Looking for basic HX espresso machine

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

#1: Post by matthyx »

Hello HB members !

I have finally upgraded my grinder to a Cimbali Max and now I am starting to look for a new espresso machine... it looks like upgraditus is very contagious here :twisted:

Well, I look for a machine like the Gaggia Achille, but with a pump for lazy IT engineers like me.

This is what I like in the Achille:
  • clean design
    small footprint
    manual fill for steam boiler
    HX
    mostly stainless steel construction
    built to last
For the moment, the only candidate I have is the Olympia Maximatic which I could eventually find since I leave near Switzerland (the only drawback being the budget).

Do you see some alternatives?

zin1953

#2: Post by zin1953 »

Well, even though I have used neither, there is a world of difference between an HX lever machine (Gaggia Achille) and a semi-auto (Olympia Maximatic).

You know you want an HX machine, but before recommendations can really be made, you need to decide a few other things, like whether you want a lever, semi-auto, or automatic machine, and what your budget is.

Also, what exactly is a "small footprint"? I agree that the Olympia Maximatic is small (approximately 19.5 cm wide x 35.5 cm high x 35 cm deep), but what are your limits? A Quick Mill Anderja Premium is, for example, 29 cm wide x 40 cm high x 44.5 cm deep (again, this is approximate). Certainly larger, but is that too large? A La Valentina is only 25.4 cm wide, but it's 43.5 cm high and 46.6 cm deep (approx.). I can't think of another semi-auto HX machine as small as the Maximatic, so it's helpful to know your limits.

Cheers,
Jason
A morning without coffee is sleep. -- Anon.

matthyx

#3: Post by matthyx »

Hi Jason, thanks for your answer.

I want a pump machine, not a lever. I don't care the machine being semi-auto or auto since I will always use the manual brew switch.

For me the killer feature of both the Achille and the Maximatic is the manual refill of the steam boiler. This will allow me to use distilled water and forget about descaling it.

The second feature is related to the HX design: the pump will only pump cold brew water.

Finally, I really want a robust machine so the almost all stainless steel contruction is a must.

My budget is something between a Silvia and a Maximatic. (yes, I know the Silvia is not what I want)

User avatar
jesawdy

#4: Post by jesawdy »

matthyx wrote:For me the killer feature of both the Achille and the Maximatic is the manual refill of the steam boiler. This will allow me to use distilled water and forget about descaling it.

The second feature is related to the HX design: the pump will only pump cold brew water.
The Elektra Microcasa Semiautomatica comes to mind, see the Bench and Article threads too.
Jeff Sawdy

matthyx

#5: Post by matthyx »

Hi Jeff and thank you !

Wow I didn't even think about it, but you are right this Elektra could do the job nicely, and it's beautiful :)

I need to check if it fits under my cabinet though :?

Any other candidate ?

User avatar
RegulatorJohnson

#6: Post by RegulatorJohnson »

i have for sale, a well cared for expobar pulser with erics TC and a thermosyphon restrictor installed.

its great.

shipping to france might be a problem.

jon
jon stovall
--
coffeetoolsapp.com

matthyx

#7: Post by matthyx »

Hello Jon,

I am not sure the Expobar will be happy with 220V current, moreover the steam boiler is not manually filled.

I appreciate your offer though :wink:

zin1953

#8: Post by zin1953 »

The Elektra is 25.4 cm x 25.4 cm (round base), by 58.5 cm high.
A morning without coffee is sleep. -- Anon.

matthyx

#9: Post by matthyx »

:cry: it is too high, I have just measured !

Even the Achille is too high :cry:

bubbamike

#10: Post by bubbamike »

I'm very happy with my Fiorenzato Bricoletta. It is a HX that comes either with a vibe pump and pourover tank or plumbed with a rotary pump. It is well made and works wonderfully. I can't say enough good about it. The review here of the plumbed in version is a bit over critical over small issues that aren't a problem for me. An example the little hitch when you remove the drip tray. It really is nothing and not a problem if you don't let your tray get over full. Heats quickly and has lots of steam.

I would also think that the better Quickmills and the Vibiemme Domobar Super are also good machines though all the above may have to large a footprint for your needs.

Edited for grammar and spelling.