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Thread: Light commercial vs premium domestic

  1. #1
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    Light commercial vs premium domestic

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hey all,
    Might be a noob question, for apologies if it is.
    Im wondering what the difference and what the advantages/disadvantages are between what seems to me to be light commercial single group HX... like a San Marino CKX (Wega Mininova), La Cimbali Junior, Carimali Uno etc, and a premium domestic HX... like a Giotto, Expobar Minore, VBM Domobar etc.
    My questions:
    - Am I right that the firs type is small commercial and the second premium domestic?
    - If so, are the commercial ones made with a preference for lots of shots and steaming one after the other at a fair quality, where as the domestics are made more for only a few shots at a higher quality?
    - Are there other differences to note (Im talking general rather than really specific)?
    Any thoughts would be great.
    Thanks

  2. #2
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    Re: Light commercial vs premium domestic

    As far as i can determine, the only differences are that the light commercial machines (carimali uno, BFC single groups, cimbali junior etc) have bigger boilers, and the premium domestics have sexier shells. Obviously some small commercial machines use volumetric dosing and rotary pumps. by the way, san marino ckx and wega mininova are most definitely in the domestic category.

  3. #3
    Super Moderator Javaphile's Avatar
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    Re: Light commercial vs premium domestic

    I would not place the La Cimbali Jr. in the light commercial category as it uses the same full sized group as all their larger machines. It is fully capable of non-stop shot pulling and steaming at the same time.


    Java "Nothing lightweight about a Cimbali!" phile

  4. #4
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    Re: Light commercial vs premium domestic

    One difference is Cimbali juniors etc use full size commercial pressure stats.

  5. #5
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    Re: Light commercial vs premium domestic

    yeah my brother uses the la cimbali junior at his small cafe back in indo. runs well all day and it has a rotary pump so its very quiet.

    and generally in the light commercial / commercial side most machines are plumbed in.

  6. #6
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    Re: Light commercial vs premium domestic


    Quote Originally Posted by 737E7077606675120 link=1315793182/4#4 date=1315839048
    yeah my brother uses the la cimbali junior at his small cafe back in indo. runs well all day and it has a rotary pump so its very quiet.

    and generally in the light commercial / commercial side most machines are plumbed in.

    Just remember with the Cimbali Jr that older models have the Ulka Vibration pump in them and some run of a tank, not plumbed. I owned one for years and loved it. It does just keep pumping shots out and has plenty of steam in it!

  7. #7
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    Re: Light commercial vs premium domestic

    Hello jb-0101,

    you dont need to apologise for asking questions... :)

    Firstly I dont see too much of a distinction in "grouping" between any the machines youve mentioned.* Any "perceived" difference in these machines (that you mentioned) has been caused by the level of marketing that any particular manufacturer or their agents has indulged in in getting a message across about their models.

    Let me explain it this way:
    They are all miniature commercial machines. Too small to put into any real commercial situation where there is going to be any real turnover of coffee ie a cafe. Due to their small size they are more suited to "semi-commercial" situations such as offices and bars where the main push of business isnt actually centred around coffee. ie low volume / low turnover coffee situations.

    The manufacturers themselves call them semi-commercial machines. They usually dont have a water connection (running out of an internal tank), and the issue of small size and little available space inside the machine usually means they are built using smaller components than fully commercial sized components used in full size commercial machines. Ergo, smaller boilers, smaller water pumps not requiring a drive motor (vibrating solenoid pumps), smaller pressurestats etc.

    They therefore simply have a smaller capacity *to deliver* than full size commercial machines.

    That said, internally they are built to a commercial design (as in a heat exchanger concept or dual boiler concept) and NOT built to any of the usual domestic designs.

    Generally anything with a boiler size less than 4 litres and not having a water connection, in our market is not a "full size" commercial machine, and will fit into the semi commercial grouping. Anything without a drain connection coming from the drip tray is definitely firmly in the semi commercial grouping....try operating in a commercial situation without a drain connection and see how long you are willing to put up with it* ;)!*

    Many (but not all) semi commercial machines in the market these days really are, fantastic little machines capable of brewing top quality commercial type espresso. They have come a long way over the years and I dont see any disadvantage in the quality of the brew from using components such as vibrating solenoid pumps and in fact, vibrating solenoid pumps also have an extremely long service life.

    These days the standard of other components such as micro sized pressurestats has also been markedly improved, and I now dont see any advantage in the fitting of full size commercial pressurestats in semi commercial machines....in my opinion it has been rendered unnecessary by the advent of latest technology components such as the micro sized Campini pressurestat.

    In the end, in this market with the heavy use of milk in espresso coffees, its size that matters ie, the bigger the boiler (or electric element capacity Vs boiler size), the better the recovery rate* when delilvering a lot of milk coffees. And this really is the area where you can differentiate between whether anything is semi commercial, light commercial, or fully commercial.

    Semi commercial machines allow retail end users to have "a commercial type espresso machine" in their kitchen in a convenient size, and in usually, a more attractive looking body than you might find in some full commercial sized machines. Lets face it, you have to live with it in your kitchen long term, so it shouldnt take up too much room and may as well look good!

    Oh and one other thing.....in terms of domestic / home use, virtually any semi commercial machine is already overkill in terms of its capacity to deliver your 2 or 4 coffees per morning or evening, and a few more on the weekends when you are home, so you dont need to get hung up on whether spomething is "more or less commercial" or can deliver more than something else, cause thats not what its all about at home ;).

    Hope that helps.

    For the rest of it, in you are in the market for a good semi commercial, dont forget to look at my own excellent imports the BFC / Diadema Junior range of machines.

    Rgdz,
    Attilio
    very first CS site sponsor.*


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  8. #8
    Coffee+carbon=heaven Mono's Avatar
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    Re: Light commercial vs premium domestic

    Thanks Attilio, great post and insight from a professionals point of view. Very well explained* :) [smiley=thumbsup.gif]

    Steve.

  9. #9
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    Re: Light commercial vs premium domestic

    Very much appreciate the kind words Steve.

    Rgdz,
    A.



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