The InkBird IHT-1P is the latest instant read BBQ thermometer to be released from BBQ thermometer manufacturer InkBird. InkBird has been very aggressive in their marketing in Australia recently, promoting their feature-packed, sensibly-priced alternative to the big name brands. In this InkBird IHT-1P Review, we’ll put their latest instant read BBQ thermometer to the test and see if it has what it takes to make the big brands hot under the collar!
Why are Instant Read Thermometers Important?
For those not familiar, there are two main types of digital BBQ thermometers: a multi-probe and an instant read. A multi-probe will have two or more probes connected by wires to a base unit. Typically, you’ll use one probe to measure the temperature at grill level inside the BBQ, and the other probe to measure the internal temperature of the meat through the course of the cook. You can find my review of an InkBird multiprobe here.
The second type is an Instant Read. This thermometer has a probe permanently attached to a base unit, with no wires, and does not stay in your BBQ for the duration of the cook. It has two main functions. Firstly, it is used to give you very quick, accurate temperature readings of your meat. The speed is important because the longer your BBQ is open the more heat escapes, making your cooks longer. The sudden fluctuations in oxygen levels will make your fire less stable and can affect the quality of your cook. If you’re cooking multiple pieces of meat at the same time, a slower thermometer can really add some serious time to your cook as the BBQ will take time to get back up to temperature after each time you open the door.
Secondly, they are great for checking the tenderness of your cook and as you become more experienced, the tenderness will become more important than the actual temperature. Basically, if you probe your meat and it feels like butter (very little to no resistance) your cook is done. Temperatures are a great guide when you’re starting, but each piece of meat will cook and be done at different temperatures. Probe-feel is the true guide of doneness. This is where an Instant Read becomes almost essential.
InkBird IHT-1P Review: What’s in the box?
The InkBird IHT-1P comes in a very neat little box that presents well. Inside, the thermometer is well packed to ensure safety in transit. The imitation felt lining is a nice touch and gives a touch of luxury to this product. Naturally, the thermometer is in there. There is also a handy little card with instructions for calibrating the unit, and underneath, in a tidy little pocket is the charging cable.
InkBird IHT-1P Review: Appearance
The InkBird IHT-1P has a familiar but refreshing design. There is of course, the probe which swings out from the body of the thermometer on a hinge. There is a large, easy to read, backlit display. The buttons are simple, large, and are also easy to read. The bright orange is eye-catching and means that the unit won’t ‘hide’ from you in your pit areas, and the matching orange backlit display is a nice touch.
What’s refreshing is that the design of this unit is as unique as it can be while still meeting the design requirements. At the moment, many Instant Read thermometers are a blatant rip-off of an industry leader. This is not the case with the InkBird IHT-1P, and you have to respect the manufacturer for that.
InkBird IHT-1P Review: Features
The features of the Inkbird IHT-1P are comprehensive:
- Range: -50C ~ 300C (-50F ~572F)
- Accuracy: ± 1C (± 2F)
- Measuring Rate: 0.5 seconds
- Waterproof Level: IPX5
- Backlit Display
- Auto Off
- Reads in Centigrade or Fahrenheit
If you’re not familiar with IPX levels of waterproofing, IPX5 means that the unit is protected against intrusion, dust, accidental contact and water, and that it has been tested with water jets with no harmful effects, and dust will not enter at a level to cause problems.
InkBird IHT-1P Review: Performance
It’s all well and good to talk about what it’s got, but more important is how well does it work. I’m happy to say that my initial tests showed me that this unit works well and as claimed by the manufacturer. I just used a simple boil test to measure the InkBird IHT-1P’s performance.
I set an electric kettle on a cutting board, filled it up and set it to boil. I’m on the Gold Coast, so boiling point should be exactly 100C (212F). I held my iPhone in one hand and inserted the thermometer into the kettle right as it switched off, to measure the temperature.
The manufacturer claims an error margin of ± 1C (± 2F), but I found the temperature to be bang on perfect, straight out of the box with no need for calibration. The temperature came in exactly at 100C (212F). I also used another instant read thermometer from a market leading brand and found there was only a 1 degree celsius difference which suggests that I need to calibrate my market leading instant thermometer.
More impressive than the accuracy was the speed. From the time I inserted the thermometer into the boiling water until it settled at 100C was barely 4 seconds. This is just barely slower than my market leading branded instant read. It also seemed to me watching (I did the test three times), that the measure rate was much faster than 0.5 seconds which was very interesting.
At this point I’m going to comment on the Build Quality of the unit. It felt well built and had a decent weighty feel in my hand, inspiring confidence in its longevity, though only time will tell on that. The only concern I have is that the hinge felt ‘sticky’ for the want of a better term when opening and closing the probe. It could just be my particular thermometer, but it felt like it was shuddering a little when opening and closing. This could also improve over time the more the unit is opened and closed.
InkBird IHT-1P Review: Price
The price point of the InkBird is exceptional. At just under $50AUD (at the time of publishing) including free shipping, you would be hard pressed to get a better deal anywhere. The industry leading instant read that I was referring to earlier in this review has a retail of around $200AUD. With these price differences, you’d expect to be getting one quarter of the features and one quarter of the performance, but that is clearly not the case. The accuracy was on par and the time taken to settle at a temperature was only one second longer. Clearly, the InkBird IHT-1P is exceptional value for money.
InkBird IHT-1P Review: Conclusions
The InkBird IHT-1P is clearly great value for money. It has all of the essential features, and a few nice extra features, such as a backlit display. It is accurate and only fractionally slower than the industry leader to settle at a final temperature. It is also rechargeable which is a nice touch that I haven’t seen on any other instant read thermometers to date. The price point is unbeatable considering that it includes free shipping. If you’re in the market for a new instant read thermometer, the InkBird IHT-1P is definitely worth considering, offering a tonne of features, and great performance at an exceptional price point.