Welcome to CS!
the VV is a great little machine. weve had 3 in our extended family and 2 are still going strong after about 6 years now.
regarding the mechanism in the group hand "porter filter".... if you buy another VV make sure you disassemble the mechanism and throw it in the bin. this is used to pressurize the basket. you will get much better results from an unpressurized basket, but youll need a metal tamper. (search this section to find previous posts on how to disassemble the mechanism if you cant figure it out)
that said, the Gaggia is great little machine too and already comes with an unpressurized group handle, though you will need to buy a good tamper to replace the silly plastic one.
on either machine make sure you take the outer plastic sleeve off the steam wand (leaving the smaller plastic tip underneath). or replace the gaggia classic wand with a rancilio silvia wand (available from site sponsors <-----)
either machine is a good entry level option. the most important decision, however, is the grinder (and fresh beans) which one did you buy?
all the best,