Coffee machine

Capsule machine, automatic machine, or manual machine? I tried 3 types and asked an expert about the difference.

Manual machine

Manual machines are the most expensive and complicated to use. Manual machines help you to make the best coffee. You upgrade your skills while working with it. You experiment with the number of coffee beans, temperatures, and what is the coolest – you draw leaves and hearts on the foams.

I tried the €1899 “ECM Mechanika slim” machine and €450 “ECM S64 manuelle” grinder. It was easy to use: first, I attach a spoon (portafilter) to a grinder. The grinder grinds coffee beans into the spoon. Next, I attach a spoon to a table or to a special holder so that the spoon does not move. Then I tamp (or press) the dust inside of a spoon. Next, I attach the spoon to the coffee machine. I turn on the machine. The boiling water flows through the dust and flows out to a cup.

You get viscous (dense) coffee with intense dark-light brown foam. It is similar to café-class coffee or even better. If you have such a machine, you don’t need to go anywhere to drink great coffee.

I used good beans, similar to Passalacqua, that cost 19€ per kilogram – it is not too much – only €0.15 per portion, but the quality was excellent. I used 60% Arabica and 40% Robusta, which gave a more Italian taste. I like strong coffee, so I need more Robusta – up to 60% of it.

Passalaqua is roasted in Naples in Italy. The quality is high for the price of 19-24€.

If you want the same beans as in cafés, then better buy coffee for 50€+ per kilogram. You may also try coffee Luwak, a coffee fermented in the belly of small, squirrel-like animals, luwaks. It costs nearly 300€ per kilo. I was once on a plantation in Indonesia and have seen these cute animals. Unfortunately, I was too small to drink coffee, but my mother said it was pretty good.

Manual machines are durable and easy to repair compared with automatic machines. You may use such a coffee machine for a decade. That is why the selling price for the used machine is so high. If you have a spare 2000-2.500€, I recommend investing in a coffee machine and selling it in 5-6 years for 70% of its cost, e. g., 1700€.

Automatic machine

The automatic machine makes good coffee. You set the needed amount of coffee beans, water required, water temperature, and milk temperature. You also choose the pre-installed coffee varieties. It is easy and is great variant for home. The prices start from 400€ till 1500€. Depends on the options you need. I recommend looking at the material, especially the milk box and tubes – they must be made out of metal. Otherwise, your coffee machine will stink. I also think that all details should be made out of metal because plastic breaks fast.

The foam is also nice in most models; however, the quality is better with manual machines.


Nespresso is a cheap, easy-to-use machine. Nespresso is great if you want to try different tastes of coffee and choose the best one for yourself. The machine price varies 70€ to350€ for a metallic version with a steam tube. Each capsule costs 0.35-0.5€, which is too expensive. In the long run, you will lose much more money using Nespresso. For example, I have a mid-class version machine with a milk heater. I used the model for 4 months, but I gave it to my friend because coffee machines make cheaper espresso with better taste.

Better spend more money on a coffee machine; you will always be able to sell a good machine on willhaben or eBay. And also, if you want a good and relatively cheap manual coffee machine, try to find it on willhaben.

2022   Coffee   english