ECM Synchronika vs Lucca M58

Recommendations for buyers and upgraders from the site's members.
j26263

#1: Post by j26263 »

I'm going to be upgrading from my modded gaggia classic in about two months. I love the look of the joysticks and I've narrowed it down to these two. I'm very interested to hear anyones opinions on either machine. On average I make 2-3 milk drinks a day, and I also like to experiment so I'll likely add the flow profiler immediately or shortly after purchase. My primary concern is longevity of the machine, at the 3k+ price point I'll end up single if I tried to purchase again.

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JB90068
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#2: Post by JB90068 »

I've been very happy with my Synch with flow control. Using it daily making 2-3 cappuccinos per day for the past six months. Joysticks are a nice feature as are the gauges mounted up higher.
Old baristas never die. They just become over extracted.

j26263 (original poster)

#3: Post by j26263 (original poster) »

Thank you!

jrham12

#4: Post by jrham12 »

Josh,

First off, welcome to the forum!!! The Lucca M58 was one of the machines I was looking at but decided to go with the Synchronika.

Like Jock (JB90068) pointed out, I also liked having the gauges up higher, but my concern with the M58 was having the PID mounted up at the top of the case where the ambient heat from the boilers would be the highest. I would think having the PID mounted lower in the case is a better idea. One thing I do like about how the M58 is laid out internally though is that the motor is not underneath the boilers like on the Synch. That way if you do ever have a boiler leak, it won't be dripping on the motor. One other thing I liked about the ECM is that they use braided SS hoses on the water lines and not just nylon tubing as in the Lucca. I ended up liking the overall internal arrangement of the Synch better and went that route.

I've had mine for nearly 2 years now with no regrets! When I bought mine at the beginning of the pandemic, the ECM flow control was out of stock everywhere so I fitted mine with the flow control from Coffee Sensor. I don't use it on every shot but I enjoy having that capability. I've had to change the o-ring on the vacuum breaker valve a couple times and swapped an o-ring on the backside of the steam valve due to a small leak, but I don't count that against the machine; just normal maintenance that you'll eventually have to perform on any machine.

Hope that helps!
Josh

j26263 (original poster)

#5: Post by j26263 (original poster) »

Thank you so much, do you use a waterline or the reservoir? I was reading that the ECM requires a lower line pressure than other machines and i'm wondering if that is a significant concern in reality.

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JB90068
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#6: Post by JB90068 » replying to j26263 »

Mine is plumbed into a BWT filter with a pressure reducer. Line pressure is around 80 psi so I had to reduce it to two bars. My guess is that this is advised so as not to blow out seals or connections.

Old baristas never die. They just become over extracted.

jrham12

#7: Post by jrham12 »

I use the reservoir and mix my own water (RPavlis recipe) so I can't help you there... But looking at the user manual for the Synchronika on the ECM website, they recommend a pressure range of 100 kPa (14.5psi) to 200 kPa (31psi) which I think is on par with other machines... Others will need to chime in here though...

Josh

salvia

#8: Post by salvia »

It's difficult to raise pressure, but easy to reduce it and I can't imagine plumbing in a machine without using a pressure regulator. Even if your incoming pressure was in the appropriate range for your machine, you would likely want a pressure reducing valve in order to protect against any potential spikes in pressure.

The Lucca M58 looks good, but if your primary concern is longevity, it would seem the Synchronika would be a better choice if for no reason than it's larger user base which might make it easier to get advise on this forum and others. (Though there's no reason to believe you would have any issues with Quickmill based M58).

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JB90068
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#9: Post by JB90068 »

salvia wrote:The Lucca M58 looks good, but if your primary concern is longevity, it would seem the Synchronika would be a better choice if for no reason than it's larger user base which might make it easier to get advise on this forum and others.
You could also call around to your nearest espresso repair shop to find out which brands they service especially if you don't buy locally. It was something I did before purchasing my Synch.
Old baristas never die. They just become over extracted.

j26263 (original poster)

#10: Post by j26263 (original poster) »

JB90068 wrote:Mine is plumbed into a BWT filter with a pressure reducer. Line pressure is around 80 psi so I had to reduce it to two bars. My guess is that this is advised so as not to blow out seals or connections.
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That's a beautiful setup, thanks so much for the information. I think with all the guidance here I'm leaning towards the ECM.