The Rlax is a funny name for an espresso maker that can pump out enough high quality shots to power a small town.
Positive Product Points
EVERYTHING! There are any things about this product that are very positive. Anyone can purchase this machine and feel very good about themselves for being such a smart consumer. The aesthetics of the system are very nice. The stainless shines up like a bathroom mirror, and what little verbage there is on the system is tasteful. The machine is very clean and impressive looking. Usability of the Relax is simple and very easy. The grouphead is well shielded making you go out of your way to get burnt (if you do it's because you tried very hard). The steaming wand is on the left and is set at a great height and functions well. It swivels far enough to allow you to set a small cup on the drain pan and steam away. The cost versus Value is a no brainer. This machine delivers as well as anyone could expect.. Endless steam, this includes while brewing. To push things a littIe I decided to really run it hard one double shot followed by a single and back to the double over and over while steaming away.. I even dumped some hot water out of the spout and it kept up with ease. The twin gauges keep you up on everything that is happening and really help to get things dialed in. I guarantee that the machine will outwork any home use, and I'm sure it would hold up very well in an office environment.
Negative Product Points
Hmm . . well for the cost you just can't compare.. That said, here are a few things. The steam wand could have a little more movement to it, like an ASTRA. The factory instructions are a bit rough (ok they are really rough) but The folks at Chris' coffee have that covered. For those of you that don't purchase from Chris take your time read the supplied instructions and pay careful attention to initial startup of the machine ( dont run the punp but for 30 seconds at a time, and wait a few minutes to go another round. by the third run everything is working great and your pump is not burned out). Just take an extra minute to read their supplied instructions first, and all is good. An improved steam tip may be in order. That said I've been getting some great micro-foam out of whole milk with little effort., but I know it could be better.
I purchased the product for myself after countless hours of reading up on the machines on this sight as well as some others. I first decided to purchase a machine after my local tab at the coffee house was approaching a car payment. This, in addition to a co-worker who owns a Pasquini Livia 90, drove me to the decision to puchase my own. I had originally decided to purchase the Livia but after reading about the Isomacs I somehow ended up purchasing the one machine with little to no reviews. I took a chance based on the specs and the looks of the Relax. It was the best choice I could have made. I love this machine. I have been able to produce the finest shots I have ever had. ( well close to it). Certainly better than any shot that has been served in a disposable cup and better than 95% of the restaurants. The Relax is simple to operate and instills confidence with its rock solid build. Dont let my comments in the negaitve product points discourage you, I only want you to be aware that there is an initial priming sequence, and once that is done you are on your way to espresso heaven.. The machine flat out performs.
I purchased this from Chris' coffee and I am very pleased. All was as promised and not one bit short. Chris' additional instructions were GREAT. I have no doubt that I would have damaged the machine had I not read his version. The shipment went out the next day as expected and it arrived exactly when UPS said it would. What more could you want..