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Help with purchase:La Valentina or Wega Lyra or ECM Giotto Premium&Semi or Auto
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mdrei
Senior Member


Joined: 8 Apr 2004
Posts: 9
Location: VA
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Thu Apr 8, 2004, 2:13pm
Subject: Help with purchase:La Valentina or Wega Lyra or ECM Giotto Premium&Semi or Auto
 

I'm a researcher (by hobby and trade).  I've enjoyed this hunt for the right machine but just as I'm about to finalize my decision on purchasing La Valentina I am teased by the Wega and ECM units.   I'm interested mainly in the details of the guts.  I'm stuggling with determining the differences in components (type and quality) and the inter-connects (plastics or metals).  I'm also influenced by ergonomics and I can't ignore aesthetics.

Also, is the tough decision on the advantages and disadvantages between auto's and semi's.  It appears that the auto has the flexibility to funtion as a semi.  If so, than I believe I would prefer that flexibility unless I'm convinced otherwise.

I realize there is a price differential with this selection above and I'm willing to shell out the extra beans for the 'right' machine.

I'm sure there are lots of opinions and I'm willing to read all comers.  I just not interested in joining a movement or a rebellion against 'the establishment'; I just want info to help me get the 'best' machine for my $1000+.
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strugs
Senior Member
strugs
Joined: 21 Jul 2003
Posts: 658
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Vincent Wega (Wega Lyra)
Grinder: Jules (Mazzer Mini)
Vac Pot: Hario TCA-5
Drip: Tray
Roaster: 49th and/or Intelly
Posted Thu Apr 8, 2004, 2:42pm
Subject: Join the WWDP
 

mdrei Said:

I'm just not interested in joining a movement or a rebellion against 'the establishment'

Posted April 8, 2004 link

How about joining a righteous crusade?  The WWDP membership is growing strong.  Join us or persih.

The Wega Lyra is up to 50% heavier than its Isomac and ECM equivalents.  Judging by photos I have seen of the internal components of the various machines, this weight difference is at least partly due to large copper pipes for almost all the water lines.  Another HUGE plus in my opinion is the hot water supply that is fed through the heat exchanger.  I didn't want to drink boiler-water americanos.

Terry at espressoparts was also very good to deal with - excellent knowledge of the machines and he personally helped me out with a problem I had after I hooked it up.  I think he has a couple of automatic models left - give him a call.

 
- Sean
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Jproaster
Senior Member


Joined: 18 Dec 2003
Posts: 66
Location: SE Tenn
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Oh yeah
Grinder: Hario
Vac Pot: Not yet...
Drip: Cuisinart Brew Central
Roaster: Convection/Stir Crazy
Posted Thu Apr 8, 2004, 2:49pm
Subject: Re: Help with purchase:La Valentina or Wega Lyra or ECM Giotto Prem
 

Have you read Dan Kehn's review of the LaV?

The man knows what he's talking about.

John
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Canucklehead
Senior Member
Canucklehead
Joined: 30 Jan 2004
Posts: 52
Location: Vancouver, B.C.
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Wega Lyra (h) / LM linea (w)
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky (h)
Roaster: JJ Bean
Posted Thu Apr 8, 2004, 3:15pm
Subject: Re: Join the WWDP
 

strugs Said:

The Wega Lyra is up to 50% heavier than its Isomac and ECM equivalents.  Judging by photos I have seen of the internal components of the various machines, this weight difference is at least partly due to large copper pipes for almost all the water lines.  Another HUGE plus in my opinion is the hot water supply that is fed through the heat exchanger.  I didn't want to drink boiler-water americanos.

Posted April 8, 2004 link

Sean,

I take it that you're very happy with your Lyra.  

World domination aside, when are we going to hear more about your first week with it?  Will you posting a review at some stage?  

I know, I know,..  it's playoff time...so I'll cut you some slack! : )

I'm leaning heavily towards the Lyra myself...assuming there are any left out there!
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espressoDOM
Senior Member
espressoDOM
Joined: 1 May 2003
Posts: 2,188
Location: Bay Area
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: WEGA Lyra (vibe)
Grinder: Mazzer Mini
Vac Pot: (no more coffee equipment)
Drip: French Press
Roaster: Hot Top Roaster; Fresh Roast...
Posted Thu Apr 8, 2004, 4:18pm
Subject: :La Valentina or Wega Lyra or ECM Giotto Premium&Semi or Auto
 

I am staying quiet.... I don't want you to get your heart set on a machine you can't get..... Lyra is an awesome battleship espresso.... but if it is not available... LaV or Gio either is a good substitute.... but make sure you can't get a Lyra.... I am sure Terry and the other Wega retailers are disappointed with the Euro.... especially with demand spiking a little...hehehehe

(lucky me.... whew... I usually miss out)

 
DOM...evil genius ...Up to no good in espresso at all times... VIVA la parts de Espresso
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Canucklehead
Senior Member
Canucklehead
Joined: 30 Jan 2004
Posts: 52
Location: Vancouver, B.C.
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Wega Lyra (h) / LM linea (w)
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky (h)
Roaster: JJ Bean
Posted Thu Apr 8, 2004, 7:02pm
Subject: Re: :La Valentina or Wega Lyra or ECM Giotto Premium&Semi or Auto
 

EspressoDOM,

I'm still waiting to hear back from Terry, but judging from some of the posting here I think all he has left are the autos...which cost quite a few more dollars.  I don't know if I have that much coin for an auto.

It sure sounds like an awesome machine though.  And I do like the look of it.  Oh well, might have to just keep dreaming for now....

Justin
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krzyhobo
Senior Member
krzyhobo
Joined: 8 Dec 2003
Posts: 353
Location: Shoreline, WA
Expertise: Pro Barista

Espresso: FB70/Wega
Grinder: Rio/Mazzer
Drip: Pourover
Posted Thu Apr 8, 2004, 7:24pm
Subject: Re: Help with purchase:La Valentina or Wega Lyra or ECM Gi
 

Keep your eyes open if you are genuinely interested in the Lyra.  Though EspressoParts is the official importer and has stopped importing (for the time being) a few retailers likely still have models they haven't sold out of yet.  I actually just ordered a semiauto vibe lyra from thedailygrinders this past monday and am anxiously awaiting its arrival.

edit: you may also want to search for "Mininova 2" which is how a few retailers label the Lyra
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mdrei
Senior Member


Joined: 8 Apr 2004
Posts: 9
Location: VA
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Thu Apr 8, 2004, 10:57pm
Subject: Re: Help with purchase:La Valentina or Wega Lyra or ECM Giotto Prem
 

Yes, Dan's review was extremely helpful. (Although, I had to laugh several times throughout the review because of the extensive detail that he went into...eg: amortizing the energy costs of leaving the machine 'on' as opposed to cycling it 'off')  

In fact, Dan was partially responsible for me leaning so hard towards La Valentina...and he was soley responsible for me taking a look at the Lyra.

I understand the association of weight with better hardware inside, but is this confirmed or just suspected?  A larger footprint would help increase weight but not necessarily improve quality.  Is the pump, press stat, etc equal in quality?  Not arguing; just playing 'devils advocate'.
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strugs
Senior Member
strugs
Joined: 21 Jul 2003
Posts: 658
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Vincent Wega (Wega Lyra)
Grinder: Jules (Mazzer Mini)
Vac Pot: Hario TCA-5
Drip: Tray
Roaster: 49th and/or Intelly
Posted Thu Apr 8, 2004, 11:01pm
Subject: Re: Join the WWDP
 

Canucklehead Said:

Sean,

I take it that you're very happy with your Lyra.

Posted April 8, 2004 link

Yes - overall I am quite pleased with the new machine.  Still trying to learn how to steam milk all over again, but my espresso tastes like nothing I have made before in my home.  

Canucklehead Said:

World domination aside, when are we going to hear more about your first week with it?  Will you posting a review at some stage?

Posted April 8, 2004 link

My first week was great.  I have made lots of mistakes leading to sub-par drinks.  With my old machine, I would have just cut my losses and drank them, as it took so long to temp surf the espresso and wait for steam.  With the Lyra, I just dump it out and build another one.  I am finding that one of the most important variables is the amount of coffee I jam into the PF.  The more the better.  I am also finally able to enjoy a real ristretto shot.  With the old Barista, anything less than 2 oz came out bitter.  Not so with the Lyra.

Canucklehead Said:

I know, I know,..  it's playoff time...so I'll cut you some slack! : )

Posted April 8, 2004 link

Go Canucks!

Between watching the playoffs and orchestrating the downfall of the Isomac Empire, I probably won't post an official review anytime soon.  I probably would not want to anyway, especially since I am still at the steep end of the learning curve on a lot of issues.

Canucklehead Said:

I'm leaning heavily towards the Lyra myself...assuming there are any left out there!

Posted April 8, 2004 link

All I can say is - get one!  As you know, I had (actually "have" - it is in my garage awaiting the land of Ebay) the same machine as you , and I don't miss it in the slightest.

The self-taught plumbing lessons and the great gobs of money I spent on it were more than worth the rewards.

 
- Sean
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strugs
Senior Member
strugs
Joined: 21 Jul 2003
Posts: 658
Location: Vancouver, Canada
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Vincent Wega (Wega Lyra)
Grinder: Jules (Mazzer Mini)
Vac Pot: Hario TCA-5
Drip: Tray
Roaster: 49th and/or Intelly
Posted Thu Apr 8, 2004, 11:30pm
Subject: Re: Help with purchase:La Valentina or Wega Lyra or ECM Giotto Prem
 

mdrei Said:

I understand the association of weight with better hardware inside, but is this confirmed or just suspected?  A larger footprint would help increase weight but not necessarily improve quality.  Is the pump, press stat, etc equal in quality?  Not arguing; just playing 'devils advocate'.

Posted April 8, 2004 link

OK - this anecdote comes from a dealer, so you may want to take it with a grain of salt.  There is shop that is close to me that sells the Wega Lyra as well as the Euro2000 (which by most accounts has the same internals as the Isomacs and ECM Giottos).  I met with the owner, and he said that despite the similar prices (they were within $50 Canadian), he never recommends the Euro2000 to anyone over the Wega.  He showed me that the copper pipes in the WEGA line were larger in diameter than the corresponding plumbing inside the Euro2000.  He also stated that the vertical orientation of the Lyra's boiler was a better design that the horizontal boiler found on most other machines.  The final major difference he pointed out was that due to the larger footprint of the Lyra, the electronic wiring is much more cleanly segregated from the plumbing of the machine.  this is good in the long run if any leaks develop.  Keep in mind (a) this is the WEGA dealer's side of the story; and (b) I am not sure how the Euro2000 compares with the Isomacs, as I have never seen an Isomac in person.

I think that the pump and pressurestat are the similar if not identical across all machines in this class.  The notable exception is the Wega Lyra with the rotary pump, but this model is apparently no longer available in the US.  The Canadian delaer (the local one I referred to), carries these at what seems like a very good price ($1500 US).  The owner's name is Vincent, and he seemed like a pretty decent guy.  The web site is here.

 
- Sean
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