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Gaggia Compact - Kevin Dee's Review
Posted: September 26, 2005, 11:09am
review rating: 5.2
feedback: (1) comments | read | write
Gaggia Compact Super Auto
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Arrow The Gaggia Compact has 8 Reviews
Arrow The Gaggia Compact has been rated 7.13 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since November 4, 2003.
Arrow Gaggia Compact reviews have been viewed 44,413 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Phil Ingber 7.00
Dennis Meyers 6.00
Phil T 6.00
D Barrett 5.20
Kevin Dee 5.20

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 7.8
Manufacturer: Saeco Quality: 7
Average Price: $599.00 Usability: 9
Price Paid: $450.00 Cost vs. Value 8
Where Bought: JL Huford Aesthetics 7
Owned for: 3 months Overall 8
Writer's Expertise: I love coffee Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned:
Bottom Line: If you don't want to go broke and only want to press a button for GREAT shot or cup, this is the machine for you.
Positive Product Points

Easy to use is what this machine is.  Press a button for 1 cup, press twice for 2...literally that's it.   After fine tuning the grind and coffee amount, the shots pulled are great.  Makes great ristretto shots, cappucinos and machiatos.  Way better than Starbucks or any chain.  Cleaning is very simple as well.

Negative Product Points

The main issues I have with it deal with the grinder but it might be my ignorance.  It seems unservicable (I can't figure out how to access it to clean it).  
-The bean light goes on often indicating there are no beans when there are plenty--to fix it I have to jiggle the beans in the hopper or remove and replace the brew unit.  
-The drip tray cover does not fit properly.
-40 to 60 second wait for steaming temperature to froth milk after pulling a shot.
-Almost entirely plastic and not the prettiest looking machine IMO.

Detailed Commentary

The crema is awesome and the ristretto blows away any espresso shots I have ever gotten from a chain's store.  

Frothing milk is very easy.  It entails filling a pitcher with cold milk, blow off the watery steam, put the wand in the pitcher, turn it to max and wait until it hits 160 degrees---PERFECT microfoam everytime!  You do have to wait for the unit to reach steaming temperature which is about 40-60 seconds.

For the price paid ($450 in an ebay auction for a returned unit), I don't think I could have gotten a better machine.  It has the same exact brew unit as all the Saecos from what I can tell and it is easy to maintain.  This unit has a few nice extras with the bypass doser and warming tray.

Buying Experience

JL Huford sent me a very dirty machine.  Since I got it from an ebay auction for less than cost they offered me nothing other than a refund (but this was after I spent 1 1/2 hours cleaning it).  Beans and grinds were everywhere!  I was surprised they didn't offer free coffee or a credit of some kind.

Three Month Followup

Still works great.  Very easy to use and to maintain.

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review rating: 5.2
Posted: September 26, 2005, 11:09am
feedback: (1) comments | read | write
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