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Will I regret buying ECM Classika over a HX?

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  • Will I regret buying ECM Classika over a HX?

    Looking to buy my first machine and I was hoping for some wisdom from the community.

    I drink long blacks exclusively and I was thinking of getting an ECM Classika PID with flow rate regulator installed paired with a Eureka Specialita. I'd like to grow and learn with the machine. However the friendly staff at Di Bartoli have warned me of outgrowing the machine with lifestyle changes when entertaining friends and the limitations of having a single boiler when making more than two milk coffees.

    Will I be limited with the Classika? Or should I save another $800 and get the Mechanika Slim? It seems a big jump for the occasional friend that drinks milk coffees.

    Thanks in advance.


  • #2
    You'll get better espresso and therefore long blacks out of a single boiler with PID than you will from a Hx. You'd be running Peter to pay Paul, by reducing the quality of 99% of your coffee to reduce the wait time for occasional friends. I think you're on the money with the Classika.

    If you really do entertain large groups regularly I'd consider a dual boiler that you can turn the steam boiler off until you need it.


    • #3
      Agree with ninja, it’s rare I make more then two coffees at a time (own a DiBartoli Lumina / ECM mechanika) so I’d not be fussed about the odd time people come over. We all drink milk based drinks so HX was for me but if drank more black coffee it be dual boiler as still mainly drink milk.
      HX feels a compromise as lower price points. Focus on the budget (not limitless) get good grinder (second hand on here to get better for same money or less?) and see what the budget left is for machine but feel your on the right track


      • #4
        Thanks for the advice ninja! I'll stick with the classika and focus on dialling in good espresso. Do you guys have any thoughts on the faustino or specialita grinders?


        • #5
          They're both made by Eureka, going to be fairly similar inside. Faustino has 50mm burrs, Specialita has 55mm. The Faustino's portafilter holder will only work with Rocket style portafilters that have the spouts on the far side of the handle, spouts on the handle side or naked portafilters will have to be held in place. The funnel will probably give a slightly fluffier grind. The Specialita will likely be a bit quieter. Otherwise largely the same, both will produce great coffee.


          • #6
            Hello there.
            I know it's a bit late but i wanted to leave my review in Faustino here. I bought few months ago a Faustino from Coffeeparts and i have to say that their service and customer support was extraordinary. Unfortunately the grinder was very bad. Grinder itself is very solid and heavy, i think 7kg for a very small grinder.
            After 3 days touch screen develop a problem as a result the guys from Coffeeparts to send me a new screen from the supplier.
            Screen to replace was very easy just 2 screws. Second screen and again problem, not the same like the first one. So i came to a conclusion that the design of the screens are very bad.
            Now the guys offer me new screen from new batch, exchange the grinder with new one, or credit to buy any other grinder as i lost my trust.
            Another problem is that the grinder after few days develop some extra vibration noise and was coming from the dial knob.
            Finally i will send it back to get something else.


            • #7
              Looks to me like you have received exceptional service. Nice work Coffeeparts.


              • #8
                Hey guys,

                I always said i would never make coffee at home, then COVID struck. Started making french press and stovetop, which is all good, but then started watching James Hoffman on youtube and quickly got very interested in espresso. Long story short, I bought a Rok espresso machine, thinking that would suffice. And, in all honesty, its actually pretty good at making espresso, when temperature is managed well. Then, I was given a Sunbeam 6910, and its working nicely and definitely been fun to start playing with a pump machine and frothing milk for my girlfriend on the weekend.

                Yesterday I received my first decent grinder - an Eureka Mignon - after hand grinding on a porlex mini up until now. I am blown away at how much better the coffee tastes. I really thought it was all hype and didnt believe it could improve the espresso that much, but am completely sold now after only 2 days with it.

                So, that leads to me this post. I have been reading and watching reviews of entry level and mid level machines. Im pretty convinced I want an ECM Classika PID. I only drink espresso during the week and weekend and make 2-4 (max) milk drinks on the weekend for friends or family. Ive spoken to a couple people and they all say ill regret not getting an HX like the Lelit Mara X. And the Mara looks like a great machine with its different preset heat settings, but the Classika with its PID should allow me to experiment with temperature more and it has the easy pump pressure adjustment, to experiment with low pressure brewing. Eventually i would love to get the flow regulator kit to play with different brew pressure profiles.

                Will the Mara allow me to experiment as much as the classika (especially if i get the flow reg paddle down the line)? Is the preinfusion of the Mara as good as many people say it is? Is the PID on the ECM useful, or is it nullified to some degree due to the way e61 groupheads operate? Would I be better to wait much longer until i have saved up enough for a machine like the Profitec Pro 500 PID? or is the mara x with the floe reg kit as good?

                My head is spinning.

                Thanks in advance



                • #9
                  Sounds like you're on the right track. If you mostly drink espresso then a dedicated boiler with PID is the way to go. A dedicated boiler can be a single boiler in brew mode or the brew boiler of a dual boiler machine. I don't think you'll regret the Classika, but you need to know it won't produce coffee better than the 6910 can as much as it costs more than the 6910.


                  • TailorCoffee
                    TailorCoffee commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Thanks for the reply. just to clarify, you're saying it will produce better coffee than the 6910, but maybe not justified for the extra $s?