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  • Paul needs a new machine

    Thnx 4 quick response.

    BTW, I just snaged a new Saeco conical burr grinder on eBay for $134, so I am now looking to replace our Krups 988 with something better, hence interest in the Silvia.

    URL to non-sponsor product removed by Mods >. There are many sponsor vendors of this machine

    I was also thinking about a Saeco Via Venezia which is bit more within my price range. Best price on that was $399

    Any thoughts, comments??

    ps: I find the Krups is ok for espresso except its a bit fast at around 12 sec., but is crap for milk frothing.

    Cheers,
    Paul

  • #2
    Re: Another.. Silvia for sale

    Hi Paul,

    If you are considering a saeco VV, you should double-check what the steam wand looks like without the plastic froth-aider on it. If it is too short, it will be useless. Froth-aiders, ironically, make it almost impossible to get proper milk. Im not sure what the steam on these is like ... it would be worthwhile checking out the boiler size and element wattage. I know that the silvia is much easier to steam with than the gaggias and I suspect that the saeco might be a gaggia internally. You should also make sure that the saeco has normal portafilter baskets rather than pressurised ones. This is worth checking, as you might have to buy them separately.

    If you buy a silvia, you know that it will take unpressurised portafilter baskets and that it will steam well, once you learn how to use it. I find single-boiler machines rather frustrating, which is why I sold my Silvia, but I still think that the silvia is better than the other alternatives. At the a mere hundred dollars more that a Via-Venezia, though, Bretts machine is an absolute no-brainer.

    You probably arent going to find a better price than $700 anywhere. Id be cautious about penny-pinching too much, lest something goes wrong and you end up with crappy service. Also, dont underestimate the value of an intro session with someone who knows how to use the machine. Finally, there are other things that you might need to buy with the machine, such as a 350mL milk jug, a 58mm tamper, espresso machine detergent and a knock box. Sienna might have the best price for the silvia alone, but you will probably be better off going somewhere that can bundle all of this stuff together for you. I have no personal experience with the Di Bartolis, this sites Sydney sponsors, but at the very least they seem to have everything in one place. Id check up with them.

    If you are happy with 12 second krups espresso shots, boy will you be pleased once youve learnt how to get a decent shot from a silvia!

    Now, the one thing that I suppose I should mention is the possiblity that your grinder might not be up to snuff for espresso. I havent used it, so I dont know, but it just doesnt sound right ... even the $200 sunbeam grinders dont have fine enough adjustment, IMHO.

    Cheers,

    Luca

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Another.. Silvia for sale

      Very interesting. The grinder retails at $299 so even though I got a bargain, Im hoping it will do ok. I already have a milk jug for the Kraps, oops, Krups. The knock box doesnt add to the taste, so I am sure the bin under the sink will do just as well. ;D

      I am sure that the Silvia should do better than the Saeco, which is why I am thinking about it. Bretts is 2 yrs old and him being in Melbourne means that there is no chance of any training, so it seems that Bretts at $500+30= $530 versus $699 for new is the question, and probably the local supply with warranty is the best bet.

      I might even get $50 for the Krups on eBay - who knows.

      Can you point me to some info on pressurized versus normal portafilters?? Thats an area I know zip about.

      Thnx.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Another.. Silvia for sale

        Luca, - just checked out your blog. Hey, its really cool. Excellent photos of the shiny stuff. What camera setup did you use? I am quite interested in photography, and just took some pics of the Krups and my attempt of making a cino, miserable that it was

        It would be nice to learn how to make those funky cino patterns, one day...

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Another.. Silvia for sale

          pszilard,

          Welcone to CS,

          Is the grinder a saeco 2002? If so it is rated as marginal for espresso....

          Which isnt good news if you are going to purchase a Silvia - they need a really good grinder if you want the best espresso.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Another.. Silvia for sale

            Oh shit! I think it is. What should I do now? - I already paid for it. >
            What coffee machine would you recommend to go with it? (The wife would KILL me if I tried selling it straight away to upgrade, even before it arrived).

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Another.. Silvia for sale

              Mmmmmm.... I think you are stuck!!

              The 2002 has smaller burrs than the lux etc and they have gaps rather than teeth all the way around the burr.....

              A significant step down from the rocky which seems to be the best match to
              Miss Silvia. (Probably even the Sunbeam would be better )

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Another.. Silvia for sale

                Any comments on a Nemox Fenice? http://www.siennacoffee.com.au/nemoxfenice.htm

                How would that compare to the Saeco Via Venezia? And whats wrong with the pressured basket thingy??

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Paul needs a new machine

                  And lastly, - anyone would like to sell a used non-aluminium boiler, non-thermoblock, manual espresso machine under $600 in the Sydney environs, that is in good nick? Ta.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Paul needs a new machine

                    Paul,

                    MMMM what to do....

                    Well Ive been thinking (having just made myself a coffee )

                    Do you have an espresso machine at the moment?

                    For now Id wait till you get the grinder and try it out..... what is more important than fine grounds is the consistancy of particle size... with the grinder set fairly fine take some of the grounds and rub them around on your hand .... are they uniform (like lots of grains of salt) or is there bits of differnt sizes down to a fine powder.... if the latter then you would definately have a problem with Miss Silvia.

                    The Saeco grinder is probably a good match to a non modified Saeco espresso machine. By non modified I mean the original baskets.

                    I had a Solis SL90 which had pressurised baskets and a Solis 166 grinder (rated better than the saeco grinder) and they worked well - espresso wasnt great but OK.... replaced the pressurised baskets with normal ones.... the Solis 166 (which produces quite a bit of fine powder) was not good enough and I had to get a better grinder (La Cimbali Jr)! The Solis then produced great quality espresso.

                    Pressurised baskets have a small hole through which the coffee is forced... this produces false "crema" - not as good by any means as the real stuff. With these you dont have to worry too much about the grind quality or size, and tamp pressure becomes far less important.

                    Normal baskets dont use any jiggery pokery to get the crema.... but you need a fine consistant grind and a tamp of 15KG.... and you then produce excellent espresso with lots of real crema.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Paul needs a new machine

                      Thnx for the info. I saw that this forum forbids any links to non-sponsors sites! I am quite stunned.

                      Meanwhile the question of VV versus Nemox Fenice still lingers. Then there is the VV + non-pressurized basket.

                      Would the Fenice be better at accepting coffee from a Saeco 2002 grinder set to fine, then the Silvia?

                      I never realized how expensive it is just to get a decent coffee at home.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Paul needs a new machine

                        Originally posted by pszilard link=1163916769/0#10 date=1163924257
                        Thnx for the info. I saw that this forum forbids any links to non-sponsors sites! I am quite stunned.

                        Meanwhile the question of VV versus Nemox Fenice still lingers. Then there is the VV + non-pressurized basket.

                        Would the Fenice be better at accepting coffee from a Saeco 2002 grinder set to fine, then the Silvia?

                        I never realized how expensive it is just to get a decent coffee at home.
                        Paul- your interpretion of the guidelines is not correct. You may include links to other sites where appropriate, however the site mentioned is not a CS sponsor, and as there are a number of sponsors who offer the Silvia for sale; it makes sense to at least give the people who fund this forum a fair go...

                        As for your grinder, it will be satisfactory for any machine with a pressurised portafilter...however, all here will agree that you will not find coffee nirvana with a pressurised PF. The Nemox has a non-pressurised, non-standard 58mm PF and many modify the stram wand...Other than that, its a good entry level machine. Greg Pullman may have one for sale soon :-?...Happy surfing...

                        2mcm

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Paul needs a new machine

                          The problem that most dont realise is that the grinder is FAR more important than the coffee machine.....

                          In order of importance for great coffee:

                          Barista Skills (you can learn these - and practice and more practice)
                          Beans - freshly roasted quality beans
                          Grinder - capable of producing fine even grinds with small adjustment of grind size
                          Coffee Machine!

                          You really need to spend quite a bit on the grinder- especially if you aim for a top end coffee machine otherwise the machine cant produce the goods.

                          I dont know the Nemox Fenice at all - so cant say how fussy it is re grinds- hopefully someone else can help you with that model. Id guess (and it is only a guess) it is less demanding than the silvia. But the 2002 might still not produce consistant enough grinds even for that.

                          Give the 2002 a go with your existing machine and fresh beans - you might get a pleasant suprise.- or even grind some fresh beans for a plunger - that can also be really good.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Paul needs a new machine

                            Originally posted by pszilard link=1163916769/0#10 date=1163924257
                            I saw that this forum forbids any links to non-sponsors sites! I am quite stunned.
                            Gday pszilard,

                            You shouldnt be, its nothing new..... The reason our great little web community can continue to exist is because of the very real input, both financial and technical, that the site sponsors provide. Without that, CoffeeSnobs wouldnt be the web community that it is today and therefore, we protect the right of our site sponsors to promote their business interests on CoffeeSnobs. Non-contributors receive no such benefit and are NOT entitled to free plugs.

                            Heres a link to our policy re: Commercial Posts. All the best,

                            Mal.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Paul needs a new machine

                              Originally posted by JavaB link=1163916769/0#12 date=1163925141
                              Id guess (and it is only a guess) it is less demanding than the silvia.
                              Hi All,

                              One of the main reasons the Silvia has this reputation, is because up until recently, the OPV (Over Pressure Valve) was non-adjustable and shipped from the factory with its setting at or above 12 Bar. Considering that the ideal Brew pressure is in the narrow range of 8.5-9.5 Bar, it can be easily understood that a Silvia with such a Brew Pressure setting will require the coffee to be ground finer in order to achieve the brew standard of 30ml poured in 25-30 seconds.... All else being equal.

                              Current model Silvias are now shipping with an adjustable OPV and one would hope that they are set correctly before leaving the factory.... Of course, if you purchase a unit from one of our sponsors, the machine will be delivered fully setup and tested ready for you to pull great shots right from day one 8-).

                              Mal.

                              Comment

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