The Lavatools Javelin Pro is a full-featured, hand-held, instant-read thermometer with very good accuracy and quick response times. It is available in a number of colors, useful in a commercial setting where cross-contamination of foods is a problem. The display will rotate, depending on the orientation of the device, making it left-hand friendly for you creative types. The plastic housing is impregnated with an anti-microbial agent for food safety.
Opening the probe, folding knife style, turns on the unit. There is a button on the back side of the display that controls the backlight, the max/min display, and the temp hold function. I found it to be a little quirky – sensitive to double-click intervals – but familiarity may render this criticism moot. If this button is held, the thermometer will beep when a stable temperature is reached, and it will hold the reading until the button is uncovered.
There are four micro-switches in the battery compartment that allow you to select Fahrenheit or Celsius, turn the auto-sleep function on or off, turn the stabilization feature on or off, and set the resolution to 1º or 0.1º. The user’s sheet leave it up to you to figure out which switch is which. The user’s sheet also describes how to check the unit’s accuracy, but there is no ability to calibrate it.
After ten minutes of inactivity, the unit will shut itself down. Picking it up and waving it will turn it back on. Waving it around will also turn on the backlight, although it takes a brisk shake. There is a magnet on the back to allow fastening the unit to a metal surface when not in use. It is IP65, meaning it is dust tight and resistant to splashes.
The owner’s sheet gives chef-recommended meat temperatures instead of the overly cautious USDA numbers. It also gives candy temperatures for different hardnesses, as well as recommendations for proofing yeast, softening butter and rennet activation.
The unit is warranted for three years. Unfortunately, the manufacturer does not provide any contact information with the unit, either on the packaging or in the user’s sheet. This is a no-no in my book. If you have a problem, who you gonna call? You’ll have to visit their website to get that info.
Build is good. It’s a tightly-built thermometer with a slightly fussy control button. Accuracy is very good, and so is response time. The unit is aggressively priced. All in all, a good unit at a good price. Gold Medal!
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Bill McGrath - Bill McGrath is AmazingRibs.com's Thermometer Maven. He has sophisticated equipment, an electrical engineering degree from Cornell University, and an MBA (almost) from UC Berkeley. Despite being mostly retired, he is still the person responsible for developing and updating all of ExxonMobil's training modules.