Is Izzo Alex MK2 a good upgrade?

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

#1: Post by walshman »

Hi Everyone
I have a dilemma. Having just sold my Expobar office Leva, I am now on the market for an upgrade. The machines I have in mind are the Izzo Alex MK2 and the commercial Elektra GL. I'm more than happy to purchase the Alex so long as I know it will be a significant upgrade to the Expobar. It is claimed to have (UK Spec) a 2 litre boiler and a 1500w element unlike the 1.5 litre boiler and 1200w element that was on the Expobar. I do mainly milk based drinks so steam is important and I don't want to spend an eternity under the steam wand if you get my drift. The Alex is around £700 cheaper than the Elektra so there would be a huge saving but having said that I don't want to buy something and a year later regret it. The Elektra speaks for itself. I don't care too much for the Duetto because I am used to cooling flushes on the Expobar so that's why it's not on my short list. Thanks for reading. Your thoughts please.
Dennis

walshman (original poster)

#2: Post by walshman (original poster) »

No takers on this thread? Perhaps a Duetto is the better option then.

mike01

#3: Post by mike01 »

I made a similar upgrade about a year ago. I went from an Expobar Pulser to an Izzo Alex MK II (not to be confused with the newer Alex II with the PID). The Alex was a definite upgrade for me. The things I like best about it are the improved build quality over the Expobar, the rotary pump and ability to plumb in, and the improved steam performance. My pulser only had a 800w element (IIRC) and the difference in steam performance was pretty big for me. The machine can basically keep up with just about any size tip you want to use on it, which definitely not the case on the Expobar. The HX dynamics seem to be very similar to the Expobar, both machines seem to run pretty hot, which means you need a large cooling flush followed by a very short recovery time. I plumbed in my machine, which was probably the biggest upgrade for me, because I no longer need to fill the water tank and drip tray, which was something I needed to do almost daily before. A few upgrades I made to my machine since I purchased it was the addition of a EricS thermometer, which I calibrated to my machine's performance with the rental of a Scace device. I also switched the hot water and steam wands over to the no-burn type, which is especially nice for steaming milk. I also like the 2-hole tip of the no-burn wand much better than the stock tip. I upgraded the feet to the newer chrome feet and I also installed dynamat on most of the interior body panels. The machine was much quieter than my Expobar in the original configuration, but it still had a few rattles and vibrations. The dynamat help silence those quite a bit. If you are used to the cooling flushes on the Expobar, I think you will be pleased with the Alex. I found a very good price on mine used so the upgrade was definitely worth it to me.