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Breville 800ES vs. Sunbeam EM4800C

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  • Breville 800ES vs. Sunbeam EM4800C

    Good evening all,

    well after many frustrating hours  of learning machine terminology, features and technologies, Ive arrived at the conclusion that my first machine will be either a Breville 800ES or Sunbeam EM4800C.

    (My original shortlist was ES800 and EM6910 but after reading about the reliability problems of the 6910 it got struck and replaced with the 4800C).

    Ive made a little list of pros and cons for each and was wondering if first of all these are accurate and second if you wonderful pepped up coffee snob experts can assist me with anything I may have missed.

    One thing Id like to take care of straight off the bat is yes - I know these are both thermoblock systems.

    Ive read up on the pros and cons of steam vs. block and Im going block this time around for convenience.

    A lot of people are probably screaming "JUST GO THE SILVIA" and trust me, I will do when money allows, however until that time I want to cut my teeth on one of these machines.

    Anyway, time to meet the contendors:

    Breville 800ES:
    *Good micro-froth (once mastered)

    *Aluminium Thermoblock
    *Crappy pressurised basket (to be replaced with Krupps un-pressurised)

    Sunbeam EM4800C:
    *Brass and Phenolic (whatever that is) Group Handle

    *Sunbeam reliability
    *Crappy pressurised basket (to be replaced with Krupps un-pressurised)

    Thats pretty much all Ive got to work with right now.

    Please feel free to add your opinion about either machine as I need all the info I can get.

    Also, one major question, does anyone know what the milk frothing capabilities of the 4800C are like?


  • #2
    Re: Breville 800ES vs. Sunbeam EM4800C

    Hi mate

    You have to be careful with these type of machines as I have repaired several of them, there main prob is they blow there hoses just keep your receipt you will be ok.


    • #3
      Re: Breville 800ES vs. Sunbeam EM4800C

      I think you would get the same if not worse durability out of these machines as the 6910 but far inferior coffee (I used to own a machine in this class didnt last a year - although we did use it heavily)

      Anyways, just my two shakes.



      • #4
        Re: Breville 800ES vs. Sunbeam EM4800C

        Gday again - yeah - I know the reliability of these is not known to be fantastic but after researching virtually every common brand and model in the sub $400 price bracket it seems to be a common theme.

        I took the plunge today and went with the Breville 800ES.

        Ive gone in with the knowledge that machines in this price bracket have a finite lifetime and that suits me fine.
        This way I get to learn the basics and get a machine now without spending too much cash.
        The way I see it its a great beginner machine and when it blows up thatll be the perfect excuse and time to upgrade!
        When that day comes Ill have gained a fair amount of experience regarding operation, technique etc which Ill be able to appreciate more on a better machine.

        Having said all that, Ive done the initial water run through etc. and run off a couple of brews.
        I have to say that I am pretty impressed with the results!
        The strength was a bit light on but that should be able to be corrected by a finer grind and replacement filter baskets (getting the Krups tomorrow).
        Steam function is also surprisingly impressive!

        (just fyi - Im basing my comparisons against a 6910)


        • #5
          Re: Breville 800ES vs. Sunbeam EM4800C

          Ive got a Sunbeam 3800 at home a Breville Ikon 400 at work and would get the 6910 in a second if I had the cash.

          Theyre on special at the moment at a big seller for $550 ( or $650?) with the sunbeam conical burr cafe grinder ... I think thats a steal for the machine.

          The baristas at Epic and the guy I talked to at the WA Barista Academy all sang the machines praises and thats high enough praise for me !!


          • #6
            Re: Breville 800ES vs. Sunbeam EM4800C

            Gday again grinders.

            Well Ive been using the machine (heavily) for a week now and am thoroughly enjoying it!

            Ive been experimenting with it and am starting to pull some pretty nice cups from the thing.

            I was getting some pretty weak strength brews  when I first started using it but this was quickly rectified when I found the correct grind size

            I threw in some Campos Superior Blend yesterday (what I normally grab as a takeaway near work) and it tastes wonderful (this is up there as one of my personal faves along with Dibella Premium).

            A buddy of mine and I have been having a little difficulty finding the Krups baskets however I found another thread on this site which suggested the Breville non-pressurised baskets (ESP4/51)  which I didnt even know existed and we found a retailer nearby selling them (Sparkys at Toowong if anyone is interested) for $16.

            Will keep you posted re the results with the new baskets.


            • #7
              Re: Breville 800ES vs. Sunbeam EM4800C

              The new basket rocks!
              Much better strength and you can tell the machine doesnt have to work as hard.
              A must for all 800ES owners!

              Also had a quick lesson in creating Microfoam this arve - this machine really is very capable!


              • #8
                Re: Breville 800ES vs. Sunbeam EM4800C

                Hi guys

                Can you tell me more about these depressurised baskets. Ive just bought an Aldi machine (a Lumina - see the other thread on this) and am still mastering it. It seems to make reasonable coffee, but like the Breville person, I like my coffee strong, and you cant get that much coffee into the basket. I can make two shots I guess, but wondered about trying one of these depressurised baskets. Does anyone know whether you can get one that fits the Lumina?


                • #9
                  Re: Breville 800ES vs. Sunbeam EM4800C

                  Hi Jeanne,
                  the difference between a pressurized basket and a non-pressurized basket is basically the number of layers.

                  A pressurized basket has two layers very close together. The top layer (or plate really) has many holes across the entire surface and allows the coffee to pass through into the thin area between the top and bottom layer where it becomes pressurized (and creates a "version" if you will of crema).

                  (Just in case you dont know what crema is, its the element of coffee that baristas take pride in creating.
                  Crema is the light red / brown layer that forms on top of the coffee. It is formed from high pressure heated water passing through the brew head and then through the coffee in the basket. When the water passes through at high temperatures, it causes the natural oils and coffee goodness to escape from the grinds.
                  These oils form crema).

                  The bottom layer has less holes (very few - about a centimeter square) which forces the coffee between the top and bottom layer to become pressurized and force the oils out of the coffee grinds.

                  Some machines use the pressurized basket to create crema where the machine may not normally be able to create it by itself, due to the lack of a capable pump / boiler or block combination.

                  A good quality machine will have a boiler or block that is capable of achieving the correct temperature as well as a good pump capable of pushing water through at the correct pressure and rate and will be able to acheive cream without the use of a pressurized basket.

                  Also, crema created by a pressurized basket is a world apart from the crema created by a good quality machine using a non-pressurized basket.
                  Pressurized basket produced crema is very weak and is there moreso for visual effect than actual flavour (in my opinion).

                  The use of pressurized baskets is a bit sub optimal for a couple of reasons:
                  Firstly, it may be a sign the machine doesnt have the goods to create it by itself.
                  Secondly, it places extra labour on the machine by creating additional back-pressure in the brew head.

                  Finally, you may be cheating yourself out of a superior brew if you have a machine that is in fact capable of creating crema without a pressurized basket (case in point - the 800ES).

                  As for baskets for the Aldi machine, well, its not exactly a well known brand with a spare parts department you can call.
                  My advice would be to jump back on the Aldi thread and start asking people to experiment with baskets they may have around the place with the aldi machine.
                  Failing that, you could take your basket to a spare parts dealer and try and size one up.


                  • #10
                    Re: Breville 800ES vs. Sunbeam EM4800C


                    most of the cheaper thermoblock machines are made in China and there tends to be a lot of commonality with certain parts.

                    I wouldnt be surprised if the Aldi shares parts [such as PF and PF baskets] with one of the others.

                    Why not start a new post with some photos of the Aldi portafilter and basket, and perhaps include some meaningful dimensions and somebody out here may recognise it.


                    • #11
                      Re: Breville 800ES vs. Sunbeam EM4800C

                      At that price, buy a Breville Ikon. Stainless steel boiler beats aluminium thermoblock any day of the week.