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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Cuadra II vs....  
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Raizon
Senior Member


Joined: 2 Jul 2012
Posts: 10
Location: WA
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Mon Jul 2, 2012, 1:02pm
Subject: Cuadra II vs. Silvano
 

Hi Guys!  I'm new to this forum and was hoping for some opinions before I make a plunge on a new espresso machine.  I'm still kinda of a newbie at making espressos.  For the past 5 years, I've only used cheaper semi-auto machines under $300 and super-automatics.  So I thought it was time to do some upgrading and start making better espressos.  

I was pretty set on getting the Silvano machine with the Preciso grinder but then I ran across the new Cuadra II at 1st-line.  It's selling at an introductory price of $1100 which I thought is an impressive price for a HX machine.   There hasn't been much reviews or discussions on the new Cuadra II so I wondering is it worth the extra $200 for the Cuadra II over Silvano?  If I get the Cuadra, would that be overwhelming or too hard for me to use since I've only used lower priced machines?

Appreciate the help.  Thanks!
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fivetenagain
Senior Member
fivetenagain
Joined: 5 Jan 2012
Posts: 20
Location: Auburn, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Nuova Era Cuadra
Grinder: Vario
Drip: No...press
Roaster: Verve
Posted Wed Jul 4, 2012, 5:03pm
Subject: Re: Cuadra II vs. Silvano
 

I'd say go with the Cuadra you will get more bang for your buck.  I could be biased here because I own the Cuadra "one" which is almost identical to the "two".  I'm sure the Silvano is a great machine but you will be getting more power and capacity with the Cuadra. I also don't think the Cuadra will be more difficult to use. As far as being overwhelmed...in my opinion trying to make decent espresso is a bit overwhelming no matter what machine and grinder you have.
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CMIN
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Jun 2012
Posts: 1,362
Location: South FL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Crossland CC1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Posted Wed Jul 4, 2012, 7:20pm
Subject: Re: Cuadra II vs. Silvano
 

I would go with the Cuadra. I was down to the Cuadra II or Breville Dual Boiler, was edging to the Breville but then got a killer deal on a CC1 I couldn't pass up.
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fivetenagain
Senior Member
fivetenagain
Joined: 5 Jan 2012
Posts: 20
Location: Auburn, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Nuova Era Cuadra
Grinder: Vario
Drip: No...press
Roaster: Verve
Posted Wed Jul 4, 2012, 11:07pm
Subject: Re: Cuadra II vs. Silvano
 

Yes, you might want to look at the Breville or even a La Spaziale used. The Braville and the Spaz will be more user friendly but the Braville might be more problematic down the road because previous Breville is garbage.
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EricBNC
Senior Member
EricBNC
Joined: 22 Jun 2010
Posts: 1,866
Location: North Carolina
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: QM Silvano, LP Stradivarius,...
Grinder: K30, Major, Preciso, Pharos,...
Vac Pot: Sunbeam C30, Bodum Santos...
Drip: Bonavita BV-1800,...
Roaster: Behmor, Melitta, Fresh...
Posted Wed Jul 4, 2012, 11:17pm
Subject: Re: Cuadra II vs. Silvano
 

I picked the Silvano after using a NS Oscar for a while. If you can plumb it in (and plumb the drain too), HX is a good solution. I couldn't do either so the inconvenience of the Oscar got old fast, fill, flush, dump, repeat.

The espresso was OK, the steam power was great, and worth recommending so the Cuadra II likely would be as well, if you can set it near a sink and still have clearance to add water if plumbing is an issue.

The Silvano is capable of stunning espresso when paired with a good grinder - temp stability, adjustable OPV, spacious drip tray with minimal drippage, decent steam for 1 or 2 people, more if pressed, and good build quality in a compact package.

 
I chew coffee beans with my teeth while gargling with 195 F water to enjoy coffee. What is this "coffee brewing" device you speak of?
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fivetenagain
Senior Member
fivetenagain
Joined: 5 Jan 2012
Posts: 20
Location: Auburn, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Nuova Era Cuadra
Grinder: Vario
Drip: No...press
Roaster: Verve
Posted Wed Jul 4, 2012, 11:36pm
Subject: Re: Cuadra II vs. Silvano
 

My biggest complaint with the Cuadra is refilling of the reservoir. If I could plumb in easily I would.  I make two shots a day and one of those is americano style with the hot water wand and I have to refill the reservoir once a week at a minimum. Take that into consideration as well.
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CMIN
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Jun 2012
Posts: 1,362
Location: South FL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Crossland CC1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Posted Thu Jul 5, 2012, 8:31am
Subject: Re: Cuadra II vs. Silvano
 

fivetenagain Said:

Yes, you might want to look at the Breville or even a La Spaziale used. The Braville and the Spaz will be more user friendly but the Braville might be more problematic down the road because previous Breville is garbage.

Posted July 4, 2012 link

Breville DB is pretty sweet, friends had his since they came out and uses it hard every day, has one in their office as well, no problems. Think Breville nailed it on that machine and it's feature set is unbeatable for the price. I was swaying to it over the Cuadra II even at it's discount price but the deal I got on the CC1 couldn't pass up.
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randytsuch
Senior Member


Joined: 11 Jun 2009
Posts: 578
Location: LA, Ca
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Expobar Office with...
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Roaster: Customized Alpenrost,...
Posted Thu Jul 5, 2012, 11:51am
Subject: Re: Cuadra II vs. Silvano
 

I remember looking at internal pics of the Breville, and thinking it would be hard and maybe expensive to fix.

Most HX's seem pretty sturdy, and the parts are available if you do need to repair.

My problem with an HX was flushing and the water dance, I put in Eric's temp adapter so I could read the brew head temps and not have to guess.

I put an hole in my cover, and bought a funnel to make it easier to refill.  Still kind of a pain, but not that bad.

For the price, the Cuadra looks nice, but the Silvano looks good too.

What's your usage, and type of drinks?
If you do mostly shots, with an occasional milk drink, I might go with the Silvano.
Cuadra should do better for higher volumes.

Randy
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Raizon
Senior Member


Joined: 2 Jul 2012
Posts: 10
Location: WA
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Thu Jul 5, 2012, 12:57pm
Subject: Re: Cuadra II vs. Silvano
 

Wow...thanks for all the replies!
Sounds like Cuadra is the better buy compared to Silvano.

Is refilling the tank going to be a problem if I have a cabinet over the machine?  It looks like the machine comes with a refill spout that allows me to just pour water in without moving the machine.  Does that work well?

I will be making 1-2 cups in the morning and another 1-2 cups in the afternoon.  We're mainly milk drinkers so caps and lattes is what we'll be making majority of the time.  We'll have small gatherings (3-6 people) about once a month where I would be making drinks with the machine.   Would the Cuadra be an overkill for the volume I'll be making?

I just saw that Chris's Coffee is selling the Rocket Premium Plus for $1450.  If I decide on the Cuadra over the Silvano, any reason to spend an extra $350 on the Rocket?  I'm probably stepping up way too far for a newbie.

I appreciate all the feedback I've received so far.  Thanks!
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mgwolf
Senior Member


Joined: 29 Mar 2005
Posts: 391
Location: Plymouth, MN
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Londinium 1, Olympia Cremina
Grinder: Mazzer SJ, Baratza Maestro
Vac Pot: Yama, Sunbeam C50
Drip: Krups Moka Brew, Chemex
Posted Thu Jul 5, 2012, 1:56pm
Subject: Re: Cuadra II vs. Silvano
 

I've used my brother's Silvano and it is a very nice machine.  Steaming isn't super fast, but it does a good job.  The big difference between your two choices is that with Silvano, you can exactly control the temperature whereas with the Cuadra, you have an HX machine which requires some getting used to.  There are hundreds of threads here on the relative merits of DB's vs HX machines (the Silvano is functionally equivalent to a DB).  Quickmill machines are well made and have a good reputation in that regard.  Also, the Silvano had a pull-out drawer for the reservoir which is MUCH more convenient that the type you fill from the top.
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