In Spring 2014 iCelsius introduced this revolutionary new remote device.
It can be used to monitor food, a grill, a smoker, an oven, room temperature, a wine cellar, an aquarium, and even body temperature.
Smaller and thinner than a deck of cards, the device is brain-dead simple to operate. In “direct mode” it speaks to an iOS or Android app on your smartphone or tablet via wifi, not BlueTooth although I am told a BlueTooth v ersion is coming. Wifi is a much stronger signal and has much greater range. I tested the range at about 100 yards line of site and about 25 yards with a brick house in the way.
In “remote mode” you can monitor it on your computer through a browser or with the app on a smartphone or tablet from across the city or anywhere in the world. In order to use the remote mode you must have a gmail account.
There are six probes already on the market and more coming. There is even a probe that meters humidity, but it won’t work on your smoker yet.
There are ports on the side for a USB cable to charge it, and a port thermistor probes. There is a battery indicator light and two buttons, on/off, and a mode button. The mode button toggles between green and blue.
Green is direct mode and blue is remote mode.
Alas, in direct mode the battery lasts only about six hours so you will need to plug the USB cable into a charger or a power supply (AC to USB power adapters are cheap). In remote mode the battery life is longer because you can set the frequency of the data transmissions. In direct mode the unit is constantly transmitting.
The device ships with your choice of probes. One of the options is for two probes on one cable so you can monitor both your cooker and your meat, or two pieces of meat, or one piece of meat in two locations. The cables are 5′ long. We have noticed that some multiple probe thermometers from other manufacturers can give you false readings when you put both probes in the same piece of meat because electrical charges run through the watery meat and the probes short each other out. iCelsius has solved this issue by using a single chip set for both probes, and polling each probe one at a time so the two aren’t sending signals at the same time. The dual probe unit sells for $14 more than the single probe pushing it just north of $100. If you can afford it, go for it.
The transmitter is not waterproof, so I slip it into a plastic zipper bag to protect it. Read my comments on the software and the probes for the iCelsius above. In general I like them very much and I am optimistic that some of the quirks will disappear in future releases.
Leave in Food, Leave in Cooker, Wireless Remote
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Meathead, BBQ Hall of Famer - Founder and publisher of AmazingRibs.com, Meathead is known as the site's Hedonism Evangelist and BBQ Whisperer. He is also the author of the New York Times Best Seller "Meathead, The Science of Great Barbecue and Grilling", named one of the "100 Best Cookbooks of All Time" by Southern Living.