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Espresso: Espresso Machines
Best Espresso Machine for ~$1000
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crobley
Senior Member


Joined: 18 Jun 2014
Posts: 38
Location: New York
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Thu Jun 19, 2014, 4:49am
Subject: Best Espresso Machine for ~$1000
 

Hey guys!
Looks like I'm well on my way to getting an excellent grinder from the suggestions thus far on the site. (Baratza Vario)
But now I would love to have some suggestions on a machine for around $1000.

A family member of mine owns the Expobar Brewtus IV so I get to use it quite often. I love it. Its such a solid machine and looks amazing. But it is a bit pricey at $1500 on Whole Latte Love.
There is, however, a Refurb Expobar Office Lever on the site for $974 which is much more dooable. The only downsides that I notice is there is no pressure gauge for pulling a shot, only for steam.

The only other machine that I was just looking at was the Bezzera BZ10. Looks fantastic but is creeping up a bit high at $1349.

So, the things that are very important to me is for the machine to be compatible with a bottomless portafilter and to of course brew/steam simultaneously and....it needs to look great ;)

Anyway, I would love to get any and all advice from you experts!
What are your thoughts??
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CMIN
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Jun 2012
Posts: 1,455
Location: South FL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Crossland CC1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Posted Thu Jun 19, 2014, 5:02am
Subject: Re: Best Espresso Machine for ~$1000
 

I own a CC1, just under 700 and like the Vario it's bang for the buck, ton of features. You have the Silvano just under a grand. Otherwise under a grand your gonna have to go used or refurb, have you checked ChrisCoffee and other retail sites to see as they have buyers remorse/return/demo models for sale usually. Check the for sale section on here or home-barista there may be something there for you. Your up north too, try Craigslist (more machines etc for sale up north then south)
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crobley
Senior Member


Joined: 18 Jun 2014
Posts: 38
Location: New York
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Thu Jun 19, 2014, 5:10am
Subject: Re: Best Espresso Machine for ~$1000
 

Great, thanks for the help.
I should clarify that I am OK spending a little over $1000. In my pricerange it looks to buy new it looks like the only options on Whole Latte Love are these guys:

Expobar Office Lever Plus $1250
Quick Mill Alexia $1250
Bezzera BZ10 Espresso Machine $1350
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boar_d_laze
Senior Member


Joined: 21 Nov 2006
Posts: 1,396
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 Thu Jun 19, 2014, 6:59am
Subject: Re: Best Espresso Machine for ~$1000
 

crobley Said:

... Expobar Office Lever Plus $1250; Quick Mill Alexia $1250; and Bezzera BZ10 Espresso Machine $1350.

Posted June 19, 2014 link

The Expobar Office Lever and BZ10 are compact HXs.  The Alexia is a non-PID SBDU.  Are you sure you want to look at SBDUs?  If so, you're nuts.  

The differences between the various HXs in the better than an Oscar but still under $1500 class are really pretty slight.  All are compacts, a little cramped to work on, mediocre steamers, etc., etc.  And, excepting the BZ-10, they're all E-61s.  You're looking at minor differences in build quality, appearance but that's about it.

The one machine in your price range which is really different is the Breville Double Boiler 920XL (aka BDB).  In exchange for some build quality you pick up an enormous amount of user-friendliness, temp stability between shots, and some extra control in shaping a few of the parameters of your pulls.  

At this level of machine competence (mid-level prosumer HX, BDB), the differences in the cup between machines are the result of indirect factors like ergonomics (simplicity and forgiveness in making a good cup makes good cups more consistent); and frankly the differences between grinders is a great deal more important.      

Rich
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crobley
Senior Member


Joined: 18 Jun 2014
Posts: 38
Location: New York
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Thu Jun 19, 2014, 10:50am
Subject: Re: Best Espresso Machine for ~$1000
 

boar_d_laze Said:

The Expobar Office Lever and BZ10 are compact HXs.  The Alexia is a non-PID SBDU.  Are you sure you want to look at SBDUs?  If so, you're nuts.  

The differences between the various HXs in the better than an Oscar but still under $1500 class are really pretty slight.  All are compacts, a little cramped to work on, mediocre steamers, etc., etc.  And, excepting the BZ-10, they're all E-61s.  You're looking at minor differences in build quality, appearance but that's about it.

The one machine in your price range which is really different is the Breville Double Boiler 920XL (aka BDB).  In exchange for some build quality you pick up an enormous amount of user-friendliness, temp stability between shots, and some extra control in shaping a few of the parameters of your pulls.  

At this level of machine competence (mid-level prosumer HX, BDB), the differences in the cup between machines are the result of indirect factors like ergonomics (simplicity and forgiveness in making a good cup makes good cups more consistent); and frankly the differences between grinders is a great deal more important.      

Rich

Posted June 19, 2014 link

I gotta be honest...I have barely any idea what on earth your talking about lol.
I pretty much dont understand a single abbreviation you mentioned.
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CMIN
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Jun 2012
Posts: 1,455
Location: South FL
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: Crossland CC1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Posted Thu Jun 19, 2014, 11:07am
Subject: Re: Best Espresso Machine for ~$1000
 

sbdu - single boiler dual use (one boiler for brewing and steaming)
hx - heat exchanger
bdb - breville dual boiler
E-61 - brew group
pid - proportional integral derivative (my CC1 has full built in PID control for temp adj/preinfusion/dwell/shot timer etc
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crobley
Senior Member


Joined: 18 Jun 2014
Posts: 38
Location: New York
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Thu Jun 19, 2014, 11:11am
Subject: Re: Best Espresso Machine for ~$1000
 

CMIN Said:

sbdu - single boiler dual use (one boiler for brewing and steaming)
hx - heat exchanger
bdb - breville dual boiler
E-61 - brew group
pid - proportional integral derivative (my CC1 has full built in PID control for temp adj/preinfusion/dwell/shot timer etc

Posted June 19, 2014 link

Thanks!
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crobley
Senior Member


Joined: 18 Jun 2014
Posts: 38
Location: New York
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Thu Jun 19, 2014, 11:57am
Subject: Re: Best Espresso Machine for ~$1000
 

boar_d_laze Said:

The Expobar Office Lever and BZ10 are compact HXs.  The Alexia is a non-PID SBDU.  Are you sure you want to look at SBDUs?  If so, you're nuts.  

Posted June 19, 2014 link

Could you elaborate? The reason I am leaning towards a SBDU machine is because the jump up to a DB machine costs quite a bit more.
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canuckcoffeeguy
Senior Member
canuckcoffeeguy
Joined: 22 Aug 2013
Posts: 235
Location: Burlington, Ontario, Canada
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Bezzera Magica, Mypressi...
Grinder: K10PB, Vario, Hario Slim
Vac Pot: I have a Dyson vacuum, but,...
Drip: Aeropress, Bialetti Brikka,...
Posted Thu Jun 19, 2014, 12:33pm
Subject: Re: Best Espresso Machine for ~$1000
 

crobley Said:

I gotta be honest...I have barely any idea what on earth your talking about lol.
I pretty much dont understand a single abbreviation you mentioned.

Posted June 19, 2014 link

Hey crobley. We all start our espresso journeys from different places, and the technical talk can be overwhelming at first. But, have no fear, that's why Coffeegeek is here.

Have a read through this CG guide about machine types. It explains the difference between SBDU, HX and double-boiler machines. It hasn't been updated for a while, but it's a start. Then circle back and ask some more questions:
Click Here (coffeegeek.com)
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takeshi
Senior Member
takeshi
Joined: 12 Oct 2002
Posts: 1,006
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Alex Duetto 3.0
Grinder: Super Jolly
Roaster: Amaya Roasting
Posted Thu Jun 19, 2014, 1:56pm
Subject: Re: Best Espresso Machine for ~$1000
 

crobley Said:

Could you elaborate? The reason I am leaning towards a SBDU machine is because the jump up to a DB machine costs quite a bit more.

Posted June 19, 2014 link

If it's very important to you to be able to brew & steam simultaneously then you can rule out SBDU's.  You don't have to only consider DB's.  An HX would fit the bill as well.
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