Comments on La Marzocco Linea Micra Espresso Machine Review

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HB
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#1: Post by HB »

When I have a free moment, I'll review the pre-announcement discussion for questions that apply to the review and add them here. In the meantime, if you have comments, requests, or even your own review of the La Marzocco Linea Micra.
Dan Kehn

drH
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#2: Post by drH »

Lance Hedrick seems to suggest it is smaller in every dimension- but marketing material says 15in tall- same as the Mini. So what's the real deal?

Also after 6 shots he had some temperature drop... what is a reasonable recovery time? If you are serving a crowd, is this something to worry about?

Given the new brew group, is the water debit the same as the mini?

Is there any reason that the new brew group is more or less robust than the Mini?

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HB (original poster)
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#3: Post by HB (original poster) »

drH wrote:Lance Hedrick seems to suggest it is smaller in every dimension- but marketing material says 15in tall- same as the Mini. So what's the real deal?
Since it's an easy one, I'll take it: I just measured and it's 13-3/16" to the top of the cup rail.
Dan Kehn

Oskuk

#4: Post by Oskuk »

drH wrote:Lance Hedrick seems to suggest it is smaller in every dimension- but marketing material says 15in tall- same as the Mini. So what's the real deal?
That photo is funny, as there is room to plenty bigger machine ;-)

drH wrote: Also after 6 shots he had some temperature drop... what is a reasonable recovery time? If you are serving a crowd, is this something to worry about?
Who needs a machine to crowds, at home? Many cafees are not serving to "crowds" -more like 2 person a time.

I'm not interested this, or even mini but still. I'm more interested this kind of social hysteria there is many times when there is something odd new coming.

drH
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#5: Post by drH »

Also forgot to add: is the gicleur size the same?

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HB (original poster)
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#6: Post by HB (original poster) replying to drH »

I don't know, but I can say it's more forgiving than any other La Marzocco espresso machine I've used.
Dan Kehn

sluflyer06

#7: Post by sluflyer06 »

Oskuk wrote:Who needs a machine to crowds, at home? Many cafees are not serving to "crowds" -more like 2 person a time.
I assume people are referring to having friends/family over for brunch or a dinner, it's not uncommon for me to make 8-10 shots/milk drinks (typically more lattes than anything else) back to back without a pause when family is over. I have to think that is what people mean by a crowd.

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another_jim
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#8: Post by another_jim »

My month's experience with the review machine is that you can steam all day making 6 ounce cappas in two minute intervals. It has the same capacity as any home DB or HX with a 2 liter boiler in this regard. It runs out of steam when doing larger milk drinks in 1 minute intervals. Unless you have two people handling your parties, this is not a usual home entertaining situation.

I have to admit that I refuse to own any coffee cups larger than 6 ounces. If people want a large milk drink, it gets hidden in a mug.
Jim Schulman

drH
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#9: Post by drH »

I noticed in the review that you mentioned that the group was perhaps more stable than the previous lineas. Did I take the meaning correctly? By that do you mean that the within-shot temperature is very even? As good or better than the Mini?

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another_jim
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#10: Post by another_jim »

I said "stable and forgiving." This group is a generation further on than the LMLM's and is designed to be more stable. My temperature tests aren't precise enough to quantify that, we'd need to do a proper Scace-WBC protocol (um, not like in the Hedrick video). I ran 50mL once a minute for four rounds, and it stayed within a 1C band the whole time, albeit 1/2 C lower than the set point. That's more than stable enough for making shots (there is massively more and more chaotic temperature variation within a puck during a shot).

The forgiving part was noticed by everyone who used the machine to dial in their favorite coffee. And this requires a small lecture:

To dial in an espresso shot you need to taste the extraction of a shot that has roughly the right flow and timing. Then you know if you need to change the grind. So if you are experienced, you can get the shot right one round after getting the flow and timing right. If you have a lever or flow profiling machine, you can fake the right flow and timing on a poorly dosed shot by controlling the flow or pressure, so you can always be dialed in by the second shot. If you don't have flow control, it may take an extra shot to get the flow right, so that you are only dialed in at the third shot.

Now if you have a really finicky group, the flow will only be right with the precisely right dose/grind combo. A forgiving group allows more latitude. Levers and flow control groups offer maximum latitude. When I reviewed the Mara X, I found a non-flow control group with a lot of latitude, but it requires a low flow pump and a long 15 second pre-infusion. The LMLu has at least as much latitude as the Mara X, but it has a short dwell time and less headspace, which makes for better crema. This is astonishingly good machine tuning, and way better than other LM machines, even when they have the smallest gicleurs installed.

If you have four ounces of some $100 per pound coffee you want to taste; not having to futz around dialing in is really important.
Jim Schulman