Profitec GO vs. Rancilio Silvia Pro X

Recommendations for buyers and upgraders from the site's members.
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#1: Post by AmishDiplomat »

Hey team - lurker turned poster.

Looking for some input on my specific situation. I used to work as a barista in DC while attending college and have been a devout daily pour-over user since I was 17. I've enjoyed tweaking my pour over recipes for the various blends and origins I've had over the years.

My partner and I are looking to make a dive into espresso and upgrade from my Aeropress/Joepresso v2 setup! Personally, I like espresso sans milk and an occasional cortado - so I value things like PID, pressure gauges, and consistency in order to modify recipes. My partner is more a cappuccino / latte enjoyer so I think the smaller details aren't as crucial to her.

I'm currently split between a Profitec Go (~$999.00 usd) from WLL and a used Rancilio Silvia Pro X (~$1,400.00 usd) available via FB in my area. (There are a number of used BDBs in my area (~$1,200.00), but unless it's a steal of a deal I worry about getting one used. The water out here is incredibly hard and I don't want to get one that's too far down the scale-hole as I've read it's better to use softened water from day 1 vs de-scaling a BDB. But I digress.)

I could go either way. Here's my rationale for each:

I see the Profitec Go as "good enough" for milk while checking many of my other boxes, and see the cash saved on this machine as going towards all the espresso accoutrements that I currently lack, i.e. pitchers, tamper, saucers, drip tray sized scale, electric grinder, etc. I may eventually tire of the shot to steam workflow, but I also reason that in 2-3 years I could sell the Go and use those funds to invest in a double boiler.

I see the Silvia Pro X as a good enough deal that it could be worth stomaching the higher price and just getting a double boiler off the bat. I don't see the double boiler as an immediate need, but as a former barista I do derive a lot of joy making drinks for others, and I see myself hoping to make 3-4 milk drinks at a time for friends in a dinner setting. This would likely be a 5-10 year investment as opposed to the 2-3 year timeline I foresee with the Go. Also, not hugely important but the Silvia is about a 3 hour drive away from me, but a factor.

Anywho - I'd love to hear your opinions and thoughts! Think used off of FB is too sketchy? Should I call WLL and see if they'll sweeten the deal? Hate the Go/Silvia Pro X? Anything that may help me get off the fence that I currently sit on would be great!

Thanks all.

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#2: Post by Cgr86 »

I'm by no means an expert nor have I owned the profitec Go, but for my needs I can't see a machine giving me more than my Pro X. It's a pleasure to steam with, and pulls a great shot as my grinder suits my needs.

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#3: Post by Bluenoser »

If the Silvia is older than 6 mo., I'd ask for it to be descaled. You can't tell how well it is taken care of and you can get significant scale just in a year. Profitec is generally well made, although I'm not a fan of their support. I would think if you just generally make 2 espressos at one time.. the Go would be more than adequate. Use low-scale water to ensure it lasts 10 years.

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#4: Post by Milligan »

I wouldn't be afraid to go used but be sure to completely take into account that you get zero customer service, zero warranty, unknown history, and inconvenience of travel. These are large factors IMO and there should be a significant discount to offset those factors. $400-500 off of a Silvia wouldn't be enough for me especially taking into account 4 hours of travel, so add in $100 for gas, wear and tear, eating out, etc not to mention your time. A lot of new machines include free shipping with insurance.

Since this is potentially a long term investment and not something to tinker/play-with/secondary machine then I'd lean toward a new purchase. Also ask yourself if there are features or stretch purchases that you may want a year from now. Since you plan to keep this machine for 10+ years, a few extra $100's amortized over 10 years may be well worth the initial cost now.

With that said, the Profitec Go has started to become the go-to machine in the $1000 range. With a PID, adjustable brew pressure via OPV, adjustable steam temp, quick warm up, relatively fast switch to steaming, nice pressure gauge, and great price point, it is kind of hard to beat as a single boiler. I really don't think it is worth going with the Rancilio Silvia Pro X to be marginally faster in the rare occasion you need to make 4-5 lattes back to back. The quick warm up, smaller size, lower price and less energy usage of the Profitec Go will likely outweigh those few limitations. You'll still be able to knock out 4-5 lattes, it'll just take a bit more time. The only hard part is finding one in stock!

AmishDiplomat (original poster)
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#5: Post by AmishDiplomat (original poster) »

Thanks all for the input! I greatly appreciate it.

@Bluenoser - valid point, and my thoughts exactly. I've a water softener filter on the way so I am ready to use that with a machine from day one, but does give me pause about the condition of any used machine.

@Milligan - your point regarding warranty definitely gives me pause. There is a refurbished Silvia Pro X on WLL right now, but as I am new to the espresso game I need to factor in the cost of an electric grinder (leaning towards Turin SK40), espresso sized scale (my kitchen scale I use for my pour over setup is probably not be precise/compact enough), upgraded tamper, and all the other little accessories I will convince myself that I need.

So, the fact that I could theoretically order a Profitec Go new (and get the resulting warranty + peace of mind) does carry a lot of weight as I'll have some room left in the budget for all of the other gizmos and gadgets I'll be ordering.

I reached out to WLL and they said they expect to have more Profitec Go's in stock around early April! Honestly this may be a blessing in disguise as it gives me time to start picking away at accessories while also calming down my case of Gear Acquisition Syndrome.

I had whipped myself into a fervor yesterday and convinced myself I NEEDED to order the refurbished SPX from WLL... and honestly I will have that machine on my radar as a potential upgrade in the future especially if I find myself consistently hitting the capacity of the single boiler workflow. But for now, I will resolve myself to making the Profitec Go work! I am genuinely impressed that it has PID, OPV adjustability, and all the other features. As you've all said, it sounds like it will handle two milk drinks without issue. If I'm hosting friends, then I'll just have to be patient :) Either way, I'm excited to learn the basics and then hopefully branch out into lighter roast territory once I am ready.

Who knows, maybe in 2-4 years when I'm ready to upgrade the Silvia Pro X will have a new version out with pre-infusion (lacking on the GO) and a different drip day. I think I won't be the only one getting in line for that one.

Thanks again to the three of you who responded.

As a footnote - if anyone reading this has a Go they're looking to offload, you know where to find me!

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#6: Post by Cranked »

I'd recommend the Go and spend the extra cash on a grinder. Remember, in order of importance: beans, barista, grinder, machine.