A big improvement over the Silvia, beautiful, functional, and best of all--you can steam and brew at the same time.
Positive Product Points
Attractive. Functional. Well built. Steaming is independent from brewing.
Negative Product Points
Some have noted the absence of a rubber buffer on the steam wand. Hasn't been a problem for me, but would be a nice touch.
I used a Rancillio Silvia for a decade and thought about getting another one after the bottom rusted through (you won't have that problem with the Silvano). But I wanted a PID and adding that to the Silvia came to over $800 and the PID looked like an add-on, just hanging down. Also, I got tired of the single boiler, always having to cool down after steaming and waiting for it to hit the right temp for brewing. Really time consuming and awkward for multiple milk drinks. After a lot of research I settled on the Silvano. I make 4 cups a day.
I use this with a Baratza Vario grinder, a super grinder that is attractive and has a small footprint.
Build quality: Both are built really well, solid, and will last years.
Appearance: The Silvano is a beautiful polished stainless with rounded edges while the Silvia is a squared off dull stainless. The Silvano presents a much more contemporary and attractive appearance.
Coffee quality: Both do very well, but I give the Silvano an edge.
Functionality: The water tank is visible on the Silvano, not the Silvia. And it's bigger and easier to remove and clean. Much more convenient. The drip tray on the Silvano is much larger, also a big plus.
Steaming: several reviews describe the Silvano as a double boiler. It's not. It uses a thermocouple for steaming. Other reviews note that steaming can be weak as a result of this design. I have never had a problem with this, even with making multiple milk drinks. The beauty of this arrangement is that you don't have to cool the machine to brew. You can do both at once. So for a party, just get a big pitcher of milk and have someone steam it while you make multiple brews. The PID will tell you when it it ready for the next brew.
Advice: do let it warm up for at least 20 minutes.
Chris Coffee was great to work with. Chris even responded himself to some emails.