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367 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 556720 11-Dec-2011 21:22 Send private message

Get a Breville dual boiler. Check out the thread on it at coffeesnobs.com.au http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1312978609. I have had one for a few months now and it is great. Of course you need the right beans and a semi decent grinder to go with it. You can also get them interest free as they are sold by Harvey Normans and Noel Leemings. They were being sold with a Breville smart grinder included.

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  Reply # 556724 11-Dec-2011 21:35 Send private message

wallop: Get a Breville dual boiler. Check out the thread on it at coffeesnobs.com.au http://coffeesnobs.com.au/YaBB.pl?num=1312978609. I have had one for a few months now and it is great. Of course you need the right beans and a semi decent grinder to go with it. You can also get them interest free as they are sold by Harvey Normans and Noel Leemings. They were being sold with a Breville smart grinder included.


I've been looking at that breville.  My only concern with it is the long term.  I dont think it woujl dshare any parts with any of the other major heat exchanger based units, and for this reason I've made the choice to spend the extra.

That said, the BES860 unit with the built in grinder might be a good move.  Again I'd be worried about servicing.

I only bring up the servicing a bit, as its biting me on my butt at the moment with my current machine....the getting it fixed isn't the problem.....but getting the parts is a nightmare.

Here's some info on HX vs double boiler machines.  The breville BES900 (as the poster mentions) is a double boiler.  The one I list (the BES860), and the Rancillo Silvia and Ascaso Dream (and Gaggia have one as well) are single boilers. 

The e-61, Cuadra, Vibemme Domobar are heat exchanger based machines.




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367 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 10


  Reply # 556776 12-Dec-2011 07:51 Send private message

The BES 860 is a thermoblock machine not a single boiler.  Hopefully the 900 will last but as it is a brand new design only time will tell.  I'm expecting at least 5 years out of it.  If you read the coffeesnobs posts you will see that Breville have been putting a lot of effort in so far.

Sancho I'm in CHCH so if you want to come around and see the machine in action let me know.  It would have to be next week though.

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  Reply # 556786 12-Dec-2011 08:27 Send private message

What is the machine you are replacing?

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  Reply # 556799 12-Dec-2011 09:12 Send private message

I also have a Nespresso and think its great. The capsules keep coffee fresh and as said , makes it exactly the same each time. I only have the smaller version which is fine for me but wouldn't be for a few people given the milk frother takes a while just to do one.

The newer ones available have a better frothing system but still doesn't look the same as steamed milk so if you are a purest its not for you.

Looking at all the big name machines being put forward I wonder how many are really that good and not just snob value (no insult to those that have them) or a boys toy :), given some of the reviews on Consumer.

I also have an ES00 at work which is great and have had it for about 4 years but some are put of by the brand name Breville. It is also reasonably priced for what you get.




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  Reply # 556812 12-Dec-2011 10:03 Send private message

Im looking at a similar upgrade, since this thread got me interested.

Without reviving a classic circular debate, what are your thoughts on Gaggia Classic v Rancilio Silvia? Seems the classic might have more stable temperature for brewing but the Silvia has relatively more capacity (as single boilers go) for steaming - is this right?

Some of the forums on this stuff are worse than Mac vs PC!



47 posts

Geek


  Reply # 556818 12-Dec-2011 10:24 Send private message

Thanks everyone for all the great information! The caudra looks and sound like a top notch unit and have some 'good' pricing on at the moment.  The breville worries me as a lot of the mainline stuff is never built as well and I love the chunky designs with strong metal switches etc, but not a deal breaker. I'll go look at one in the retail stores and see what kind of deal I can get, if they can make a nice cash sale then it could swing me. Still havn't written off the Silvia as I can get that and a decent grinder for less than the unit alone of the other 2..... decisions decisions :\

The below image is from a demo Caudra, do most decent units make coffee this creamy? (sorry if thats a REALLY n00b question) but god damn that looks good :)



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  Reply # 556820 12-Dec-2011 10:35 Send private message

Sancho: Thanks everyone for all the great information! The caudra looks and sound like a top notch unit and have some 'good' pricing on at the moment.  The breville worries me as a lot of the mainline stuff is never built as well and I love the chunky designs with strong metal switches etc, but not a deal breaker. I'll go look at one in the retail stores and see what kind of deal I can get, if they can make a nice cash sale then it could swing me. Still havn't written off the Silvia as I can get that and a decent grinder for less than the unit alone of the other 2..... decisions decisions :\

The below image is from a demo Caudra, do most decent units make coffee this creamy? (sorry if thats a REALLY n00b question) but god damn that looks good :)




Lol if you buy one of those, can you mention my name, maybe he'll give me commission!!






Previously known as psycik

NextPVR Based HTPC:

2 x HVR3000 - DVB-S - Freeview, HVR3000 - DVB-T Freeview|HD, Nova-T 500 - Dual Freeview|HD, Digital Coax --> Yamaha RX-v540, 8600GT --> Samsung LA46A650D via HDMI
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47 posts

Geek


  Reply # 556826 12-Dec-2011 10:51 Send private message

davidcole:
Sancho: Thanks everyone for all the great information! The caudra looks and sound like a top notch unit and have some 'good' pricing on at the moment.  The breville worries me as a lot of the mainline stuff is never built as well and I love the chunky designs with strong metal switches etc, but not a deal breaker. I'll go look at one in the retail stores and see what kind of deal I can get, if they can make a nice cash sale then it could swing me. Still havn't written off the Silvia as I can get that and a decent grinder for less than the unit alone of the other 2..... decisions decisions :\

The below image is from a demo Caudra, do most decent units make coffee this creamy? (sorry if thats a REALLY n00b question) but god damn that looks good :)




Lol if you buy one of those, can you mention my name, maybe he'll give me commission!!




Haha sure :) - Have you been able to do any real world comparisons or much research? Suck thing about being self employed is I have already spent too much time on the subject :( Especially at this time of year!



29 posts

Geek
+1 received by user: 2


  Reply # 556919 12-Dec-2011 13:11 Send private message

I've got the ascaso dream, I find it gives consistently great coffee. Best feature for me is the switchable heads.

During the week I'm in a rush so I use the pods for quick clean and easy shots. Come the weekend switch over and put in some nicely ground stuff for when time isn't at a premium.

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  Reply # 556928 12-Dec-2011 13:25 Send private message

One model not mentioned so far...

http://www.carina.net.nz/category/coffee-machines.aspx


I bought this about 4 months previously. 

The best thing is that it is no grinding and very little cleaning required.

Cleaning is the one job I cannot stand and the reason I stopped using my previous machine.

Milk frothing is not quite as good as from a good barista (how do they make it so creamy?) but the taste is always spot on. 

Oh, did I mention, almost no cleaning :)

 

71 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 556945 12-Dec-2011 13:55 Send private message

The cuadra looks to be pretty good value for a mid range heat exchanger unit. However, there doesn't seem to be a lot of information available online. Depending on the price, you might also consider a VBM Domobar Junior HX or Super HX or Rocket E61 if you are looking at that price range.

Either way, any HX machine will be light years ahead of a thermoblock machine. 

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  Reply # 556949 12-Dec-2011 13:58 Send private message

Sancho: Thanks everyone for all the great information! The caudra looks and sound like a top notch unit and have some 'good' pricing on at the moment.  The breville worries me as a lot of the mainline stuff is never built as well and I love the chunky designs with strong metal switches etc, but not a deal breaker. I'll go look at one in the retail stores and see what kind of deal I can get, if they can make a nice cash sale then it could swing me. Still havn't written off the Silvia as I can get that and a decent grinder for less than the unit alone of the other 2..... decisions decisions :\

The below image is from a demo Caudra, do most decent units make coffee this creamy? (sorry if thats a REALLY n00b question) but god damn that looks good :)




Most decent machines with a decent barista and fresh beans (a very important part of the whole equation, do not buy supermarket rubbish) will produce shots like that. I have an Expobar Brewtus II at home and my shots look like that with the naked portafilter I use.

In relation to the discussion here: in your price range the Silvia has a towering reputation. At a later stage you can also mod it to add a thermal PID (will run you ~$200US) which will increase the quality of the coffee it produces quite a bit, so it has some room to grow with you. I'm unfamiliar with the Caudra, will take a look (I often get asked about home nachines so need to maintain a working knowledge of the less expensive ones!). I wouldn't touch the Nespresso's or their ilk with a barge pole, however if you're not a real purist then they are probably worth looking into.

Definitely find a good source for fresh beans, I have an AP to CoffeeLab and they courier me a bag of beans on their roasting days (twice a week).

As mentioned earlier definitely do not just use the horrible plastic tamps that come with these machines, but a decent one (the Espro coffee tamp is brilliant for getting consistency - good learning tool but also good if multiple people will be using the machine since all will be using the same tamp pressure - hard to find but Ebay usually has them). 




Twitter: @nztechfreak
Blogs: AndroidNZ.net


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  Reply # 556952 12-Dec-2011 14:02 Send private message

NZtechfreak:I'm unfamiliar with the Caudra,


Cuadra.co.nz - sold by Revive Espresso in petone (Here in Wellington).




Previously known as psycik

NextPVR Based HTPC:

2 x HVR3000 - DVB-S - Freeview, HVR3000 - DVB-T Freeview|HD, Nova-T 500 - Dual Freeview|HD, Digital Coax --> Yamaha RX-v540, 8600GT --> Samsung LA46A650D via HDMI
Clients:
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UnblockUS - Unblock your freedom

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  Reply # 556956 12-Dec-2011 14:09 Send private message

davidcole:
NZtechfreak:I'm unfamiliar with the Caudra,


Cuadra.co.nz - sold by Revive Espresso in petone (Here in Wellington).


Cheers!

I think it was the OP mentioned about a machine that doesn't come suited for our power supplies (possibly from the US where these things tend to be cheaper) - might be worth mentioning that you can just buy a stepdown transformer for like $60NZ at Dick Smith to get around that. Just in case that opens up more options in the OP's price range.

I use one with a few US-brought appliances n stuff (like my Digitech Whammy pedal that I got for like $250NZ brand new and sells here for like $600).

Oh, and I don't think anyone here has mentioned getting an electronic timer for the machine. I have one on my machine at home - turns the machine on ~40mins before I wake and before I arrive home from work so the machine is 'at temperature' when I pull my shots.
 




Twitter: @nztechfreak
Blogs: AndroidNZ.net


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