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Thread: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

  1. #1
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    Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hello, all the coffee snobs out there!

    I am very new to this field, and CS itself, so if I missed the previous post about the topic, I am really sorry.

    I am considering on buying a machine for home, as I am getting sick of inconsistent coffee quality even from good cafes around, depending on who is making the coffee.

    Also, I am a mother of two young children and very limited time to drive to get to good cafes, so I decided to study everything myself and buy a machine for home.

    I have been reading for a week or so on these postings as time allows, and pretty much narrowed down to above mentioned two machines, but cant decide on which. If you can vote on one or the other, or suggest another machine, that would be wonderful.

    * I have never owned an espresso machine before.
    * My knowledge is limited to what Ive learned at Domestic Espresso course run by Tobys Estate
    * We do own a grinder - Delonghi KG100 and from the previous post, I understand we need to upgrade this as well . . .

    Most importantly,
    * We entertain a lot. Once or twice a month, I will be making ~10 cups in one hit. Once or twice a year, I will be making ~20 cups in one hit. So I cant afford to sit in front of coffee machine forever.

    If it wasnt for the last point, I think I would go for Silvia for sure, but reading many posts in many different forums, it seems to take longer to make a cup than EM6910. If that time is significant, even if I have to compromise on the quality of coffee a little bit, I have to go for the faster one.

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Hi Mrs H and welcome to CS!

    So much to consider - first machine, budget, guests, quality, etc.!

    Lets start with the machines you are considering:

    1) The Sunbeam is easy to use and makes a reasonable coffee; its durability is questionable.

    2) The Silvia requires a more disciplined approach and in my opinion, makes a far better coffee than the Sunbeam; it is robust.

    If you purchase the Sunbeam, any support you need will need to come from this forum. If you purchase the Silvia online, again the support will come from the forum. If you by a Silvia direct from a Sponsor with a brick and mortar support should be more readily available.

    Im afraid whatever means you currently employ to serve your guests coffee, will remain the best option, no matter whether you choose the Silvia or the Sunbeam. Neither machine will cope adequately with 10-20 consecutive coffees whereby your guests are served in reasonable time. You will need to step up to Heat Exchange (HX) machine for this.

    So, I suggest that whatever machine you buy, you buy for your personal use and enjoyment.

    We dont sell either the Sunbeam or the Silvia. We do sell the Lelit PL042, which has similarities to the Silvia, and an inbuilt grinder that will do a good job. I would ask that you consider this machine too.

    As with all Sponsors, we are happy to demonstrate what we sell.


  3. #3
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Hi Mrs H and welcome to CS.

    You are correct in that the Silvia is not ideal for entertaining. I have owned both a 6910 and a Silvia and think the latter is better in most other ways. The Italian is a more simple and robust design that, if well maintained, will last many years and keep excellent resale value. *I should qualify my opinion by saying that I had (expensive) issues with my Sunbeam which put me off it a little, although I am certainly not alone there.

    Any single boiler/dual purpose machine is going to have the same issue as the Silvia. *Keep in mind that the Sunbeam will not be superfast for 10 coffees if they are all milk-based compared to a HX machine, but certainly faster than the Silvia.

    In short, if your budget is around the $700-800 mark then I would recommend the 6910. *You may want to consider an extended warranty. *I believe standard is 12 months and 5 years for the pumps? *The Sunbeam is sold at electrical retail & dept stores so make sure you haggle for a good deal. Sunbeam often run promotions where you get a free EM0480 grinder.

    The EM0480 or EM0450 is the minimum standard grinder Id recommend you buy.

    If it were me, I would buy the Silvia and serve my guests plunger coffee made from high quality, freshly roasted beans.


  4. #4
    tek
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    I believe Subeam make nice frypans I know Rancilio make nice coffee machines, Buy the Silvia youll have it for years then when you upgrage you can throw it on the bay and recoup a good deal of your original purchase price

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Quote Originally Posted by 31202E450 link=1296211230/3#3 date=1296221442
    I believe Subeam make nice frypans I know Rancilio make nice coffee machines
    Rancilio also makes nice dish washers, glass washers and ice machines. Nothing wrong with a bit of multi-tasking... as long as youre good at it ;)

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    tek
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Quote Originally Posted by 784740475A4F5D5D4B2E0 link=1296211230/4#4 date=1296224668
    Quote Originally Posted by 31202E450 link=1296211230/3#3 date=1296221442
    I believe Subeam make nice frypans I know Rancilio make nice coffee machines
    Rancilio also makes nice dish washers, glass washers and ice machines. Nothing wrong with a bit of multi-tasking... as long as youre good at it * ;)

    That was my point...... :D

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    The Silvia is a superior machine in almost every way - except useability.

    To get decent, repeatable shots out of the Silvia, you need to learn how to temperature surf, or get it PIDd. It sounds like you dont have time for that, so in your case, Id say the 6910.

    If you look after it, you might get 5 years out of it, but likely less.

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Quote Originally Posted by 0E3F3F3D2A213B262C2A1008024F0 link=1296211230/0#0 date=1296211230
    Most importantly,
    * We entertain a lot.Once or twice a month, I will be making ~10 cups in one hit.Once or twice a year, I will be making ~20 cups in one hit.So I cant afford to sit in front of coffee machine forever.
    Buy a HX and employ some staff and you should be fine then. :)
    Buy a percolator or plunger or drip filter or something for guests.

    It would take hours, perhaps even days or weeks to steam enough milk for 20 people on a em6910, by which time your guests would have left. (exaggerrating to make the point)

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Thank you all so much for the response so far. I am sorry for lack of knowledge - but would someone be able to tell me more about HX?

    And also, how much do I need to prepare to pay to get a decent machine thats equipped with it?

    If we need to get into the commercial machine, we actually have thought about getting second hand small commercial machine, and of course, I was going to attend the full barista courses to learn how to use it properly and maintain it also. But we didnt want to start looking from that range to start with.

    We are that serious about looking after our guests. As we do use good coffee beans freshly gound for drip coffee machine at the moment, they still enjoy it, but we would love to be able to provide better coffee, if its possible in domestic setting at all. Do I have to consider ~$3000 machine???

  10. #10
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Quote Originally Posted by 1C2D2D2F383329343E38021A105D0 link=1296211230/8#8 date=1296294097
    would someone be able to tell me more about HX?
    There are several categories of domestic coffee machines:

    1. Thermoblock - must Sunbeam, Breville, Krups, etc. have these. *The EM6910 has two of them, one for coffee and one for steam, which is why you can do both at the same time.

    2. Single boiler, dual purpose machine e.g. Silvia. *As the name suggest one boiler does both brewing and steaming but cant do it at the same time.

    3. Dual boiler machine - e.g. Alex Duetto II, Expobar Minore III. *One boiler for coffee & one for steam. Can be used simultaneously. *There are also some machines which have one boiler and one thermoblock.

    4. Heat Exchanger (HX). Used by the majority of prosumer and commercial coffee machines. *Wont go into detail of the engineering but essentiall there is a single boiler and within it a HX which allows you do brew/steam simultaneously.

    You require either 3. or 4. to fulfill your needs sufficiently. *These machines start at around $1400 for the Nuova Simonelli Oscar, most are $2K-$3K.

    Quote Originally Posted by 1C2D2D2F383329343E38021A105D0 link=1296211230/8#8 date=1296294097
    we actually have thought about getting second hand small commercial machine
    A single group commercial probably wouldnt give you too much advantage over a good quality domestic HX machine. *A dual group commercial would be handy when youre trying to make 20 coffees in a hurry.

    Be very careful with 2nd hand commercials. One used in a busy cafe would have been thrashed.

    With a larger commercial you would also need at least 15A power, although there are some ways around this. *

    A commercial would be overkill day to day for making a couple of coffees in the morning and use more power.

    Quote Originally Posted by 1C2D2D2F383329343E38021A105D0 link=1296211230/8#8 date=1296294097
    we would love to be able to provide better coffee, if its possible in domestic setting at all.
    Firstly I and many others here dont consider espresso coffee to be better than other forms of brewing, just different. *

    It is absolutely more than possible to make outstanding quality coffee at home and better than most cafes. The keys are a good grinder, fresh roasted & high quality beans and good training/technique. The espresso machine probably comes 4th.

    I believe you are better off spending $3K+ now and getting right the first time. *If you try to do things by half you are likely to not get what you need.

    The best advice I can give is to visit one of our sponsors, the list is to the left of page. *

    There are many excellent machines in the $2K-$2.5K range, all of which would be able to do the job you require of them. *Allow at least $500 for a grinder, preferably $700-800. *

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Thank you so much for what a comprehensive response!!! I will do some more research about HX and the machines in the mentioned price range and start reading more about it in the forums as well, I suppose! ;)

    There is still lots to learn - it will be a while away before we get one, but we would like to get it right, like you said.

    Thank you again, for your time!!!

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Youre most welcome Mrs H. Where are you located? Im sure your local sponsor would be more than happy to have a chat to you even if you are not ready to buy yet.

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    I have an HX and have used the 6910 extensively.

    10 coffees on the 6910 would be frustrating if everyone wanted milk; 20? Well you wouldnt want to be the 20th guest.

    Even my with my HX 20 would be a strain on me (not the machine).


    A friend recently held a dinner party and hed listened to me enough to buy some fresh beans in preparation.
    I helped him grind them and prepare plunger coffee for all.
    I dont normally drink plunger but must say I quite liked it on this occasion, as did all the guests.
    The main point being the freshly roasted and freshly ground coffee made it an excellent brew.
    And everyone was able to be served together.

    My recommendation would still be to get an HX as a long term investment (many continually upgrade from cheaper machines before reaching this level) and also a few large plungers for those occasions when you need to do 10 or 20 coffees.

    Youll save money and frustration in the long term.

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Thank you, Caffeine Junky. I live on Central Coast, NSW. I assume there wont be anyone around here who can help me, and I will probably have to make a trip to Sydney. It will be a big commitment for me to do that at this stage, because Ive got a pre-schooler and a toddler. I will get there some day!!

    Thank you for your comment as well, Thundergod. Do you think plunger coffee is better than drip coffee? In the past, I thought these two types were pretty much similar style, but then I havent got a plunger, so I cant compare with the same quality beans done the same way.

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Quote Originally Posted by 7C4D4D4F585349545E58627A703D0 link=1296211230/13#13 date=1296356469
    Thank you for your comment as well, Thundergod.Do you think plunger coffee is better than drip coffee?In the past, I thought these two types were pretty much similar style, but then I havent got a plunger, so I cant compare with the same quality beans done the same way.
    My palates not as good as some others so to me theres probably not much difference.

    Both though can taste quite nice, so my suggestion was in the interest of getting a lot (of nice coffee) done quickly (compared to espresso based).

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    I understand. Thank you again, Thundergod!

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    I have the EM6910 with the EM0480 grinder (which was included) and have been satisfied with the results.
    However, I am consider upgrading the grinder to a Mahlkonig Vario (Baratza Vario) as Im finding my current grinder isnt allowing me to fine tune the grind as much as I would like.

    I have had small issues with the Sunbeam during the course of ownership, such as the steam, but the advice on the forum really helped me out.
    Sunbeam Customer service is also great!

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Thank you jaysonlew. I know just about every coffee snobs out there are recommending good grinder. In this price range machines, most think Rocky is good grinder, but when I was reading higher price range machines, some were saying need better grinder . . .

    We might just have to get good grinder for now, spend the money we were going to spend on machine to buy grinder, and buy the machine later.

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    My friend just happened to drop in, and we happened to find out he owns EM6910!! He kindly offered to lend it to us when we have ~ 10 guests around, so I can test it out. He normally has heaps more guests than we do, and he is using that machine to provide coffee for everyone, so he was wondering why other people didnt think its capable . . . ? Does the quality drop for some reason?

    I might give Sunbeam a call tomorrow, but if anyone is experienced in this area, your comments are welcome!!!

  20. #20
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    I have catered for up to 25-30 people with a 6910, it is do-able. A HX machine will make it easier, faster, more enjoyable to use and give much greater longevity.

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Dear Caffeine Junky

    What a quick, easy to understand, very clear response!!!!!

    Thank you very much!! Now I know what to consider - and I havent forgotten about the expensive problem you had with it. I am taking lots of things into account - thanks to you and all the others who gave me insight.

    More research to come!!

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Regarding HX machines, yes, new ones are mostly $2-3K, but how about a used one? They often come up in the "Coffee Hardware for Sale" section of this forum, like the Rancilio S27 1 Group HX thats currently in the For Sale section for $650. See here: http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1292047394

    There seems to have been a fair bit of interest in that one, so it may have gone already, but something else similar will be sure to come up for sale if you keep an eye out.

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Thank you, Bill! I will keep an eye out!!

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Quote Originally Posted by 282923302E2B31420 link=1296211230/19#19 date=1296387252
    I have catered for up to 25-30 people with a 6910, it is do-able. *A HX machine will make it easier, faster, more enjoyable to use and give much greater longevity.
    An accurate reply CJ but the point I was trying to emphasise, is that though do-able, it would be frustrating for both the hostess and guests becuause it would take so long.
    The 6910 I used had a second group handle, which meant with help you could pump the coffees out a little faster, as your aid could prepare the second one while you were finishing making the previous two coffees.

    The bottleneck for the EM6910 is the relative slowness of the steaming, especially if trying to steam for two at a time.

    I believe the steaming speed is where the HX *takes the lead (other factors aside).
    If we were talking 20 - 30 espressos only, speed of prep shouldnt be a factor.

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Quote Originally Posted by 7945584349485F4A42492D0 link=1296211230/23#23 date=1296426353
    An accurate reply CJ but the point I was trying to emphasise, is that though do-able, it would be frustrating for both the hostess and guests becuause it would take so long.
    I totally agree, its what I was actually trying to say but perhaps didnt come through clearly.

  26. #26
    A_M
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Quote Originally Posted by 14252527303B213C36300A1218550 link=1296211230/0#0 date=1296211230
    Most importantly,
    * We entertain a lot. *Once or twice a month, I will be making ~10 cups in one hit. *Once or twice a year, I will be making ~20 cups in one hit. *So I cant afford to sit in front of coffee machine forever.
    I think for all concerned this needs further clarification..

    Cup OR Mug

    If it is a Cup and a double basket is used with a two spout group then in-fact only 10 shots in use and depending on the size of the cup and pre prep (warm cups etc). Then the Milk will be the slowest point but can be managed without extensive stress for ONE or TWO occasions a YEAR.

    An Espresso or long black etc or a Plunger to the side and again much easer to manage as to ensuring every one gets what they want in a good time frame.

    20 Mugs, each with a double shot and while a HX will manage it. Unless you have had some experience, YOU will be the one that fails not the machine. *OH and wait till a few start asking for Soy and or other strange requests.


    10 people in a sitting is a much more manageable number *BUt like all systems; it comes down to your experience.

    I am aware of at least one person that has a EM6910 at the markets and supplies 30 to 50 CUPS a session; To support his other products.. *He thinks it is GREAT for the cost he spent and the few repairs he has done. Not ideal but very cost effective and does the job. While he was looking at a Silva, I think he soon realised that regardless of build.. It would NEVER provide the TAT....


    I think he also has modified the steam side a bit and uses a smaller jug to suit the style of cups.... I also understand that he was looking to upgrade to a Didema Automatic at some stage... As he felt that that was the next step up.




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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    When I entertain, most of my guests prefer milk based drinks (lattes),
    which I serve in 220ml glasses, so I split a double shot into 2 glasses.
    Ive served up to around 16 glasses in one sitting, which was only 8 double shots.
    The machine seemed to be coping fine, without many hiccups.

  28. #28
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Quote Originally Posted by 4D465E5448494B424850270 link=1296211230/26#26 date=1296439453
    Ive served up to around 16 glasses in one sitting, which was only 8 double shots.
    I prefer doubles myself, but when I have a lot of guests I split the shots as you do.
    It seems to suit most of them, as Ive never had feedback that my coffee is too weak.

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Thank you for your feedback, everyone! :)

    I am aware, that I will be slow in the beginning, but we constantly have smaller number of guests all the time, and I will be drinking coffee few times a day myself, I thought I would be able to practice before the big occasion.

    And splitting the double shots were always going to be my plan! Otherwise it WILL take forever. It really only needs 5 shots for 10 cups, and I didnt think it was that hard of an ask . . . Good thing about my kitchen is that we have renovated it, so I can talk to the guests as I cook or wait for the shots to come through.

    I drink soy myself, so I was going to have 3 jugs prepared anyway (1 for regular milk, 1 for skim and 1 for soy) for these occasions ;)

    It sounds like as a beginner, EM6910 + extended warranty might be the go. I will have a trial with my friends machine in a couple of weeks when I have friends over, and will decide whether it is too frustrating or not.

    Thank you again for all your comments and feedbacks!!! ;D

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Quote Originally Posted by 0C302D363C3D2A3F373C580 link=1296211230/27#27 date=1296440638
    I prefer doubles myself, but when I have a lot of guests I split the shots as you do.
    Yeah the same goes for me, I generally prefer my lattes a little stronger, so I pull double ristrettos for myself.

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Ive had the EM6910 for a while and I will never buy Sunbeam again. *It would break every few months and even under warranty it was a serious pain (serious lack of repairers in Melbourne)! *Once out of warranty with exactly the same issue as reported a few times while under warranty, the Sunbeam support people basically told me that its no longer their problem. *At this point I had to start paying $100+ to get it fixed...

    So annoying!

    p.s. Hello all! :)

  32. #32
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    My Sunbeam toaster recently developed a problem.
    It went in the bin.
    Ever since the factory down the road was closed and the jobs moved to China Ive been slowly replacing my Sunbeam appliances.

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Thank you, sillygit & Thundergod. Its a serious problem with all the production going to China - nothing built to last. I can see lots of problems with EM6910 just on this forum. I am leaning back towards just buying a good grinder for now and buy good HX machine later - when we can afford it.

    Thank you all again for your comments!!!!!

  34. #34
    A_M
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Quote Originally Posted by 1C2D2D2F383329343E38021A105D0 link=1296211230/32#32 date=1297045235
    Thank you, sillygit & Thundergod. *Its a serious problem with all the production going to China - nothing built to last. *I can see lots of problems with EM6910 just on this forum. *I am leaning back towards just buying a good grinder for now and buy good HX machine later - when we can afford it.

    Thank you all again for your comments!!!!!
    Problem is that these days things a MADE not to last as we are a consumer society and business is geared to ONGOING sales and the LATEST model.

    US older ones are even more disgruntled as things once lasted many years.. But to day, just like a JOB, if ya been in one position more than 5 years people ask WHY - What is wrong with you ?

    Every one also wants cheep and cheep means CHEEP. While some electronics can get smaller and better CPUs for eg... The HARDWARE around is unable to keep up.

    Thus with many item LARGE numbers means cheaper but all to often means a higher fail rate. Worse still repairs are often not ment to happen and thus EXPENSIVE. That in-turn means you go and buy another ;D

    One just has to remember that: NO one will go looking for Forums to state they never had a problem...

    In general it is like a Service Department 99.9% of your calls will be about a PROBLEM. How often do you call a Supplier or Service center and say - All is good just wanted to say HI :o


    Thus you can look on any forum for most products and you will find lots of complaints because that is often what Forums attract. A voice to the World because someone is upset and wants to tell you their story...

    BOT.

    Yep Quality of products across the board is failing.. The trick is to look at realistic expectation for the $$$ spent and then look at the Functionality and then LOOK at the USER ;)

    I still like the EM6910 and in teh hands of a respectful user it is OK for teh $$$ and its functionality.

    As to a long term investment you can do better, but it will cost you more ;D and remember every machine has its own little got you ::) The Silvia is not immune and is still subject to the USER doing the right things!!!!




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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Yeah - AM, I hear what you are saying. Its so true that this sort of place does attract unhappy people.

    I have a friend who bought expensive machine with lots of functions, and kept breaking down - went back to simple cafe series (dont know which - not EM6910, smaller machine, cant do steaming and espressing at the same time) and she is much happier with her Sunbeam. She is a barista herself, so I trust what she is saying, too.

    I still would like to get a good grinder, and depending on what I get, we wont be able to even afford EM6910 either - as I didnt realise how much a grinder could cost!!

  36. #36
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Quote Originally Posted by 0C3D3D3F282339242E28120A004D0 link=1296211230/34#34 date=1297048622
    Yeah - AM, I hear what you are saying. *Its so true that this sort of place does attract unhappy people.

    I have a friend who bought expensive machine with lots of functions, and kept breaking down - went back to simple cafe series (dont know which - not EM6910, smaller machine, cant do steaming and espressing at the same time) and she is much happier with her Sunbeam. *She is a barista herself, so I trust what she is saying, too.

    I still would like to get a good grinder, and depending on what I get, we wont be able to even afford EM6910 either - as I didnt realise how much a grinder could cost!!
    We also tend to have people return: As after they understand they become EDUMICUDICATED and then end up being Happy People ;D

  37. #37
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Hi Mrs. H - Im in the same boat...I initially looked into the EM6910 after seeing it on special with a sunbeam grinder, but became concerned at the number of reviews I was coming across where reliability, cost for repair and after-sales support were consistent issues.

    My budget is around the $600 - $900 mark, so I had been looking at the Rancilio Silvia, but from all accounts it needs a really good grinder and takes a lot of time to heat up. *The price of a good grinder really pushes a Silvia + good grinder (e.g. Rocky) just out of reach.

    I have since been considering the Lelit Combi (PL042E) which sells for around $850, and has good reviews re espresso quality and reliability, since the internals are very similar to the Silvia. *It comes with an in-built grinder of decent quality, and I like the fact that its all in one, so more room on our bench! *I have also read that it heats up quicker than the Silvia too.

    Im still concerned about being able to make multiple coffees with this type of machine, but I think my desire for good coffee and longevity is outweighing the temptation to just get the Sunbeam. *I came across a good article where Alan Frew runs through the process for making 6 milk-based coffees in 6-minutes here which is probably what Im aiming to achieve with a new machine. *I cant afford an HX type, so for larger crowds I think the previous comments re plunger coffee is the way to go!

    BTW - how did you go trialling the 6910?

  38. #38
    Senior Member Rusty's Avatar
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    I had a Silvia but found it finicky without a PID. I added a PID but never found it to be a consistent performer. Maybe I was the the bad performer. After the PID gave up at around five years I bought the SB 6910 and have never looked back :D

    Its getting close to two years now and it produces IMHO better coffee than my Silvia ever did.


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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Hi all, I have just come through this conundrum myself. I went with the 6910 and 480 and so the story starts.... The 6910 has not skiped a beat, I have read up on all the posts on using it correctly and maintaining it, much gratitude to AM and Thundergod. The 480 as you will read on here is the grinder minimum for acceptable results. Unfortunately the paddles (things that push the ground coffee out and down the chute of the 480) snapped off. I returned for replacement, sold the brand new one and put money toward a compak K3T which will now see me though hopfully many years to my next machine (dreaming...... Giotto). I didnt think I could aford a better grinder either but I figure this is my hobby and life is too short to drink bad coffee. I have found the 6910 very easy to use and am very much enjoying the coffee im making. For me the bigest downfall is its very noisy. Which is normal with thermoblock machines. I didnt go the Silvia way as I didnt have the money for the better grinder at the time either. There is some info on here about the Lelit Combi it looks like a great machine but I didnt know about these when I brought my sunbeam, had I had seen them I may have gone that way I dont know. Mrs Hospitality - keep reading and let us know what you decide on.

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Thank you, Dr. Spock, Rusty and Bigdog for your comment.

    Well the big day isnt here yet - I am just about to ask my friend whether I can borrow his machine on Wednesday for this Thursdays event. I will report how I go afterwards!!

  41. #41
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    My Lelit arrived today!!! So once I work out how to use it, Ill post some feedback - cant wait!

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Mrs Hospitality how did your event go?

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Hi everyone!!

    Sorry to post this so late!!

    Well, to start from conclusion - I couldnt really have a good test run yesterday, as we didnt have as many people as we normally have. We only had 5 adults, and one of them didnt even want a coffee, I only had to make two double shots to make 4 cups of coffee . . . I probably coped even with Silvia for that amount!!

    My feeling with actually using 6910 without much practice (I had to cook as well, so I didnt really have time to practice - only 3 go before the actual guests) was that I now really want a good grinder (!!!) as mine didnt perform well . . . Managed to make some good shots, but I wasnt that happy with the steam - but that could be a probalem with the operator, not the machine.

    So I have pretty much decided that I will go with just a good grinder at this stage (considering Compak K3 Elite or Mazzer Mini and doing lots of research - HUGE thanks to Bigdog for her assistance). What I might do is to attend full barista courses and work as a barista for a while, and then test few machines before I decide to buy one. Like AM said earlier, the operator of the machine could fail the machine - without spending huge $$$ on HX, I might be very happy with EM6910 if I am capable. Like I mentioned earlier, my barista friend is very happy with her little Sunbeam . . . so I wont know what I will be happy with until I train myself . . .

    Thanks again for everyone involved!!!!! I have already learnt heaps since I first posted this question, and I very much appreciate everyones comment, as I know they are all honest comments - because you are not getting paid to do so!! Hopefully you will all find out what I end up doing in the future ;)

  44. #44
    Senior Member Rusty's Avatar
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Sounds like youre off to a good start.

    I strongly recommend the free Sunbeam Barista course. It is designed to cover your machine and it teaches you how to get the best results for brew and milk.

    Youve got nothing to lose :)

  45. #45
    Senior Member Rusty's Avatar
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Sounds like youre off to a good start.

    I strongly recommend the free Sunbeam Barista course. It is designed to cover your machine and it teaches you how to get the best results for brew and milk.

    Youve got nothing to lose :)

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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    I havent actually purchased 6910 - it was friends. So the barista course I am looking into is the ones run by some of the sponsors. It wont be straight away, as my husband and I will have to juggle the time around to sort out when he can look after the children . . .

  47. #47
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Hi Mrs H , depending on the condition of your friends SB6910 that will affect its performance as well , mine has worked well and l think with any machine you get, regular backflushing is important , also flushing the water and steam outlets after every cup is made and wipimg the PF seal also the norm , as well as Descaling when needed , claening screens etc.

    You should be able to get the 6910 and 480 grinder on special for around $700 give or take $100, depending how patient you are, also if you go this way ld get the extended warranty ( the Good Guys have the best )

    Otherwise , yep get a K3 and save for a hx ! :)

    All the best , ken

  48. #48
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Hi kesa32!

    Yep, when I was trying friends 6910 out - I thought exactly the same thing. He only got it for last years fathers day, so its only been 5 months or so, but knowing his personality, he will not be the type of person who would look after it as well as I would . . .

    The 6910 & 480 grinder combo special just finished few weeks ago, so I dont know how long it will be before they start another special, either.

    I have a bad experience with our local Good Guys, though. I bought something else and it was well under warranty, but they told me to contact the manufacturer directly if its more than 30 days old. They gave me a number to call, and it was disconnected, so I told them that, and gave me another number to call - ended up getting told by importer that Good Guys were supposed to look after me during the warranty!! So I said that, and they gave me a different product, as they no longer had the same products and charge me for the difference . . . >:( My point is, not all Good Guys are "good" - I think it depends on the franchisee . . .

    Anyway, if I decide to buy 6910, I will definitely go with 5 year warranty!!!!!

  49. #49
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Weve had our Lelit Combo for just under a week now, and were very happy with the quality of coffee were getting, especially considering that we are complete newbies to making espresso (but not when it comes to drinking it!! ;D). First impressions are that it is really well-built, but maybe not as stylish as other machines like the sunbeam or saecos that I have seen in many stores. It feels solid, but is much more compact and lighter than I originally expected, and it doesnt take up much space on the bench. There are a few nooks and crannys, and a lot of right angles so cleaning the machine takes more effort than I first imagined. I like the fact that the Lelit is simply built - by that I mean that I feel confident that it will last beyond its warranty, and that in the years to come Ill be able to do replacement or even basic repairs.

    My other impression is that this is a machine that makes you work for a good coffee - it took us a number of attempts trying out different grind settings, dose quantity, and tamping technique before we could consistently pull good shots of espresso (thank goodness for the complimentary beans we received with the machine!!).

    Probably the most difficult part has been frothing the milk, since we predominantly drink lattes etc. The steam wand is vertical so the jug has to be held at an angle to create a decent whirlpool. Were getting better with practice, but still havent been able to consistently create nice microfoam. This is definitely down to technique and practice, since the machine itself produces plenty of steam - enough to do multiple coffees at a time.

    Im confident that even though it doesnt have the thermoblock technology of the EM6910, we will be able to serve coffees to multiple guests in minimum time (...maybe not 10 at once though :o)

  50. #50
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    Re: Rancilio Silvia vs EM6910

    Thank you for your report, Dr. Spock!

    I will keep it in mind when I start looking for a machine . . .



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