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New Breville BES920
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > New Breville...  
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Iluvdabean
Senior Member
Iluvdabean
Joined: 7 Mar 2005
Posts: 1,282
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 Wed Mar 26, 2014, 3:31pm
Subject: Re: Steaming milk on the 920
 

The Oscar and Chinese made Breville are not in the same performance category IMHO. The Oscar is a true war horse.

PrescottCR Said:

After using an Oscar yesterday I was impressed with the steam wand performance. It SHOULD have good steam as it has only one large HX boiler. For the small cafe it was in, this is a good machine.

This got me to thinking - the BES920 now has adjustable steam boiler temp/pressure. Has anyone tried adjusting the temp up? If so- how much improvement in steaming time have you noticed? I'm just curious, this would be good to know when it comes to recommending home machines to those who like cafe lattes or caps.

Thanx!

PCR Rich

Posted March 26, 2014 link

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PrescottCR
Senior Member
PrescottCR
Joined: 19 Dec 2012
Posts: 136
Location: Prescott
Expertise: Pro Roaster

Espresso: Breville
Grinder: Baratza
Roaster: Diedrich
Posted Fri Mar 28, 2014, 3:07pm
Subject: Re: New Breville BES920
 

So,

any 920 owners with experience steaming on the 900 have anything to add?
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Metatron
Senior Member


Joined: 10 Nov 2011
Posts: 73
Location: Calgary, Canada
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: BDB900
Grinder: Vario
Posted Sat Mar 29, 2014, 4:34am
Subject: Re: Steaming milk on the 920
 

Iluvdabean Said:

The Oscar and Chinese made Breville are not in the same performance category IMHO. The Oscar is a true war horse.

Posted March 26, 2014 link

You are so right. The BDB performs MUCH better than an Oscar. There is no comparison. The Oscar may last longer. Time will tell.
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mariog7
Senior Member


Joined: 7 Mar 2011
Posts: 210
Location: NJ
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Quickmill Vetrano
Grinder: Vario
Posted Sat Mar 29, 2014, 8:10am
Subject: Re: Steaming milk on the 920
 

Some of you may think I'm crazy, but I have a Quick Mill HX machine and I'm not particularly fond of the temperature surfing. I really want a db but can't afford an Italian. So would I be crazy, some may consider this downgrading, but I was considering upgrading to the temp stability of the BDB. What do you think? Please, no comments about durability - I am questioning performance.  Thanks.
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Iluvdabean
Senior Member
Iluvdabean
Joined: 7 Mar 2005
Posts: 1,282
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 Sat Mar 29, 2014, 9:01am
Subject: Re: Steaming milk on the 920
 

I think if you are finding the need to temperature surf on a machine like the Vetrano ( which really only applies to SBDU machines ) you probably havent mastered its potential, which points to a
learning issue, rather than changing to a DB like the Chinese made Breville. I would highly suggest going over to HB and reading their review and
in particular Espresso Performance/ Pulling shots by the numbers. In the hands of a skilled user the Quickmill is equally at home with any
DB as far as performance. Also it is a quality machine and not made in an assembly line in China by a company new to espresso who just wanted to enter the market.

http://www.home-barista.com/vetrano-buyers-guide.html



mariog7 Said:

Some of you may think I'm crazy, but I have a Quick Mill HX machine and I'm not particularly fond of the temperature surfing. I really want a db but can't afford an Italian. So would I be crazy, some may consider this downgrading, but I was considering upgrading to the temp stability of the BDB. What do you think? Please, no comments about durability - I am questioning performance.  Thanks.

Posted March 29, 2014 link

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PrescottCR
Senior Member
PrescottCR
Joined: 19 Dec 2012
Posts: 136
Location: Prescott
Expertise: Pro Roaster

Espresso: Breville
Grinder: Baratza
Roaster: Diedrich
Posted Sat Mar 29, 2014, 10:11am
Subject: Crazy?
 

You're not crazy, but I'd second the idea that you might be able to fine tune your abilities with the machine you have. If you find that it's a beautiful machine but it's also too much work for you, then get a divorce. At least in this divorce you'll make some money from selling it no doubt.

If you decide to get a BES920 I would suggest getting one from a local authorized seller. I bought a BES70 with one of those 20% coupons a particular chain loves to email/text me, that was a nice savings.

I only ask one thing, please don't become one of those people who takes it personally when someone else buys something else with their own money for their own use and you don't like their decision.
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jonr
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Jun 2013
Posts: 304
Location: Americas
Expertise: I love coffee
Posted Mon Mar 31, 2014, 5:21am
Subject: Re: Steaming milk on the 920
 

mariog7 Said:

considering upgrading to the temp stability of the BDB. What do you think?

Posted March 29, 2014 link

Test show that the BDB is very consistent and also stable* during brew.  But these are two completely different things and many people find that espresso tastes better with some temperature drop during brew (ie, not so stable).  Consistency is always a good thing.

  • - measured above the coffee.  No machine produces stable temperatures throughout the puck.
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Bill33525
Senior Member


Joined: 28 Aug 2012
Posts: 5
Location: Dade City, Fl
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Breville Dual Boiler 920
Grinder: Quamar M80
Posted Sat Apr 5, 2014, 6:51am
Subject: Re: Steaming milk on the 920
 

Had the 900 now the 920 and enjoy all the programmable settings of this product. Have tried lowering the steam temperature because I steam in a very small micro pot. Could not actually notice any difference.

Would like to comment on the ability to the change brewing temperature, however; While some beans may like a high temperature, the lighter beans I am drinking now require a lower temperature of around 190-195 degrees. It's easy to change the brew temperature and pull another shot to compare the taste. The difference can be astronomical, going from an almost burnt taste @ 200 degrees to the desired taste below 195. It's amazing what 5 degrees does to the taste of espresso. I am happy with the performance of the BDB, my shots compare favorably to those served off the Slayer or Marzocco Strada paddle machines.

Finally, the programmable preinfusion feature provides the ability to soak the coffee grinds until they are ready for full pressure, allowing for a tighter grind and more coffee in the basket. Using the naked portafilter and mirror the manual button is held until the a few grams of extraction are in the cup and the whole bottom surface of the basket is covered with liquid. Then the button is released and full pressure is applied until the desired quantity is extracted. Currently dosing the 20 gram VST basket with 22 grams and extracting 1 1/2 ounces of espresso. The 920 comes with a depth blade for measuring screen clearance. 22 grams in the VST competition basket allows for plenty of head room on the BDB.

This is my first serious espresso maker so I can not compare it with experience from any other model.
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boar_d_laze
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Nov 2006
Posts: 1,399
Location: Monrovia, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Cimbali M21 DT/1 Junior...
Grinder: Ceado E92; "Bunnzilla"
Vac Pot: Royal Coffee Maker
Drip: Chemex + Kone; Espro Press
Roaster: USRC Sample Roaster
Posted Sat Apr 5, 2014, 7:49am
Subject: Re: Steaming milk on the 920
 

It's easy to overestimate the difference a machine change makes.  Once you reach a certain level of competence, the machine doesn't do much more than front for the grinder and the most obvious differences tend to lie more in use, touch, and looks than "in the cup."  Which isn't to say that there aren't in the cup differences nor that use and aesthetics aren't incredibly important.

On the one hand, HXs aren't the best choice for everyone.  They do take a little more involvement than DBPIDs as controllable and regulated as a BDB 920.  However, don't be fooled by DB propaganda.  You still have to dial-in for temp; and that's entirely a matter of palate.  You can't choose a "one size fits all" temp and expect it to work for every coffee.

On the other hand, if temping your HX is problematic and stressful, chances are good you're doing some things wrong.  If you can temp well enough to dial in, you should be able to easily return to that temp on successive pulls.  You may want to master your E-61 HX before buying a new machine.  

On the third hand hand (?!) the BDB 920XL in particular has a lot of features you don't find on any machine near its price -- including some possibilities for rudimentary pressure profiling.  In addition to all the features, it's an extremely friendly machine, which makes it as easy as possible to pull a darn good cup.    

Moving along to the fourth and final hand (maybe we should call them paws?):  While it's nice that you can hear some of the DB vs HX rehashed for the umpteenth time, no one can tell you whether you should or shouldn't buy a particular machine.  This is a hobby, not a competition won by the guy who gets the most performance from the least amount of money.  The winners are everyone who has fun.  My recommendation -- based more on human nature than on espresso -- is that if you want it and can afford it, buy it.  

jonr Said:

... many people find that espresso tastes better with some temperature drop during brew (ie, not so stable).

Posted March 31, 2014 link

Well put.  It's hard to separate out things which contribute to nuance, but the "temperature hump" phenomenon is a big part of what I like about HXs; and so is the flexibility of tuning it.    

Rich
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lparsons21
Senior Member


Joined: 8 Jul 2006
Posts: 311
Location: Herrin, IL
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Izzo Alex
Grinder: Mazzer SJ, Ascaso i2,...
Roaster: Gene Cafe, Behmor,...
Posted Sat Apr 5, 2014, 9:18am
Subject: Re: Steaming milk on the 920
 

I keep thinking that I should get one of these since it has been 7 years since I got my Alex HX machine, mostly because I've had it for 7 pretty much trouble free and easy to fix years!  I have no complaints with it, and I'm very used to it so going up and flushing and pulling a shot is something I can do in my sleep!

But then, there's this new, spiffy looking and excellently performing box from Breville!  I like the way it is designed and with the glowing reports about it, it sure is tempting.

But then again, I need a different maker about like I need another hole in my head!  :)   And what is my Alex actually worth if I tried to sell it?

Decisions, decisions...  :)

 
Lloyd
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