The price range for coffee machines ranges from $400 to $6,000 to $7,000. On an unlimited budget, choosing a good coffee machine for your home isn’t difficult, just consider all the professional luxury models. However, the lion’s share of functions that professional coffee machines are equipped with are unlikely to ever be useful to you. At the same time, their presence will have a significant impact on the price and will result in an unjustified overpayment.
Choosing the right coffee machine for your home is all about finding a compromise, between:
- Ease of use.
These are the main criteria you should pay attention to if you want to choose an inexpensive, but the highest quality coffee machine for the home.
The main criteria for choosing
Before you choose a grain coffee machine for your home, you should familiarize yourself with the criteria of paramount importance, which will greatly affect your experience with the device. These should include:
- availability of automatic cappuccinator (coffee machines with a manual cappuccinator are not much different from conventional coffee machines);
- the volume of containers (tanks with water, milk and beans);
- self-cleaning system;
- ability to select the degree of grinding of beans (minimum 3 levels);
- control system and electronics.
Such indicators as pressure, power consumption and even body materials are most often identical in all models in the same price category. The great majority of coffee machines have the power of 1300 to 1800 watts, pressure of 15 bar, details and the body made of metal or plastic. The same applies to cup heating, the presence of filters and water purification system. Before buying, it is recommended to check the presence of these options in the characteristics of the device, but do not get hung up on them.
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Parameters of the ideal coffee machine
The most important criterion in selecting a coffee machine for the home can be considered the presence of a cappuccinator. Now it is present in almost all models, but previously some manufacturers did not include it in devices of the budget category. The automatic cappuccinator has a huge advantage over the manual one. In comparison, with a manual tube, you will have to make the foam for the drinks yourself. “The automatic will do every process in a cycle without your intervention, after one push of a button, which is much more convenient. When you use the coffee machine all the time, it gives you a whole different level of comfort.
The volume of the tanks cannot be called the most important criterion, especially since even in the most compact coffee machines it exceeds 1 liter, but this parameter should also be taken into account. The bigger the tanks, the less intervention is needed when preparing drinks, which is especially important if the “automatic machines” for the house are chosen for large families. This rule does not apply to the milk tank if it does not have a cooling system (present only in expensive coffee machines of professional or semi-professional types).
Self-cleaning is another indicator that plays a key role when you choose a device for your home. It makes the coffee machine almost completely self-contained. All you need to do is to remove excess cake from the tank, as well as flushing the system (every 2-4 months). This is what differentiates automatic coffee machines from coffee makers, where the cleaning and washing procedure has to be done after each brew.
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The electronics are important, but not the primary indicator. It has almost no effect on coffee taste, but it will have a noticeable impact on comfort and functionality of the coffee machines (especially if they have a programming function). If you are choosing a model for your home, first of all you should pay attention to the following functions:
- Information panel – displays all modes, gives the necessary tips, greatly simplifies the use of the coffee machine.
- Indicators – the level of fullness of the containers, the need for cleaning and others.
- Manual adjustment – often all the options are “sewn” into ready-made modes, which narrows the possibilities. With the manual setting you can change some parameters at will, creating recipes to your liking.
Remote online control can be useful too, but only if you really need the option.
This category includes features that don’t have an important impact, but can marginally increase your overall convenience level. That is, when choosing a coffee machine for home use, their presence will be desirable, but not mandatory. Among these are distinguished:
- the use of beans and ground coffee – “machines” are equipped by default with a grinder for beans, but can not always use ground coffee (drinks from beans usually taste better, but it is better not to limit the capabilities of the device);
- the way of filling the containers – easy to remove, the ability to add water or beans without dismantling the tank;
- the number of cups per cycle – most coffee machines are designed for 2 cups, although there are also those that cook only one cup. Calculate this figure based on the needs of the family;
- compactness – it matters only in small kitchens.
– well-known brands produce coffee machines for all categories, so it is better to choose by models and their functions, not only by brand;
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The rest of the features, and even the range of drinks (95% of coffee machines for home it is identical), almost will not affect the taste and comfort in the preparation of coffee, but will increase the cost of the device. They should be regarded as insignificant, and should be considered only when a particular coffee machine model fits into the budget.