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Where to go from a Rancilio Silvia?

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  • Where to go from a Rancilio Silvia?

    I have a Rancilio Silvia (& Mazzer SJ) and am wondering if theres a general consensus of where the next step up the espresso machine would take me? (When I eventually make that move), and how much pain in the wallet it would cost me.

    Milk frothing isnt particularly important to me, so my criteria is simply to focus on producing superb, consistent espresso shots.

    Just to clarify, Im happy with my set-up, and am making great coffees, but when I do eventually consider replacing my Silvia, is there a next logical step?
    Would it be a full manual level setup?

    Thanks

  • #2
    Re: Where to go from a Rancilio Silvia?

    Originally posted by 7653545278594A5055523C0 link=1319404946/0#0 date=1319404946
    I have a Rancilio Silvia (& Mazzer SJ) and am wondering if theres a general consensus of where the next step up the espresso machine would take me? (When I eventually make that move), and how much pain in the wallet it would cost me.

    Milk frothing isnt particularly important to me, so my criteria is simply to focus on producing superb, consistent espresso shots.

    Just to clarify, Im happy with my set-up, and am making great coffees, but when I do eventually consider replacing my Silvia, is there a next logical step?
    Would it be a full manual level setup?

    Thanks
    Hi John,

    Concentrating on shot quality, I think you have a few options- in no particular order:
    • PID the Silvia for much better temperature control/consistency (A few hundy and some time)
    • Upgrade the Silvia to an e-61 single boiler machine like the Diadema Perfetta or VBM Domobar Piccolo. Make sure your dealer has a Scace device so as to accurately calibrate the machine for temperature. ($1-1.2k after the sale of the Silvia)
    • Breville DB which gives you an inbuilt PID and also terrific shots. You get simultaneous steam as a bonus (circa $1k after the sale of the Silvia)
    • Go crazy and buy a 1 group manual lever machine (anywhere from $1.5-6k)

    Hope that helps

    Chris

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    • #3
      Re: Where to go from a Rancilio Silvia?

      Something that tempted me greatly prior to purchasing my BZ09 (similar to a Silvia) was the idea of a good lever machine.

      Theres a romance to the lever, which I cant quite explain, but I feel like there would be a whole new level of challenges involved that have the potential to improve the shot greatly. Everything Ive read about them makes me feel that with a lever you can achieve a nuance in your shot that may be difficult to achieve otherwise and that you are vastly more in touch with the process as its you driving it.

      Then again, Ive seen the dent in the shelf behind Bezzeras Strega, so there are other considerations as well....

      When you move up to an HX, it seems like itd be different challenges from the single boiler, but thatd theyd feel like the same old challenges. (Same-same but different as I think a commenter here said recently, reminding me of my Thai holidays). You have to learn to make cooling flushes instead of heating ones. You can steam and brew simultaneously. You can steam more. These dont seem like challenges to me - so its not as an appealing an upgrade as to something that really changes the paradigm of my process.

      And of course, I dont actually own a lever and Ive never used one - so Im talking out of my a** really.

      But thats where Ill go when its time to upgrade.

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      • #4
        Re: Where to go from a Rancilio Silvia?

        Next logical step? well, if you dont do milk drinks then Id say the best most cost effective would be to PID that silvia, Thousands have done so with excellent results. Other things to maybe consider is play around a little with the silvia, stuff like different baskets, Tampers, Etc.

        of course, Theres also upgraditius, Skys the limit there, whether it be I want a BDB/cheap HX to "hell, why not go for a vintage Lever?"

        But yeah, You sound like youve got a good setup for espresso shots there already. you should try staying away the upgraditus as much as possible, for now

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        • #5
          Re: Where to go from a Rancilio Silvia?

          Thanks for the replies.

          Comment

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