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Thread: Froth on cheaper and more expensive machines

  1. #1
    Senior Member FineGrind's Avatar
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    Froth on cheaper and more expensive machines

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    A person brought a Cheap sunbeam espresso machine (not sure which one) into work and it produced what seemed to me really good froth. I had a Delonghi and it was ok froth not as good as the sunbeam. I bought a more expensive machine Isomac zaffrio and it barely made any froth at all. And the more I read the more I see people with the same problem, that the more expensive machines like the tea and the expobar minor III don't seem to easily get really frothy milk. Yet I saw the cheap sunbem do it easily. What is the story with that? I see a lot of people trying to compensate the lack of easily made froth with different techniques too.

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    Senior Member specialpants's Avatar
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    There are too many variables: people, machines and different points in time. It's too early to point the finger at the machine.

    I'd say give it more time to develop your technique, and to adjust to the increased power of the boiler. Your Delonghi probably had a thermoblock heating system which is much slower (weaker steam pressure, lower steam temperature) than your Isomac.

    I jumped from a Sunbeam to an E61 machine about a year ago. It took me about 2 weeks before I was able to get a decent milk. It then took another couple of months for me to get perfect microfoam.

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    Senior Member saoye's Avatar
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    It has to do with the amount of steam and how quickly the milk heats up. when you deal with a thermoblock you have ample time to adjust your hold and position while steaming. The larger boiler, more powerful steam, prosumer and commercial machines are made for heating larger amount of milk in quicker time. The prosumers are still reasonable, but commercial machines you'll really need to have your positioning etc right from the get go as it takes seconds to heat your milk especially if you are steaming for 1. If you are steaming for 1 then it's tough but not impossible. You can also purchase aftermarket single or double hole tips to surpress the amount of steam stretching the time you have. At the end of the day, it's better to have more steam as it's fantastic to have when you entertain. Imagine steaming for 6 on the sunbeam and then imagine on the prosumer or better yet the commercial machines which can steam 1 litre of milk in less than a minute! Incidentally, what's really good froth? If we're talking soap sudds then give me a flat white any day.

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    Senior Member FineGrind's Avatar
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    That was actually all pretty helpful. Thank you guys. I also found out that the cheaper machines have a feature where the steam wand automatically injects air into the milk. It makes it easier but gives you soap suds.

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    Do any have experience with steaming on the stove top Atomic? Having some trouble making it thick...

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    Senior Member flynnaus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChristianBB View Post
    Do any have experience with steaming on the stove top Atomic? Having some trouble making it thick...
    You may have the wand a bit too deep at the start and not enough air is being injected into the milk. Try searching Youtube for 'atomic steam milk'.

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    Thanks - I did some more research and practice, and it's getting nice and thick now...the wand was in too deep and the pressure wasn't high enough to really froth..



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