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How a coffee machine differs from a coffee maker

How a coffee machine differs from a coffee maker

The large variety of models on the market can confuse even the experienced coffee drinker. Sometimes in appearance it is difficult to understand what kind of device is in front of you. Let’s understand the difference between a coffee machine and a coffeemaker and what is better to choose for your home.


Types of coffee makers and coffee machines for the home

The coffee maker category includes all methods that require “manual” or partially automated brewing. The simplest varieties are considered to be:

Простые кофеварки, фото

They do not use electricity and brew coffee in a primitive way – through the interaction of ground beans with boiling water. Coffee makers that use electricity are considered more advanced. These include:

  1. Drip
  2. .

  3. Carob
  4. .

  5. Capsules
  6. .

  7. Cups.



They use a more complex brewing technique and can make several kinds of coffee drinks. Partly because of this, many people mistakenly classify capsule, carob, and pod coffee makers as coffee machines. Yes, they are partially automated through capsules or tablets (pods). But the only difference from the other varieties is that you are not using the ground beans yourself, but the portions pressed by the manufacturer.

In fact, the difference between a coffee maker and a coffee machine is very simple. If the device uses coffee beans, it’s a coffee machine; if it uses ground coffee, it’s a coffee maker (regardless of its price or appearance).

In other words, a coffee machine differs from a coffee maker in that it completely automates the process. You need to fill the machine with beans and water (and milk if you need to make a cappuccino or latte), and then select the desired option. The device will do everything on its own. Hence another misconception to call coffee machines automatic. They cannot, by definition, be manual or semi-automatic. If any of the steps require the presence of a person, it’s already a coffee machine.

Кофеварки, фото

Coffee machines have many more possibilities in making different types of coffee, although it depends on the specific model. Usually the following types are distinguished:

  1. Conventional (espresso machines).
  2. With cappuccinator.
  3. Superautomatic machines.


Cooking differences

The quality of the beans plays an important role, but the brewing technique has a much greater impact on taste. After all, even the best grains can be ruined if cooked incorrectly. When it comes to flavor, the differences between a coffee machine and a coffee maker are substantial.

Turks, French presses and geyser coffee makers are considered the most primitive devices. They do not use electricity and allow only espresso or Americano. They are suitable for everyday use, but they will hardly please real coffee lovers with refined taste. They have a bitter taste and “grounds” (which remain even when decanting).

Electric coffee makers are more advanced. This has a positive effect on taste (with the exception of drip, which are at the bottom of coffee evolution). Exposure to water or steam under high pressure provides a completely different taste. Such a beverage is free of impurities, has a thick crema and reveals the full potential of beans.

Кофемашина и кофе, фото

Nevertheless, even partially automated coffee machines are not without drawbacks. The main problem is the human factor. It is easy to make mistakes during brewing, which will affect the taste. Determining the degree of grinding, lack of control of water heating, even the ratio of ground beans to liquid, all this can affect the final result. That’s why there is a not unfounded opinion among coffee drinkers that only a coffee machine can make perfect coffee.

Even in the simplest coffee machine, every process is carefully tuned and automated, and the human element is reduced to just filling all the tanks and selecting the desired mode and type of coffee. As a result, even a novice, who is not versed in the intricacies of brewing, can brew coffee comparable in quality to the best coffee houses.

The range of coffee drinks

Automation of the process aside, the essential difference between a coffee machine and a coffee maker is the assortment. In addition to most types of coffee (from espresso to ristretto and lungo), automatic machines make any drink with the addition of milk: lattes, cappuccinos and others. Advanced coffee machines may also include a cappuccinator, but most often it is implemented in the form of an external tube. That is, you will have to create the foam manually, applying hot steam directly into the cup with milk. The exceptions are capsule coffee makers. Some models have an internal tank for milk, so they can make cappuccino.

In most coffee machines, the process of creating “complex” drinks is fully automated. You just need to fill the milk, water and beans into the appropriate containers, and then all the processes take place inside the machine. The beauty of coffee machines also lies in the fact that most models are designed for simultaneous dispensing of several servings, so they are in demand both for home use and in public places.

Other advantages of coffee machines

The concept of “automation” for coffee machines is not only the absence of the need to intervene in the process, but also improved control. Unlike coffee makers, coffee machines have the following options:

  • selecting the degree of grinding
  • ;

  • water temperature control;
  • cup heating;
  • filtration system (reduces water hardness, improving the taste);
  • the possibility of express coffee making (accelerated mode for some types of drink);
  • remote control with smartphone and power on timer;
  • personalization of drinks and the ability to save recipes in the machine memory.

This is a true crown of creation among coffee devices, which maximizes not only the taste of drinks, but also the comfort in their preparation.

Price of the question

As a rule, even the most budget models of coffee machines exceed the cost of any coffee machine. This is the only, but quite a significant disadvantage of coffee machines, which is more than compensated by the advantages listed above. When estimating what is better for the house, coffee machine or coffeemaker, you should approach the question from two angles: financial and qualitative. In terms of coffee taste, brewing convenience and variety of options, coffee machines are superior to coffee makers on almost all evaluation criteria, which explains the difference in cost.

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