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I'm a but of a noob- please help me spend $1500 on a set-up!

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  • I'm a but of a noob- please help me spend $1500 on a set-up!

    Hi guys,

    First time.poster, short time lurker.

    After a few years use out of a basic delonghi and a sunbeam smart grinder I want to upgrade to something decent with $1500 max to play with but any cash saved would be a plus.

    There are 2 of us in the house, we both drink flat whites and usage might average 3 coffees a day...some days none ..peak times 6...

    I did have my eye on the letit 41 TEM PID and stick with the grinder I have, and spend 1000 max but there is a few nice items on this site at the moment second hand including an Ecm veneziano for around 1400 and the letit 2nd hand for 700. Theres a few nice possible grinder upgrades there as well.

    I would love it if you all could help me get the best bang for buck here and advise if I should just buy the new letit and pocket 500 or buy some combo of what's available on the market place of this site or if there is another great option you would suggest. I see the breville dual boilers seem to get a good rap in this price range too.


    I know theres a heap of these sort of.posts but any help.would be great as I have very little.knowledge of the hardware...I just like great tasting coffee..!

    Thanks!
    Last edited by yanjarra; 13 November 2019, 11:08 PM.

  • #2
    Once your machine is "good enough" the grinder is the most important piece of equipment. I would recommend you consider spending a similar amount on each. Nothing wrong with second hand, as long as it's been looked after. Usually a pretty safe bet when buying from other CS members. What's your location?

    Consider the following:

    https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-ha...n-grinder.html

    https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-ha...m4d-black.html

    https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-ha...pic-heavy.html

    https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-ha...i-grinder.html

    https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-ha...rless-mod.html

    Edit to add:
    https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-ha...e-grinder.html
    Last edited by level3ninja; 13 November 2019, 09:09 PM.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by level3ninja View Post
      Once your machine is "good enough" the grinder is the most important piece of equipment. I would recommend you consider spending a similar amount on each. Nothing wrong with second hand, as long as it's been looked after. Usually a pretty safe bet when buying from other CS members. What's your location?

      Consider the following:

      https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-ha...n-grinder.html

      https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-ha...m4d-black.html

      https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-ha...pic-heavy.html

      https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-ha...i-grinder.html

      https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-ha...rless-mod.html

      Edit to add:
      https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-ha...e-grinder.html
      Thanks
      I've read that many times with the grinder and am sure it's true to be so frequently stated but geez my head has a hard time computing 800+ on a grinder where as a machine it seems more reasonable for some reason.

      That first link is the letit I would like to get.

      The first few grinders are probably just too much for me to justify in my head as said but could manage the last few in the 400 range....is there a particular one you would suggest over the others in that range? Would they be a "big" jump from the breville smart grinder?

      I'm in remote far north qld so that's an issue but would probably fork out a100 or so for a courier

      Comment


      • #4
        I still like the Rancilio Rocky for an inexpensive but well put together grinder. A second hand Mazzer Mini with a doser might be affordable too. Dosers are very handy things even when you just grind from the hopper. It helps break up clumps.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by yanjarra View Post
          Thanks
          I've read that many times with the grinder and am sure it's true to be so frequently stated but geez my head has a hard time computing 800+ on a grinder where as a machine it seems more reasonable for some reason.
          The grinder determines the quality of the coffee from your machine.

          a good grinder will make a $600 machine look great
          a poor grinder will make a $6000 machine look crap

          get the best grinder you can afford.

          Comment


          • #6
            Excellent advice...

            Mal.

            Comment


            • #7
              Hmmm this might be taking it to the extreme but would I be better spending 1500 on a grinder and keeping the base level delonghi?

              Comment


              • #8
                Spending $1500 or even $1000 isn’t necessary to get good espresso. It is a choice people make later down the line, if at all, to get expensive equipment.

                Comment


                • #9
                  An ex cafe grinder can be had for $300. My brother got an old Wega for that price and he has had it for a few years now. Works really well. He has a cheap-ish Breville thermoblock machine. Great for espresso but crappy for frothing milk.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by yanjarra View Post
                    Hi guys,

                    First time.poster, short time lurker.

                    After a few years use out of a basic delonghi and a sunbeam smart grinder I want to upgrade to something decent with $1500 max to play with but any cash saved would be a plus.

                    There are 2 of us in the house, we both drink flat whites and usage might average 3 coffees a day...some days none ..peak times 6...

                    I did have my eye on the letit 41 TEM PID and stick with the grinder I have, and spend 1000 max but there is a few nice items on this site at the moment second hand including an Ecm veneziano for around 1400 and the letit 2nd hand for 700. Theres a few nice possible grinder upgrades there as well.

                    I would love it if you all could help me get the best bang for buck here and advise if I should just buy the new letit and pocket 500 or buy some combo of what's available on the market place of this site or if there is another great option you would suggest. I see the breville dual boilers seem to get a good rap in this price range too.


                    I know theres a heap of these sort of.posts but any help.would be great as I have very little.knowledge of the hardware...I just like great tasting coffee..!

                    Thanks!
                    Originally posted by flashpixx View Post
                    The grinder determines the quality of the coffee from your machine.

                    a good grinder will make a $600 machine look great
                    a poor grinder will make a $6000 machine look crap

                    get the best grinder you can afford.
                    G'day yanjarra

                    flashpixx is right on the money.

                    Consider this - the grinder is earlier in the coffee path. If it screws up, you are hosed regardless of fancy machinery further down the track.

                    I do not know whether you have a Breville Smartgrinder or a Sunbeam EM480 (or siblings). Both of those are great value entry level grinders which perform a lot better than their low price would indicate. Upgrading the grinder will make a lot more difference in the cuppa than an espresso machine upgrade given your setup unless your delongi is what I call the "toy models" (say under $500 new). The issue - at around $200 for your current grinder, the next step up is likely to be in the $800 to $1200 range. In an ideal world, do both.

                    A quick comparison - my Mahlkoenig Vario (or "big beast Mazzer Major") plus a 2008 Sunbeam 6910 made much better coffee than my Rocky or EM480 into my GS3 (about an $8K espresso machine these days).

                    I hope this helps.

                    TampIt

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Just for some more context my delonghi is the icon pump model..think it was about 300 or.so and it has been hammered for 5 years or so now...it seems to have lost pressure/seal....when you try to to make espresso at decent pressure the water pours back through the steamer wand....the wand itself never really seemed fit.for purpose...I think.it was only meant for cappacino but I slightly modded it....I am.pretty sure its had it hence the machine centric focus..

                      Maybe i look at a cheaper machine replacement at around 500 and a grinder up around 700?

                      The grinder is the breville smart, i always thought it did decently but am not too sure how to analyse one grind from.another..

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Managed to miss this in my list:
                        https://coffeesnobs.com.au/coffee-ha...o-grinder.html

                        This and the Lelit machine will do you very nicely. I think the Lelit is the best machine for you that is currently for sale.

                        If you want to analyse your grinder quality try spreading some ground coffee out on a white piece of paper. The closer the particles are to all being the same size the better. BSG is about the minim quality grinder that's worth trying to make espresso with.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          A couple other grinders worth looking at in your price range are the Compak K3 Push (no timer) which can be had new for as low as $460, delivered. The are super reliable, built like a brick outhouse and at the price excellent value for a very decent grinder. If you want the timed grind version, the K3 touch (I have one but never use the timer), this can be had for around $510 new, delivered. Another option is the Baratza Sette 270Wi for around $600+. It grinds/weighs to a set weight and has fluffy, clump free grinds but the earlier models had some reliability issues. Not sure whether these have been fully addressed with the updated 270Wi model? Quite a few fans of this grinder though here on CS.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Just bought the lelit you are looking at. My first machine and after a weeks use feeling pretty pleased with the results and also Upgraded to a macap m2m grinder from a sunbeam em480 that I was using for plunger-coffee.

                            Comment

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