Best coffee machines of November 2019: ranking and price comparison

Which are the best coffee machines of 2019?

Best coffee machines of 2019 (1 - 5)
coffee machine comparison
Comparison winner
coffee machine comparison
Comparison winner
Breville Barista Express
Comparison winner
Breville Infuser
Comparison winner
Breville Dual Boiler
Comparison winner
Expobar Office Leva
Comparison winner
Breville Duo-Temp
Comparison winner
Expobar Office Control
Comparison winner
Gaggia Carezza
Comparison winner
Krups XP5240
Comparison winner
Rancilio Silvia V3
Comparison winner
Gaggia Baby
Image
100points
95points
81points
62points
56points
54points
54points
51points
51points
50points
Best price
Best price
Summary
Summary
  • General info (62)
  • Components (70)
  • Water source (80)
  • Maintenance (100)
  • Features (83)
  • General info (70)
  • Components (43)
  • Water source (79)
  • Maintenance (100)
  • Features (52)
  • General info (39)
  • Components (67)
  • Water source (81)
  • Maintenance (25)
  • Features (100)
  • General info (48)
  • Components (75)
  • Water source (72)
  • Maintenance (25)
  • Features (71)
  • General info (41)
  • Components (32)
  • Water source (100)
  • Maintenance (50)
  • Features (24)
  • General info (49)
  • Components (71)
  • Water source (72)
  • Maintenance (25)
  • Features (81)
  • General info (98)
  • Components (32)
  • Water source (76)
  • Maintenance (25)
  • Features (48)
  • General info (82)
  • Components (22)
  • Water source (38)
  • Maintenance (100)
  • Features (48)
  • General info (84)
  • Components (44)
  • Water source (56)
  • Maintenance (25)
  • Features (24)
  • General info (96)
  • Components (32)
  • Water source (60)
  • Maintenance (25)
  • Features (48)
Pros
Pros
  • Full drip tray alert
  • Pressure gauge
  • Cleaning alert
  • PID controller
  • Simultaneous brewing and steaming
  • Sleep mode
  • Full drip tray alert
  • Pressure gauge
  • Cleaning alert
  • PID controller
  • Sleep mode
  • More programmable buttons
  • Pressure gauge
  • Transparent water tank
  • Cleaning alert
  • PID controller
  • Simultaneous brewing and steaming
  • More programmable buttons
  • Pressure gauge
  • Simultaneous brewing and steaming
  • Full drip tray alert
  • Transparent water tank
  • PID controller
  • Sleep mode
  • Simultaneous brewing and steaming
  • More programmable buttons
  • Transparent water tank
  • More years under manufacturer's warranty
  • Full drip tray alert
  • Sleep mode
  • Overheating prevention
  • More years under manufacturer's warranty
  • Transparent water tank
  • More years under manufacturer's warranty
Cons
Cons
  • 58mm portafilter
  • 58mm portafilter
  • Watts per litre
  • Dry puck feature
  • Hot water outlet
    • Dry puck feature
    • 58mm portafilter
    • 3-way valve
      • Commercial steam wand
      • Hot water outlet
      • 58mm portafilter
      • Commercial steam wand
      • Pre-infusion function
      • Commercial steam wand
      • Integrated water filter
      General info
      Watts per litreGenerally, a larger capacity boiler with a higher wattage will be able to recover and replenish quicker. This is useful if making many coffees at once.
      Watts per litreGenerally, a larger capacity boiler with a higher wattage will be able to recover and replenish quicker. This is useful if making many coffees at once.N.A.N.A.10531333N.A.1333N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.
      Warranty periodWhen covered under the manufacturer’s warranty it is possible to get a replacement in the case of a malfunction.
      Warranty periodWhen covered under the manufacturer’s warranty it is possible to get a replacement in the case of a malfunction.111N.A.112122
      Ground coffeeGround coffee, especially if freshly roasted and ground, results in much better quality coffee than the kind of results you get with pods or capsules.
      Ground coffeeGround coffee, especially if freshly roasted and ground, results in much better quality coffee than the kind of results you get with pods or capsules.
      Total score for "General info"
      Total score for "General info"
      Components
      Cup warmerWith a cup warmer you can heat the cups before pulling your espresso so that it doesn't go cold quickly, which affects the taste and quality. It also means that you don’t have to manually heat them using hot water.
      Cup warmerWith a cup warmer you can heat the cups before pulling your espresso so that it doesn't go cold quickly, which affects the taste and quality. It also means that you don’t have to manually heat them using hot water.
      Pressure gaugeOne of the most important aspects to pulling a great espresso is the amount of pressure used. Aspects such as how tightly tamped the portafilter is can affect the pressure and therefore the overall quality of the extraction. A pressure gauge helps you to adjust your process to achieve a perfect 9 bar of pressure.
      Pressure gaugeOne of the most important aspects to pulling a great espresso is the amount of pressure used. Aspects such as how tightly tamped the portafilter is can affect the pressure and therefore the overall quality of the extraction. A pressure gauge helps you to adjust your process to achieve a perfect 9 bar of pressure.
      58mm portafilterA 58mm portafilter is the most common size in the industry, offering a greater range of accessories to purchase such as portafilter baskets and tampers.
      58mm portafilterA 58mm portafilter is the most common size in the industry, offering a greater range of accessories to purchase such as portafilter baskets and tampers.
      Steam wandIt has a steam wand, which allows you to make steamed/frothed milk to create other drinks from an espresso base.
      Steam wandIt has a steam wand, which allows you to make steamed/frothed milk to create other drinks from an espresso base.
      Commercial steam wandIt comes with a commercial style steam wand as opposed to a pannarello steam wand. These are harder to master but can allow you to produce better, richer milk froth.
      Commercial steam wandIt comes with a commercial style steam wand as opposed to a pannarello steam wand. These are harder to master but can allow you to produce better, richer milk froth.
      Total score for "Components"
      Total score for "Components"
      Water source
      Removable water tankThe water tank is removable, making it easier to refill.
      Removable water tankThe water tank is removable, making it easier to refill.
      Hot water outletA hot water outlet is useful as it can be used to heat cups, as well as making americanos, long blacks and teas.
      Hot water outletA hot water outlet is useful as it can be used to heat cups, as well as making americanos, long blacks and teas.
      Integrated water filterAn integrated water filter produces cleaner water for brewing espresso. It also helps to prevent the build up of limescale.
      Integrated water filterAn integrated water filter produces cleaner water for brewing espresso. It also helps to prevent the build up of limescale.
      Transparent water tankWith a transparent water tank you can easily see when it needs to be filled up. This is important as attempting to make an espresso with an empty tank can damage the machine.
      Transparent water tankWith a transparent water tank you can easily see when it needs to be filled up. This is important as attempting to make an espresso with an empty tank can damage the machine.
      PID controllerA PID controller controls the temperature of the boiler electronically. It offers a far greater degree of accuracy and consistency than a regular, mechanical thermostat used to control temperature. This is very important as a temperature of around 92°C to 96°C is key to pulling the perfect espresso.
      PID controllerA PID controller controls the temperature of the boiler electronically. It offers a far greater degree of accuracy and consistency than a regular, mechanical thermostat used to control temperature. This is very important as a temperature of around 92°C to 96°C is key to pulling the perfect espresso.
      Total score for "Water source"
      Total score for "Water source"
      Maintenance
      Cleaning alertThe machine alerts you when it requires cleaning.
      Cleaning alertThe machine alerts you when it requires cleaning.
      Full drip tray alertWith a drip tray indicator the machine informs you of when you need to empty the tray.
      Full drip tray alertWith a drip tray indicator the machine informs you of when you need to empty the tray.
      Sleep modeAfter a certain period of being idle, the device will switch to a sleep mode to conserve power.
      Sleep modeAfter a certain period of being idle, the device will switch to a sleep mode to conserve power.
      Overheating preventionIt has an internal fuse/thermal sensors which prevents the machine from overheating.
      Overheating preventionIt has an internal fuse/thermal sensors which prevents the machine from overheating.
      Dry puck featureAt the end of the extraction process, all moisture is removed from the puck. This allows you to easily tap out the coffee from the portafilter afterwards, reducing mess and the need to clean it as often.
      Dry puck featureAt the end of the extraction process, all moisture is removed from the puck. This allows you to easily tap out the coffee from the portafilter afterwards, reducing mess and the need to clean it as often.
      Total score for "Maintenance"
      Total score for "Maintenance"
      Features
      Simultaneous brewing and steamingWith a double boiler or heat exchanger system, you can brew and steam milk at the same time. This has an advantage over single boiler machines where you have to wait between brewing and steaming for the temperature to adjust.
      Simultaneous brewing and steamingWith a double boiler or heat exchanger system, you can brew and steam milk at the same time. This has an advantage over single boiler machines where you have to wait between brewing and steaming for the temperature to adjust.
      Pre-infusion functionWith a pre-infusion function you get a low pressure of water before it ramps up to around 9 bar of pressure. This gently expands the grinds to get a smooth extraction and to help prevent channeling in the cake.
      Pre-infusion functionWith a pre-infusion function you get a low pressure of water before it ramps up to around 9 bar of pressure. This gently expands the grinds to get a smooth extraction and to help prevent channeling in the cake.
      Number of grind settingsA higher number of grind settings gives you more flexibility when choosing the fineness of your ground coffee. The particle size is important as a grind which is too coarse can produce weak tasting espresso, whereas a grind which is too fine can lead to a bitter taste.
      Number of grind settingsA higher number of grind settings gives you more flexibility when choosing the fineness of your ground coffee. The particle size is important as a grind which is too coarse can produce weak tasting espresso, whereas a grind which is too fine can lead to a bitter taste.15N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.N.A.
      3-way valveA 3-way solenoid valve relieves the portafilter of pressure and moisture after the extraction. This produces a dry puck which can easily be removed afterwards. It also means that you don’t have to wait for the pressure to equalise, so that you can make back-to-back coffees.
      3-way valveA 3-way solenoid valve relieves the portafilter of pressure and moisture after the extraction. This produces a dry puck which can easily be removed afterwards. It also means that you don’t have to wait for the pressure to equalise, so that you can make back-to-back coffees.
      Programmable buttonsThese buttons can be programmed for different types of coffee such as an espresso, doppio or ristretto. This means once you have mastered a particular style of coffee, you can get it the same every time.
      Programmable buttonsThese buttons can be programmed for different types of coffee such as an espresso, doppio or ristretto. This means once you have mastered a particular style of coffee, you can get it the same every time.2220040000
      Total score for "Features"
      Total score for "Features"

      How to choose the best coffee machine

      Whether you are a coffee expert or a casual coffee drinker, there are many ways to enjoy this delicious black gold. But how to choose the right coffee machine? There are various types of coffee machines and finding the best semi-automatic or super-automatic coffee machines of 2019 is no easy task. In addition, there is an extremely wide selection of brands: Dolce Gusto vs Nespresso, Jura vs DeLonghi, DeLonghi vs Saeco? With choice comes confusion and that's why we're here to help. Our guide provides the key specs and features of coffee machines, and tips for choosing the perfect coffee machine for your home!

      To find the best coffee machine, it's necessary to know what features need to be taken into account and choose based on the functionalities that are relevant to you, depending on what you want to get out of your machine and what kind of coffee drinker you are. For instance, if you like to carefully prepare your coffee with the same precision as a chemist working in a lab, then a manual coffee machine would probably be the most interesting for you. If you prefer a compact device that allows you to prepare your espresso shots as quickly as possible, then you might want to search for the best capsule coffee machines.

      1. Types of coffee machines

      Manual coffee machines

      Most of these machines have a spring lever or a manual lever which you have to maneuver in order to push the water through the filter containing the coffee. They offer more control over the brewing process but are more difficult to use. Some manual coffee machines, called percolators, work with a stove (electric versions have a heating element), where you heat the water so it goes up through the coffee when it is been pressurized, creating a strong and cream-topped cup of coffee. If you want to be your own barista and you are not bothered by cleaning the machine after each use, a professional manual coffee machine like La Pavoni might be the right choice for you.

      Semi-automatic coffee machines

      Semi-automatic coffee machines have high-pressure electric pumps, a portafilter, a boiler, and a switch to activate or deactivate the pump for the extraction, hence the name of semi-automatic. They are easier to use than manual coffee machines and allow you to control the pressure, as well as the duration of the extraction process, enabling you to control the water flow for every shot you make.

      Controlling the water flow allows you to create the perfect shot by setting a precise time for brewing. This is a very important aspect, since coffee that is extracted too quickly is high in caffeine, but underdeveloped in flavor and aroma, as it often happens with super-automatic machines, whereas an extraction that is too long will cause the coffee to contain high amounts of organic acids, making it too bitter. If you want to find out exactly how coffee brewing works, Coffee Geek provides details about the relationship between extraction and strength, as well as great tips for choosing the right coffee beans - in the end, even the best coffee machine can't do the job without high-quality coffee.

      Semi-automatic coffee machines are the most popular choice for coffee drinkers who are interested in more traditional espresso machines since you have some manual settings and, on the other hand, less work than with a fully manual machine. Top brands for semi-automatic coffee machines are Rancilio Silvia & Gaggia Classic.

      Super-automatic (fully-automatic) coffee machines

      These machines, often called bean-to-cup machines, have preset buttons for different types of drinks (cafe latte, espresso, cappuccino). Usually, they have many types of drinks available and include a milk frother and a coffee grinder (so you can use coffee beans). Super-automatic machines do almost everything for you, from grinding - where you can set up the dosage, as well as the fineness of the coffee - to tamping and steaming the milk for latte macchiato and cappuccino. Some machines have a traditional steam wand, while others use a Panarello wand for frothing the milk (more about this later). Common features of super-automatic coffee machines include the adjustment of the brewing temperature, brew volume, extraction time, and water hardness.

      Many machines, like the Keurig K-Elite and Breville BDC600XL YouBrew, have an auto-on function, enabling your machine to warm-up by the time you want to drink your morning coffee. With some super-automatic espresso machines, you have to choose and configure the type of drink manually. However, many coffee machines make this very easy by offering the option of saving your preferred settings (Breville Barista Express). Most machines have a one-touch preset espresso button.

      Super-automatic coffee machines are very convenient since you can prepare your favorite drink in just a few minutes, they are easy to use and easy to clean. However, there are also a few disadvantages. First, the number of grinding settings is limited. Second, using very oily or dark roasts can often cause the grinder to clog after some time. Super-automatic coffee machines are generally more expensive, especially top brands like DeLonghi Magnifica or Jura Impressa, which can cost well above 500$.

      Capsule coffee machines

      These are small, compact coffee machines that work with coffee pods. They are very easy to use and to clean, but the downside is that you have to purchase the standard coffee pods for your type of machine. The use of a capsule for each coffee also increases the cost per coffee. On the other hand, you can experiment with different flavors and types of drinks. Manufacturers offer a wide selection, including caffeine-free pods. If you don’t drink a lot of coffee, capsule machines are a good choice because the sealed capsules keep coffee fresh for a longer time. Some capsule machines have built-in milk frothers and others provide stand-alone frothers as an extra. The most renowned capsule machines are Nespresso Pixie, Nescafe DolceGusto, and Bosch Tassimo.

      2. Top features to consider when choosing a coffee machine

      Grinder

      The grinding process is one of the most important aspects when it comes to making coffee, therefore, it is important to take it into consideration when choosing your coffee machine. If you don't mind buying ground coffee instead of beans, you can also opt for a machine without an integrated grinder. If you enjoy freshly ground coffee, then you definitely need a machine with an integrated grinder or a stand-alone grinder in your kitchen.

      Integrated grinders are more common on super-automatic machines. However, these offer a few grind settings, whereas a stand-alone grinder usually has much more grind settings. If you want to have more control over the strength and flavor of your coffee, a semi-automatic or manual machine and a stand-alone grinder might be a better choice. When buying a super-automatic coffee machine, make sure to check how many grind settings it has. The average number of grind settings for built-in grinders is between 5 and 9.

      Water tank

      Concerning the water tank, there are three things that are important to consider. First of all, you should check out the capacity of the water tank (also called a reservoir), which is indicated in liters. A larger water tank is simply better because you don’t have to refill it very often. The average capacity of water tanks is 1.8 liters. Second, it's quite handy to have a removable water tank because it's easier to fill and to clean thoroughly. Most of today’s machines have removable water tanks. Thirdly, a water filter purifies the water and improves the quality of the coffee. A coffee machine with an integrated water tank filter is always a great choice.

      Steam wand

      If you like to drink your coffee with milk, a steam wand might be an important feature for you. Most of the super-automatic and semi-automatic machines have steam wands (Krups XP5240, Expobar Office Leva), while manual and filter coffee machines don’t. It's not so easy to create the perfect foam with a traditional steam wand. You need precise control over the amount of air and steam that enters in contact with the milk to get that silky, fluffy milk texture. Therefore, some semi- and super-automatic coffee machines have special adapters, called Panarello wands, which make steaming the milk easier.

      Cleaning alert

      A cleaning alert is very convenient when you don’t want to think about when you have to clean your machine. Most super- and semi-automatic machines have cleaning alerts, although they don’t need to be cleaned as often as manual machines.

      Display

      Most semi-automatic and super-automatic coffee machines have displays, allowing you to choose your drink, the strength of the coffee, and control various settings. Smaller coffee machines, like capsule machines, don’t have a display because they don’t have so many functions and controls like the larger ones. If you prefer a compact machine and you are not very picky when it comes to brewing settings, a machine without a display will be just fine.

      | Updated on
      This page is currently only available in English.