Quick Mill Silvano Evo for first espresso machine

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

#1: Post by wet_firecracker »

Hi all, I have been doing a lot of research on this forum and have found your advice incredibly helpful. I am interested in getting a proper espresso setup and want to skip the entry level Gaggia $500 realm because I feel like I will want to upgrade quickly. I am interested in making both espresso and milk-based drinks and would like my setup to be around $1500.

The current frontrunner is the Quick Mill Silvano EVO, although I am a little concerned about the milk-steaming capacities because of the Thermoblock. However I would not be making more than 2 - 3 drinks a day on it, so I'm fine with the process taking a little longer if needed.

As far as grinders go, I was thinking of going with the entry level Eureka Notte. I have seen some better deals on Eureka grinders from espressocoffeeshop.com but would prefer to order from a domestic retailer unless the price difference is substantial.

I also don't live far from Chris' Coffee and was thinking that visiting there and checking out some machines in person would be preferable before I make a decision. If anyone has any input on this, please let me know and thanks in advance for your assistance.

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#2: Post by HB »

wet_firecracker wrote:I also don't live far from Chris' Coffee and was thinking that visiting there...
I hear they have a nice showroom. I'd definitely go (disclaimer: they're an HB sponsor).
Dan Kehn

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#3: Post by jrcdzn »

Silvano was my second machine. I went to it from an E61. It is a solid machine. I went to it specifically for the double boiler effect (yes I know steam is Thermo block) and PID. I have since upgraded only because I wanted a different workflow/experience, I now have a LMLM, there is no comparing it and the jump is not one that most people would need, want, or have to make. My decision was purely based on my personal evolution not the capabilities of the Silvano. I would be happy if I had never upgraded. In fact, I have kept it as a backup, for no other reason than it changed my espresso and milk drink game. I can confidently recommend it as a first machine. I was able to make several milk drinks at a time... 4-5 if I was occasionally hosting a family brunch or something, most of the time I was doing 2 milk drinks in the morning relatively quickly. The steam was not lightning fast but it was solid enough to pour and steam at the same time, which helped the workflow.

I got mine from Chris Coffee, McKenzie and Taylor are rockstars the whole family is clearly committed to the craft. If you can visit them you will not regret it. They will also have great grinders. I still have my F4E from them as well. I want to modify it for a larger burr set and make it a single dose, but that is really only driven by my need to tinker, the grinder is solid as well, with no issues, going on roughly 5 years now. Definitely a single-purpose grinder (espresso only).

As you look at this level of set-up my recommendation is to get something serviceable. Meaning, stick to the brands you see on this forum from vendors like Chris Coffee. You will tinker as you get experience. The Rancilio counterpart of the Silvano is solid as well, there are others in the price point and similar features. I think PID is the most important part of any machine you get at this level. Everyone will have their preference and opinion and there is certainly plenty of knowledge in this forum on most anything you could find.

Good Hunting!

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Team HB

#4: Post by Jeff »

A few shots hands-on won't tell you if any machines a great machine. It will, however, tell you if there's something that is likely to be annoying enough to be a "wish I had" moment every day for years. Examples for various machines and grinders might be a commonly used control that is in an inconvenient place or sound that is just grating on the nerves. (I'm not saying the Silvano has any of these.) I'd definitely take advantage of trying it.

I think the Silvano is a strong contender in its price class. My experience with Chris' Coffee over the years have been excellent.

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#5: Post by HB »

With the reminder of my earlier disclaimer, I remember a conversation with Chris Nachtrieb, owner of Chris' Coffee about "buyer's remorse" returns. He said they're rare, because his sales team spends time to make sure the buyer gets the right equipment for their needs. In the end, it saves them money by investing time upfront rather than dealing with returns/resales.

It may be confirmation bias, but I believe this is true for all of the HB sponsors -- they're committed to supporting this community not just because it's good business sense, but because they're genuinely "coffee people" who just happen to sell coffee-related products. If you shop with one of the sponsors (they're listed in the Resources page), it doesn't hurt to mention you're an HB member. That gives them a heads up that you're an informed buyer and you have been advised about their [good] reputation. :wink:
Dan Kehn

wet_firecracker (original poster)

#6: Post by wet_firecracker (original poster) »

Thanks everyone for taking your time to give me feedback. This is really helpful. I'll try to post an update once I make the trip and mention that Home Barista sent me!


#7: Post by PortentPorpoise »

I bought the Lelit Mara X from Chris Coffee recently, and I'm loving it. The steaming has been good for me, but I don't steam anything over 6oz. If you don't mind the heat up time, and the e61 aesthetic it could be a contender. I imagine they have one on display, so you might be able to check that out. Also, I'll second that Mackenzie was excellent to work with.

wet_firecracker (original poster)

#8: Post by wet_firecracker (original poster) »

Thanks for the note about the Mara X. Even though it's a bit above my budget, I am also considering the Lelit Mara X with Flow Control in addition to the Silvano Evo. I'm not sure if this would be too difficult to learn for a first machine but it does seem like this breed of HX is a little more accessible than previous generations and I wouldn't need to upgrade for a while.

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#9: Post by Jeff »

Either machine should be a good choice. The Mara X let's you avoid the HX flush ritual, which I think is a major advantage over other HX machines. You can not install (or ignore) the flow control until you have a need for it as you get comfortable with making espresso. The decision probably comes down to budget as I think both deliver good value.


#10: Post by NeilKuo »

I also have the same needs as the PO. The current priority is also the quickmill silvano evo. I drink espresso mainly, and I rarely use steam.
The list of other considerations is
quick mill RUBINO
quick mill ANDREJA
quick mill qm67
This will also be my first and last espresso machine. I will also be happy to maintain and repair it myself.