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The dreaded "owners manual"

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  • The dreaded "owners manual"

    So... youve just shelled out mega bucks on the latest from Italy. It arrives, youre stoked, ready to get stuck into using your new gear  ;D. You pull out the manual (all 3 pages in English including covers) and, and... you say "whats this", "whats this", "I dont understand", "please explain"...

    Ive been to Italy and other parts of Europe a few times over the years (my family is primarily from Holland) and understand that there is a compromise involved if you want to enjoy a culture that is different than your own, one of the reasons you travel or purchase something from a country other than your own to begin with. However... surely with the world being a much smaller place these days than it used to be with technology and all, it wouldnt take much for a company that turns over millions a year to hire an instructional designer or similar to put together a few pages of guidance that would make the application of your new purchase a little easier... . At the end of the day you figure it all out (well... some maybe not), but why do they make you go through all the effort? Shouldnt "they" try to make the use of your new "stuff" as easy as possible?

    Fortunately, there are some retailers out there that have gone through the extra effort of expanding on what is provided and include a supplement. Unfortunately, others are just left scratching their heads....

  • #2
    Re: The dreaded "owners manual"

    Yep. I sometimes think manufacturers assume the whole world speaks their language. If it was Australia it might have been be the cultural cringe and an assumption that the rest of the world is smarter and can figure it out with less info. :

    Was there much information on the Italian pages or did it only have the English?

    I have to say I was really impressed with the Sunbeam manual in english. It would be interesting to see if the whole manual is translated for export. The other thing is Sunbeam is probably targeted at an entry level user with perhaps less assumed knowledge than your machine.

    In any case it shouldnt be up to retailers to do the work. But I suppose it gives them a point to differentiate their service if the supply chain isnt locked down.


    • #3
      Re: The dreaded "owners manual"

      The latest manual was written in Italian, French, German and English. A one page description provided in each language (small pages mind you... ). The one I received before that for my Elektra was basically the same but with more spelling and grammatical mistakes. Took me about 2 dozen re-reads before I could somewhat understand what the procedure was. I guess Im a little biased as I used to be an instructional designer, but I cant help but think there is room for improvement. I purchased an 8 megapixel Samsung multimedia camera the other day for a mere $200. Although the main user manual was in PDF format it was exceptionally well done. A couple of hundred pages with brilliant graphics, icons, etc. to prompt and assist. Samsung is obviously a giant with deep pockets, but it doesnt take much to put together something simple that is user friendly. Im sure it would take a bit of the pressure off the retailer having to answer the same basic questions over and over again.


      • #4
        Re: The dreaded "owners manual"

        Spot on Buschy. Imagine if you are brand new to espresso making and buy one of these machines hoping that the instruction book will provide what you need. Ive just been re-visiting some of your earlier posts regarding your first encounters with the Levetta. Im still coming to grips with mine, getting the dosing right mainly.

        I notice that ECA have updated their website that may contain some useful info. I say "may" as there is a lot of coming soon messages. I hope they live up to the promise. Doing some digging around and came across this site as well which may have some useful info; may in this case because I dont want to provide misinformation. But it has what looks like good info on E61 grouphead maintenance



        • #5
          Re: The dreaded "owners manual"

          I did not get a hard copy of a user manual with my Bezzera
          However all I need to do for a full schematic on my machine is to go to the Barazi Bezzera site and its all on PDF