a great coffee roasting year.
Matt Savage (verified owner) –
The only coffee roaster I had ever used in my life was a commercial that roasted 25 pound batches at a time.
I got the SR540 from Burman (with a LOT of different coffee beans) this Christmas and after first roast, I am ecstatic with this little roaster!
I am the only one in the house who drinks coffee so this small batch roasting is perfect. The roasting method was a piece of cake and was able to watch until my beans hit that perfect color I like before hitting the cooling fan.
Looking forward to many more wonderful cups of coffee because of this roaster!
Britt G (verified owner) –
Great roaster, but… Glass of roasting chamber way too thin; will break under light pressure like when screwing the metal base cap onto the glass chamber. Even gentle pressure cracked the “mug” and a new one is way too expensive for a glorified glass coffee mug. Will stick to popcorn popper.
Dennis (verified owner) –
I’ve roasted a little over a dozen batches so far. BIG step up from popcorn poppers. Took me about five batches to get my roasting times, fan speeds, and such where I want them. Invest in the extension tube. But be careful putting it together. The handle on the roasting chamber is fragile. Broke one. Manufacturer replaced it. Burman has been great, too. Great deal on the coffee bundle with purchase.
Lawrence Bilida (verified owner) –
I just moved up from the “freshroast plus 8”. The plus 8 was pretty straight forward and I just turned it on but over the years, the fan wasn’t doing its job anymore so I got the “sr540” and it seems alright but the settings keep changing every time I use it(the same bean). I don’t know how long this thing’s gonna last but I’m sure its not gonna last more than 10 years. This computer stuff is just weird and I know this thing can just quit anytime. Works good for now but what else can I say?
Jon Burman (verified owner) –
Yes, definitely more tech on the newer machines. So far lifespan has been good on them, but they have not been around nearly as long as your +8. The best part is our buddy Sam over @ FreshRoast. He will keep them running long out of warranty. Repairable machines even out of warranty, he will refurbish them for $50. Not a bad deal all in all. I would not expect any problems any time soon though.
Lawrence Bilida (verified owner) –
It does a good job of roasting my coffee! Good coffee is coffee but bad coffee is horrible. I don’t drink a whole lot of it but I only make enough that I can drink in 7 days or it gets very bitter.
Frank Star (verified owner) –
Worked flawlessly right out of the box and I roasted my first batch (I love LIGHT roasts that show that white stripe down the center of the bean ((according to Jon Burman you should use a washed process coffee for this)) ). The fan really sends the whole bean bed up and down a fraction of an inch at the same time rather than individual beans at the center only. By using the adjustable power and fan settings, together with the timetable, you can tweak easily within light, medium or dark roasts. I recommend it w/o reservation.
Brenndon Harp –
My only complaint is that the parts don’t lock on to the base. If you have kids or animals definitely keep them away when roasting. Otherwise I love this thing and would recommend it to anyone wanting to try roasting their own coffee. So easy, especially following the wuick start guide that comes with it.
donald bingham (verified owner) –
I have been roasting in a pan for a few years. I bought the SR540 and the extension tube. I have never had to go to more than power 5, and that is roasting 6 scoops outside in 40 F temps. I love how it gives you excellent control on the roast and responds quickly. Everybody I have given coffee to that had gotten it from me pan roasted, when given SR540 roasted has said “Wow!” The fluidized bed gives even roasting and no burned beans.
dmtrchn59 (verified owner) –
I just bought the updated version of this SR540. I also bought the extension tube for this model. I don’t really see any reason to buy any other roaster. They say this is for the beginner in roasting but it’s not. I know friends that have bought very expensive drum-roasters and they have all said the same thing. They said the SR540 is the best. I gave my older model away years ago to our family physician when I bought a new roaster. He really helped us with our adult son on the Autism Spectrum. He’s still using it😁I trust Burmans too. They stand with their customers.