La Marzocco GS3 AV vs Decent for small coffee shop

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

#1: Post by cemara »

Hi folks, I need advice preferably from people who have used both machines.
I'm starting up a small coffee shop, I just checked decent is about half the price of GS3 here,
but with decent I need to do repairs myself, where as the GS3 reseller here offers temporary replacement should the machine breakdown.
I prefer the machine can make consistent flavor and doesn't need too much troubleshoot.
Since i'm gonna be leaving it to my employee most of the time.

I'm kinda interested in automation, I played with home assistant a bit in my house, so I guess I wouldn't mind tinkering with decent.
But GS3 quality and service is kinda hard to beat. And I read decent need troubleshoot every now and then.
I would appreciate any input, especially from longtime owners.. Regards.

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#2: Post by Jaroslav replying to cemara »

GS3. Let's you brew and steam at the same time (two people can work with one machine), Decent doesn't.

cemara (original poster)

#3: Post by cemara (original poster) »

I was thinking decent's profiling flexibility could give me competitive advantage, since there are alot of coffee shops here.
By using the profile could i tailor-made coffee based on their preferred taste by asking them first, e.g bitter, sweet, etc ?
I'm just concluding this from reading forum posts, so any real feedback would be appreciated.

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#4: Post by HB »

It depends on how many back-to-back milk drinks you expect. If it's just one (or zero), then the GS3 speed advantage evaporates. If it's 3-4, then the additional steam/transition time you add to drink preparation matters. If I were shopping around for equipment, I'd stop by other nearby cafes and see what their typical queue looks like, then decide.

FWIW, I don't think it's realistic to tweak each espresso to someone's taste preference. Getting espresso dialed in takes time and in my experience, paying customers want to be out in < 5 minutes.
Dan Kehn

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#5: Post by Jeff »

I have yet to find a machine that can change the general flavors that a coffee presents. There are machines that can get a slightly different rendition of it, but the differences are subtle in the hands of a skilled barista. They are subtle enough that they are probably lost on most of the coffee drinking public. Any machine is capable of taking a good coffee and making it bitter or sour -- many consider that to be a poorly executed shot. If you choose to market your business based on the machine, that will likely require both reasonable coffee and excellent marketing skills. I would select based on the ability to serve your customers fast enough to meet their desires with coffee that is consistently good. That includes a machine that is reliable so you don't have days or weeks when you're not there.

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#6: Post by pizzaman383 »

Jaroslav wrote:GS3. Let's you brew and steam at the same time (two people can work with one machine), Decent doesn't.
For the price of one GS3 can't one buy two Decents?
LMWDP #551
“Taste every shot before adding milk!”

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#7: Post by Jaroslav replying to pizzaman383 »

Valid point, sure you can. But one GS3 steams milk twice as fast as both Decents combined.

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BaristaBoy E61

#8: Post by BaristaBoy E61 »

The GS3 is truly a 1-group Professional machine.
"You didn't buy an Espresso Machine - You bought a Chemistry Set!"

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#9: Post by LondonBunny »

Why either of those machines and not a commercial machine that can take constant use, simple for staff, and be consistent.

I look at those machines as superb high end domestic machines, but not commercially orientated machines.

A plumbed-in La Marzocco Mini maybe better suited, but even then I would rather take a service from a commercial espresso supplier.

I maybe wrong, so please any cafe owners running banks of DE1s or GS3s, correct me.

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#10: Post by HB »

Good points above! I would also put the availability of service high on my priority list -- both in terms of parts and qualified maintenance/repair technicians.
Dan Kehn