Popcorn machine recommendations - Page 2 - AVS Forum
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post #31 of 475 Old 09-06-2011, 08:54 AM
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I get peanut popping oil free from a friend that works for an oil company.

Tastes great, better for the heart and I can't beat the price!
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post #32 of 475 Old 09-06-2011, 11:46 AM
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Can anyone recommend who are the best e-tailers to buy a Paragon popper from? I'm trying to shop around to see if I should do this!

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post #33 of 475 Old 09-07-2011, 04:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by godsbrother View Post

I get peanut popping oil free from a friend

I first misread that as "I get peanut-free popping oil" and it made me want to ask if anyone with nut alergies uses a popper, and what oil you use? A close friend of ours has a peanut/nut allergy and I'd like to keep the machine friendly to him if possible. Canola maybe? Any preference for prepackaged brands?
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post #34 of 475 Old 09-17-2011, 07:03 PM
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I came here researching popcorn makers, but thought I would add you don't need to worry about coconut oil, it's actually one of the healthiest oils one can cook with, and it's very heat stable.

http://undergroundwellness.com/i-heart-coconut-oil/

http://www.coconutresearchcenter.org/article10132.htm

http://www.mnwelldir.org/docs/nutrition/coconut.htm

http://www.thaifoodandtravel.com/features/cocgood.html
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post #35 of 475 Old 09-19-2011, 08:08 AM
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People are afraid of coconut oils because it has saturated fat in it. What people don't realize is there are different forms of saturated fat, and coconut oil has good ones. Use organic extra virgin coconut oil so you get the least processing possible.
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post #36 of 475 Old 09-21-2011, 10:34 PM
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We're thinking about picking up a popcorn machine this Christmas, so I'm finding this thread quite useful. One question I had, though, was about ambient light. If we have the theater room quite dark, do these machines throw off a lot of light? At the moment I'm thinking most seriously about the Paragon models. This would be down the hall from the theater room, but it will still have line-of-sight to some of the seats.
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post #37 of 475 Old 09-22-2011, 04:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JJ7 View Post

We're thinking about picking up a popcorn machine this Christmas, so I'm finding this thread quite useful. One question I had, though, was about ambient light. If we have the theater room quite dark, do these machines throw off a lot of light? At the moment I'm thinking most seriously about the Paragon models. This would be down the hall from the theater room, but it will still have line-of-sight to some of the seats.

My machine puts off a pretty good amount of light. I guess some could call it distracting. It is in my movie room and i just make popcorn before the movie then turn it off during the movie.
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post #38 of 475 Old 09-24-2011, 03:57 PM
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I am firmly in the Paragon camp. I've had mine for over a year. I have a 6 oz. It really is built like a tank. It's easy to use and easy to clean. Somebody else wrote about cleaning being a hassle and having trouble finding time. You basically empty the kettle and throw away the uneaten corn. Then I take two paper towels...one moist and one dry. I wipe the inside of the kettle and the warming deck with the moist towel and then I finish with the dry one. Takes about 90 seconds. Not a big deal and I often do it days after the batch is made and it's no problem. Then once every 2-3 months I use a special spray cleaner that I bought from Paragon for the inside walls to remove oil buildup. Absolutely zero problems. We absolutely love it. Perfect for family movie night, having friends over to watch the game, and just awesome for parties. It's always a conversation starter. People just gravitate towards it. They always think it's a rental and then are insanely jealous when I tell them that we own it and enjoy it all the time.

On the other hand, my bro-in-law got a piece of junk bargain model (I forget which exact brand) and it looks like a child's toy. The kettle looks and feels flimsy. It makes crappy corn with some being burnt and more unpopped kernels than mine ever has. Long story short...the Paragon is worth the extra bucks. I ordered mine directly from them through their website. I also get all my supplies from them.

On the ambient light issue....I actually enjoy the light. I still haven't finished the lighting plan for our room although I plan on getting some dimmable sconces in the future. For movies, we turn off all the room lights but we have the paragon on around the corner in a little nook and it gives a faint glow so you can still find your way around the room but it's not a distraction from what we're watching. It's like a tasty night-light!

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post #39 of 475 Old 09-24-2011, 10:30 PM
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Thanks for the mini-review of the Paragon. I am basically sold on it. And I'm definitely will to pay a bit more for a superior, made-in-America product. In our case I was thinking of getting the 4 oz. model since most of the time it's just the four of us. I appreciate the cleaning tips as well. And it sounds like the light shouldn't be a problem, ours will be in a "nook" as well.
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post #40 of 475 Old 09-27-2011, 04:26 AM
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JJ7- I have a Paragon 6 oz that I was going to put on Craigs List. If interested, PM me.
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post #41 of 475 Old 09-27-2011, 06:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tccolv View Post

JJ7- I have a Paragon 6 oz that I was going to put on Craigs List. If interested, PM me.

Just curious as to why are you selling your Paragon?

Thanks to AVS for helping me with my first home theater system!

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post #42 of 475 Old 09-28-2011, 01:17 PM
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Its a great machine. Paragon's your best choice. We had a big lower level with dedicated theater, entertainment kitchen, etc. where we kept the machine. We moved this spring to a much smaller home. No a good place for it now. Haven't used it since we moved.
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post #43 of 475 Old 09-28-2011, 01:41 PM
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Is there a big enough difference between Paragon and Great Northern to justify greater than 2X the price?

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post #44 of 475 Old 09-28-2011, 02:17 PM
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Great Northern (DTX International) is a Chinese copy of Paragon.
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post #45 of 475 Old 09-29-2011, 05:41 AM
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What about a difference between Paragon Models? I have been looking at the Cinema and Theater models, and the Theater is a little more expensive. They seem to be nearly identical, but some say that the Theater is a little stronger...any comparison of build quality? Anyone out there with a Cinema model who would say it lives up to the "built like a tank" standard (or close)?
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post #46 of 475 Old 10-02-2011, 08:23 AM
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My 4oz. paragon machine should arrive this week. Can I ask which brands of pre-measured package folks have found to be good? I've been looking at Country Harvest, Great Northern, Funpop/megapop, and Pop Weaver. Also I would be interested to hear if anyone has had good luck with trying oils other than coconut-*like sunflower oil.
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post #47 of 475 Old 10-03-2011, 09:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JJ7 View Post

My 4oz. paragon machine should arrive this week. Can I ask which brands of pre-measured package folks have found to be good? I've been looking at Country Harvest, Great Northern, Funpop/megapop, and Pop Weaver. Also I would be interested to hear if anyone has had good luck with trying oils other than coconut-*like sunflower oil.

I use orvile redenbacers popping/topping oil for popping. It seems to be basically canola oil with a slight butter flavor. I like it. It tastes very good with flavacol. I usually eat my popcorn without butter because the oil/flavacol combination tastes so good. I also have tried extra virgin olive oil. That just made alot of smoke and didn't have a taste.
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post #48 of 475 Old 10-03-2011, 12:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OJ Bartley View Post

What about a difference between Paragon Models? I have been looking at the Cinema and Theater models, and the Theater is a little more expensive. They seem to be nearly identical, but some say that the Theater is a little stronger...any comparison of build quality? Anyone out there with a Cinema model who would say it lives up to the "built like a tank" standard (or close)?

You mean the "Cineplex" model? I have that one, in the copper finish, and it's great. There may be some build differences (didn't compare them in person), but build quality on the Cineplex is still excellent.

The advantage of the Cineplex models is that they were designed for home use. Meaning - the power cord is on the "back" and the controls, doors and graphics are on the "front". Allows you to put it on a bar or stand against a wall, but still have the "pretty" side facing out. A commercial popper faces the pretty side toward the customer - on the other side of the counter...

Jeff


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post #49 of 475 Old 10-04-2011, 04:38 AM
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That's right Jeff, sorry, the Cineplex was the one I meant. Thanks for the comments, that's exactly what I wanted to hear. I'm down to the Paragon Cineplex or the Gold Medal #2424 for $65 more, which has a stainless kettle that can also pop the 6oz packs.

I think if the build quality is good on the Cineplex and there aren't any parts that you've noticed feel cheap or flimsy, I'll stick with it. If I need more popcorn, I can always do a double 4oz batch, and I'm not too worried about the kettle material since popcorn can't be too tough to clean out.
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post #50 of 475 Old 10-05-2011, 02:36 PM
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I have had my Paragon Contempo Pop 6oz for several years now and I love it.

You do have to watch for kettle wear, as it will eventually happen (as there is a metal stirring rod which can and will scrap the bottom at times), but even after 6 or 7 years now that I have had mine, there is only some light scrapping marks in a few places, but nothing through the anodized coating. Really the thing you want to make sure you get is one that can be taken apart and parts replaced. Some of the cheaper ones do not have replaceable parts (i.e. power is hardwired to the kettle, no access to the stirring motor due to pop rivets, etc., etc.).

I can easily use the 8oz packs in this unit with very few unpopped kernels (or burnt ones as well). In fact, I havn't used 6oz pre-measured packs in years, since I found that I will typically eat all of the 8oz without problems (and in most cases will do 2). It cleans very simply with paper towels. I found it best to clean the pot while it is warm. You can simply turn it on for 20 seconds or so the next day (or even a couple days later if you really forgot), and wipe it out/down with dry paper towels. I use a wet paper towel on the glass surfaces followed by a dry one. The bottom tray easily lifts out and I wipe it down with some soapy water, rinse, and dry every once in a while (otherwise I just wipe it down).

Speaking of all this, I need to go get some more popcorn supplies. I used up the last of my popcorn packs a couple weeks ago and havn't had use of the machine since then (and I have been missing it since it is so much better than microwaved).

I have been very happy with the Megapop pre-packs. I have tried a few different ones, and this is the one I have liked the best. I am thinking of trying a few different ones again, since it was years ago that I tried out 4 or 5 different ones and settled on the Megapop at that time and have simply been buying it ever since.
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post #51 of 475 Old 10-07-2011, 12:32 AM
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I like the megapop ones too but in the end I didnt like paying for the shipping. Ended up using Orville's Kernels + Flavacol+ Kernel Season's movie theatre popping/topping oil. Great combo!

Just tried Albertson's popcorn because it was cheaper than Orvilles...pretty crunchy I must say...Guess its back to the more expensive Orville lol

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post #52 of 475 Old 10-17-2011, 12:09 PM
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I got this machine

http://www.amazon.com/Maxi-Matic-EPM...8878341&sr=1-2

Absolutely love it and it gets used at least once a week for movies

It's very easy to clean as well. Just a damp paper towel and done.

I also use Coconut oil and love the taste. But I think the biggest taste difference I've had is the butter topping O'Dells SuperKist II and the Flavacol.

I've noticed if I don't clean out the machine it doesn't pop as well... so just FYI I don't know if other machines are the same, but if mine was hard to clean it would probably never get used because I have to clean it before I use it or it just doesn't pop very well.

Also I've left the machine for days before I've cleaned it as well and it's still very easy to clean... maybe it's because of the coconut oil, but I don't know.


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post #53 of 475 Old 10-17-2011, 10:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pokekevin View Post

I like the megapop ones too but in the end I didnt like paying for the shipping. Ended up using Orville's Kernels + Flavacol+ Kernel Season's movie theatre popping/topping oil. Great combo!

Just tried Albertson's popcorn because it was cheaper than Orvilles...pretty crunchy I must say...Guess its back to the more expensive Orville lol

I know Sam's Club carries Megapop pre-pack cases. I am not sure if Costco, or BJ's.
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post #54 of 475 Old 10-19-2011, 12:03 PM
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Has anyone purchased the Paragon Contempo 4 machine? If so any thoughts on it?

I was looking into this one to replace my old machine.

http://www.paragonpopcornmachines.co...n-us/p133.html

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post #55 of 475 Old 10-19-2011, 08:52 PM
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BJ's and Costco in the Boston don't carry pre measured paks its easy to order 24 pack cases from SAMs club for 36$ shipped. I buy online from SAMs club without a membership.
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post #56 of 475 Old 10-20-2011, 12:14 PM
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Well we decided to order the Paragon Contempo 4. i just hope that we will be ok with a 4 oz machine. Had a 6 oz before but found that with my wife and I we always had some left over that we would end up throwing out. Figured now we will hopefully pop what we need and we can always put some more in if needed.

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post #57 of 475 Old 10-20-2011, 04:50 PM
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I just switched from using Gold Medal Fun Pop pre-packs to the 4 oz. Great Northern pre-packs. In my opinion the Great Northern corn tastes better. I also like the fact that the oil included in the Great Northern packs is lower in saturated fat with NO trans fat. I prefer the GN portion of Flavocal too (perfect level of saltiness for me).

I've done a bunch of experimenting in the last 6 months... trying my own recipe of coconut and canola oils, various amounts of Flavocal, and a couple different brands of corn. None of my combinations were as tasty as these Great Northern pre-packs.

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post #58 of 475 Old 10-21-2011, 10:23 AM
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The great Northern pre-packs are under $25 for a case at O.biz

Just incase anyone was looking.
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post #59 of 475 Old 10-22-2011, 06:12 AM
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Thanks Mark, that's good to know. I think I'll be going with a Paragon Cineplex for Christmas, and now I'm researching the corn prepacks. Paragon seems to have their own in house brand which I think might be labeled Country Harvest (it is their "part #1000") which I can order for a decent price from the same place I would order the machine. Still comparing options, but it would be good to know if anyone uses this kind.
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post #60 of 475 Old 10-26-2011, 08:01 AM
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Our Paragon Contemp 4 machine is arriving today - will report on how it is.

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