Such a fun and effecient machine - TECHNOlogically speaking!
Positive Product Points
Rotary pump is quiet Steaming is quick and NOT noisy Has an economy mode that affordably allows 24/7 'ON' Two separate boilers - steam/brew Fully programmable functions Unique on/off steaming via solenoid Great looking with color choices Direct plumb Powerful 1800 watt heating element in each boiler
Negative Product Points
Just nothing folks - I use this thing all day and it operates wonderfully. Some of my Positive features will be negatives for you but this is MY review.
Have been living with Rancillio Rocky/Silvia - two great machines. But it was time to move on. Rocky still performs as needed but Sylvia was becoming a menace. The noise levels of the vib pump and steaming roar could no longer be tolerated on a everyday basis. And, semi-auto sucks after a while. We all tolerate semi-auto because machines cost twice as much to get into full auto.
Where do I go? Everyone searches into the next pricing tier - $1000 plus. Okey, lots of choices but the Livia 90 automatic caught my eye. Was about ready to buy but borrowed my brothers instead. I used it a while until the great realization hit - Livia 90 auto just REFINES the $500 home machines functions - and at a huge premium (Livia 90 auto is 3x that of Silvia).
Still, where do I go? If the next pricing tier still represents REFINED HOME machines, then commercial machines should be considered. I spent lots of time I didn't have visiting web sites such as this and following chat threads that went on forever. But it paid off. On this very site I was turned on to a lower volume commercil unit called the Reneka Techno.
It was all there. The small fractional horsepower/brew pump is silent. And no more rocket level noise from the steaming operation. Powerful 1800 watt elements make for continuous anything. Fully programmable CPU black box results in quick and easy operations that provide for accuracy and precision. No more maintenance than Sylvia (since I was backflushing anyway). Great looking machine with simple no frills design and color choices. By using the ecomony mode while not making drinks, its a mere 5 minutes to full on operation. My machine is on 24/7 and I don't suffer the feeling the local nuke is running just to keep my machine hot when not needed.
Techno is quite a value. Current price for unit plus shipping plus 3.7% import tarrif is about $1700. So what? Look at the price of The Livia 90 auto. Headed to $1400? Hey folks, this is a true low volume, automatic commercial unit with two boilers and a rotary pump with hard plumbing and enough power to match the best commercial one group machines.
Going to a commercial unit is quite a commitment. You have to do a plumbing thing and then you need 240 volts(to get the big elements). As an electrician, I quickly added my own 240 volt dedicated branch circuit, but the plumbing was even easier. Anyone who is sophisticated enough to be on this website will not let these facility issues deter them from going the distance.
The thing is, most serious coffee drinkers eventually 'buy up'. Its just a matter of WHEN till you get out of the HOME style machine into a machine that has features which aren't a COMPROMISE.
Justespresso.com mediates your direct purchase from the Reneka, France factory. Its unusual to initiate the purchase by filling out an online excel spreadsheet. Its unusual to send E money direct to France. Its unusual to pick up the machine at a 'local' international airport. Its unusual to hoof it to the airport customs before the air carrier will load your machine. And - its unusually fun to do all the above.