I've been trying to upgrade from my Starbucks Barista machine for a few years now. I've mostly been looking at HX machines: the Quickmills and the Vibiemmes; all $1000+ machines. Knowing that I'd also need to upgrade the grinder at the time, I was looking at 1500-2000+. Unfortunately, this expenditure just isn't feasible right now. However, driving to Stumptown/Coava/Water Avenue/Barista every few days to get my espresso fix also wasn't going to be financially smart. Enter the Mypressi Twist.
I had read great reviews about this thing, but it really is tough to wrap your mind around how it can possibly compete with commercial machines such as the LM Linea (see H-B review). After reading more about the V2 upgrade and how they had fixed many of the issues in V1, plus reading about how well Mypressi stands behind their product, I decided to go for it. It arrived and I excitedly opened it up, ground some beans, and tried to pull a shot...disaster. My grinder couldn't even come CLOSE to grinding fine enough for this. Is your grinder good enough for a prosumer or commercial machine? No? Then get something else before buying the Twist. It comes with a pressurized basket to cope with inferior grinders, but for my situation that would defeat the purpose. Disappointed, I immediately bought a Vario and soon enough tried again. Success! The process is really simple: preheat, preheat, preheat, pull the trigger. The 'bottomless' feature is really great; I got as much enjoyment out of watching the shot pull as I did in drinking it!
The Twist comes with a plastic tamper (which actually fits! i.e. it WILL work!), a tamping mat, the device itself, 4 n2o cartridges (which each will make AT LEAST 4 doubles; I've been getting 5), a double basket, and a pressurized basket. After purchasing, your only expenditures are the cartridges (at ~$.40 each) and coffee. No steaming capabilities, but you can find stand-alone steamers for 40-50 dollars. The 'shot-counter', new in V2, is pretty useless because I leave it to dry unattached. I just use a post-it to keep track; no big deal.
The Mypressi Twist is a bit of a strange device: it's priced near Krups machines, but makes espresso that will compete with commercial equipment. So, who is it marketing to? Who should be buying this thing? Well, it's going to be difficult to sell this to anyone who doesn't love straight espresso. $150 for something that requires cartridges and doesn't steam milk? Tough sell. It's also not going to work well for someone who is making espresso for multiple people often. Preheating and cleanup, while no more time-consuming or difficult (in fact, it's easier) than any other machine for a single shot, must be done each time. In the end, and in my opinion, the Twist's market is for people like me: those who are on a budget, want to make high-quality espresso, don't require steaming capabilities, and are not making more than one or two/day. Small market, maybe, but if you are here reading this, you probably fall into that market, and I wholeheartedly recommend the Twist. It really is an incredible device.
Bottom line: Paired with a good grinder, you'll be easily making espresso that would otherwise cost you THOUSANDS more.