During my mission to find the best instant read meat thermometer, I tested out the ChefsTemp Finaltouch X10 to see if it has what it takes to compete with some of the bigger brand names.
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ChefsTemp Finaltouch X10 Review
As an experienced griller with many instant-read thermometers, I know what makes a thermometer stand out. So, do the ChefsTemp Finaltouch X10’s features have what it takes to earn a spot among my trusted thermometers?
As part of my testing, I gauged the temperature accuracy using the sous vide method and tested the meat right on the grill. Since I knew the temperature of the water, I could quickly test the thermometer’s temperature reading accuracy.
My Experience With the Finaltouch X10
My first impressions were overwhelmingly positive, mainly because using the ChefsTemp Finaltouch X10 is straightforward. Simply remove the stainless steel probe from its set compartment within the main body. Then, adjust the probe to your desired angle, and carefully slide the tapered end into the meat you are grilling.
The thermometer automatically lights up when inserted into meat, and the temperature is prominently displayed on the screen.
I found the probe impressively sensitive, as I got solid temperature readings with just 0.2 inches of the probe inserted into the meat. This is great, especially when grilling lean cuts of meat.
The ChefsTemp is really easy to hold and handle, weighing only 4.3 ounces. I felt like I could grip it pretty well, and it wouldn’t slip out of my hand while using it.
However, not everything about the Chef’sTemp Finaltouch X10 surpassed my expectations. While it was accurate reading lower temperatures, up to around 130-140 degrees, accuracy went down when reading higher temperatures.
In fact, the Finaltouch was far less accurate at high temperatures than the Thermo Pro or the ThermoWorks Thermopen. In my testing, it was off by as much as five degrees, which is significant, especially when grilling chicken or pork, when accuracy is really important.
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The battery compartment contains a small, transparent rubber washer that helps maintain the thermometer’s IP67 waterproof rating by sealing the compartment. If you accidentally lose it, the thermometer will be susceptible to water damage in the future.
Features of the Finaltouch X10
The ChefsTemp Finaltouch X10 offers several features that enhance its usability and performance. Its most outstanding feature was its bright LED display.
I was impressed with the thoughtful design of the display. It was surprisingly easy to read, no matter where I positioned it on the grill.
But when it comes to instant read thermometers, displays aren’t the only thing that matters. Let’s take a closer look at how it performed in my tests.
270 Degree Probe Rotation
The X10 thermometer comes with an impressive 270 degree probe rotation, giving you more flexibility compared to the standard 180 degree rotation found in most thermometers. This means you can position the probe at various angles, making it incredibly versatile and user friendly.
This feature is great when the sun is casting a glare on the screen, because I can easily rotate the display until there isn’t a glare and still see the reading in the proper orientation.
I also like that no matter which hand you use to grab the X10, its design makes it easy to handle. That means even left handed users can easily use this thermometer.
The Finaltouch X10 LED screen is clear and easy to read, whether it’s a really sunny day or you’re grilling at dusk. You can even press a “hold” button to lock the temperature reading, pull your hand away from the smoky grill, and read the measurements clearly.
With some other instant read thermometers, such as ThermoWorks Thermopop 2, the reading vanishes when you pull it out of the meat, which is incredibly frustrating! I like that the Finaltouch takes this into consideration and allows you to see the reading, even when not in the meat.
Motion Activated Wake Up Mode
Another feature I found extremely helpful with this tool was that it went into Sleep Mode after three minutes once I laid it down. When I touched it again, its motion detector turned it on – I love that.
This feature saves on battery power, and you don’t have to push a button to turn it back on. It’s this type of attention to detail that makes this thermometer stand out from the others.
Long Battery Life
The Finaltouch X10 now comes with 2 AAA batteries, preinstalled. These batteries are rated at 3000 hours of nonstop use. This is double that of their other main competitor, the Thermapen ONE, where the batteries are said to last 1500 hours.
Fast Display Readings
Cheftemp claims that the Finaltouch X10 provides a temperature reading in one second, and I was surprised to find that was fairly accurate.
In my tests, the temperature was displayed right around one second. That is much faster than most instant read thermometers, which can take 3-4 seconds or more to provide a reading.
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Benefits and Drawbacks
Some things that I loved about the ChefsTemp Finaltouch X10 included:
- The generous 1.86” x .77” sized LED screen is easy to read and enables a quick and effortless view of the temperature without straining your eyes
- Bright LED screen that is easy to read, even in tough lighting conditions
- Fast reading times so that your hand is in and out of a hot grill before it burns
- IP67 rating means you can give it a deep clean under running water
Here are a few of the drawbacks I experienced:
- Inaccurate when reading temperatures above 130-140 degrees by as much as five degrees.
- The battery compartment is held on with two screws, which takes time to access if you need to open it up
- Switching between Fahrenheit and Celsius requires removing the back cover to access the button, which is a bit of a hassle (but most people won’t have to do this)
Comparing the Finaltouch X10
Because accuracy is so important in grilling thermometers, I didn’t stop at just grilling various cuts of meat. I also tested the Finaltouch X10 against other thermometers in temperature controlled water baths.
I’ve found the sous vide method to be the best way to test a thermometer’s accuracy. With this method, I tested several popular instant-read thermometers available.
Finaltouch X10 vs ThermoWorks Thermopop 2 and Weber
Although more affordable options, the ThermoWorks Thermopop 2 and the Weber Instant Read both lacked the same accuracy and ease of use provided by the Finaltouch X10.
The ThermoWorks Thermopop 2 and the Weber also lack the intelligent auto light feature available in the Finaltouch X10, which I think is a big drawback.
Finaltouch X10 vs ThermaPen ONE and ThermoPro
All three of these thermometers were decent at their accuracy for lower temperatures (below 140 degrees), though the Chef’s Temp was off by the most in this group, up to five degrees off.
When reading high temperatures, the ChefsTemp was the least accurate of the three. The Finaltouch X10 consistently underreported the temperature at higher temperatures by 2-3, and even up to five degrees. That’s a big deal because if you’re grilling pork to 165 degrees, coming under that by five degrees is substantial.
I’d highly recommend only using the ThermaPen ONE at higher temperatures. It is the only thermometer I saw consistent accuracy at temperatures above 140.
Who Should Buy the Finaltouch X10?
The ChefsTemp thermometer may be a good pick for you if you primarily grill at lower temperatures (not going above 140 degrees) and generally don’t require extreme precision in your temperature readings.
It’s an excellent option for those who value a thermometer that is easy to handle with an exceptional display screen.
If you’re on a tight budget and can compromise on accuracy at higher temperatures, more affordable options such as the Thermopop 2 or Weber Instant Read are available.
And if you are looking for a thermometer that provides more precise temperature readings while staying in the same price range, then the ThermoPro TP19H is your best choice.