Our Valued Sponsor
OpinionsConsumer ReviewsGuides and How TosCoffeeGeek ReviewsResourcesForums
Espresso: Espresso Machines
Help me buy a decent espresso machine, please!
Home Espresso Machines
Watch videos with Gail & Kat, Rocket, Jura Capresso, Saeco, Rancilio, Quick Mill, Nespresso
www.seattlecoffeegear.com
 
Not Logged in: Log In to Postlog in
New Topics updated topics   New Posts new posts   Unanswered Posts new unanswered  
Search Discussion Board search   Discussion Board FAQ faq   Signup sign up  
Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Help me buy a...  
view previous topic | view next topic | view all topics
showing page 4 of 9 first page | last page previous page | next page
Author Messages
rotwang
Senior Member
rotwang
Joined: 22 Sep 2010
Posts: 150
Location: New Mexico USA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Pure
Grinder: Pharos, KyM,  Sözen, PeDe
Vac Pot: nope
Drip: No..Cezve
Roaster: nope
Posted Sun Feb 27, 2011, 9:48pm
Subject: Re: Help me buy a decent espresso machine, please!
 

justpete Said:

I was thinking about getting this combo, if I were to get a grinder - but again, the real-estate is very limited.

Click Here (www.idrinkcoffee.com)

A pretty good deal, I take it?

Posted February 27, 2011 link

Oops.  I wasn't paying enough attention while browsing that site, and I thought the grinder was a pl53, not the pl43.  You could still get the pl53 and be just within budget, but it won't be as great a deal.   But even with the pl43 you're going to be much, much better off than with ground Illy.  Also, I don't know the prices in Canada very well, but in the US Illy is a lot more expensive than even the really pricey fresh "artisan" beans, so a grinder will save you money in the long run.  If space is that tight and you don't mind a little extra time (not much- I do it every day) and effort in the morning, you could get a great hand grinder for under $100.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
justpete
Senior Member


Joined: 27 Feb 2011
Posts: 34
Location: Toronto
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sun Feb 27, 2011, 9:51pm
Subject: Re: Help me buy a decent espresso machine, please!
 

rotwang Said:

Oops.  I wasn't paying enough attention while browsing that site, and I thought the grinder was a pl53, not the pl43.  You could still get the pl53 and be just within budget, but it won't be as great a deal.   But even with the pl43 you're going to be much, much better off than with ground Illy.  Also, I don't know the prices in Canada very well, but in the US Illy is a lot more expensive than even the really pricey fresh "artisan" beans, so a grinder will save you money in the long run.  If space is that tight and you don't mind a little extra time (not much- I do it every day) and effort in the morning, you could get a great hand grinder for under $100.

Posted February 27, 2011 link

Click Here (www.idrinkcoffee.com)

The PL53 is only $40 more - is it that much better?  I do like the aesthetics of the PL43, though.

 
One thing I've learned after being on the internet for so long - if you ignore the trolls, they'll go away.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
rotwang
Senior Member
rotwang
Joined: 22 Sep 2010
Posts: 150
Location: New Mexico USA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Pure
Grinder: Pharos, KyM,  Sözen, PeDe
Vac Pot: nope
Drip: No..Cezve
Roaster: nope
Posted Sun Feb 27, 2011, 10:02pm
Subject: Re: Help me buy a decent espresso machine, please!
 

The pl53 is stepless,  so you can really dial in the exact grind you need.   I'd say it's worth the difference in price, but honestly I haven't read up on the pl43 all that much.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
justpete
Senior Member


Joined: 27 Feb 2011
Posts: 34
Location: Toronto
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sun Feb 27, 2011, 10:16pm
Subject: Re: Help me buy a decent espresso machine, please!
 

rotwang Said:

The pl53 is stepless,  so you can really dial in the exact grind you need.   I'd say it's worth the difference in price, but honestly I haven't read up on the pl43 all that much.

Posted February 27, 2011 link

Thanks Rotwang.  Is there a practical solution for having to grind two types of beans?  (caffeinated and non-caffeinated)?

 
One thing I've learned after being on the internet for so long - if you ignore the trolls, they'll go away.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
randytsuch
Senior Member


Joined: 11 Jun 2009
Posts: 578
Location: LA, Ca
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Expobar Office with...
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Roaster: Customized Alpenrost,...
Posted Sun Feb 27, 2011, 10:35pm
Subject: Re: Help me buy a decent espresso machine, please!
 

OK, here is another post that you will probably consider annoying, but I am going to say it anyway.

Someone posts here they want to spend $500-700 on an espresso machine (happens all the time).

Suppose someone responds to go buy a Silvia, which is at the high end of the range.

OP buys the Silvia, and comes back a month later, very frustrated because he can't pull a good shot.

Response to the cry for help is that you need a good grinder, and that will cost over $200, and that is the bare minimum, unless you get a hand grinder.  

At that point, the OP would be complaining why didn't you tell me about the grinder when I asked about the machine.  The answer, of course, is that you didn't ask about a grinder.  I'm sure the OP would be VERY happy to hear that response.

That is why the standard answer here, when people come asking what machine to get, is to get a good grinder first, and then worry about the machine.

BTW, the PL53 is supposed to be a good espresso grinder, but it is supposed to be noisy and slow, I haven't used one.  In that price range, there aren't a lot of options, the Barataz Preciso is the other one I can think of.

And, your attitude is BAD.  Like I said, people ask ALL the time for help picking a lower end machine, and the standard response is to get a good grinder first.  That's the advice you were given, and you went off on the guys trying to help you.   And some of the later posts are in direct response to your attitude.

One last thing, there are disadvantages to buying a single boiler machine for making milk drinks, but you would need to increase your budget to get around that.

Randy
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
JtothaR
Senior Member
JtothaR
Joined: 20 Dec 2010
Posts: 683
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Faema D92/A1 Smart
Grinder: B VARIO, Krups Conic
Drip: Manual Pour-Over, Bodum...
Roaster: Redbird, Metropolis
Posted Sun Feb 27, 2011, 10:39pm
Subject: Re: Help me buy a decent espresso machine, please!
 

randytsuch Said:

OK, here is another post that you will probably consider annoying, but I am going to say it anyway.

Someone posts here they want to spend $500-700 on an espresso machine (happens all the time).

Suppose someone responds to go buy a Silvia, which is at the high end of the range.

OP buys the Silvia, and comes back a month later, very frustrated because he can't pull a good shot.

Response to the cry for help is that you need a good grinder, and that will cost over $200, and that is the bare minimum, unless you get a hand grinder.  

At that point, the OP would be complaining why didn't you tell me about the grinder when I asked about the machine.  The answer, of course, is that you didn't ask about a grinder.  I'm sure the OP would be VERY happy to hear that response.

That is why the standard answer here, when people come asking what machine to get, is to get a good grinder first, and then worry about the machine.

BTW, the PL53 is supposed to be a good espresso grinder, but it is supposed to be noisy and slow, I haven't used one.  In that price range, there aren't a lot of options, the Barataz Preciso is the other one I can think of.

And, your attitude is BAD.  Like I said, people ask ALL the time for help picking a lower end machine, and the standard response is to get a good grinder first.  That's the advice you were given, and you went off on the guys trying to help you.   And some of the later posts are in direct response to your attitude.

One last thing, there are disadvantages to buying a single boiler machine for making milk drinks, but you would need to increase your budget to get around that.

Randy

Posted February 27, 2011 link

+100

 
Load and Lock.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
rotwang
Senior Member
rotwang
Joined: 22 Sep 2010
Posts: 150
Location: New Mexico USA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Pure
Grinder: Pharos, KyM,  Sözen, PeDe
Vac Pot: nope
Drip: No..Cezve
Roaster: nope
Posted Sun Feb 27, 2011, 10:41pm
Subject: Re: Help me buy a decent espresso machine, please!
 

justpete Said:

Thanks Rotwang.  Is there a practical solution for having to grind two types of beans?  (caffeinated and non-caffeinated)?

Posted February 27, 2011 link

Depends what you mean by practical I guess.  Is the issue that you don't want to get any caffeinated in with the decaf?  If you just want to be able to change grind settings quickly, you could get a Baratza Vario, but that'll break the bank.  Or you could get two hand grinders.   Is the decaf for espresso also?  If you're only grinding decaf for drip or something you could get a much cheaper ginder for drip use, but you said space is tight.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
justpete
Senior Member


Joined: 27 Feb 2011
Posts: 34
Location: Toronto
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sun Feb 27, 2011, 11:16pm
Subject: Re: Help me buy a decent espresso machine, please!
 

rotwang Said:

Is the issue that you don't want to get any caffeinated in with the decaf?  If you just want to be able to change grind settings quickly, you could get a Baratza Vario, but that'll break the bank.  Or you could get two hand grinders.   Is the decaf for espresso also?

Posted February 27, 2011 link

Yes and yes to your questions.  Things to consider.  Thanks for all your helpful advice on this.

 
One thing I've learned after being on the internet for so long - if you ignore the trolls, they'll go away.
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
JasonBrandtLewis
Senior Member
JasonBrandtLewis
Joined: 9 Dec 2005
Posts: 6,368
Location: Berkeley, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Elektra T1 - La Valentina -...
Grinder: Mahlkönig K30 Vario -...
Vac Pot: Yama 5-cup
Drip: CCD, Chemex
Roaster: No, no, not another...
Posted Sun Feb 27, 2011, 11:31pm
Subject: Re: Help me buy a decent espresso machine, please!
 

justpete Said:

Perhaps "great espresso" was an over-statement.  I just wanted to show that the espresso was more important than the steaming functionality, so I wouldn't be advised to purchase a product with an incredible steamer that only produced so-so espresso.  It appears that this was the mistake that set you guys off.  My fault.

Posted February 27, 2011 link

At the risk of setting you off, no -- that wasn't it.  What "set (us) off" -- and actually, I wasn't aware any of actually were -- was your lack of a grinder and the expectation that, without one, great espresso is possible.  

It isn't.  Period.  Because it isn't the machine that makes the espresso, it's the grinder.  The espresso machine is merely a device that delivers hot water.  (Sorry, but it's true.)

justpete Said:

In any case, I am unfortunately limited by a few un-changeable circumstances with regards to a grinder:

a) I live in a condo, so the real-estate of my kitchen counter is extremely valuable.
b) my SO and I drink different kinds of coffee due to a type of allergy - one of us cannot ingest caffeine in it's very potent form in an espresso, so switching beans back and forth to grind when trying to make breakfast is somewhat impractical.
c) my current espresso machine is a Breville esp8xpl, which, by all accounts, is a horrible espresso machine due to it's "thermo-blocking" technology

Posted February 27, 2011 link

OK, now we're getting somewhere -- more information from the questioner will always elicit better responses from the answers . . .

re: a) kitchen space is always at a premium, but we certainly aren't suggesting multi-group commercial machines that are 42" wide.

re: b) 1) FWIW, keep in mind there is less caffeine in espresso than drip coffee, 2 oz. double espresso v. 6-8 ounce cup of drip coffee; 2) even decaf has some caffeine in it, so make sure to consult a doctor/allergist; 3) I am presuming -- short of changing one's SO -- this situation will not change, and so I cannot help but wonder how sensitive to caffeine one of you is -- that is, will you eventually need to buy TWO grinders, one for each type?

re: c)  Breville?  Run awaaaaayyyyyyy!

justpete Said:

All these circumstances dictate my focus on a better espresso maker, as opposed to a grinder - I thought all the information I provided without going in to too much detail would lead to a number of pertinent suggestions, as opposed to a series of posts "tee-ing off" as to why I was mis-guided in my focus.

Posted February 27, 2011 link

Well, clearly you didn't provide enough information . . . .

justpete Said:

In addition, I was a Barista about 10-12 years ago - I can scarcely remember the name of the espresso machine that I used - and I'm so far out of familiarity that I bought this horrible espresso machine.

Posted February 27, 2011 link

And what kind of machine was it?

OK, slightly more serious . . .

-- Great espresso is impossible without a grinder, so be prepared for less-than-great espresso no matter what you do, and significant improvement when you do decide to get one . . . or two.

-- Your price range limits you to SBDU (Single Boiler, Dual Use) machines.  These are machines with one boiler and two thermostats, so your machine will either be at brew temperature OR at steaming temperature.  You will have to wait for your machine to heat up/cool down between making espresso and steaming milk, so your SO will have finished consuming their drink while you are still making yours.  In contrast HX (Heat eXchanger) and DB (Double Boiler) machines will let you do both simultaneously.

-- Each of the links I provided you with above have SBDU machines in your price range.

Cheers,
Jason

 
A morning without coffee is sleep . . .
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
justpete
Senior Member


Joined: 27 Feb 2011
Posts: 34
Location: Toronto
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sun Feb 27, 2011, 11:53pm
Subject: Re: Help me buy a decent espresso machine, please!
 

JasonBrandtLewis Said:

At the risk of setting you off, no -- that wasn't it.  What "set (us) off" -- and actually, I wasn't aware any of actually were -- was your lack of a grinder and the expectation that, without one, great espresso is possible.  

It isn't.  Period.  Because it isn't the machine that makes the espresso, it's the grinder.  The espresso machine is merely a device that delivers hot water.  (Sorry, but it's true.)

OK, now we're getting somewhere -- more information from the questioner will always elicit better responses from the answers . . .

re: a) kitchen space is always at a premium, but we certainly aren't suggesting multi-group commercial machines that are 42" wide.

re: b) 1) FWIW, keep in mind there is less caffeine in espresso than drip coffee, 2 oz. double espresso v. 6-8 ounce cup of drip coffee; 2) even decaf has some caffeine in it, so make sure to consult a doctor/allergist; 3) I am presuming -- short of changing one's SO -- this situation will not change, and so I cannot help but wonder how sensitive to caffeine one of you is -- that is, will you eventually need to buy TWO grinders, one for each type?

re: c)  Breville?  Run awaaaaayyyyyyy!

Well, clearly you didn't provide enough information . . . .

And what kind of machine was it?

OK, slightly more serious . . .

-- Great espresso is impossible without a grinder, so be prepared for less-than-great espresso no matter what you do, and significant improvement when you do decide to get one . . . or two.

-- Your price range limits you to SBDU (Single Boiler, Dual Use) machines.  These are machines with one boiler and two thermostats, so your machine will either be at brew temperature OR at steaming temperature.  You will have to wait for your machine to heat up/cool down between making espresso and steaming milk, so your SO will have finished consuming their drink while you are still making yours.  In contrast HX (Heat eXchanger) and DB (Double Boiler) machines will let you do both simultaneously.

-- Each of the links I provided you with above have SBDU machines in your price range.

Cheers,
Jason

Posted February 27, 2011 link

what I meant by "setting you off" collectively was on the "you need a grinder, stupid" tangent... I don't actually want "great" espresso, I just want *better* Espresso - that was where my initial error was.

I accept that I won't be making great espresso w/o a grinder... what I'm trying to get to is the next level beyond what the Breville offers, and I don't think that would take much.  However, with that said, what would be the price range for an introductory DB or HX machine?  And also, I am keeping an open mind and will get a grinder if I feel it's absolutely necessary.

We typically only make espresso's twice a week, on the weekends in the morning - so while I don't want to sink an overly significant amount of money in to this, I thought that $800 would be sufficient to improve on the Breville, which it appears that it is - but just curious as to what the next level would dictate, and what might some models be?  I admit that I don't like the idea of having to wait for the machine to heat up/cool down before being able to make the next espresso.

What kind was it?  Not sure - but I've attached a picture.

justpete: just desserts.jpg
(Click for larger image)
back to top
 View Profile Link to this post
showing page 4 of 9 first page | last page previous page | next page
view previous topic | view next topic | view all topics
Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Help me buy a...  
New Topics updated topics   New Posts new posts   Unanswered Posts new unanswered     Search Discussion Board search   Discussion Board FAQ faq   Signup sign up  
Not Logged in: Log In to Postlog in
Discussions Quick Jump:
Symbols: New Posts= New Posts since your last visit      No New Posts= No New Posts since last visit     Go to most recent post= Newest post
Forum Rules:
No profanity, illegal acts or personal attacks will be tolerated in these discussion boards.
No commercial posting of any nature will be tolerated; only private sales by private individuals, in the "Buy and Sell" forum.
No SEO style postings will be tolerated. SEO related posts will result in immediate ban from CoffeeGeek.
No cross posting allowed - do not post your topic to more than one forum, nor repost a topic to the same forum.
Who Can Read The Forum? Anyone can read posts in these discussion boards.
Who Can Post New Topics? Any registered CoffeeGeek member can post new topics.
Who Can Post Replies? Any registered CoffeeGeek member can post replies.
Can Photos be posted? Anyone can post photos in their new topics or replies.
Who can change or delete posts? Any CoffeeGeek member can edit their own posts. Only moderators can delete posts.
Probationary Period: If you are a new signup for CoffeeGeek, you cannot promote, endorse, criticise or otherwise post an unsolicited endorsement for any company, product or service in your first five postings.
Stefano's Espresso Care
Repair - Parts - Sales
Factory Authorized &
Trained Technician
www.espressocare.com
Home | Opinions | Consumer Reviews | Guides & How Tos | CoffeeGeek Reviews | Resources | Forums | Contact Us
CoffeeGeek.com, CoffeeGeek, and Coffee Geek, along with all associated content & images are copyright ©2000-2014 by Mark Prince, all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated. Content, code, and images may not be reused without permission. Usage of this website signifies agreement with our Terms and Conditions. (0.560153007507)
Privacy Policy | Copyright Info | Terms and Conditions | CoffeeGeek Advertisers | RSS | Find us on Google+