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Thread: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

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    CoffeeSnobs Owner Andy's Avatar
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    Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    After much discussion in another thread about this machine I decided to buy one and find out first hand if its possible to get a good coffee from a $400 *superauto.

    Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine

    The Aldi store that I went to had about 6 of these left from the "Catalogue Sale" last Thursday so I grabbed one and took it to the Snobbery to give it a workout.

    It comes in good looking, full colour retail packaging, lots of attention grabbing catchwords on the box like "dual boiler", "LCD display" and "conical grinder" along with mention of the 2 year warranty and 60 day satisfaction guarantee.

    Inside the box it was packed more than well enough with foam to protect from the shop to home. *

    Out of the box you notice that its fairly bulky and weighed-in at nearly 10KG dry.

    Im using a Silvia here to give a comparison for the size and weight. *The Silvia weighs near 12kg and Lumina is about 50% wider and little taller. In the box is the espresso machine, manual, DVD, tool and a ground coffee scoop with a cleaning brush on the handle.












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    CoffeeSnobs Owner Andy's Avatar
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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    First impression is that it feels a little cheap. Everything is plastic including the drip tray cover and cup warmer. Doors and trays dont fit as well as they should and are sometimes a little tricky to get them into place but remember this is a $400 machine, not a multi thousand dollar one so some corners have to be cut.

    The whole machine is on a swivel base which is nice as it turns around on the spot with very little effort so you can get to the back of the machine to refill it and to the side of the machine to get at the brew head. The swivel base also means it would work fine under overhead cupboards in a small kitchen.

    The door on the side opens to allow access to the brewing group. With a simple lift and slide the whole brewing group comes out for easy cleaning. The dreg tray is located below that.

    With the brewing group removed you get easy access to the bottom basket.

    It appears that a single screw hold the screen in place and you have clear access to the screw so cleaning would be simple.

    The top shower screen is more buried in the brewing head and while you could get to it with a finger I think removing it would be trickier.












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    CoffeeSnobs Owner Andy's Avatar
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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    The conical grinder has alloy gears to set the grind with a simple push knob to make changes. The scale goes from 1 (finest) to 8 and the manual recommends setting it to 4.5 (the DVD says 5.5?!?!). There is the typical "cone" finger guard over the burr set so seeing them or getting at them through the hopper is tricky. However, the hopper is held on by 3 screws with silicone plugs covering them so if you were cleaning it would be easy enough to get at it.

    The 1.5 liter water tank has a door on top that you can easily pour cold water through.

    The water tank is also removable for cleaning or filling with a spring-loaded stopper on the bottom so you can get from the sink to the machine without leaving a train of water.

    The bean hopper has an easily removable lid and holds 300 grams of roasted coffee.

    This was built August 2010 in China. I bought it in August 2010 in Australia. Thats super speedy from the factory and across half a planet. There is also a local support number that is good for east coast Australia business hours.












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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    The LCD has icons to tell you what mode its in and what the settings are. *First pic shows medium amount of coffee and temperature along with the "refill" icon to show the water level is low.

    Second pic shows large (full) amount of beans and temperature.

    Using default settings, the "small coffee" button pulled a gusher with very pale crema. It needed some tweaking from factory settings to improve the shot.

    Finest grind, highest temperature, largest dose is often the best settings for an auto so I tried that with far better results. *The shot was still too long (40ml) for the amount of coffee used.

    A quick fiddle and I had set a 20ml volume for the small coffee. *This was a big improvement over the default 40ml shot (which was pale and very over extracted). *











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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    The first pucks in the drawer were just slop with no shape at all. After lowering the volume of water, raising the amount of coffee and using the finest grind the pucks were in much better condition.

    How does the 20ml shot compare to the Giotto? Not very well, but to be fair the Giotto is a $3000 machine and was using a $3000 grinder. The other (I have to remind myself) is a $400 machine and inbuilt grinder.








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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Steam? *There is plenty of steam! *Changing from coffee to steam takes about 20 seconds all up. *Once it’s in steam mode it keeps producing steam until you take it out of steam mode. *A word of warning though, the initial burst of steam is very high pressure so I suggest bleeding it off into the drip tray or a cloth before heating the milk in the jug.

    Take the silly rubber thingy off the steam wand (already gone in this picture) and toss it in the box (or bin!). *You will get far better milk without it and will be better off just using just the bare steam arm and good technique.

    The steam arm has limited movement (single plane) but if you tilt the jug to get a whirlpool you will get good milk.



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    CoffeeSnobs Owner Andy's Avatar
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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Pros:
    Good steam power
    Reasonable espresso shots with tweaking to max
    LCD lets you see the settings easily.
    Good user manual, some chinglish that required reading twice but mostly ok.
    Easy to disassemble and get at parts that need cleaning.
    Great warranty (on face value, not tested)
    Well designed overall.
    Grind on demand entry for $400

    Cons:
    Near 100% plastic made it feel a little cheap.
    Coffee could be better with more control.
    Cannot set the grinder quite fine enough.
    Would like the option of shorter than 25ml shots.


    Putting it all together what do you get?

    This is a $400 automatic espresso *machine and it was never going to produce as good a coffee as a $4000 semi-auto (manual) espresso machine and grinder. *The tamping and dosing are pretty much fixed variables so I would like to see finer grind adjustment so you could “choke” the pour and work your way up the grinder adjustments to get a nice tight pour. *I would really like to see the minimum volume of 25ml for the “small coffee” short-shot become a 15ml minimum so you could do double-short-shots and get a far better 30ml coffee shot.

    Overall the Aldi Lumina Auto is a very affordable leap away from the jar of instant coffee and this is a machine that your Nanna could use after 15 minutes of tuition.

    8-)


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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Excellent review Andy, and an excellent way of encouraging entry level CoffeeSnobbers to the forum, and introducing them to the delights of real coffee and yours and the other sponsors wares. Not to mention that none of us appear immune to the upgradeitis virus [smiley=wink.gif]

    Graham

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Excellent review Andy.... 8-)

    Makes for a bloody excellent Template for all of we prospective equipment reviewers. I almost want to go out and buy one of these... Almost ::)

    Mal.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Thanks fellas!

    I hope it helps any new owner of these to produce a better coffee and for those that are researching the machine before purchase, hopefully a lot more facts than what you will gleen from reading the box in the Aldi store.

    Of course, I was also curious if you could get a drinkable coffee from a superauto machine in this low a price bracket... turns out you can!

    I should also put it back to the factory defaults and take a picture of the nasty brew it made out of the box but as mentioned above, you can get a pretty good coffee from it with some tweeking and maybe with some internal hacking, produce even better?!?!

    Hmmm... there might be a round two.
    ::)

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 19363C21580 link=1283270347/9#9 date=1283354679
    ...internal hacking... Hmmm... there might be a round two.
    Go on, you know you want to and you know we want to see innards ;D

    However, more interesting than the Aldi were the glimpses of the Snobbery in the photos - looks sensational!

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 6F404A572E0 link=1283270347/9#9 date=1283354679
    Thanks fellas!

    I hope it helps any new owner of these to produce a better coffee and for those that are researching the machine before purchase, hopefully a lot more facts than what you will gleen from reading the box in the Aldi store.

    Of course, I was also curious if you could get a drinkable coffee from a superauto machine in this low a price bracket... turns out you can!

    I should also put it back to the factory defaults and take a picture of the nasty brew it made out of the box but as mentioned above, you can get a pretty good coffee from it with some tweeking and maybe with some internal hacking, produce even better?!?!

    Hmmm... there might be a round two.
    ::)
    As one who has also had access and worked / attempted to work on a few full Autos...

    My concern has always been one of reliability... I know with teh Saceo for eg... Set it to fine grind and you start to get problems shortly afterwards.... If you readjust the grind adjuster and crib a few more slots... You get dammed good shots but the main tamping and delivery system splits and cracks up under pressure after a few months..

    It is like any unit... Built to a speck / purpose and once you start tweaking to the extremes then something will give.

    I still think its as good as some of teh more expensive units but just like the Sunbeam etc... Only Time will be teh real judge.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Atropine, I also think it produces a very good cup of coffee, and like you have no experience with an automatic machine with which to compare it.
    I agree with your critisism of the cup heater, and the confusion about the two cup procedure.
    Im not quite sure what you mean by the design of the machine means you are using day old coffee grinds?

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Thanks Andy for the review. I first saw this a few weeks ago in the catty. Have been on holidays so missed the sale, tossing up on visiting a store to see if they still have any left.

    Do you keep the machines you test or sell them on? I currently have a Breville IKON and Breville Burr Grinder. Do you think the Aldi machine is a better setup, worse or similar to my current one? Im never going to have a few thousand dollar machine so this is in my price range.

    Do you have the approximate dimensions of the unit?

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 4F787F61626B0D0 link=1283270347/13#13 date=1283404610
    tossing up on visiting a store to see if they still have any left.
    Plenty left around my area.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Hi Andy,

    nice to see a result in the cup with good beans (assuming ;) ).

    Does the grinder look like it gan be gotten too easily to tweak and or clean it or is it held together by secret clips? Also any idea if it keeps much preground coffee between shots?

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    CoffeeSnobs Owner Andy's Avatar
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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 44545645524E370 link=1283270347/10#10 date=1283378224
    you know we want to see innards
    Yeah, that might happen too. ;)

    Quote Originally Posted by 44545645524E370 link=1283270347/10#10 date=1283378224
    glimpses of the Snobbery in the photos - looks sensational!
    "This aint work, its just Andys oversized play room."
    Its not finished yet (insert something about the last 10% taking 200% of the time) but it is a good place to play.

    Quote Originally Posted by 5645435B58415245370 link=1283270347/12#12 date=1283399825
    confusion about the two cup procedure
    The amount of coffee that goes into each shot is pretty small so yes, you really want it to do 2 single shots for 2 cups else you are just over extracting.

    Quote Originally Posted by 7542455B5851370 link=1283270347/13#13 date=1283404610
    Do you think the Aldi machine is a better setup, worse or similar to my currentone?
    I dont really know your gear so cannot comment but if you are happy using a manual machine and grinder then it will always have more tweekability that a superauto and should be able to produce a better coffee.

    I think you only buy a superauto if mess or learning is an issue.

    Quote Originally Posted by 7542455B5851370 link=1283270347/13#13 date=1283404610
    Im never going to have a few thousand dollar machine so this is in my price range.
    Which is why I did the review. I think if we all expect everyone to own a multi thousand dollar machine then more people will stick to instant coffee.

    As always, buy the best machine you can in the price bracket that suits and learn how to get the best out of it with fresh coffee and good technique.

    Quote Originally Posted by 7542455B5851370 link=1283270347/13#13 date=1283404610
    Do you have the approximate dimensions of the unit?
    Approx 350mm wide x 350mm deep x 400mm high

    Quote Originally Posted by 55525659515B4E5E5950370 link=1283270347/15#15 date=1283413796
    with good beans (assuming)
    Yep, good beans. Week old Espresso Wow was used in the test above.

    Quote Originally Posted by 55525659515B4E5E5950370 link=1283270347/15#15 date=1283413796
    Does the grinder look like it gan be gotten too easily
    3 screws will get the hopper off so pretty easily but not without tools.

    Quote Originally Posted by 55525659515B4E5E5950370 link=1283270347/15#15 date=1283413796
    if it keeps much preground coffee between shots
    Not much. The grinder exit is very close to the dosing funnel, I owuld guess it leaves far less than the Robur grinder. Still, I would suggest the first shot in the morning might be for someone else (or the sink).

    :)

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 113E3429500 link=1283270347/16#16 date=1283415768
    you know we want to see innards


    Yeah, that might happen too. Wink
    Hi, very good review. My question relates to the removable brewgroup unit. All the movable parts appear to be plastic as well as the cork screw looking thing which I"M guessing forces down the tamp onto the coffee grinds. I had imagined that would be a metal part, would it usually be metal and over time do you imagine that plastic internal or any other failing because the part/parts should have been metal?

    If the warranty is as good as it was for my Aldi computer, you send the machine back to a free postage paid service centre, and they send it back to you for free. So even though you dont take it to the local service dealer it should not be a costly exercise to have it repaired, but even so Id rather it not break and not have to send it anywhere for an unknown period of time.

    What grinder setting did you turn your up to? My breville burr grinder allowed me to set a grind so fine it was grinding up plastic. Obviously a very poor design/faulty unit. So Id like to try a finer grind but not a grind number thats finer than what you are using. I use dark roasted beans and as I understand they dont need a fine grind but I will try medium roast and even light, so would like to know the finest grind number tested without problems.

    thanks.

  19. #19
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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 2A3F39243B22252E4B0 link=1283270347/17#17 date=1283788578
    Hi, very good review. My question relates to the removable brewgroup unit. All the movable parts appear to be plastic as well as the cork screw looking thing which I"M guessing forces down the tamp onto the coffee grinds. I had imagined that would be a metal part, would it usually be metal and over time do you imagine that plastic internal or any other failing because the part/parts should have been metal?
    Welcome to ownership of a SuperAuto Espresso Machine! Your experience will vary from machine to machine... moreso because your machine is a SuperAuto with the variable of an unknown manufacturer (quality or otherwise) thrown in! How long is a piece of string?

    Quote Originally Posted by 2A3F39243B22252E4B0 link=1283270347/17#17 date=1283788578
    If the warranty is as good as it was for my Aldi computer, you send the machine back to a free postage paid service centre, and they send it back to you for free. So even though you dont take it to the local service dealer it should not be a costly exercise to have it repaired, but even so Id rather it not break and not have to send it anywhere for an unknown period of time.
    Welcome to ownership of a SuperAuto Espresso Machine! Your experience will vary from machine to machine... moreso because your machine is a SuperAuto with the variable of an unknown manufacturer (quality or otherwise) thrown in! Coffee is 2 + 2 = 5!

    Quote Originally Posted by 2A3F39243B22252E4B0 link=1283270347/17#17 date=1283788578
    What grinder setting did you turn your up to? My breville burr grinder allowed me to set a grind so fine it was grinding up plastic. Obviously a very poor design/faulty unit. So Id like to try a finer grind but not a grind number thats finer than what
    Welcome to ownership of a SuperAuto Espresso Machine! Your experience will vary from machine to machine... moreso because your machine is a SuperAuto with the variable of an unknown (quality or otherwise) manufacturer thrown in! Its whats in the cup that counts!

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    :-? You right there Brett? :-? ::)

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 56434558475E5952370 link=1283270347/17#17 date=1283788578
    Hi, very good review. My question relates to the removable brewgroup unit. All the movable parts appear to be plastic as well as the cork screw looking thing which I"M guessing forces down the tamp onto the coffee grinds. I had imagined that would be a metal part, would it usually be metal and over time do you imagine that plastic internal or any other failing because the part/parts should have been metal?
    I dont have a problem with mechanicals made from plastic, I can only assume they used a strong enough material to last well. It is also something that only moves a little at slow speed so I guess good toleraces in plastic mean that its quiter and wont rust.

    Quote Originally Posted by 56434558475E5952370 link=1283270347/17#17 date=1283788578
    so would like to know the finest grind number tested without problems.
    I had it set to "1", the finest (as per post #4 above)
    Quote Originally Posted by 7659534E370 link=1283270347/4#4 date=1283274592
    and using the finest grind
    I would like it a little finer to see what difference it made in the cup but that is as fine as the factory setting allowed.


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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Ok thanks for your response.

    I tried finer grinds, but for me the whole point of an auto is not to muck about. I want quality coffee, with the least hassle & fast. With the finner grind my 140ml pours became very bitter. obvious over extraction. So I moved the grind back to 4.5. Does a very nice 140ml pour, and no need to add hot water afterwards.


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    CoffeeSnobs Owner Andy's Avatar
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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 382D2B362930373C590 link=1283270347/21#21 date=1283950574
    point of an auto is not to muck about
    Understood, but setting it up as good as you can even if you dont "muck about" later is worthwhile.

    Quote Originally Posted by 382D2B362930373C590 link=1283270347/21#21 date=1283950574
    With the finner grind my 140ml pours became very bitter.
    Yes it will. As posted above 20-30ml is about all the water that you would want to run through an espresso puck that size.

    Quote Originally Posted by 382D2B362930373C590 link=1283270347/21#21 date=1283950574
    So I moved the grind back to 4.5. Does a very nice 140ml pour, and no need to add hot water afterwards.
    An interesting take on the use of a super auto. I think you have invented a "super automatic plunger" and if that suits your coffee needs thats ok too.

    Curious... are you adding steamed milk or just drinking it black?

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    white coffee, maybe it would be called a cappuccino, but i dont use much steamed milk.

    Just wondering if the people that bought this machine still have no problems and decided to keep it or did you end up taking it back?

    My main problem with it is the 2nd cup of coffee is always warm and never hot. I think its a software problem. If I turn the machine on in the morning, it will preheat and do all its auto cleaning stuff, then deliver a hot cup of coffee. No problem there, though i really wish it wouldnt do an auto clean everytime it turns on.

    But If i were to make a 2nd cup of coffee maybe 15+ minutes later it will never be hot, only warm. It seems that it either turns the power to the boiler turns off or is set to low, and when you make another cup of coffee there is no pre-heat period it just starts. I would have thought the boiler should stay at full boiler temperature until it goes into power saving mode 1 hour after the last use.

    Because of this, I find myself in the ridiculous situation of putting my quality coffee in the microwave after making it. I dont have the expertise to judge, but im sure the coffee cant be of the same good quality either if its going through the grinds warm rather than hot. Must have some effect on extraction.


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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 7267617C637A7D76130 link=1283270347/23#23 date=1284593237
    if its going through the grinds warm rather than hot. Must have some effect on extraction.
    Yes it will have a negative effect.

    So are you keeping it or taking it back? ::)

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Cut your shots down to 30ml max and your problem might fix itself. If you decide you want more water in the coffee add it from the kettle. Never add extra water through the group. It seems at least half of the people out there that buy coffee machines in this price bracket complain of them making cold coffees. It is because they think you fill the cup up when you brew it. They rarely understand that a shot of coffee should only ever be 30ml.

    GL

    Andy one thing that was never commented on was the "dual Boiler" aspect of the machine. It is a while ago that I read the review but I seem to recally you saying there is a short wait for steam. This would be entirely acceptable if there was one boiler but for two boilers doesnt make sense.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Just wondering why youre not supposed to run hot water through the empty group handle?!! I thought this was a good way to preheat it and also get handy boiled water???

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    I was meaning when there is coffee in the group. On an auto you wouldnt be able to run water through the group unless it goes through the full cycle of grind dose tamp brew.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Hi coffee guys,

    Just thought Id let you all know I decided to keep my Aldi auto coffee maker. Still making superb coffee, & you have to love the dedicated hotwater/steamer boiler.

    After a months use, nothing has gone *wrong & im confident its build and design will yield many more years happy push of the button quick and easy quality freshly ground coffees.

    What clinched the deal to keep it for me, was 2 things. BigWs auto mahine costs $860, & is just as plastic & cheap looking *as mine, yet has no more features. I spoke to aldi about its 2 year waranty and its actually IN HOME warranty. I dont have to send it anywhere. Thats crazy & the peace of mind you dont get from ebay purchases or for that matter most department store purchases.

    Quote Originally Posted by 122D2B2C3136071A3721343D580 link=1283270347/25#25 date=1284608745
    It is a while ago that I read the review but I seem to recally you saying there is a short wait for steam. *This would be entirely acceptable if there was one boiler but for two boilers doesnt make sense.
    I think probably all autos have a dual boiler due to the design of autos. 1 boiler is for the coffee, the 2nd is for hotwater/steam. The short delay & reason for having to press the steam button is to turn the heat up on the thermoblock for steam, as the default temperature is for hot water.

    ANd yes, standard pours are 30ml or 60ml. but the quality dedicated aldi boiler can well accept a 200ml pour while keeping maximum heat. Its just on a number of times Ive noticed a warm rather than hot pour after the machine goes into power saving mode, but I havent noticed that recently, so all is good.

    I"m not one to sip coffee like cough medicine, i could never drink or rather sip 30 or 60ml of coffee. I"m more a 140ml kind of guy, & I"ve now set the Grinder for a perfect 140ml pour. no over or under extraction. BTW for those people that speculated the grinder was low quality, It has the same burr grinder thats in the delonghi $860 auto machine at Big W. I know this by viewing the actual grinder components of both & grinder adjustment knob

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 4A5F59445B42454E2B0 link=1283270347/28#28 date=1285201387
    I"m not one to sip coffee like cough medicine, i could never drink or rather sip 30 or 60ml of coffee. I"m more a 140ml kind of guy, & I"ve now set the Grinder for a perfect 140ml pour. no over or under extraction.
    I think what everyone is trying to say is that if all 140ml goes through the coffee, it will be way more bitter than it should be (unless you are into bitter coffee :))

    I would suggest adjusting the grind and other settings to deliver 30-60ml in 25 seconds or so, and then filling the cup to 140ml with water. That should give you a better tasting coffe that is as tall as you like it.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    [QUOTE=7E79737F100 link=1283270347/29#29 date=1285202756]
    Quote Originally Posted by 4A5F59445B42454E2B0 link=1283270347/28#28 date=1285201387

    I would suggest adjusting the grind and other settings to deliver 30-60ml in 25 seconds or so, and then filling the cup to 140ml with water. That should give you a better tasting coffe that is as tall as you like it.
    Hi Nick, yeah that was my intention at the beginning, but then decided that was adding a manual element, & I wanted push button autoness. But I will give that a try and note if theres a change in quality. I was getting bitterness with a 140ml pour with a fine grind but at course grind it seems ok, but I shall definitely try your suggestion.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 687D7B667960676C090 link=1283270347/28#28 date=1285201387
    I think probably all autos have a dual boiler
    Please refrain from calling it dual boiler this is just NOT CORRECT !

    Quote Originally Posted by 687D7B667960676C090 link=1283270347/28#28 date=1285201387
    Still making superb coffee
    Please dont keep espousing this "Superb", Compared to what? International roast maybe but superb ;D

    If you want a long black then start with boiled water as a base then add the shot on top or if you prefer shot first and add the water later for an Americano. From what Andy mentioned in his review keep the shots low in volume.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 65626669616B7E6E6960070 link=1283270347/31#31 date=1285205640
    I think probably all autos have a dual boiler


    Please refrain from calling it dual boiler this is just NOT CORRECT !
    I suspect they missed out a word. Perhaps it should be dual purpose boiler. Big difference!!!!

    Atropine glad you are happy with your purchase. If you are grinding so that the shot is good at 140mls then perhaps andy was right. You have yourself a $400 plunger. You certainly arent having an espresso drink which is where we all like to start.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Interesting and useful review. Thanks.

    I recently found this forum (today) after deciding I needed a coffee machine on the weekend, and trying to determine how much I need to pay to get a decent (if not suberb!) espresso.

    A relatively recent Choice review (Jan 2010) rated two <$500 Sunbeam manual machines as producing the "best" coffee against a number of more expensive and reputable brands. Which seemed a little surprising, and contradicted by many of the responses left by members - one of whom helpfully suggested the CS site.

    Adding to my confusion; at work a local coffee shop produces a great espresso during the week. If I go on the weekend, a different barista using the same coffee maker produces something I often cant drink. Much too bitter, almost no crema and too hot to drink straight away. It makes me think a "cheap" coffee machina with some experimentation and quality beans will still give me a better result (I hope!) than a poor barista with *a high-end commercial machine...

    I will be seriously considering the Aldi machine against a $200 manual Sunbeam or similar product...

    I look forward to reading more of the posts and insights from members on this forum.

  35. #35
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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 2C2F2A35263127430 link=1283270347/33#33 date=1285424295
    A relatively recent Choice review
    Ya have a Choice - Dont take much notice or be miss guided.

    Quote Originally Posted by 2C2F2A35263127430 link=1283270347/33#33 date=1285424295
    Adding to my confusion; at work a local coffee shop produces a great espresso during the week. If I go on the weekend, a different barista using the same coffee maker produces something I often cant drink. Much too bitter, almost no crema and too hot to drink straight away.
    No one ever said it is the machine..

    My observations are - in order

    1: Beans / Grinder

    2: Grinder / Beans

    3: User

    4: Machine

    Note: The importance of grinder OR beans is a hard choice as they are so critical...

    Enjoy your reading it is a great road to take.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    BTW Anyone come along late and see this Aldi coffee maker, you could get a bargain if you see these at aldi. Ive had mine for nearly for nearly 2 months now & still works great. They tell you that you should remove the brew group after every 10 coffees to clean, but theres nothing that needs cleaning, as nothing gets dirty. Ill prob remove once a month, but I dont see the need to even do this, except maybe to detect a fault.

    Aldi normally discount large stuff about a month to 6 weeks after they go on sale. Aldi is a shopping centre for working class people & I really dont think this demographic buys $400 coffee machines.

    I would expect this machine to be $300 or less by now, if there are any remaining. I havent been to an aldi in maybe a month so cant comment on availability or price.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Today I saw that the Chatswood Aldi store has plenty of stock of the Lumina Automatic unsold. I am surprised that the price has not been discounted yet from $400.

    Barry

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    oh wow really some still floating about? Ill have to look around, might be tempted if I see one. I didnt end up buying only because I was ultimately concerned about the footprint. Dont have lots of bench space.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 2336302D322B2C27420 link=1283270347/35#35 date=1286708831
    They tell you that you should remove the brew group after every 10 coffees to clean, but theres nothing that needs cleaning, as nothing gets dirty. Ill prob remove once a month, but I dont see the need to even do this, except maybe to detect a fault.
    Instructions are there for a reason.
    If something goes wrong they have every right to deny a warranty claim if you havent followed the instructions.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 7245425C5F56300 link=1283270347/37#37 date=1287101154
    Dont have lots of bench space. *
    Buy a Pavoni and a hand grinder for the full manual coffee experience instead of the auto ordinary one. Smaller footprint and better coffee got to be a good thing ;)

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 18373D20590 link=1283270347/3#3 date=1283273971
    A quick fiddle and I had set a 20ml volume for the small coffee.This was a big improvement over the default 40ml shot (which was pale and very over extracted).
    Hi Andy, thanks for the review of this machine, as a result I have gone out and grabbed myself one today... just wondering if you could clarify in the queens english how to manually adjust the shot quantity up or down, I ve given it a go trying to follow the engrish instructions but failed so far. Thanks

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Unfortunately Aldis seem to discount on a store by store basis. Its up to the manager of each. I have 1 aldi near me that never discounts anything. Its like a museum of past aldi specials, but 2 other aldis near me discount to get rid of stock & free up space.

    Bilbo you press the small cup button or large cup button, and keep button pressed until the coffee cup icon starts flashing. Remove finger, wait for your desired pour quantity and press the button again. The pour will stop & the new pour quantity is memorised.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Great review, & I am tempted, but my finance manager says no - get a better one. Youll only regret and thow it away later. So thats why I am visiting coffeesnobs and expect to meet some sopnsors soon. *:)

    BTW, It is advertised at $199 at the Abottsford Vic store, I guess as a centre opening special. I had to check Andys review pics as it seemed so cheap. Looks identical. Not advertised as automatic, but as Lumina Signature twin boiler espresso machine, "Limited stock" !

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Hi, from a total noob to this forum!
    First, huge huge thanks to Andy for the comprehensive review. *Thanks to your research, Ive gone and bitten the bullet on this machine today (remaindered stock hit $249 at my local Aldi this week).
    My background has been as an intermittant experimenter with coffee - Im no self-roaster, and Ive not been one to throw lots of money at this small indulgence (if you havent already guessed that by now!) *but I have over the years or so slowly evolved from a totally awful Krups auto (now torturing whoever picked it up from the Salvos) -> pretty reasonable Breville auto -> addition of grinder (Delonghi KG100) -> two kids -> grinder + plunger (just couldnt/didnt have the time/energy to clean up anymore after each shot *;) ) -> kids getting older -> I have even less energy left over -> coffee bags/instant!
    Ive wondered for some time if a super-auto was my way back in from the wilderness, but could never justify the entry price - but for $249 for a machine with a decent review...I can happily report I have survived the WAF test with only minor scarring. *I think a big help has been the pedestal/swivel design - which has meant I can tuck it into a corner of the kitchen without chewing up too much of my wifes precious kitchen top space (it was where the Breville/Delonghi used to go, but every time I used it I used to have to drag them out of the corner to fill the water tank/hopper etc. etc. - what a PITA...)
    I can heartily concur with Andys original observations - out of the box, the coffee is pretty awful - I was beginning to sweat, thinking Id just made a $250 mistake - but after following the instructions (max temp, max beans, 20ml draw), about a dozen shots later I can report the coffee coming out of this machine is entirely drinkable - for this non-connoisseur anway. *It certainly beats coffee bags and plunger coffee! *(Jeez, I dont think Im going to be able to sleep tonight after sampling all those shots...) *:o
    PLUS - for possibly the very first time in marital history, my wife will be able to draw shots for herself and her friends.
    The two year warranty on this thing is a pretty outstanding bonus.
    Andy - thanks again - I salute you for catering for entry-level-financially-challenged/miserly noobs like me! * ;D

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Hi there,
    I have been using a Pony Espresso until recently (now the motherboard needs replacing $600 repair), so I went into Aldi a few weeks ago and thought I would try this machine out as a stop-gap measure.
    Anyhow, it was reduced to $299 and I thought why not. Unfortunately a couple of days later, I found it leaking water around the group during brewing, and delivery was asymmetric with most of the delivery through the inside spout, so I took it back for a refund with no problem).
    I did, however, find the coffee to be acceptable for me and my wfe and the steamer to be good (once you get out of the way of the initial blast).
    To my surprise I was in the store the other day and they had reduced them again to $249 and had about 6 in stock, so I thought I would have another go, and this one has been fine so far (3 days).
    I followed Andys suggestions again and have found the coffee to be great for my wife and me (so far).
    To those that have been wondering how to set the delivery volumes, the procedure is as follows:
    1. Set up the temperature and bean quantity in the usual way
    2. Place your delivery cup under the group
    3. Press and hold either the small cup or large cup button until the matching icon on the screen is flashing, then release the button
    4. Once the required volume of coffee has been delivered, press the corresponding cup button once more.
    5. Your new volume should now be set.


    Thanks again for this great review, I would never have considered this machine otherwise.

    Cheers,
    Pete

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Three days later...no probs, still pretty happy. *Have gone through one bag of beans. *Tried out the steamer on the w/e with guests, and it worked very well (better than the old Breville) *
    With a 20ml shot, definitely need a double shot everytime for our lattes-in-a-mug. *Crema seems a bit sparse, but that might be a function of a 20ml shot going into aforementioned mug.
    First shot of the day is, frankly, not great (as noted by Andy) - I agree, probably the result of the old ground beans stuck in tbe brewing group. *Thankfully the group is easy to remove and give a 10 second rinse under the tap. *Also, when shutting the machine down Ive been turning it off -> on *again at the power point (before final shut down) to force another cleaning cycle (I dont like the idea of old brewed coffee sitting in the pipes overnight).
    Overall, coffee is not as good as best I remember from either fresh ground + Breville (or ground Illy + Breville) - which itself is hardly the heights of coffeesnobdom - but for me, the reduced clean-up is an acceptable compromise as a time-poor parent. * *
    I have printed out an abbreviated instruction set for my wife which is blutacked onto the splash back next to the machine, but she has yet to "push the button" herself...if she actually does start pushing that button herself, then I would consider this experiment a resounding success, all other reservations be damned! * ;) *

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Hi to all from a new member.

    Firstly thanks for providing such an invaluable source of info with this site - especially Andy with his great review above.

    Just wanted to let you know my experience with this machine. After 20 days regular use - 3-5 cups a day Ive had to return it *to ALDI. Sun night I was making a latte when all of a sudden the steam knob stuck hard. After a short time I was able to move it but it was very loose in its action(no resistance) Then when selecting the steam button it randomly shot out a violent burst of steam without touching the knob. After this I tried to make another cup. Grinder worked as normal but then all that happened was water came out of the steam wand and nothing from the brewhead(is that the right term?) Puck in draw looked like it was completely dry(weird).

    Obviously something was broken but all that was suggested to me when I phoned support (and after following troubleshooting in manual /fully cleaning etc.) *was return to store for a full refund as there were no replacement machines left. Dissappointing as I was seduced by the convenience of the auto operation - and the coffee was quite good after following the above instructions.

    Maybe ALDI see these as a throwaway item.

    Hopefully others do not experience the probs I had with this unit.

    Very happy to get my money back no questions asked but now I need suggestions for another machine under $500. Should I spend more on a grinder and less on a manual machine or vice versa. My Breville Cafe Roma cheapie lasted 2.5years with heavy use. (I usually get fresh beans from The First Pour in Abbotsford VIC)
    Any suggestions greatly appreciated.

  48. #48
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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 392F2A2A356B6C5A0 link=1283270347/46#46 date=1290486299
    Hi to all from a new member.

    Firstly thanks for providing such an invaluable source of info with this site - especially Andy with his great review above.

    Just wanted to let you know my experience with this machine. After 20 days regular use - 3-5 cups a day Ive had to return it *to ALDI. Sun night I was making a latte when all of a sudden the steam knob stuck hard. After a short time I was able to move it but it was very loose in its action(no resistance) Then when selecting the steam button it randomly shot out a violent burst of steam without touching the knob. After this I tried to make another cup. Grinder worked as normal but then all that happened was water came out of the steam wand and nothing from the brewhead(is that the right term?) Puck in draw looked like it was completely dry(weird).

    Obviously something was broken but all that was suggested to me when I phoned support (and after following troubleshooting in manual /fully cleaning etc.) *was return to store for a full refund as there were no replacement machines left. Dissappointing as I was seduced by the convenience of the auto operation - and the coffee was quite good after following the above instructions.

    Maybe ALDI see these as a throwaway item.

    Hopefully others do not experience the probs I had with this unit.

    Very happy to get my money back no questions asked but now I need suggestions for another machine under $500. Should I spend more on a grinder and less on a manual machine or vice versa. My Breville Cafe Roma cheapie lasted 2.5years with heavy use. (I usually get fresh beans from The First Pour in Abbotsford VIC)
    Any suggestions greatly appreciated.
    Hows this for left field... Buy a Behmor, a starter pack and a Clever Coffee Dripper and a Hario Grinder.... think I just blew the 500 but I must be close and what an adventure???

    Okay, hows this.... a Popper, a Starter Pack a Breville fancy grinder electronic bits thingy from Talk Coffee and a Clever Coffee Dripper.

    The beans are the important bit, then the grinder, then the brewer. My best value investment coffee machine longevity wise is:

    #1 Pullman Tamper
    #2 Stainless Steel Plunger

    All the other stuff comes and goes, however if much more new stuff comes my wife says I gotta go! ;D

    Enjoy the journey and contact a sponsor for great free info.. and maybe even a coffee too!

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 3B2E3F2E7F7F7F4B0 link=1283270347/44#44 date=1290205110
    Hi there,

    Anyhow, it was reduced to $299 and I thought why not. Unfortunately a couple of days later, I found it leaking water around the group during brewing, and delivery was asymmetric with most of the delivery through the inside spout, so I took it back for a refund with no problem).
    last).
    Could you detail the symptoms of this leaking brewhead. I"M not sure Id even realise if that was happening. For example. what is the difference between the replacement and the old leaking one. How would one ascertain they have a leaking brew head?

    I ask because the water would just drip into the drip tray wouldnt it?
    Did you hear dripping or less coffee came out? Just want to beaware of something like that incase its not down right obvious. I havent owned an auto before, so cant make any comparisons.

    I bought another one of these for a relative for the $249 price for Xmas. I hope itll be ok. If it isnt, it will still be within the Aldi 60 days return warranty, so as long as I can detect the fault quickly enough will be able to return it for them. Unfortunately there arent likely to be any replacement machines left after Xmas.

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    Re: Aldi Lumina Signature Automatic Twin Boiler Espresso Machine - Review

    Quote Originally Posted by 5441475A455C5B50350 link=1283270347/48#48 date=1290829296
    Quote Originally Posted by 3B2E3F2E7F7F7F4B0 link=1283270347/44#44 date=1290205110
    Hi there,

    Anyhow, it was reduced to $299 and I thought why not. Unfortunately a couple of days later, I found it leaking water around the group during brewing, and delivery was asymmetric with most of the delivery through the inside spout, so I took it back for a refund with no problem).
    last).
    Could you detail the symptoms of this leaking brewhead. I"M not sure Id even realise if that was happening. For example. what is the difference between the replacement and the old leaking one. How would one ascertain they have a leaking brew head?

    I ask because the water would just drip into the drip tray wouldnt it?
    Did you hear dripping or less coffee came out? Just want to beaware of something like that incase its not down right obvious. I havent owned an auto before, so cant make any comparisons.

    I bought another one of these for a relative for the $249 price for Xmas. I hope itll be ok. If it isnt, it will still be within the Aldi 60 days return warranty, so as long as I can detect the fault quickly enough will be able to return it for them. Unfortunately there arent likely to be any replacement machines left after Xmas.
    Hi there,
    the water was leaking near the inside philips screw at the back. You can see four of them surrounding the spout.
    The water was going into the drip tray, but I was concerned that it was a developping problem, as it wasnt like that at first. Additionally, most of the coffee was being delivered on the inside spout, so perhaps it was just not assembled correctly - but it was noticeable that it was water leaking and not coffee.
    If it wasnt for the money back guarantee I probably would have looked into it further.
    Anyhow, I havent seen this problem on the new one.
    Cheers,
    Pete

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