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Please comment on my future setup!
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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Please comment...  
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Mingdanger
Senior Member


Joined: 15 Jan 2014
Posts: 9
Location: NY
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Wed Jan 15, 2014, 1:26pm
Subject: Please comment on my future setup!
 

Hello All,
I am a newbie just joined the forum.
I have been doing research on getting my first setup. I read all the wall of posts and the grinder buying guide on coffeegeek.
I do understand that the quality and choices are based on personal opinion, but i have narrowed down my selection to just a few.
Please do comment on it and let me know!!! Greatly appreciate it!
I will be using the setup for home only.

grinder:
Rocky/Vario/Mazzer Mini

Machine:
Gaggia classic/silvia/infuser

I am a big fan of solid metal material build machine. and I won't be brewing a LOT of coffe on a daily basis. perhaps 2-3 shots onces i get the hang of it.

my budge limit is about 1000?

i am also open to suggestions on others, but i want something that i dont have to upgrade unless it breaks, so resale value is.....useless to me.


THANKS!!!!
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Burner0000
Senior Member


Joined: 28 Jul 2011
Posts: 1,075
Location: Cambridge, Ontario Canada
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: Rancilio Silvia, VFA Expres...
Grinder: Macap MX/VFA N1464/Kyocera...
Drip: Manual Drip, French Press
Roaster: Behmor 1600 / Sonofresco
Posted Wed Jan 15, 2014, 2:07pm
Subject: Re: Please comment on my future setup!
 

Out of the options you mentioned forget the Rocky grinder and the Infuser.. Breville machines need to be services by a tech regularly and if you can't find one your screwed. There build quality is nice but it's not made to last.  The Classic is built better and according to info I have seen and read on it will last you a long time but the Silvia is built better all around.  In terms of boiler size and materials the Silvia beats Both.  The Silvia's internals are brass and copper built. All but the boiler you would find in a commercial machine.  Plus it has the traditional multi directional steam wand which the Classic does not.  As for the grinder obviously the Mazzer is the best choice.  I've heard tons that the Vario is more than capable for great espresso but there's a chance you may have problems with it down the road.  (Vario owners please chime in).  The rocky isn't a good choice because the amount of steps needed for espresso are very limited.  Stepless is best which the Mazzer has.

My recommendation is..

For espresso go with the Silvia
Grinder.. Go with the Mazzer.  If your funds are too limited go with the Vario then.   Both machines you can find used too.

Others may tell you to go with the Crossland CC1 over the Silvia in terms of value but in build quality and longevity the Silvia will beat it.
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takeshi
Senior Member
takeshi
Joined: 12 Oct 2002
Posts: 968
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Alex Duetto 3.0
Grinder: Super Jolly
Roaster: Amaya Roasting
Posted Wed Jan 15, 2014, 2:41pm
Subject: Re: Please comment on my future setup!
 

Mingdanger Said:

grinder:
Rocky/Vario/Mazzer Mini

Posted January 15, 2014 link

As all recent threads indicate, ditch the Rocky.  It does not belong in the list with those other grinders.

Mingdanger Said:

I am a big fan of solid metal material build machine.

Posted January 15, 2014 link

If that trumps all else then Silvia and Mini.  However, you might want to consider more than just that one preference.

Burner0000 Said:

Others may tell you to go with the Crossland CC1 over the Silvia in terms of value but in build quality and longevity the Silvia will beat it.

Posted January 15, 2014 link

I'd add ease of use and if you make milk drinks you'll appreciate the thermoblock on the CC1.  OP really needs to clarify intended usage.

As for the long term, we don't have a track record established for the CC1 so no one can conclusively state anything one way or the other.

Mingdanger Said:

i am also open to suggestions on others, but i want something that i dont have to upgrade unless it breaks

Posted January 15, 2014 link

I wouldn't count on that unless you abandon espresso at some point.  Additionally these are entry machines.  While some could be indefinitely happy with one, single boilers just aren't an ideal espresso long term goal for many.  My Silvia was a great machine for the 12 years I had it.  The new machine just offers much better consistency and ease of use.  I'm certainly not the only one to make such a comment after upgrading from the Silvia.  If you make milk drinks you'll probably want an HX or DB down the road.

As always, get the best grinder you can buy.  Of the 3 you listed the Vario (consider that its performance is often compared to the Super Jolly).  Then work on the selecting the machine that fits your budget.
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emradguy
Senior Member
emradguy
Joined: 31 Mar 2011
Posts: 3,041
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Duetto II; Twist v2
Grinder: M Major, Macap M4 x2, VDD...
Drip: Espro presses; Aeropress
Roaster: H-B "List of Favorites"
Posted Wed Jan 15, 2014, 2:43pm
Subject: Re: Please comment on my future setup!
 

While I agree to pass on the Rocky, and that the Mazzer will likely outlast you, I don't think you've provided enough information to answer your machine question.

I highly recommend reading the sticky and answering the "standard questions", in order for people here to give you a better response based on your needs and wants.

As far as not ever having to upgrade...well, who's to say, you won't ever want to improve the quality of your espresso based drinks? The machines you're looking at are entry level - like buying the cheapest car available on the market. I'm not saying you should focus on resale value, but there is a distinct possibility you will want to move on to better gear in the future. Resale value tends to mirror machine longevity.  I.e., something made to last decades is also likely to have good resale value. The differences between high quality espresso gear and entry level gear go far beyond longevity and resale value. There are drastic jumps in ability to produce high quality beverages consistently. I'm not trying to talk you into buying more than you need, want or can afford, but rather, trying merely to open your eyes to the reasoning why you may, perhaps in the future, want to have better gear than the entry level stuff you're looking at now.

 
.
Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
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Mingdanger
Senior Member


Joined: 15 Jan 2014
Posts: 9
Location: NY
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Wed Jan 15, 2014, 3:02pm
Subject: Re: Please comment on my future setup!
 

Thanks!
I was hoping to get a nice grinder and a mediocre machine, because i feel that if i can have the grind consistent, i can further work on the brewer a little more....

I have a tendency towards gaggia because of the price, but i am not so sure though.
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Mingdanger
Senior Member


Joined: 15 Jan 2014
Posts: 9
Location: NY
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Wed Jan 15, 2014, 3:03pm
Subject: Re: Please comment on my future setup!
 

Passing the Rocky it is!
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Mingdanger
Senior Member


Joined: 15 Jan 2014
Posts: 9
Location: NY
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Wed Jan 15, 2014, 3:05pm
Subject: Re: Please comment on my future setup!
 

I am seriously considering Vario, but the plastic material really is bugging me..... I love some solid metal!
I heard Mazzer Mini will have coffee left in it....sorry for not using fancy and professional words........so...wasting coffee?
I may just have about 2-4 shots per day and thats about it, so could Mazzer Mini be a little overkill for regular home use?
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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 Jan 15, 2014, 4:14pm
Subject: Re: Please comment on my future setup!
 

Using both a Mini and Vario, Vario hands down. Friend had both and quickly sold the Mini. Vario was just plain better for taste in cup, grind quality, and little retention like all Baratzas. Hate to say it but the Mini is kinda the bastard child in those class of grinders, if you want that metal like build your far better off finding a used Super Jolley for cheaper. I'd look at the CC1 as well, for barely more than a Silvia your getting a much better and easier performing machine whether straight shots or milk drinks. Even the boiler is like 5-6oz larger, that's massive for this class.

I'd take a Classic over a Silvia though, still have the same quirks like temp surfing etc. But it's priced right vs way overpriced Silvia, and you can mod it cheap too like swapping the Silvia steam arm etc

SCG was just running a special for a CC1 and Vario packaged deal for less than 1k, after their sales price and there was another discount for signing up. Even at normal price that combo is a performance bargain.

Avoid Rocky like the plague lol
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boar_d_laze
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Nov 2006
Posts: 1,203
Location: Monrovia, CA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Cimbali M21 DT/1 Junior...
Grinder: Ceado E92; "Bunnzilla"
Vac Pot: Royal Coffee Maker
Drip: Chemex + Kone; Espro Press
Roaster: USRC Sample Roaster
Posted Wed Jan 15, 2014, 5:57pm
Subject: Re: Please comment on my future setup!
 

The SBDU design is obsolete and unacceptable.  There are much better alternatives for similar or slightly more money.  Do yourself a HUGE favor.  Forget about non-PID SBDUs if you care about coffee.  A +5/-5 temperature range can't balance bitters and sours.  And forget about any SBDU if you plan to make milk drinks regularly, or if you ever plan to entertain.

SCG still has the CC1 + Vario combo for $999.  That's about $150 off regular price, cheaper than a PID Silvia with the same grinder.  But the CC1 is a lot of plastic.  

If you want adequate (not great, not good, adequate) performance in a metal box, the cheapest choice is the QM Silvano, $1000.  

While there are a couple of entry-level HXs, the next solid step up above the Silvano in a metal box are the mid-priced, E-61 prosumer HXs -- there are a lot of them, from manufacturers like Bezerra, Expo-Bar, Izzo, Qucik Mill, etc.  They run around $1500.  

Vario or Mini?  There are arguments in favor and against each.  The Mini is much better built, the Vario is a slightly better performer, quite a bit more convenient to use, and plenty o'plastic.  

BDL
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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 Jan 15, 2014, 7:02pm
Subject: Re: Please comment on my future setup!
 

CC1 is all metal except for the drip tray base and I think PID housing, water tank is plastic like all others though. SCG was doing another 10% off if you sign up (think for all deals), think they emailed you the code to use. That combo deal is great performance value, you'd have to go waaay up in price for a better machine and grinder.

Mingdanger have you thought of used? That opens up a whole new world of options, can score some insane deals on top notch gear. I mean if your dead set on an all metal grinder for example, look for a used Super Jolley, much better grind quality than the Mini and can be scored for quite less money.
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