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Rocket Giotto vs VBM Domobar Junior

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  • Rocket Giotto vs VBM Domobar Junior

    Hi All
    I am thinking of replacing my Nuova Simonelli Oscar after recently had a service. It is operating better than ever but I quite like the look of several machines that I have saw in the shop and the addition of a water dispenser will be useful! Namely the Rocket Giotto and the VBM Junior.

    In favour of the VBM is the smaller footprint, gauges in a more useful position, a much bigger drip tray (I managed to get 1.6l into it), a more powerful heating element and price. On taking out the drip tray the machine looks to be better built with stainless steel around the drip tray rather than black painted steel on the Rocket from what I could see. I have seen several second hand machines where Rockets are rusty in this area too. The VBM cup storage is quite small but for the 2-3 coffee's we make a day, its probably not a big issue.

    In favour of the Rocket is the bigger working area, a slot on the top of the Rocket which makes for easier filling, cool touch wands and unique looks.

    The Rocket drip tray looks seriously small compared to my Oscar and the water tank is bigger on both that my Oscar which are my main concerns on practical day to day usage.

    The VBM seems to go for approx $2300 vs the Rocket at approx $3000 and I maybe able to get a Rocket Evolizione with the rotary pump for a little bit more. These are NZD so a little higher than AUD too.

    I am told that they produce coffee of a similar quality - is that a fair statement? Is the Rocket or the Rocket Evolizione worth spending the extra $$ on? Id be interested in other feedback between the machines too.
    Last edited by GBH; 17 February 2014, 01:21 PM.

  • #2
    Got the VBM and like the smaller footprint besides not being able to fit lots of cups on the top. Even though I can accommodate a larger coffee machine, it seems like a better option now after some months of usage. I have to say that the slot on the top of the rocket is very nice and if it wasn't for the kill switch... I would have burnt out the element a long long time ago and many many times over as sometime I am too lazy to take off the cups to refill. A larger water tank would be nice. I have been pondering whether to manufacture a replacement lid with a slot like the rocket so I can at least have the option of not taking off the lid every time. Also when refilling, the machine is quite loud but comparable to the mazzer mini so its not too much of a concern.

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    • #3
      btw I am looking at replacing my grinder. Currently I have a Sunbeam EM0480 and a Mini Macho but after 4.5 years and reading about inconsistent grind and associated grit in the coffee I think its time to upgrade. I am thinking to possibly a Macap M2M as I would prefer to have a doserless setup.

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      • #4
        I would suggest a slight step up than the m2m as the grind tray is plastic and it's stepped. My suggestion would be k3p or mini-e or m4d if you want doserless. I prefer doser as given if I dose too much then I'll just put it back into the doser and dose into next coffee. Some people or sponsors are more knowledgeable but the worm drive on the macap killed it for me as it seems too tedious to change grind setting

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        • #5
          Also I can't understand why macap don't make a two tiered worm drive. one for fine adjustment and one for large adjustment.

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          • #6
            have a look at Talk Coffee's sponsor thread. Chris has deals on for both the machines you are interested in.

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            • #7
              Sorry just realised you're in NZ, so previous post may not apply.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by javatime View Post
                Also I can't understand why macap don't make a two tiered worm drive. one for fine adjustment and one for large adjustment.
                There is.... The worm drive hinges back. Find something (allen key or similar) to replace the 2 grub screws with and hey presto....

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                • #9
                  Hi GBH, have owned the Junior now own the Rocket Evo. I cannot tell the difference with the coffee from either. You should be happy either way. The non-stainless chassis was an issue for me but I saw past that and am very happy. If you can swing for the Evo which is plumbable it takes the pi##y little drip tray out of the equation. Both machines are winners.

                  Steve

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Talk_Coffee View Post
                    There is.... The worm drive hinges back. Find something (allen key or similar) to replace the 2 grub screws with and hey presto....
                    that was a really good idea when I first read it... someone did a mod using a spring so you can just flip it out to do the big adjustment then it would be strong enough to hold it tight when you flip it back with no play to it...

                    I really liked the worm drive for the Macap

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Mono View Post
                      Hi GBH, have owned the Junior now own the Rocket Evo. I cannot tell the difference with the coffee from either. You should be happy either way. The non-stainless chassis was an issue for me but I saw past that and am very happy. If you can swing for the Evo which is plumbable it takes the pi##y little drip tray out of the equation. Both machines are winners.

                      Steve
                      Hi Steve, I am curious as to why you upgraded from the VBM to the Rocket Evo - was it for the rotary pump? Was there anything that you miss about the VBM apart from the drip tray capacity?

                      The Rocket does have a nice glossy chrome finish whereas the VBM has more of a matt finish to my eye anyway. My kitchen has recently been upgraded so I will be using the internal water tank and drip tray so the practicality of those two items are important. The Rocket has an large opening on the Rocket which is good but I guess in reality that is probably a 5-7 day task depending on usage, whereas the drip tray will be emptied daily.

                      In trying to workout whether its worth spending the extra 50% on the Rocket Evo, it sounds like the main advantage of the Rocket Evo is the quieter pump and if the coffee is similar to the Rocket Plus, it comes down to personal preference?

                      My current thinking is that if I buy the smaller and cheaper VBM, I'll have a bit more budget and room for a better grinder. Although I have had my setup for over 4 years, I have read quite a bit on the forum about the grinder being worth spending the extra $$ on.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by GBH View Post
                        the machine looks to be better built with stainless steel around the drip tray rather than black painted steel on the Rocket from what I could see. I have seen several second hand machines where Rockets are rusty in this area too.

                        and

                        The Rocket drip tray looks seriously small compared to my Oscar
                        To be honest I think you would be happy with either machine. Although the size of the Giotto drip tray initially discouraged me in my purpose decision, in practice I have not found it to be an issue. After all how long do you want to go without emptying your drip tray?

                        Also can't say that I'm aware of any signs of rust on my almost five years old Giotto.

                        Best wishes, Russell

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by russellm View Post
                          To be honest I think you would be happy with either machine. Although the size of the Giotto drip tray initially discouraged me in my purpose decision, in practice I have not found it to be an issue. After all how long do you want to go without emptying your drip tray?

                          Also can't say that I'm aware of any signs of rust on my almost five years old Giotto.
                          I have a Giotto Premium Plus since 2009. Although the drip tray was a concern when I bought it, it's actually a non-issue now. I only empty once every two or three days mainly because I keep a small container to perform a cleaning flush between shots or a backflush ( ie placing the container under the outlet during a backflush. One other consideration is steaming power If you plan to prepare several milk-based coffees . My GPP Can just manage steaming a 600 myug after pulling two double shots. I noted the VBM Super had much better steaming power, not sure about the Junior though.
                          Yes, a little rust developedalong the top of the frame Where the driptray sits but this hasn't been a problem'
                          Flynn ( posting from the beautiful Island of Langkawi in Malaysia where I have been drinking pod coffee for the last 4 days and almost used to it) .

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                          • #14
                            Hi all, long time watcher of the CS forums, but thin poster sorry.

                            I recently upgraded to a Rocket Evoluzione from a Rancilio Silvia and haven't looked back. I compared quite a few machines, but honestly, in the end, in this price range they all make great coffee.

                            What swayed me on the Rocket was how damn good looking it was! It's quality of finish is also quiet impressive. You could save some dollars dropping to a Plus, but I just couldn't live without that beautiful rotary pump sound in the morning. I'll also get it plumbed in at some time in the future.

                            Don't get caught up in specs, follow your heart - the whole coffee thing is pretty emotional!

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                            • #15
                              GBH the main reasons were a quieter pump, asthetics and that I was no longer as squeezed for bench space as before. Either machine will be able to consistently produce excellent espresso. The weak link will be the operator & grinder. Enjoy whichever purchase you make.

                              Steve.

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