Masterbuilt 560 Gravity Series 560 grill is the first charcoal grill with a digital control system. While it offers the big flavor of charcoal, it also provides easy electronic temperature control that can be set and forgotten. An aftermarket grill or kamado would be necessary to achieve that combination.
Pellet grills are the hottest models of connected grills. Despite their rising popularity, wood pellets aren’t as widely available as charcoal, despite producing excellent tasting food.
There are hardware stores online where you can find them, but they aren’t easily added to your regular grocery order. Some people prefer charcoal over anything else.
A grill from Masterbuilt, a brand under the same umbrella as Kamado Joe, combines the convenience of charcoal with the flexibility of pellet grilling.
Despite this, the Gravity Series 560 isn’t perfect. Some smokers on the market are more fuel-efficient than this one. It also tends to consume more briquettes than other smokers.
Due to the 560’s inability to withstand the rain, you can’t use it in the rain. Nevertheless, this charcoal cooker is reasonably priced, functional, and user-friendly.
So, if you want classic charcoal barbecue flavor without the hassle of tending a fire, the Gravity Series Masterbuilt 560 is perfect for you.
How to use Masterbuilt 560
- Add charcoal to the hopper
- Light a fire starter block in the area where you want to start the fire.
- Three minutes later, close the door.
- Walk away from the grill when it reaches the temperature you desire.
Masterbuilt 560 Review
Looks like a smoker
It looks like most backyard pellet smokers from the outside, and that’s not a bad thing. It has a short but tall black metal body. On the front and back of the cart-style grill are casters and wheels.
On the right side of the cooking chamber, a rectangular charcoal hopper is located. The grill’s controls, a temperature display, and four meat probe ports are located on the left side of the 560.
The grill comes with one meat probe. Extra probes are available for $20 each from Masterbuilt. When the lid is opened, you will see two cast-iron cooking griddle pans as well as a pair of warming racks.
As a whole, Masterbuilt says it offers 560 square inches of cooking space.
Packaging and assembly
Excellent packaging was used for the grill. There was plenty of cardboard and foam as well as clear packaging. All the parts did not rub against one another. Assembling this grill was not easy, but it was not a hassle either.
We found it a bit tricky to put the fiberglass gasket between the ash bin and the hopper. About 2 hours and 20 minutes were needed to assemble the grill, but if you had help, you might be able to reduce this time. Everything was painted very well when we unpacked it, and the parts and areas that were unpainted didn’t have any gouges.
The Gravity 560 didn’t have any defects that we could see during the assembly process than most grills, however. All the pieces fit together perfectly.
Design and build quality
A grill of this price would be considered average in terms of material strength. This is normal for many grill companies, as it is usually thin sheet metal. There isn’t much difference between this grill and other grills in terms of durability.
Additionally, the temperature gauge lacks any real temperature markings, which does not inspire confidence. The digital display displays the temperature, so it is purely cosmetic. It appears that the side tray is riveted to the body.
There is some concern there – because if you pull extremely hard, it might snap off. Furthermore, those rivets will corrode one day, and the side tray may also corrode. There is a reasonable amount of sturdiness in the bottom part. For a grill of this size and price, there appears to be sufficient strength.
There is nothing remarkable about the wheels. The outer tread is made of tough plastic. While not heavy-duty, they give the grill adequate durability and allow it to be moved around with ease.
You can quickly start grilling
After the smoker is set up, get started as soon as possible. The Masterbuilt smoker is easy to light, and it does so very quickly. You can start the smoker using a fire starter if you have used one before.
Plug the starter into the socket and turn it on. Add charcoal to the charcoal hopper, add some firelighters under the hopper, and adjust the heat. Smokers will complete the job. To use the smoker, the first time, you must clean it.
During this process, the dirt and grease left behind during manufacturing will be burned off. When the Masterbuilt has cooled down, you can start using it. Within ten to fifteen minutes of lighting, you are at 140 degrees (284F).
It takes 10 minutes longer to grill because that can be done as well. The Masterbuilt easily reaches 350 degrees (660F) within no time.
Firing It Up
A fairly simple process was required to light the 560. Using natural hardwood briquettes and hardwood lump charcoal, we filled the airtight hopper as instructed. The next step was to remove the 2 slides, since they allowed air into the fire, causing flames to ignite and heat to build up inside the grill.
Likewise, the ash bucket door was opened to let the hot ash fall to the ground. A fire starter was inserted in the slot above the ash bucket, and a butane lighter was used to ignite it. Within 15 minutes, the grill reached 700 degrees, which is a high temperature for a grill.
That’s all there is to it. We reached our set temperature after about fifteen minutes, after opening a bag of charcoal. Even if you dismissed charcoal in the past because it is messy and dangerous, it’s worth reconsidering now because the 560 is fast and easy to start.
The grill needs to be emptied periodically, the bottom must be cleaned, and the grates must be scrubbed clean after each use. Instead of using a bucket, we just removed the lower hopper door from the charcoal grill, removed the ash, and disposed of it.
Before you remove the ash from the grill, make sure it has cooled down. An additional selling point is how easy it is to clean up the ash.
Grill with the app
WiFi and Bluetooth are available on the 560. In addition to monitoring the temperature and setting up timers remotely, we were also able to adjust the temperature setting via the Masterbuilt app on our smartphones.
Recipes for barbecue, grilling, and smoking are also available through the app. To ensure all of the app’s functions work as advertised, we tested them, but we didn’t need to use them. The grill display provided a quick glimpse of our progress.
Since all these features, as well as the rest of the grill’s functionality, are electronically controlled, there is the potential for difficulties in diagnosing and repairing the problem.
Despite that, we experienced no issues, and if a repair is needed, the electronics seem relatively inexpensive.
- Prepares delicious meals
- Easy to clean
- Can hold four food probes
- Remote temperature control
- It takes practice to master lighting
- A few attractive features are lacking
- Is not as fuel-efficient as it claims to be
- Cast iron
Frequently Asked Questions
Is the Masterbuilt 560 worth it?
The Masterbuilt Gravity Series 560 will be an excellent $500 investment for you. Smokes at low and slow temperatures and grills with high heat. The 560 has the convenience of controlling the fire temperature independently, just like a pellet grill, but uses lump or briquette charcoal.
Masterbuilt 560 can be used with wood chunks?
With the Masterbuilt 560, lump charcoal or briquettes are both acceptable. As long as the chunks of wood do not exceed 1.5 pounds, you can mix the wood with your charcoal in the hopper.
What is the cooling time of the Masterbuilt 560?
To burn the smoker for the first time, it must be cleaned. The leftover dirt and grease from manufacturing can be burned off this way. You can now begin working with it after it has cooled down.
Masterbuilt 560 has impressed us. This grill stands out from the rest because of its ease of use, in addition to its ability to smoke low and slow as well as sear when required. A $500 gas grill is a rather good deal, especially when you consider how versatile it is.
It’s undisputed that food cooked on charcoal tastes better, but several factors deter people from doing it, including lighting the grill, heating it to the right temperature, and cleaning up the ash that results. All of this has been handled by Masterbuilt.
The 560 Digital Charcoal Grill allows you to expand your barbecue capabilities and menu, regardless of how experienced you are.