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Need advice on new espresso machine
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Rocket Espresso R58 Double Boiler -  Everything you need for the perfect shot!
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Need advice on...  
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jalanc
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Nov 2012
Posts: 11
Location: Manila
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Sat Jan 26, 2013, 9:47pm
Subject: Need advice on new espresso machine
 

Hi guys, I'm a newbie here in the forums and looking to buying my first home espresso machine.  I have no experience at all with espressos when it comes to making them, but I know enough to tell a good one from bad.  I've done a lot of reading the past few months and I've already decided (well more or less) on my grinder.  It will be the Vario (still on the fence between that or the Preciso, but leaning heavily towards the Vario will be using the machine 95% for espresso, 5% drip).  I need the espresso machine for making drinks for 2 people - me and my wife for the next 5+ years.  I prefer to have a double espresso in the morning while she prefers a cappuccino (or maybe a macchiato).  Then probably another double for me in the afternoon and another macchiato or cappuccino (i know, blasphemy) for her.  
Initially, I was looking at getting a Gaggia Classic and then just change the wand myself, but now I'm not sure if this machine will be up to the task for my purposes.  Now, the CC1 and the Lelit are in the discussion as well.  After looking at these 3, will I be better served by just going a step up and invest on a DB or HX?  What (if any) are my options in the USD1,000 or below range? Maybe just get the Gaggia for now, practice for a few years and THEN move up?  I can't believe I'm getting upgraditis even before I get my machine...* shakes fist*
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SStones
Senior Member
SStones
Joined: 24 Nov 2012
Posts: 474
Location: Canada
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Giga 5, ECM Giotto, Rocket...
Grinder: Anfim Milano-Best
Vac Pot: No  :(
Drip: Some $30 thing from Walmart
Roaster: I buy pre-roasted.
Posted Sat Jan 26, 2013, 10:14pm
Subject: Re: Need advice on new espresso machine
 

This isn't really an answer, just some advice I hope you might consider.  Since you're already considering the possibility of upgraditis, spend some time seeking used machines.  That way, they've only devalued a small fraction of your purchase price when you resell them and replace them.  Just food for thought.
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D4F
Senior Member


Joined: 15 Mar 2012
Posts: 1,981
Location: USA
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic PID
Grinder: Baratza Forte-AP
Posted Sat Jan 26, 2013, 10:23pm
Subject: Re: Need advice on new espresso machine
 

If you are considering a Gaggia classic, then look in BST.  One with a PID is available now, perhaps not so close to Manila.  Just responding to your consideration, not specifically recommending.  I can make espresso and then another with steaming without much difficulty.  It is a little more time consuming with a SBDU machine, but depends on your budget.  You have already looked beyond SBDU at Hx and DB, and the cost.  I also use a Preciso and would get either the Preciso or Vario, again based on budget.

 
D4F also at
http://www.gaggiausersgroup.com/
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jalanc
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Nov 2012
Posts: 11
Location: Manila
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Sat Jan 26, 2013, 11:43pm
Subject: Re: Need advice on new espresso machine
 

Thanks for the inputs.  Good to hear that the Gaggia is good enough for my purposes.  I was looking at a refurbed Gaggia in WLL, and considering preordering it.  Never really considered the BST but I will keep an eye on it now.  Does the PID significantly improve the Gaggia?
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jalanc
Senior Member


Joined: 22 Nov 2012
Posts: 11
Location: Manila
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Mon Jan 28, 2013, 7:00am
Subject: Re: Need advice on new espresso machine
 

Hi guys, I've spent the last day combing through lowest priced HX machines - BZ07 BZ02, Alexia and the Cuadra.  Given that I will be making 50% or more milk based drinks, I gather that the Alexia is out, which leaves me with either the BZ02, BZ07 or the Cuadra.  As far as I can tell, the Cuadra offers the best value because of the E61 group head.  Am I correct?
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DaninMaryland
Senior Member


Joined: 3 Jan 2013
Posts: 79
Location: US
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: V2 Silvia
Grinder: Vario-W
Posted Mon Jan 28, 2013, 8:10am
Subject: Re: Need advice on new espresso machine
 

i would keep an eye on your local craigslist as well.  I was able to find a V2 Silvia for $125 a few weeks ago.  Probably wont get that good of a deal, but i see lots of good brand espresso machines in the $250 range all the time.  on my local craigslist there was a nice Gaggia Classic for $150 at the same time i got the silvia.  

I would recommend a used machine and a very nice grinder.  I have seen a few super jollys on my local listings for $300-$350 recently.

I have a Preciso now.  Originally had the vario but for those times when i wanted to use it for coffee i just didnt like it.  Very happy with the Preciso and the quality of the espresso grind AND for when i want to grind coffee for my vacuum pot or aeropress.
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Iluvdabean
Senior Member
Iluvdabean
Joined: 7 Mar 2005
Posts: 1,249
Location: Kentucky
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Nuova Era Cuadra/Gaggia...
Grinder: Baratza Preciso/K-A Pro...
Drip: Bonavita BV 1800 TH
Roaster: Nesco 1010/Behmor 1600
Posted Mon Jan 28, 2013, 8:12am
Subject: Re: Need advice on new espresso machine
 

Awesome what a great decision to be faced with. I have used my Gaggia Classic for five years everyday. Love it since it came like a white knight and delivered me from Breville hell six years ago.
Now its faced with competition and thats a good thing but they have come down in price from what I paid.
http://www.wholelattelove.com/Gaggia/classic.cfm

Just finished reading Lelit stats again. Sounds great really and PID. Large brass boiler. Made in Italy ( The only people I will ever trust to make an espresso machine...period)
Non standard portafilter size at 57mm. Probably a better machine when looking at stats yet hasnt accumulated the Gaggia Classic track record as of yet, although time could change that.
I would say for you Lelit over  Gaggia Classic and this comes from a Gaggia Classic lover.
Click Here (www.1st-line.net)

The other Rancillio Silvia V3 non PID is a beast with an earned status level of indesputable quality. I know this goes against the stats
but that would be my choice over CC1,Lelit,and Gaggia Classic.
I would do it based on build quality and track record alone.But for you I still say Lelit.
Click Here (www.wholelattelove.com)


I know the CC1 has generated buzz but from what I understand its made in Taiwan so it goes on the list with the ones from down under. ( Please dont over react this is just my personal opinion and not an attack)
If those float your boat then be happy this is just my own opinion. I dod it once and never again.
Click Here (coffeegeek.com)


Everyone eventually seems to want to move up the ladder. They either want more control over the shot or better build quality or both.
So whats my next step,if I decided to do it,for me,and once again its personal. The one contender which I like for me is the Silvano by Quickmill.
http://www.chriscoffee.com/products/home/espresso/silvano

Have fun getting a new machine and grinder...remember to buy good coffee.


jalanc Said:

Hi guys, I'm a newbie here in the forums and looking to buying my first home espresso machine.  I have no experience at all with espressos when it comes to making them, but I know enough to tell a good one from bad.  I've done a lot of reading the past few months and I've already decided (well more or less) on my grinder.  It will be the Vario (still on the fence between that or the Preciso, but leaning heavily towards the Vario will be using the machine 95% for espresso, 5% drip).  I need the espresso machine for making drinks for 2 people - me and my wife for the next 5+ years.  I prefer to have a double espresso in the morning while she prefers a cappuccino (or maybe a macchiato).  Then probably another double for me in the afternoon and another macchiato or cappuccino (i know, blasphemy) for her.  
Initially, I was looking at getting a Gaggia Classic and then just change the wand myself, but now I'm not sure if this machine will be up to the task for my purposes.  Now, the CC1 and the Lelit are in the discussion as well.  After looking at these 3, will I be better served by just going a step up and invest on a DB or HX?  What (if any) are my options in the USD1,000 or below range? Maybe just get the Gaggia for now, practice for a few years and THEN move up?  I can't believe I'm getting upgraditis even before I get my machine...* shakes fist*

Posted January 26, 2013 link

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Coffeenoobie
Senior Member
Coffeenoobie
Joined: 11 Dec 2011
Posts: 3,010
Location: PNW
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: N S Oscar
Grinder: K30 & Vario W
Posted Mon Jan 28, 2013, 10:42am
Subject: Re: Need advice on new espresso machine
 

I had a low budget and upgraditis before I bought so I hunted a long time and got a used HX, NS Oscar for $475.  Light commercial machine so I can leave it on all the time.

 
Coffeenoobie

Buying advice: GRINDER GRINDER GRINDER. Don't cheap out on the grinder.

My coffee treasure map...
Click Here (maps.google.com)

Oscar trick out: http://s156.photobucket.com/user/GandBteam/story/14231
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jumpjet2k
Senior Member


Joined: 28 Jan 2013
Posts: 2
Location: Houston
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Silvano by Quick Mill
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky (modded)
Posted Mon Jan 28, 2013, 7:53pm
Subject: Re: Need advice on new espresso machine
 

I was in about the same boat as you and went with the Silvano. It's right at the very top of your price range, just like it was for me... But I love love love the machine. I've had it for a year now, and it's been a real pleasure to learn on. Steaming and pulling a shot simultaneously is a great advantage, in my book. It takes some time to heat up but it seems to be very stable, temperature-wise. I'm planning to hang on to this one for several more years, and I don't see myself outgrowing it any time soon. To me it's definitely worth a bit extra to get a machine you can grow with.

Chris' Coffee Service occasionally has a "buyer's remorse" machine available, so it's worth giving them a call. They're very helpful in general, too.

Good luck!
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