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First Time Buyer

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  • First Time Buyer

    Hi all,
    I am hoping to get some advice etc on obtaining my first coffee machine.
    There seems to be precious little out there in the way of reviews of machines (not that I could find, anyway!), and living in Charters Towers (west from Townsville, Qld) makes it hard to go to shops to talk to people in the know.
    I initially started off thinking of buying a pod machine, but having had some friends who have bought them I was not impressed with the quality of the coffee - more 'instant' than 'cafe' tasting to me and my wife.
    As we would only be having a couple of cups a day, I was hoping not to have to spend too much - under the $500 - I almost fell off my chair when I first started looking at machines/prices! From what I have read here, it appears that fresh beans and a quality grinder seem almost more important than the machine itself? Anyway, the majority of the time I would only be making two cups at a time, apart from the odd dinner party.
    I found a site (Coffee for Connoisseurs) that recommended the Rancilio Silva as the best value for money machine, with the Sunbeam EM6900 a close second, but this info appeared to be several years old.
    Looking on the net, the Rancilio seems to be around the $500, then I would need another $200odd for a grinder - which gets up to the $700ish? Then I ran across the Philips Saeco Intelia HD8753-23 for just over $700 with inbuilt grinder! Is this better value for money??
    I am now really confused - without reviews to go by, it makes knowing what I should buy and how much I will need to spend very hard to work out.
    If anyone can offer some advice, it would be greatly appreciated!

  • #2
    Welcome to the forum Weagles.
    Regarding reviews, try typing in the machine name with the word review after it i.e. Rancilio Silvia review, first one to come up for me was a 2012 review.

    With espresso machines like most other things you get what you pay for, perhaps if you keep your eye open for a good second hand machine and grinder.

    Combo machine grinders are in my opinion generally a compromise.


    • #3
      First Time Buyer

      You can get a second hand Silvia for about $350ish. But you really need a grinder to get cafe quality coffee from it, the breville smart grinder for $250 is perhaps the cheapest new grinder out there that will do the job, but a second hand rancilio rocky grinder for about $250+ would be perfect.

      The Silvia will require lots of practice, but well worth it once you've mastered it.

      A cheaper sunbeam will produce perfectly good coffee as long as you run fresh coffee beans through a grinder.