Results 1 to 20 of 20

Thread: Budget Coffee Machine

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    6

    Budget Coffee Machine

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Guys...just wondering what can i get for around $200 for a entry level coffee machine ???
    Was thinking of getting Gaggia Cubika but after reading some posts here i might ask for more further information....and what sort of grinder should i get ???

    Thanks for any input

    Derrick

  2. #2
    Senior Member ozscott's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    BRISBANE
    Posts
    1,998

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    Hi mate - welcome to the site. It depends on whether after reading some threads on this site your thinking that you will upgrade!

    I like the little Sunbeam Ristretto - can pick them up for about $90 new. It has pressurised baskets. You can get a second hand sunbeam em grinder for probably the remainder. Otherwise you can pick up a new sunbeam grinder (their top of their line one) and do stove top percs or plunger coffee - combine that with genuinely fresh coffee and either way you should have a nice start.
    Realistically, in my opinion, there isnt much point going to something that looks a little flasher at the top of the budget but that still uses pressurised baskets. Also the little Ristretto uses a little boiler and is a better proposition I reckon than a thermoblock machine - which most are around $200 - and steams like a little devil.

    Cheers

  3. #3
    Senior Member Stan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Just North of Brisbane
    Posts
    943

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    I picked up a Sunbeam Cafe Crema for $156, if you look around and bargain a little you can get the prices down. From memory the starting price was $200.00. They have the pressurised baskets. But you can buy unpressurised baskets (Krups) for them. Good Luck :)

  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    6

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    Ok thank for the info.
    What is the different between boiler vs thermoblock ???
    In regarding to the coffee machine...usually how long does it take for the temperture to heat up before first cup and should it be turn off or better to put it on stand by???
    And how much is the grinder going to cost brand new ???

    Derrick

  5. #5
    Senior Member Stan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Just North of Brisbane
    Posts
    943

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    The Crema (Thermoblock) is ready in about 5 minutes but leaving it a little longer makes the steam better. A grinder will cost from $150 up for a Sunbeam 0450 or 0480. :).

    I havent used a boiler machine yet so I wont comment on them. Someone esle will no doubt help you in that area.

  6. #6
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    11

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    Derrick,

    I too am new to this coffee world. After having only a handful of what i would deem good coffees, and far too many average ones over the past couple of years at cafes, i decided it was time to get my feet wet and buy a machine and grinder. After a fair bit of research over the past week i decided to get the Sunbeam Ristretto, since im a uni student and wanted to also get a grinder for no more than $250. I picked the little Ristretto today for $69.95 at the Good Guys (cash price). While i am yet to make a coffee with it (i just gave it a flush to clean it out for first use), i am going to pick up a non-pressurised basket for it and some grounded beans tomorrow and give it a while. I will let everyone know how it goes. I am looking to pick up a Sunbeam EM0450 grinder in the next couple of weeks (Myer last time i check had them for $149, but im sure you could do better elsewhere). Have a read of the articles in the Entry Level forum, lots of good reviews of the Ristetto. So for about $250, you should be able to get a little Ristretto, a Sunbeam Grinder, a non-pressurised basket (about $12 or so from what i understand) and possibly a better tamper than the standard one provided. I will fill everyone else in on how my very first coffee from a home machine turns out.

    Cheers

  7. #7
    Senior Member ozscott's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    BRISBANE
    Posts
    1,998

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    The Ristretto with boiler only takes about 7 mins to full temp and you can turn it off after. It is much better than the thermoblock steamers unless and until you get to the EM6910 which is better again with the steam TB turned up to full.

    Cheers


  8. #8
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    6

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    I have a look at The Ristretto...dont really know if its good quality i mean most of the thing are plastic.
    Anyway is there any another budget options???

    Derrick

  9. #9
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    4,512

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    Hi Derrick

    In the under $200 bracket, I think the Breville Ikon has had pretty good reviews. You might just need to change the basket to one thats non-pressurised.

    Theres more info on it here...

    http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1178803379

  10. #10
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    6

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    Derrick, what about the Breville Ikon... I got one recently for $129 (standard price from Breville seconds outlet) and also a Sunbeam 4050 grinder for $130 (Myer - got them to price match DSE). I then got the Breville Bar Italia unpressurised basket for $9 (Breville seconds outlet) and a 52mm tamper $19 (The Coffee Company) the Breville plastic one is crap.

    All up approx $290, and I couldnt be happier. *:) *It may not be the greatest coffee in the world, but it definately beats all of the dodgy cafes out there.

    The Ikon heats up in around 2-3 minutes... but I leave it a good 10-15 to warm up the PF as well. In my opinion it does nice silky milk and good froth (if you like that kinda thing). The extraction process is unique if you just press the button, it does a pre-soak of the grind before it does the final extraction... but this can be overridden just by keeping the espresso button depressed.

    Good luck.

  11. #11
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    6

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    Breville Ikon is out of my price range at the moment(Target Breville Ikon $350)....i am willing to spend $200 on the coffee machine, and later on i can get a good grinder.
    As for second hand...not sure it would be an good option for me.

    Derrick

  12. #12
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    4,512

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    Quote Originally Posted by derrick28 link=1208660501/0#10 date=1208759839
    Breville Ikon is out of my price range at the moment(Target Breville Ikon $350)....i am willing to spend $200 on the coffee machine, and later on i can get a good grinder.
    As for second hand...not sure it would be an good option for me.

    Derrick
    How about $205.00, incl postage? Or if youre in Sydney you can pick it up and save $30 postage...bay of evil ;)

  13. #13
    Kes
    Kes is offline
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    24

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    Derrick
    A retailer gave me some sound advice: dont buy a grinder that is more expensive than your coffee machine!! Ive got a Sunbeam EM3600 which works fine. I use a small blade grinder (also Sunbeam but the top of of that particular range) which is fine. I ignore the settings and effectively overgrind. This gives a me a fine enough coffee to use with pressurised baskets without clogging them up, which Ive seen a Sunbeam barista do whilst demonstrating!

    I tamp with a fair bit of force.

    Theres a raft of opinions on this site so try out different things and experiment a bit. One thing that most members say which I FULLY agree with - grind yourself. It is much better,

    Kes

  14. #14
    TC
    TC is offline
    .
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    14,665

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    Quote Originally Posted by Kes link=1208660501/0#12 date=1209189403
    Derrick
    A retailer gave me some sound advice: dont buy a grinder that is more expensive than your coffee machine!! * Ive got a Sunbeam EM3600 which works fine. *I use a small blade grinder (also Sunbeam but the top of of that particular range) which is fine. *I ignore the settings and effectively overgrind. *This gives a me a fine enough coffee to use with pressurised baskets without clogging them up, which Ive seen a Sunbeam barista do whilst demonstrating!

    I tamp with a fair bit of force.

    Theres a raft of opinions on this site so try out different things and experiment a bit. *One thing that most members say which I FULLY agree with - grind yourself. *It is much better,

    Kes

    Well I clearly know nothing then! *::) Perhaps I had better trade in the K10WBC and get me a Sunbeam.

    Rule #1 of coffee at home: Buy the best grinder you can possibly afford. Blade choppers may be satisfactory for spices but they have nothing to do with coffee.

    If you want to ditch the pressurised baskets and make true espresso, a blade grinder will be absolutely useless. Id suggest that your retailer might be best to stick to selling toasters and vacuums ;)

    Chris

  15. #15
    Senior Member ozscott's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    BRISBANE
    Posts
    1,998

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    snap Chris

  16. #16
    Senior Member Lizzie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Bridport, Tas
    Posts
    1,151

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    A retailer gave me some sound advice: dont buy a grinder that is more expensive than your coffee machine!! *
    :o :o :o :o

    Chris is right.. get the best grinder, even if it means you have to play catch-up with your machines quality later on; at least you will get the best coffee from your lower-priced machine!!

    Kes, i challenge you to use a plunger and put a bag of beans through both your blade and any burr grinder from the Sunbeams up... and tell the forum how the resulting coffees taste! *;)

    i am travelling with a vintage Trespade simply because i could not recognise the beans i was using when they went through the blade grinders my friends have on hand; now at least my coffee tastes like coffee.
    and the difference in aroma... blades = burnt, burr = beautiful! ::)

    L

  17. #17
    Senior Member Stan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Just North of Brisbane
    Posts
    943

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    Does that mean that the Mazzer is no good for my machine :o :o

    No - switching from the Sunbeam em0480 to the Mazzer even on my very low end machine, using the same beans and procedures revealed a world of difference in the taste.

    The coffe had more flavour and appeared sweeter to the palette. The same coffee on the Sunbeam gri9nder was on the throw away list because it tasted burnt. So yes the quality of the grinder does appear to make a difference. :P

  18. #18
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Posts
    32

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    I second the Sunbeam Cafe Crema (EM4800C) recommendation. Ive had mine for a month or so and its a great little machine.

    Even with the standard baskets and preground coffee I was very happy, but since buying a Breville BCG450 grinder yesterday, I am loving the espresso it pours using nice fresh beans.

    I dont know how much improvement moving to unpressurised baskets would bring, but I dont think my grinder would be up to that, so Ill stick very happily to what I have now. To my palate it already beats all the local coffee places quite handily!

    Anyway, this combo gets a thumbs up from me (and my guests).

  19. #19
    psaigh
    Guest

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    I must say, the difference on my breville 800es (non-pressurised) between when it was paired with the sunbeam480 and the (current) compak k10 is amazing!! Ive always agreed with the idium of spending the $$ on the grinder before the machine, but i was truly amazed to notice the difference on a meager 800series.

    If i was short on cash and wanting decent coffee, id spend as much as possible on an amazing grinder, and pair it with an aeropress till i could get the cash together for a decent espresso machine. And then match that with amazing and fresh roasted coffee.

  20. #20
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Sydney
    Posts
    10,496

    Re: Budget Coffee Machine

    Quote Originally Posted by porschemad911 link=1208660501/15#17 date=1209205192
    I second the Sunbeam Cafe Crema (EM4800C) recommendation. Ive had mine for a month or so and its a great little machine.

    Even with the standard baskets and preground coffee I was very happy, but since buying a Breville BCG450 grinder yesterday, I am loving the espresso it pours using nice fresh beans.

    I dont know how much improvement moving to unpressurised baskets would bring, but I dont think my grinder would be up to that, so Ill stick very happily to what I have now. To my palate it already beats all the local coffee places quite handily!

    Anyway, this combo gets a thumbs up from me (and my guests).
    Welcome to Coffee Snobs.

    When youre ready to move to unpressurised baskets you can find a modification online for your grinder that will allow it to grind a little finer.
    That should do the trick until you can afford a better grinder.



Similar Threads

  1. Coffee machine on a budget
    By Sponge in forum Brewing Equipment - Pointy End ($1500-$3000)
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 23rd January 2008, 09:25 AM
  2. Budget Machine Questions...
    By Expresso in forum Brewing Equipment - Entry level (sub $500)
    Replies: 19
    Last Post: 23rd June 2007, 09:11 PM
  3. Ive got a $1K-2K budget for a machine. Help?
    By shawn_low in forum Brewing Equipment (non-machine specific)
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 14th November 2005, 05:36 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •