I upgraded from a Silvia to an ECM Giotto after much research and have had zero issues. The Giotto is arguably the best of the E-61 based domestic machines.
As far as I can tell there is no single group Epoca machine. They are 2 or 3 group. This size machine draws a lot of power and needs to be plumbed in.
If Rancilio takes your fancy then have a look at the S24, S26 and S27 that offer increasing sophistication and features and all are in your price range.
Another option is the Reneka Techno which is probably the cheapest of the dual boiler machines with rotary pump.