I bought a Whynter 21-Bottle Dual Zone on ebay. It is electronically cooled, no refrigerant. After some thought, I decided on this one for the following reasons:
- I have a small dorm sized refrigerator that I tried to regulate using a timer and a temperature probe. This method is purported to work and there are kits available. But the temperature was too variable.
- I settled on a dual zone because ageing and storing cheeses use two different temperatures. Most of the long term ageing is at 40-45 degrees F. Initial ageing is at 50-55 degrees F, and sometimes as high as 60F.
- The Whynter was one of the smallest and least expensive of the dual zone models. I didn't want to dive in and buy a $500 - $800, or higher priced model, without having some experience with a less expensive model so that I would know what to look for if I decided to upgrade eventually. This one is in the $350 range. But on ebay, I got it for $175 because it was cosmetically damaged (the back corner and back panel were slightly dented)
- The wine racks are completely removable, so I could put the plastic ageing container in easily.
As far as temperature control, it's perfect. I can set the temperature for each zone and leave it be. I'm not constantly fussing with a modification to a regular refrigerator. As far as humidity control in the container, I had used a GE thermometer/hygrometer with remote sensor. I put the sensor in the ageing container to monitor the humidity. I have since given that up because there just isn't any room now in the smaller ageing container I am forced to use. I just judge the humidity by how much moisture beads on the lid of the container, or whether the surface of the cheese is wet, slimy, or sticky.
So, the only complaint I have is the size. I believe that someday, I may buy a larger wine refrigerator. But it will have the features that this one has.