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Elektra Nivola - Bill Rutledge's Review
Posted: August 4, 2002, 7:59pm
review rating: 6.9
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
Elektra Nivola Espresso Machine
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More About This Product
Arrow The Elektra Nivola has 5 Reviews
Arrow The Elektra Nivola has been rated 8.96 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since February 25, 2002.
Arrow Elektra Nivola reviews have been viewed 35,589 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Andrew Lawson 10.00
Don Faulkner 10.00
Ann Banks 8.55
Bill Rutledge 6.87
Joel Richard 5.25

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 9.0
Manufacturer: Elektra Quality: 9
Average Price: $1,099.00 Usability: 9
Price Paid: $614.00 Cost vs. Value 8
Where Bought: Bellaitalia.com Aesthetics 10
Owned for: 3 months Overall 9
Writer's Expertise: Advanced Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned:
Bottom Line: Physically beautiful, somewhat coltish, but great performance.
Positive Product Points

Beautiful machine and makes great espresso.

Negative Product Points

Some quirkiness and problem with water level mechanism.

Detailed Commentary

I saw this machine when I was in Amsterdam. I really wanted it and yet it seemed too "design heavy;" almost austentatious. I have a small apartment so I thought it would really stand out. Finally I succumbed to desire and ordered one direct from Italy. It looks great.

Initially there was a big problem with the water level mechanism. It always buzzed as though it were empty. I was extremely disappointed. Against my better judgement, I spent the evening cleaning the contacts, checking for loose wires, etc. Not a great first impression. Finally, after two hours of mousing around, and in response to absolutely nothing I did, it started working.

I've decided to regard this machine as something akin to high-performance Italian sports car. It's so beautiful that you have to forgive it for its impetuousness. These are some of the negative aspects of its "personality:" the green "power on" light flickers; the portafilter needs to be cleaned out regularly; the portafilter handle now clamps in a little to the right, which, for me, ruins some of its symmetry; it's kind of a production to refill with water; there's no way to tell the water level, you have to wait for the buzz; the screen on top of the drip tray has little drain holes so the coffe pools and stains the screen after each use.

This sounds like a lot of problems, but overall these are minor inconveniences. The machine is blast to operate, produces great coffee and is admired by my friends and colleagues.

I've also figured out the problem with the water-level mechanism. If you use distilled water, it will buzz empty, I assume, because the mineral content of the water is too low to complete the electric circuit that indicates the machine is full. I use tap water now and I have no problems.

Buying Experience

The online buying experience was painless. I ordered and it arrived ten days later. I did receive a separate bill from Fedex for the shipping which was unexpected but not exorbitant.

Three Month Followup

Problems continue with water level mechanism. On light has burnt out and I can't figure out how to replace it without taking the whole machine apart.

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review rating: 6.9
Posted: August 4, 2002, 7:59pm
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