Among the sea of humidor options for cigar enthusiasts currently on the market, NewAir currently ranks among the top choices within the space of wineador-style systems. The company as a whole specializes in a variety of cooling and heating gadgets, ranging from wine and beer fridges, to garage heaters, and temperature-controlled cigar humidors. With the latter, NewAir capitalizes on the DIY practice of modifying wine coolers for cigar storage with a more turn-key approach.
NewAir offers a range of temperature-controlled humidors, each boiling down to one of two sizes: 250-count or 400-count. The latest of which is the NewAir 250 Count Electric Cigar Humidor Wineador (model NCH250SS00).
NewAir NCH250SS00 Breakdown
- Style: Wineador
- Finish: Black / Stainless Steel
- Exterior Dimensions: 13.6”(w) x 18.5”(h) x 19.3”(d)
- Interior Dimensions: 10.25”(w) x 14.25”(h) x 12”(d)
- Volume: 1.16 ft3
- Capacity: 250 (Manufacturer Suggested)
- Levels: 4
- Price: $399.99 (MSRP)
- Warranty: Limited (1 year) | Extendable (3 additional years)
- Thermoelectric cooling
- Digital hygrometer
- Digital-touch controls
- Full glass front door
- Interior light
- Customizable high-quality cedar shelves/drawers
- Key/lock set
- Adjustable feet for leveling
Formerly, Cigar Dojo reviewed the NewAir CC-300H humidor, giving the unit a high score of 94. This remains a high recommendation of ours, combining an ideal form and function with a reasonable price point. With the NCH250SS00, the humidor brings nearly all of the same perks that made the 400-count CC-300H unit great, adding a few more bells and whistles for the modern generation.
With humidors, appearance is more important to some than others. High-end desktop humidors are often purchased with aesthetics taking the lead over functionality, as they may need to compliment the decor of their environment. This is less of a concern with the wineador, as the units are more commonly stored under the desk. That being said, the NCH250SS00 has a clean and modern look that doesn’t seek to dominate the room. It’s essentially the same design as the CC-300H (or all NewAir humidors, for that matter), with the most noticeable change being digital touch controls that are now located under the glass. This is a welcomed addition that is just as functional as before, yet offering even more of the clean look that the company aims for.
Nearly all of the aforementioned bells and whistles have been carried over, save for the heating capability of the CC-300H, which NewAir dubs Opti-Temp™. Instead, the unit offers thermoelectric cooling (i.e. the correct cooling mechanism for cigar storage) that can be set between 52–74°F. Most other features are generally expected and straightforward (adjustable feet, internal light, lock/key), with the built-in digital hygrometer being among the most noteworthy upgrades. Without a doubt, the biggest motivator to opt for a NewAir system over a DIY wine cooler is the cedar shelves. The shelves are built from high-grade cedar, smoothly sliding throughout the four tiers of the humidor to allow for added customization. Unless you fancy yourself a fairly capable woodworker, a DIY approach will not be able to match the NewAir’s shelving.
The NewAir NCH250SS00 has a nice seal, bringing humidity levels up to 70% RH within 24 hours when placing a small amount of water in a dish at the bottom of the unit. This method is slow-going past the 70% mark, and wet sponges were used to bring the RH to 90% over the next 48 hours. After a week of seasoning, humidity beads were placed at two different levels of the humidor, cigars filled the shelves, and the unit was powered. Everything is straightforward from here, with the touch controls determining your cooling settings, a toggle between °F and °C, and a toggle for the LED light.
Like its big brother, the NCH250SS00 excels in the shelving department. There are two trays and one drawer, which I find best for cigar boxes on the trays and bulk cigar storage in the drawer. Actual storage in humidors will always be less than advertised. For this unit, NewAir lists it at 250 cigars, but I found it to be closer to 140 (drawer: 50, trays: 30/per, bottom area: 30). The Tetris enthusiasts out there may be able to extend this to 200 cigars, but that may be more work than most are willing to put in.
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The cooling system is the biggest draw in comparison to the CC-300H. Setting aside the lack of heat, this system functions more on par with standard thermoelectric wineadors. Yes, it cools, but it also doesn’t seem to know when to stop (again, like all other wine fridge wineadors). Even on its highest setting (which you’ll want to set it at immediately), the unit never shut off during my testing. Placed in a room set at 68°, I would’ve expected the unit to shut off when set at its highest setting of 74°F. When tracking temperature with a SensorPush hygrometer over a two-week period, the unit ranged from 64.5–66.5°F. This is great stability and I’m fine with the temperature range for my purposes, but the unit is fairly loud when running (maybe twice as loud as your computer’s fan running at full speed) and, as mentioned, it never stopped. Most people remedy this by hooking the power up to a smart outlet or outlet timer, telling the unit when it is allowed to turn on and run, but this is not something I’d like to deal with when going all-in on a unit such as this.
In terms of humidity, where there’s stable temperature and a good seal, the RH shouldn’t be a concern. This applies here, as the RH ranged from 64–69% during the same trial period.
The included digital hygrometer is a nice touch—it is embedded on the front of the cedar drawer and has a large display that can be read from across the room. Unfortunately, it’s not able to be calibrated and does not list temperature, but the RH was always within two percentage points of a calibrated hygrometer that was also in the unit, so I didn’t find this to be much of a concern.
If you’re looking for a smaller unit and don’t need heating functionality, this will easily meet your needs and keep your cigars stored properly. However, as the running joke goes within the cigar hobby, no amount of storage is ever enough. With the NewAir CC-300H housing nearly double the cigars and only coming in at $150 more, I’d recommend going with the bigger unit if you’re anywhere in the ballpark of debating between the two. On the other hand, if the small size is what you’re after (you could even place this on a desktop if you have space for the swinging door), this will more than get the job done for those looking for peak storage conditions for their collection.
- Clean and unassuming look makes for a great fit for a wide range of rooms/decor
- High-quality cedar shelves are practically worth the price of admission
- Compact size can be stored nearly anywhere
- Cooling system (essentially) does not turn off
- Somewhat loud when running
- Holds much less cigars than advertised