By: Max Good
The A830 is a combo gas and charcoal side by side grill with thick, heavy 304 stainless steel grates. It consists of an A430, the smallest Aurora gas 2-burner, on one side and a matching charcoal grill on the other. The A430 gas side has 16 gauge stainless steel flavor grids that blanket the burners for even heat distribution and two cast stainless steel E-burners, actually shaped more like an H, that are super heavy duty and designed to spread flame throughout the firebox. One owner likened the intensity to “a sea of fire”. Access to burners is easy for cleaning, smoking, or setting up a rotisserie. The charcoal side features a hand cranked adjustable height charcoal pan for easy heat control, easy access front door to add charcoal or wood and a 26,000 BTU charcoal igniter burner. Unfortunately it has radial lid heat indicators instead of the battery powered digital thermometers and meat probes that come with all other Fire Magic models (sigh).
Auroras have 12″ deep fireboxes (mighty nice for rotisserie) and a double wall spring assisted hoods. Removable warming racks can be stored on brackets behind the hood. These brackets also hold the rotisserie spit. Backburners include stainless steel covers for protection when not in use.
The drip collection system on the gas side consists of a tapered firebox bottom draining into a small drawer accessed from the front control panel and equipped with a disposable aluminum tray. But you shouldn’t get much grease because most burns up on the flavor grids especially if you do a burn off after each use. There is s slide out ash pan on the charcoal side. All 304 stainless steel cart construction with insulated doors and drawers. Heavy-duty locking swivel casters.
All Fire Magic BBQ grills are made with high quality 304 cast stainless steel burners, cooking grates and housings that carry a lifetime warranty. Warranty for various components then drops to 15 years for brass valves and backburner and manifold assemblies all the way down to 1 year for electric systems. Lifetime ownership is a Fire Magic mantra. All grills are shipped with conversion kits that facilitate propane or natural gas should your preference change.
Fire Magic designs are elegant and engineered for customization. The grills or “heads” can be purchased for drop in installations or mounted on carts and pedestals. The model numbers tell a lot about the model. For example, A660i indicates: A=Aurora, 660=actual or approximate primary cooking surface, i=island or drop-in head for install. A540s: A=Aurora, 540=540 square inch primary cooking surface, s=stand-alone or mounted on a cart. For outdoor kitchen installations, anything in the vast Fire Magic catalog may be incorporated. Options for the Aurora series stand-alone models are more limited than with Echelons. Fire Magic Add-ons can increase the price significantly. Our listed MSRP is for a basic A830s freestanding model.
Please note: The Heat Flux number of 91.57 on this one is misleading. The gas side has a rating of 116.28. The charcoal side could easily exceed that, but our calculation is based on main gas burner BTU. In this case we included the 26000 BTU charcoal ignitor burner.
Fire Magic grills have been manufactured in California since 1937. These luxury grills exude elegance and quality. Excellent in design and construction, beautiful to behold and priced accordingly. These are among the finest grills made.
In 1982 RH Peterson, pioneers in fabrication of realistic, artificial gas logs, acquired Fire Magic to complement their outdoor lifestyle line. They produce not only free standing gas, coal and electric grills on carts and pedestals, but anything else you need for an outdoor kitchen including smokers, a wide range of attachments and accessories, several different side burners, refrigerators, keg coolers and tappers, rotisserie baskets, ventilation hoods, griddles, pots and pans, tongs and spatulas, and even the kitchen sink.
Paul Loar, owner of Fireplace and Chimney Authority, is a Chicago area Fire Magic Dealer who was kind enough to invite us to one of his showrooms. Loar clearly took pride in demonstrating his wares, stating the burners have a range of 200°F for slow roasting and smoking all the way up to 1600°F on the large Echelon 1060 model to sear steaks in minutes, just like steakhouses. All monitored by the onboard digital thermometers. He warns new owners to reduce cooking times, “It’s like getting behind the wheel of a Ferrari when you’re used to driving a Taurus”.
Fire Magic designs are elegant and engineered for customization. The grills or “heads” can be purchased for drop in installations or mounted on carts and pedestals. The model numbers tell a lot about the model. For example, E1060i indicates: E=Echelon, 1060=actual or approximate primary cooking surface, i=island or drop-in head for install. A660s: A=Aurora, 660=660 square inch primary cooking surface, s=stand-alone or mounted on a cart. For outdoor kitchen installations, anything in the vast Fire Magic catalog may be incorporated. Options for stand-alone models are more limited but you may, for instance, replace an E-Burner with an IR Sear Zone.
If you’re in the market for the best, you should consider Fire Magic. If you’re building an outdoor kitchen or souped-up patio you should consider Fire Magic. Outdoor kitchens are significant home improvement projects. We don’t recommend drop-ins because once the cement is dry, it’s hard to change your mind and if you move, you can’t take it with you. But if you choose to go that path you undoubtedly would like your grill to last as long as the bricks. One Fire Magic dealer recounted a call to fix an installed drop-in grill. When asked about its age the homeowner replied, “I bought this place 30 years ago and it was already here”. To the astonishment of both men, parts were still available and the unit was put back in service. I believe this company will stand behind all their products. Indeed, when speaking with Fire Magic employees their genuine enthusiasm is palpable. Of course you’re not just buying reliability and great customer service; you’re buying the shining centerpiece of your outdoor realm and a lifetime of enjoyment the versatility and superior performance these elite cooking machines deliver.
They also make American Outdoor Grills, which are premium cookers at a lower price than Fire Magic. All high quality and made in America.
Available on-line and at independent hearth and patio stores.
Published On: 12/5/2012 Last Modified: 3/17/2021
These are products we have tested, won our top awards, and are highly recommend. Click here to read how we test, about our medals, and what they mean.
A big part of this site is our unbiased equipment and product reviews. We love playing with toys and we have no problem calling them the way we see them. Some companies pay a finder’s fee if a reader clicks a link on AmazingRibs.com and buys a product. It has zero impact on our reviews, zero impact on the price you pay, and the sites never tell us what you bought, but it has a major impact on our ability to keep this site alive! So before you buy, please click our links. Here’s a link that takes you to a page on Amazon that has some of our favorite tools and toys: https://tinyurl.com/amazingribs
The Broil King Signet 320 is a modestly priced, 3-burner gas grill that packs a lot of value and power under the hood. Broil King’s proprietary, dual-tube burners get hot fast and are able to achieve high, searing temps that rival most comparatively priced gas grills. The quality cast aluminum housing carries a Limited Lifetime Warranty.
The FireBoard Spark is a hybrid combining instant-read capability, a cabled temperature probe, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity. We gave Spark a Platinum Medal for pushing the envelope of product capability while maintaining high standards of design and workmanship.
Fireboard Labs Product Photo Shoot. Kansas City Commercial Portrait and Wedding Photographers ©Kevin Ashley Photography
With the ability to monitor up to six temperatures simultaneously with either Bluetooth or Wifi on your mobile phone, tablet, or computer, Fireboard is the best digital thermometer we’ve tested.
Click here to read our detailed review
The amazing Karubecue is the most innovative smoker in the world. The quality of meat from this machine is astonishing. At its crux is a patented firebox that burns logs above the cooking chamber and sucks heat and extremely clean blue smoke into the thermostat controlled oven. It is our favorite smoker, period.
Click here for our review of this superb smoker
GrillGrates(TM) amplify heat, prevent flareups, make flipping foods easier, kill hotspots, flip over to make a fine griddle, and can be easily moved from one grill to another. You can even throw wood chips, pellets, or sawdust between the rails and deliver a quick burst of smoke.
The PK-360, with 360 square inches of cooking space, this rust free, cast aluminum charcoal grill is durable and easy to use. Four-way venting means it’s easy to set up for two zone cooking with more control than single vent Kamado grills. It is beautifully designed, completely portable, and much easier to set up for 2-zone cooking than any round kamado.