Pros & Cons – Traeger Pro 780

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The Pro 780 is the bigger brother to the Pro 575. Both models are a part of the second generation of Pro Series models from Traeger. There are notable improvements over the Pro 22 and Pro 34. However, its not all sunshine and roses. Right, let’s review the Pros & Cons of this pellet grill/smoker.

Tap/Click above to review our video on the Pros & Cons of the Traeger Pro 780

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Where the Pro 780 easily beats its older Traeger siblings is with regards to temperature control. The D2 controller features a PID algorithm to make constant adjustments to maintain a set temperature.

The D2 controller fitted to the Traeger Pro 780 is a big improvement with temperature accuracy.
The D2 controller fitted to the Traeger Pro 780 runs a PID temperature control algorithm

PID stands for ‘Proportional Integral Derivative’; it simply means the controller is looking at the set temp, comparing it to the actual temp, and frequently adjusting the pellet feed rate to suit.

The result is typically 5 to 10 degree temperature swings either side of the set temperature as opposed to swings of 25 degrees on older Traeger pellet grills/smokers.

PID tech is great for accurate temperature control on a pellet grill/smoker, as its able to maintain a very stable pellet fire. The problem is a very stable peller fire doesn’t actually produce much smoke.

Unfortunately, the D2 controller on the Traeger Pro 780 doesn't get a dedicated smoke setting.
The Pro 780 is missing the ‘Super Smoke’ setting of more premium Traeger models

You can give a pellet grill/smoker with a PID controller the ability to produce more smoke by creating wider swings in the efficiency of the pellet fire, Traeger calls theirs ‘Super Smoke’.

The problem is the Pro 780 doesn’t get this feature, its only found on more expensive Traeger models. As a result, the smoke production capabilities of the Pro 780 are more limited.

If you have read some of my other Pros & Cons articles, you will know I’m not a fan of purely having small caster wheels on large/heavy pellet grills/smokers. I think its daft.

I'm a fan of the large all-terrain wheels on the Traeger Pro 780.
I like the fact Traeger has fitted pretty large wheels on the Pro 780

The reason I like to see large wheels on grills/smokers is because sometimes you have to move a grill either over soft ground or across a surface that is not perfectly flat.

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To this day, several years after the Pro 780 came onto the market, I have no idea why Traeger fitted 18lb pellet hoppers. Pellets have always come in 20lb bags!

Its a bit annoying that Traeger decided to fit an 18lb hopper on the Pro 780.
With an 18 lb hopper, it means the Pro 780 cannot take a full 20 lb bag of pellets in one go

While its a bit annoying the Pro 780 cannot take a full bag of pellets in one go, its more of an issue in winter conditions when pellet consumption is increased.

In really cold conditions, pellet consumption can double, and the Pro 780 is not an insulated pellet grill/smoker. Therefore, the 18lb pellet hopper is not ideal.

When the Gen 2 Pros Series came out, Traeger heavily marketed their WiFire App on social media, and when it comes to smoking your foods over long periods of time, it can be very useful.

The Traeger Pro 780 benefits from the WiFire App which offers a lot of functionality.
With the Traeger WiFire App, you can do more than just monitor the temperature inside the pellet grill/smoker

From the App, you can monitor and adjust the temperature of the Pro 780, set alerts from the meat probe. You can even download recipes and order new pellets.

Now I should note, in the image above it shows a pellet percentage, which is possible on the Pro 780, but you have to purchase the separate Traeger pellet sensor to place in the hopper.

Where the Traeger Pro 780 is most lacking is in its out-of-the-box ability to get a good sear on steaks and burgers due to the relatively low max temp setting of 500 degrees and thin wire racks.

When it comes to high direct heat grilling this not a strength of the Traeger Pro 780.
Grilling and searing is not a natural strength of the Traeger Pro 780

While the out of the box grilling/searing performance of the Pro 780 is not great, it can be improved with a set of GrillGrates and the use of 100% charcoal pellets.

My point is though, that the grilling performance goes down as a Con compared to pellet grills at a similar price point to the Pro 780 from the likes of Camp Chef and Weber.

My Final Thoughts On The Traeger Pro 780

Traeger was the first brand to come up with the idea of a pellet grill in the 1980s, and its still the market leader to this day. Therefore, many people want to own a Traeger.

However, the market today is bustling with competing products, all gunning for Traeger and its potential customers. As such, for the same money as the Pro 780, there are a lot of options.

The Pro 780 currently retails for just under a thousand dollars, and as you can see from our database through the link below, there are now 165 pellet grills under that price point.

Does the Pro 780 compete with them on its features? In some regards yes, but in others, not really when it comes to its maximum temperature setting in particular.

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