dfk41 you can be consistent with the variables that you control. If you find a good roaster, use a decent grinder and temp stable espresso machine, what you are left with is shot prep and tamping. If you are consistent with these aspects you are giving yourself the best chance of getting the most out of your coffee…consistently. It becomes even more important IMO as you pull lighter roasts.
PortafilterProcrastinator measuring the tamping force on scales doesn’t work in my opinion. On the Bravo for example you can feel the spring bottom out in the handle but you can still push down further without realising. What I think benefits most is the self levelling aspect which does help with consistency.
I think the force tamper is interesting in that when you reach the desired pressure the piston disengages and the base slams the puck (from my understanding).