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Need some help chooseing between these 3 machines - (Yep, I've read the FAQ)
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Need some help...  
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Metalor
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Apr 2013
Posts: 6
Location: Auckland, New Zealand
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sun Apr 21, 2013, 10:27pm
Subject: Need some help chooseing between these 3 machines - (Yep, I've read the FAQ)
 

Hey guys,

I'm new to the world of coffee geekery and have been lurking this site the last month or so for reviews on home espresso machines... I've found a few that I'm keen on so I thought I'd sign up and ask for some input before committing to a purchase.

I used to work as a barista when I was 17/18 and was pretty good at it (that's about 10 years ago now!) but now I'm wanting a halfway decent espresso machine for home as my el cheapo Breville just packed up.

I drink mainly flat whites (or lattes) and I can get great milk from even the breville I have at the moment, but I do take the terrible 'steaming accesory' off as that just creates a bubble bath.

Anyhow, I'm looking at these 3 machines and would love some help on what the best option would be. A Rancilio Silva is currently out of my price range due to resuming life as a student :P

Gaggia Coffee Delux http://www.trademe.co.nz/a.aspx?id=585080551

La Pavoni Espresso Cappuccino http://www.trademe.co.nz/Browse/Listing.aspx?id=584907526

or

La Pavoni Espresso Plus  http://www.trademe.co.nz/Browse/Listing.aspx?id=584441036


I WILL be purchasing a grinder in the near future, but the Mrs has just got a whole lot of preground delivered (she runs a business from home so we go thorugh a fair amount of coffee) so I'll need to use that up first.


Any advice will be awesome, thanks!

Courts
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carlsilver
Senior Member


Joined: 19 Dec 2003
Posts: 231
Location: Portugal
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: La Pavoni Europiccola/La...
Grinder: la Pavoni Jolly/Ascaso i...
Vac Pot: Normax
Drip: Melitta (manual)
Roaster: no
Posted Mon Apr 22, 2013, 2:35am
Subject: Re: Need some help chooseing between these 3 machines - (Yep, I've read the FAQ)
 

I expect most geeks here will advise the Gaggia (they are very popular in these forums) but personally I'd opt for the La Pavoni Espresso Cappuccino. Great machine. I have one for more than 10 years and it's still working and looking good. More forgiving than the gaggias (according to what I've read) will work well with preground. And when you'll buy a grinder you can upgrade to a non pressurized portafilter and get really excellent results.  (Mark that I am referring to straight espresso I never make milk drinks).
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Metalor
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Apr 2013
Posts: 6
Location: Auckland, New Zealand
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Mon Apr 22, 2013, 2:58am
Subject: Re: Need some help chooseing between these 3 machines - (Yep, I've read the FAQ)
 

Thanks for the advice mate. Yeah, was one thing that was putting me off was the pressurised basket... what does it do anyway?

Do you know if there's much of a difference between the 2 La Pavonis?
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carlsilver
Senior Member


Joined: 19 Dec 2003
Posts: 231
Location: Portugal
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: La Pavoni Europiccola/La...
Grinder: la Pavoni Jolly/Ascaso i...
Vac Pot: Normax
Drip: Melitta (manual)
Roaster: no
Posted Mon Apr 22, 2013, 4:40am
Subject: Re: Need some help chooseing between these 3 machines - (Yep, I've read the FAQ)
 

I suppose the 2 Pavonis are not very different as for the quality of espresso. They use the same portafilter and the differences are probably only cosmetic. I don't know if any of them will be better for frothing milk...
The pressurized portafilter (not basket) makes more palatable and good looking espresso with preground coffee . But with freshly roasted coffee and a good grinder you get much better results with a non pressurized one.
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Metalor
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Apr 2013
Posts: 6
Location: Auckland, New Zealand
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Mon Apr 22, 2013, 3:11pm
Subject: Re: Need some help chooseing between these 3 machines - (Yep, I've read the FAQ)
 

I'm just a bit iffy that the Stainless steel la pavoni is just a rebadged Saeco is all.

I've also found this one that looks pretty cool! http://www.trademe.co.nz/Browse/Listing.aspx?id=585047954 but might be a bit of a gamble on that thing.
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Metalor
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Apr 2013
Posts: 6
Location: Auckland, New Zealand
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Wed Apr 24, 2013, 2:18am
Subject: Re: Need some help chooseing between these 3 machines - (Yep, I've read the FAQ)
 

Ok, so I ended up going for the Gaggia machine as it was a bit cheaper than the La Pavoni and wasn't too keen on the pressurised porta filter idea. I wasn't too keen on the La Pavoni steam wand either, which decided it for me in the end.

Turns out I now want to get a bottemless filter anyway :P But that can wait... grinder and cleaning equipment is next on the list.

Thanks again for you help!

Oh, and if you know anywhere that ships a rancilio silva stema wand to NZ let me know.


Cheers!
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carlsilver
Senior Member


Joined: 19 Dec 2003
Posts: 231
Location: Portugal
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: La Pavoni Europiccola/La...
Grinder: la Pavoni Jolly/Ascaso i...
Vac Pot: Normax
Drip: Melitta (manual)
Roaster: no
Posted Wed Apr 24, 2013, 3:03am
Subject: Re: Need some help chooseing between these 3 machines - (Yep, I've read the FAQ)
 

I believe you made a good choice too. The gaggias are considered to be good machines and their larger portafilter is better for double shots (60 to 70 ml) than the smaller La Pavoni Espresso Capuccino which is excellent for 30 to 45 ml shots. But for what I've read the Gaggia is less tolerant for preground so you really need a good grinder soon.
Happy shots!
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Dayglow
Senior Member
Dayglow
Joined: 5 Oct 2007
Posts: 74
Location: Greenville, NC
Expertise: I live coffee

Posted Wed Apr 24, 2013, 8:09am
Subject: Re: Need some help chooseing between these 3 machines - (Yep, I've read the FAQ)
 

This may not help much, but part of your decision should also be influenced by how hard you think you'll get upgrade fever. If you really get into the hobby and can see yourself spending over a grand on a prosumer machine someday then you should pick a machine tthat can grow with you until that point. I personally had my eyes on Gaggia's for years but got turned off by the possibility of boiler corrosion as a result of mixed brass and aluminum parts. Also the Gaggia did not seem as much as a step up until delving into higher end machines. I like to tinker and tweak and mod my machines so I found the Silvia to be a better mating when I started wanting move on up.
Think hard about what you want to get and have not just what you can afford now. If you think you'll own several machines someday then by all means get what's in your budget now. If not, save for the single machine that will continue to challenge your abilities that you'll keep for a long time. Not to beat a dead horse, but don't neglect the grinder as the same upgrade fever applies.
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Metalor
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Apr 2013
Posts: 6
Location: Auckland, New Zealand
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Fri Apr 26, 2013, 4:52pm
Subject: Re: Need some help chooseing between these 3 machines - (Yep, I've read the FAQ)
 

Dayglow Said:

This may not help much, but part of your decision should also be influenced by how hard you think you'll get upgrade fever. If you really get into the hobby and can see yourself spending over a grand on a prosumer machine someday then you should pick a machine tthat can grow with you until that point. I personally had my eyes on Gaggia's for years but got turned off by the possibility of boiler corrosion as a result of mixed brass and aluminum parts. Also the Gaggia did not seem as much as a step up until delving into higher end machines. I like to tinker and tweak and mod my machines so I found the Silvia to be a better mating when I started wanting move on up.
Think hard about what you want to get and have not just what you can afford now. If you think you'll own several machines someday then by all means get what's in your budget now. If not, save for the single machine that will continue to challenge your abilities that you'll keep for a long time. Not to beat a dead horse, but don't neglect the grinder as the same upgrade fever applies.

Posted April 24, 2013 link

Hey mate, cheers for the advice. I needed a machine anyhow, due to the cheap breville machine calling it a day, and this Gaggia was the right price. I know I will, one day, upgrade but that will be after I've bought a house and can plumb one in. So for the time being, this Gaggia is perfect... I've done a lot of reading up so I'm learning  little tricks here and there.
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Metalor
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Apr 2013
Posts: 6
Location: Auckland, New Zealand
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Fri Apr 26, 2013, 5:00pm
Subject: Re: Need some help chooseing between these 3 machines - (Yep, I've read the FAQ)
 

carlsilver Said:

I believe you made a good choice too. The gaggias are considered to be good machines and their larger portafilter is better for double shots (60 to 70 ml) than the smaller La Pavoni Espresso Capuccino which is excellent for 30 to 45 ml shots. But for what I've read the Gaggia is less tolerant for preground so you really need a good grinder soon.
Happy shots!

Posted April 24, 2013 link

Mate, just wanna say thanks again for your help. I've only had the machine a few days and I'm loving it.

I went and purchased a steam wand for the Rancilio Silvia yesterday and put that on it and it is SOOO much better than the shitty attachment that was on it originally... it was a plastic thing with a tube that went into the vessel of milk you were steaming - what a way to over complicate things! With the Silvia wand I can get perfect milk and I've found that not waiting for the boiler to fully reach steaming temp and counting to 25 then winding the steam on means it doesn't drop in pressure.

I did a big descale yesterday and cleaned all the grouphead parts so it's running awesome. Strangely though, there wasn't much scale that come out when I ran the solution through, but that may be due to the water here in NZ as we have excellent tap water.

So, for $125 NZ (plus the steam wand), I'm pretty damn happy. Next in line is the grinder (got my eye on a couple of cheap second hand ones that are local, or the Sunbeam EM0480) and a good tamper!

Cheers!
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