I'm honestly going to be using little mr beer ingredients in a lot of future recipes. Plus maltodextrin is pretty cheap and comes with all of the recipes from my LHBS. Not sure if I'll like using it, but I have some for bottling up what I'm brewing right now. It's interesting seeing everybody's preferences. I'm sure I'll try every way once before knowing what I like.
I'm no connoisseur .. I wouldn't know a '09 Montrachet from paint thinner, nor would I care. if something tastes ok to me, I drink it...ready or not. since I don't churn out brews like a madman, the most i'll wait for a beer to age is a couple months. sure waiting a year might make it taste like Unicorn pee and rainbows but my taste buds aren't that refined. if it has alcohol and doesn't taste like feces? I'm there. count me in...hic.
simple 2g sugar cubes. easy .. peezy... if I am slightly over / under the carb level, who cares? one cube per 12 oz bottle. one cube to a 1.2 liter bottle. 2-4 depending on desired co2 level in a liter bottle. done.
use a priming sugar calculator like the one on NB. plug in the style.. plug in the bottle size (some calculation required as it is in gallons)... enter the current temp of the beer (important as colder beer has more co2 already in it in suspension). it gives you multiple types of sugars and their measures. done.
carb drops - I started off using them but they are expensive. cubes are cheap.
A few things -
As a brewer, I am all about time, convenience, and ease. Now, I have nothing but crazy mad love respect for all the people who are looking to maximize whatever they are are maximizing....dollars saved, quality, etc. But for me, I am always looking for the easiest, simplest way. I prefer not to sacrifice quality, and I don't want to waste money, but I don't trade ease and convenience very easily.
All that being said, for me, the easiest, most convenient way to carbonate is to use Mr. Beer carb drops. Every time I place an order just add whatever number of carb drop packets I need.
At bottling, after sanitizing, etc. I plop two tabs in the big bottles or one in the standard.
Simple, easy, fast.
I used the sugar scoop and hated it.
I love the concept of batch priming.....but not happening for me. (See the ease/convenience factor.)
Mr. Beer carb drops all day, every day.