The DynaQ BBQ
Temperature Controller

The Display

The DynaQ, being an entry level controller, has no temperature display. As you will see later, you monitor the temperatures using an App for your smart device. However, there is the new light ring display which consists of several colored LEDs, a light ring and what is called a tail. Here we have labelled the components of the display for you:

1 - The top and bottom bars create the top and bottom of the light ring.

2 - The left and right bars create the sides of the light ring.

3 - The tail is constantly illuminated with a red LED.

4 - The two colored LEDs on the left side (red for pit, yellow for food) indicate if each temperature probe is inserted or not (on or off).

5 - This LED flashes blue if there is no Bluetooth connection, and is solid blue if there is a Bluetooth connection.

Let us show you the various ways that the light ring is used to communicate information:

Blower On Outside Target Range

If the pit temperature is below the target range and the blower is running, the entire ring will illuminate solid blue.

Blower Off Inside Target Range

When the pit temperature is within a certain number of degrees of the target ("inside the target range"), the ring will turn red. If the blower is not running, the entire ring will be on solid.

Blower On Inside Target Range

When the pit temperature is within the target range AND the blower is pulsing, the entire ring will be red, but the sides will flash.

No Pit Probe

If there is no pit probe installed, the entire light ring will flash red to alert you.

Pit Temperature Too High

When the pit temperature rises too far above the target temperature, the entire ring will flash red.

While you may find the light ring useful for at-a-glance status, you will find that in bright sunlight, you can barely see the color of the ring. Otherwise, the light ring and tail are a clever way to relay information about the state of the cooks.


All the connections are on the bottom edge of the DynaQ unit. From left to right are the plugs for the pit probe, the food probe, the blower and the power cord. They are labeled on the front of the unit.

The bottom side of the DynaQ showing the connectors.

The Reset Button

There is a reset button on the left side of the DynaQ. You can do a factory reset by pressing and holding this button for four seconds. You can also do a factory reset from the BBQ Guru App. The reset button can also be pressed momentarily to reset the flashing red ring for a missing pit probe event, or a high pit temperature event.

The left side of the DynaQ showing the reset button.


The DynaQ unit is powered by 12V DC. It comes with a power adapter that can be used with 100-240 VAC, 50-60 Hz. The power adapter has a 5-foot cord. Since the unit has a standard 5.5mm/2.5mm 12V barrel socket on it, you can use an automobile jump start battery with a cigarette plug to power the unit.

It is important to note that for the first time, the power supply comes with a separate power cord that must be attached to the power supply via a plug with screw ring. While the plug is keyed, it is possible to insert the plug incorrectly far enough to make contact with the power supply and damage the power supply. Be careful when you install the cord to be sure that you get the plug inserted correctly. It is a good idea to make sure that the power cord is not plugged in while you attach it to the power supply in order to avoid an accidental mismatch that would damage the power supply.

You can see the plug incorrectly inserted in the photo on the left below. The middle photo shows the plug inserted correctly while the photo on the right shows the screw ring tightened and holding the plug in place.

Temperature Probes

The DynaQ comes with one pit temperature probe and one food temperature probe. The probes which come with the DynaQ are new and improved over previous probes sold by BBQ Guru as these new probes are now dishwasher safe.

Thermocouples: Type T vs K

Type K thermocouples are the most common type of thermocouple. They are inexpensive, accurate, reliable, and have a wide temperature range. They are made from Nickel-Chromium / Nickel-Alumel and have a range of -454°F to +2,300°F and an accuracy of ±4°F or ±0.75%, whichever is greater.

Type T thermocouples are very stable and often found in laboratory environments. They are made from Copper / Constantan and have a smaller range of -454°F to +700°F, but greater accuracy of ±2.0°F or ±0.75%, whichever is greater.

The probes are made from stainless steel and each probe contains a type T thermocouple, a more accurate type of thermocouple than you usually see. (See sidebar). Each probe has a 72" braided stainless steel cable and can handle up to 500°F (260°C). An alligator clip is provided with the pit probe which you can use to clip the probe to your food grid or the stem of your dome thermometer. (Cooks debate which location is better. Presumably, placing the pit probe on the grate near the food will measure the air temperature where the food is cooking. On the other hand, if you are used to cooking by dome temperature, placing the pit probe on the stem of the dome thermometer will allow you to continue cooking the way you always have.)

The probes and the wires should be shielded from direct radiation from a hot fire. Do not let them come into direct contact with flames. If you need to shield the wire, you can place a layer of aluminum foil beneath it. Also, having the pit probe itself exposed to direct radiant heat can cause it to register a temperature which is higher than the air temperature in the cooker, and thus fool the controller into cutting back on the fire.

Temperature Probe Accuracy

Why The Need For A Warmup?

The way thermocouples work is you measure the voltage generated across the thermocouple and this tells you the DIFFERENCE in temperature between the probe end of the thermocouple and the plug end. To determine the actual temperature at the probe end, you need to know the temperature of the plug end of the wire. Then you can add the temperature at the plug end to the temperature difference and you have the temperature of the probe end.

Finding the temperature of the plug end is done by having a thermistor inside the unit. Normally, the inside of the unit is the same temperature as the plugs just outside the unit and you can determine the probe temperature immediately. But with the DynaQ, the LEDs are generating heat and raising the temperature inside the unit. Until the temperature inside the unit stabilizes, you don't have a stable temperature from the thermistor to use in calculating an accurate temperature for the probe.

First, we need to mention a behavior of the DynaQ which is new to us when it comes to barbecue temperature controllers. You need to let the unit "warm up" for 5-10 minutes before the probes will give accurate readings. So, when testing your probes or even simply using the DynaQ to control your cooker, allow 5-10 minutes for the unit to warm up. Yes, we can hear you saying no other unit has ever required a warmup period. That's because no other units contain such a large number of LEDs inside the unit which generate enough heat to raise the temperature inside the unit. For an more detailed explanation, see the sidebar at right.

That said, we measured the temperature of boiling water using the DynaQ controller. Using our boiling point calculator to determine the boiling point of water in our locaton (211.6°F), we then measured the temperature of boiling water with each of the probes:

Probe  Room Temperature   Boiling Water 
Actual 75°F 211.3°F
Food 1 77°F 212.0°F
Pit Probe 77°F 212.0°F

As you can see, both probes registered the same temperature at room temperature, and both were about 2 degrees high. As you can also see, both probes registered the same temperature of boiling water, but were about 0.7°F high compared to the actual boiling point of water. So, both probes were within the error limit for a Type T thermocouple, and exhibit more than enough accuracy to control the temperature of a cooker. And compared to the 50°F swing that is typical of most kitchen ovens, these results are phenomenal. Here is how well our $2200 Bosch oven holds 300°F:

That's a 43°F swing on the last oscillation. Again, an error of a few degrees on your pit temp is irrelevant.


The temperature probes cannot be calibrated, or more correctly, the DynaQ controller cannot be calibrated by the user. If your probes all consistently read off by a significant amount, you should contact BBQ Guru support to consider having them take a look.

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