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  • $1000 machine for office use

    Hello one and all!

    First of all - my apologies in advance if I am breaking any sort of posting protocols. I'm still new, and am sure I will learn the weird and wonderful coffee forum ways quite quickly.

    The main reason for my post is this - I am co-ordinating a small office coffee drinking club. Our numbers fluctuate between 8 and 15 people, most of whom are primarily interested in getting a decent espresso several times a day, for (naturally) a minimal price. We are looking to replace our existing coffee machine with something....better (read - primarily more reliable, improvement in quality would be awesome). To give you an idea of the benchmark - we are currently running with a Saeco Minuto (yes, you read that right) with Vittoria Espresso beans. People seem sufficiently happy with it, however the machine itself is struggling (after a bit over a year), necessitating a replacement. And yes, I clean it quite regularly (circa every second day).

    My question is this (though I might be asking for a unicorn) - what are your suggestions for a reasonable coffee machine (or in case of a semi-auto, a machine and grinder combo) which MAY be suitable for our use, around the $1000 mark. The poison of choice is espresso - it doesn't need to steam milk well (or at all in fact), it should have prospects for a reasonable life without dying, needs to grind (or price should include a grinder), and should (ideally) be able to churn out a beverage in under about 30 seconds (to cope with the demand of 8-15 people in the zombie state requiring their morning shot).

    I look forward to your advice

  • #2
    To get the ball rolling, my uneducated advice would be that you need a hefty domestic machine to knock out up to 15 coffees at once/ in quick succession ... Well , it might be hard for a sub $1k, and that's without a grinder.

    remember it takes about 30 seconds just for the shot to be pulled, so if time is of the essence in that way then ... Super auto? $2k.

    I think I'm right , but someone else might be able to give you an idea of what it might take to realistically fill your need.

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    • #3
      Welcome John....

      Maybe something like this is a possibility, but you will still require a decent grinder...
      http://coffeesnobs.com.au/brewing-eq...c-project.html

      Mal.

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      • #4
        Thanks for the replies guys

        @Dimal - the Bezzera definitely looks like it could take the sort of abus.... I mean love, that it would likely see. Unfortunately, 10 people covering a ~$2500 machine would equate to around 250 each, which is not something anyone here will spend on something that remains in the office.

        I was originally looking at the Breville 870, but it appears they are not sufficiently reliable to protect me from lynching which would happen as a result of early failure. I was also potentially considering a Silvia with a K3 Push, however the need for temp surfing might make it....challenging for some of our team.

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        • #5
          I was tasked by the boss to find a new office coffee machine here.

          Purchased a Breville BES920 inc smart grinder from HN:

          Breville BES920 Dual Boiler Coffee Machine - Coffee Machines - Coffee & Beverage - Kitchen Appliances | Harvey Norman Australia

          Knew a friend of a friend at HN; we paid $1250 - close to your 1k mark.

          All very happy so far.

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          • #6
            Hi JohnF, make coffee hardware for sale as your favorite link (if you haven't already done so) there are good bargains on well loved coffee gears popping up on coffeesnobs site every now and then

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            • #7
              Expobar Office used machines appear from time to time here and on fleabay (with grinder combos can be had for around $1000). Don't skimp on the grinder.

              Well looked after machines (rather than appliances eg saeco) can last forever (or are at least readily repairable) so don't be afraid of second hand. As always buyer beware tho. Too bad if the boss says (for tax purposes) it must be new - tell him we said $1000 for a new machine and grinder in a busy office environment is not likely to produce good results in the cup.

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              • #8
                You probably should consider a pod machine (not appliance, once again) as well. While I'll never own one for a range of reasons, the better ones (eg expobar, spinel) can do quite okay in the cup even by 'snobs standards, would backend your costs (ie no grinder purchase) and provide speed in the office.

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                • #9
                  Thanks for the insight - the Breville 920 is looking decidedly interesting, especially if I can get it for below the ~1500 price it usually goes for. Also, based on other reviews I have seen, I don't think anyone has been complaining of unreliability/breakages just yet (though it is still relatively new).

                  @WantRancilio - Cheers, I'll keep an eye out for second hand machines. Although it seems all the good ones get snapped up pretty quickly . As for pods - those are decidedly out. Currently we work in an arrangement where everyone pays a lump sum each month, and drinks as much as the jitters allow. Pods would get a bit pricey.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by WantRancilio10 View Post
                    You probably should consider a pod machine (not appliance, once again) as well. While I'll never own one for a range of reasons, the better ones (eg expobar, spinel) can do quite okay in the cup even by 'snobs standards, would backend your costs (ie no grinder purchase) and provide speed in the office.
                    Oh? I can't recall any snob ever saying commercial pods came anywhere close to producing what using fresh ground coffee in a single walled basket in a decent machine could.


                    Java "Pods? Pass!" phile
                    Toys! I must have new toys!!!

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by WantRancilio10 View Post
                      You probably should consider a pod machine (not appliance, once again) as well. While I'll never own one for a range of reasons, the better ones (eg expobar, spinel) can do quite okay in the cup even by 'snobs standards, would backend your costs (ie no grinder purchase) and provide speed in the office.
                      Don't know what snobs you've been hanging around with, but I'd make them hand back their credentials if they're giving pass marks to pods!

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                      • #12
                        My instinctive reaction to pods is indeed the same but I'm no expert in pods... and the office environment is a specialised area and I'm sure some 'snobs have said the gap isn't necessarily enormous and have advocated them in office environments in a number of posts. Don't make me dig them out

                        I also note that some mobile coffee vans now use them.

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                        • #13
                          I sell these so expect some bias but in an office environment you could do really well with a Brazen.
                          CoffeeSnobs - BeanBay - Other Stuff - Behmor Brazen Plus - Coffee Brewer

                          It will produce 1.2 liters in under 10 minutes.
                          Has an inbuilt timer so you could dose it up before going home and have coffee ready when you walk in.
                          Super easy to clean.
                          Small footprint, low power usage.
                          You can use whatever fresh coffee you like.
                          Milk coffee drinkers enjoy it too with a splash of milk in the long black.

                          Buy a grinder and a Brazen and you won't look back.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Andy View Post
                            I sell these so expect some bias but in an office environment you could do really well with a Brazen.
                            CoffeeSnobs - BeanBay - Other Stuff - Behmor Brazen Plus - Coffee Brewer

                            It will produce 1.2 liters in under 10 minutes.
                            Has an inbuilt timer so you could dose it up before going home and have coffee ready when you walk in.
                            Super easy to clean.
                            Small footprint, low power usage.
                            You can use whatever fresh coffee you like.
                            Milk coffee drinkers enjoy it too with a splash of milk in the long black.

                            Buy a grinder and a Brazen and you won't look back.
                            Agreed Andy. The Brazen produces hands down THE BEST filter coffee I have ever experienced- by a country mile. It's perfect for an office (and my warehouse...and another on my bench at home ).

                            Chris

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                            • #15
                              Out of interest, what grinder have you chaps paired with the Brazen? My K3 lives in my office at the moment, but I don't find it the greatest for the Aeropress (prefer my cheap Porlex mini).

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