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Thread: What coffee machine should I buy???

  1. #1
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    What coffee machine should I buy???

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hi,

    I was wondering if you could help me find a good coffe machine for my coffe loving partner!?
    I have looked at a Sunbeam EM6910 and also a Breville BES820. Are they good, any of them better then the other?
    He loves a good strong espresso, so it should be a machine good for that, and I would like to make hot choccolate with it, so a steamer is necassary!
    If these two machines are out of the question, are there any other machines that are good in this price range?

    Thanks a lot for your help!!

    Cheers
    Emma

  2. #2
    Senior Member greenman's Avatar
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    Re: What coffee machine should I buy???

    The Gaggia should be in that price range and is popular, it has a boiler whereas the Sunbeam is a thermoblock.
    With any of these machines you will need a grinder to get good espresso from them. Starting point would be a Sunbeam EM450/480 from $150-200 mark.
    The 6910 is popular with CS members and makes a good espresso, they offer a grinder included package occasionally if you keep on the lookout. Price ranges from just under $600 up to $670 mark.

  3. #3
    TC
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    Re: What coffee machine should I buy???

    Quote Originally Posted by emmahe link=1229462499/0#0 date=1229462499
    Hi,

    I was wondering if you could help me find a good coffe machine for my coffe loving partner!?
    I have looked at a Sunbeam EM6910 and also a Breville BES820. Are they good, any of them better then the other?
    He loves a good strong espresso, so it should be a machine good for that, and I would like to make hot choccolate with it, so a steamer is necassary!
    If these two machines are out of the question, are there any other machines that are good in this price range?

    Thanks a lot for your help!!

    Cheers
    Emma
    Hi Emma,

    A little use of the search button ^^^^ will lead you to many posts on those two machines.

    Most department store machines are "appliance machines" -based on thermoblocks- use them for a few years, they will probably break and then youll chuck them out as repairs will be prohibitive.

    The best machines in this class are the dual purpose single boiler machines- such as the Rancilio Silvia, Isomac Zaffiro, Vibiemme Domobar Piccolo and Diadema Perfetta. These are real espresso machines. All are build like tanks, perform well and will last forever with a little care. In addition, they are available from many of the site sponsors- Talk Coffee, Cosmorex, Jetblack, DiBartoli just to name a few. Youll get the bonus of dealing with passionate people who really care about coffee rather than TV salespeople.

    The CS mantra is that none of this is of use without a great grinder, real fresh coffee and good skills. Budget at least $450 for a good grinder.

    Enjoy your search ;)

    Chris

  4. #4
    Senior Member greenman's Avatar
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    Re: What coffee machine should I buy???

    HI Emma,the common theme from newcomers to CS is that they dont realise the importance of the grinder, the machine is secondary to grind quality.
    I only talked about appliance machines as they were in the price range you mentioned.
    As Chris said if you want quality you will need to spend around $400 upwards on a grinder, prosumer machines start at around the $800 mark for a Silvia, then on to $1200 upwards for the VBM and other machines stated by Chris.
    If you want a long-term quality machine you need to spend the $$$, most people on CS that start with a basic set-up soon get the upgrade bug and purchase some serious equipment.
    Coffesnobs is a very addictive site, be warned...............................!!!!!


  5. #5
    Member peteru's Avatar
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    Re: What coffee machine should I buy???

    Emma,

    Ill go on a limb here and give you a different perspective to those offered by CS veterans. If you are coming from an environment with no coffee machine and you drink coffee from "coffee shops", then you may as well save yourself a $1,000 and go with the Sunbeam EM6910 + EM0480.

    I have both and they are fine. I could have spent more on better things, but for the price, you get a decent bit of kit that works. It works much, much, much better than things that only cost $100 less and it can outperform some gear that costs twice as much. I shopped around during the Sunbeam "free grinder" promotional period and the combination package only cost me $570. With care and practice, I can get results that compare very well with those I could get out of a Rancilio S10 - a commercial setup that cost 20x as much.

    Fresh coffee and skill are huge contributing factors. You also have to have the tools to be able to make decent coffee. A coffee grinder is a must have, but it needs to be a real coffee grinder with burrs, not one of those "blender" thingies.

    In terms of service life and vendor support, I would not fuss too much. Sunbeam have a pretty good reputation for customer support, but their retailers are unlikely to be very clued. Thats understandable given the price point and the selection of retail outlets that carry the brand. Youll get at least several years out of any setup and in that time you will figure out whether having a coffee machine at home was a passing fad (like bread makers) or whether it is an indispensable part of your life and your machine should become the defining feature of your kitchen. Maybe at that stage you will decide to "upgrade" to one of the shiny metal Italian machines being proposed. I got 12 years out of a Krups thermoblock machine, with not a single part change in that period - just cleaning and descaling on a regular basis.

    Based on your description, I would suggest that you get the Sunbeam EM6910 machine and a Sunbeam EM0480 grinder. Then find a coffee roaster that sells Yergacheffe/Yirgacheffe coffee beans and buy your partner 250g pack. Make sure your partner uses the coffee within 4 to 14 days of roasting. Hell be in heaven!

  6. #6
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    Re: What coffee machine should I buy???

    Good response Peteru. I agree that for someone not planning heavy use, the Sunbeam combo should be fine. I produced excellent shots with my EM6910/O480 combo. But, despite care, cleaning and following the manual, I had internal leaks which killed the machine. Admittedly, this was with high useage - about 10 coffees a day. I should stress that Sunbeams service is great - they provided parts and service without question. However, repairs are outsourced, and therefore unpredictable. I was without a mahcine for two weeks the first time and three the second. So thats another consideration.
    Good luck, whichever way you go...

  7. #7
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    Re: What coffee machine should I buy???

    Wow, thank you so much for all your very quick answers! Okay, so a good grinder is a must, didnt realise that, so thank you very much. I think I will go for the "cheaper" option, the Sunbeam to start with, my partner could always upgrade later. And as you pointed out Peteru, with the breadmachine, its probably best to start small and then upgrade once you know if its a machine that will be part of your everyday life or not. Im pretty sure my partner will use the machine a lot, everyday since he is a huge coffee fan, as well as coffee snob ;)

    Ill also do a search as on the site on the two machines before I make my final decision.

    Thanks a lot again!

    Cheers,

    Emma



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