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Thread: Advice for novice on Expobar Minore IV

  1. #1
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    Advice for novice on Expobar Minore IV

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

    Firstly, its terrifying posting a topic on here amongst the coffee immortals...

    Ive been making coffee at home for a few years now on a pretty basic machine and grinder setup. Im ready to upgrade.

    I was thinking about the Expobar Minore IV. What are peoples opinions on this machine? I dont mind what I pay for a machine, I just want something that is reliable, high quality and makes great coffee. Im also very much a novice so Im a little worried this machine may have a few too many bells and whistles for me to handle.

    Would really appreciate any thoughts anyone may have. Are there other machines you would recommend?

    Many thanks

  2. #2
    TC
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    Re: Advice for novice on Expobar Minore IV

    Welcome Old_School* [smiley=thumbsup.gif]

    Dont be scared. We all started with little knowledge. There are plenty of great resources and trainers out there if required to get you going at a high standard.

    Any good dual boiler or heat exchanger (HX) machine will very likely exceed your requirements in a domestic situation.

    My company Talk Coffee has sold a fair few Minore II, III and IV to a host of CSers with very few issues whatsoever. The dual boiler machines offer a little more tweakability which you may try playing with in the future if youre more into black coffee variants.

    Expobar machines are sometimes a "little rougher" around the edges than some of the Italian made machines, but it is ultimately about whats in the cup and they do deliver.

    I normally ask clients to pick 3 machines they like the look of and then I tell them what I dont like about them. No company has made the perfect machine and its all about locating your best match for your requirements at a price that sits comfortably.

    We dabble in Diadema, Expobar, Rocket, VBM, Izzo and others. If the machine is nasty and makes for a difficult experience, we wont sell it.

    You are most welcome to call for a chat if I can assist in any way.

    Happy shopping!

    Chris

  3. #3
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    Re: Advice for novice on Expobar Minore IV

    Hi Old_School,

    dont forget about the grinder! I just did the same as you recently and got a Giotto HX and apart from some second-hand issues Im very happy with it. Im sure you would be delighted with the Minore - it was on my wish list. Im amazed at the difference in quality of components coming from an appliance - it really is solid.

    The Minore IV is a step above the Giotto because it is a dual boiler. It also has a few more gauges and readouts than the Giotto, which can make it tempting to watch them all the time instead of the coffee. Having said that I want to modify my Giotto to put a brew-temp gauge on it ::)

    The biggest thing to look out for is who you buy the machine from. Chris isnt just doing a sales talk above - not only do they not sell nasty machines, they calibrate the ones they do sell, and they know their stuff. You could buy a factory standard Giotto elsewhere and have it too hot and too high pressure and make bad coffee.

    At least give Chris a call* and pick his brain, or drop in if youre in the area. Same goes for other sponsors - if youre going to spend this kind of money and have the machine for 5-10 years, youll want to see it in action first.

    *Im sure he wouldnt mind me saing "obligation free"!

    good luck.

  4. #4
    TC
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    Re: Advice for novice on Expobar Minore IV

    Quote Originally Posted by 202820272D2B490 link=1320763337/2#2 date=1320795153
    The Minore IV is a step above the Giotto because it is a dual boiler.
    Not so sure I agree with that statement iain. Its a dual boiler and will make great coffee in the hands of a skilled operator as will a Giotto- which is a step up in terms of finish. Both are good machines at similar price points. It all comes down to what the OP desires.

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    Re: Advice for novice on Expobar Minore IV

    OK, Im not comparing any dual boiler to a Giotto (think Breville) which would be kind-of like comparing the Ikon to a Silvia. What I meant was the Giotto and Minore are well above the consumer electronic bracket, and in this HX / DB range the DB is "better" in that steaming and extracting dont affect each other like a HX.

    As to the real-life performance of the Minore vs the Giotto Ill concede I dont know squat ;) Also, I keep comparing new machines to my 4-year old one, however the 2011 Giotto is better specced so it may punch higher than my 2007 model.

    One thing I forgot Old_School - you might want to consider plumbing. Some machines have the option to be plumbed, some have to be, and some cant be. If you want to go down that route as a future upgrade (or right now?). Also, rotary pumps that come with plumbed machines are generally quieter.

    :)

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    Senior Member fatboy_1999's Avatar
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    Re: Advice for novice on Expobar Minore IV

    Quote Originally Posted by 4C444C4B4147250 link=1320763337/4#4 date=1320804427
    OK, Im not comparing any dual boiler to a Giotto (think Breville) which would be kind-of like comparing the Ikon to a Silvia.* What I meant was the Giotto and Minore are well above the consumer electronic bracket, and in this HX / DB range the DB is "better" in that steaming and extracting dont affect each other like a HX.
    Now Im not sure I agree with that.
    The whole point of a HX or a dual boiler is so you can brew and steam at the same time.
    My understanding (and experience from owning a DB and having used a HX) is that they can both do it, they just use different design and parts.

    A Single Boiler (such as a Silvia) is certainly going to have issues if you try to steam and brew at the same time, but a HX like a Giotto or Mavin is going to be comparable to a DB like a Minore.

    Perhaps ThunderGod and myself need to get our respective Expobars together and do a shoot out?
    His is a HX, mine is a DB. Sure, we are in different states, but perhaps we can get sponsorship to help answer the question?

    Brett.

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    Re: Advice for novice on Expobar Minore IV

    So what happens on your DB when you do lots of steaming? Maybe youre making muggachinos or something for the kids. Steam pressure drops but you could still extract without detriment right? And you could potentially wind up your steam boiler if you really need extra steaming?

    If I loose boiler pressure, perhaps even a little water is let in, Im going to see a detrimental affect to extracting - probably a bit cooler right? Ill have to wait 5 minutes to get back to "normal". And if I wind up the boiler pressure preemptively, Im going to see hotter shots.

    Again this is based on what Ive read so happy to be corrected. And maybe it wont affect Old_School at all?

    Better get sponsorshi for a Giotto owner too, just for good comparisons sake ::)

  8. #8
    Senior Member bennett's Avatar
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    Re: Advice for novice on Expobar Minore IV

    A well designed Hx (including the giotto) shouldnt have very much of a detrimental effect either way on steaming or shot extraction. Even on my vbm jnr, if I make 2 coffees then steam milk in a 600ml jug, by the time I have ground more coffee and am ready to go again, the machine has recovered and it is also ready to go.

    Even if I open the steam tap for one minute, my pressure drops, but then recovers to 1.2bar almost instantaneously.

    The only time you get a HUGE drop in temp is if you open the hot water tap for tea or long blacks which drains the boiler and can drop shot temperature for a little while.

    Thats my understanding of it anyway.

  9. #9
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    Re: Advice for novice on Expobar Minore IV

    Hi all,

    The Giotto is a trooper, it will work as fast as you and wont struggle along the way.

    The shots I get from it are the best Ive had and the in operating it you really get a sense of fit and finish. The only thing I sometimes have a quibble with it is the mirror finish is very hard to keep from scratching.

    With the Minore i havent seen it steam but some say the piping restricts the amount of steam output perhaps someone could comment on this??



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