If you can’t imagine your morning without a cup of freshly brewed coffee, but you’re tired of wasting time preparing a drink in a Turk, then it’s time to think about purchasing a coffee machine. The range of models on the market is great. In today’s article, we tell you what types of coffee machines are for home, what are their pros and cons, as well as what points to pay attention to when choosing a device.
Types of coffee machines
For home use, the following types of coffee machines are distinguished:
A drip coffee maker is the simplest and most affordable electric coffee maker (for example, Kitfort KT-767). Modern models have an auto-off function and a delayed start.
- simplicity and ease of use;
- cooking several servings at once;
- low price.
- prepares only black coffee (espresso or americano);
- high consumption of coffee;
- low strength of the drink;
- the filter must be cleaned and changed regularly.
The carob coffee maker is also designed for preparing espresso and espresso-based drinks. However, some modern models are equipped with a cappuccinatore (for example, Kitfort KT-740). To get rich aromatic coffee, it is better to choose devices with a metal rather than a plastic horn.
- low consumption of ground coffee;
- pleasant taste with a delicate creamy foam;
- additional functions (temperature maintenance, auto-off, optional built-in coffee grinder);
- long service life;
- low cost.
- after each use, the horn into which coffee is poured must be washed;
- skill is required to prepare a drink (you need to properly tamp the coffee in the cone);
- coffee strength cannot be adjusted (depending on the degree of compaction in the horn and the quality of the grind).
Outwardly, a pod (or portioned) coffee maker resembles a carob one. In this case, a bag of tamped coffee powder is used to make coffee. Some models are equipped with a cappuccinatore and can prepare two cups of coffee at the same time.
- high quality of the prepared drink;
- it is impossible to spoil the taste of coffee;
- works quietly;
- compact dimensions;
- ease of care;
- low price.
- poor assortment;
- you can not adjust the fortress;
- high cost of one cup of coffee.
To prepare the drink, special capsules are used, in which coffee is packaged in portions. This type of coffee machine includes, for example, Delonghi Nespresso.
- wide range of colors of coffee machines;
- a variety of tastes, it is impossible to spoil the drink;
- simplicity and speed of preparation;
- compact dimensions;
- ease of maintenance;
- works quietly.
- cost of capsules;
- it is impossible to use capsules of the same type for coffee makers from different manufacturers.
The main feature of automatic coffee machines is that there is no need to pour coffee and pour water every time before preparing a drink. In addition, these models are distinguished by a wide range of functions (built-in coffee grinder, cappuccinatore, automatic cleaning, preparation of 2 cups at once, adjustment of the grinding degree and coffee strength, etc.).
- quality and taste of coffee;
- you can use both ground and grain coffee;
- Ease of use;
- many functions.
- relatively high price;
- large dimensions;
- the need for regular maintenance.
Grain — automatic coffee machines have a built-in grinder. Thanks to fresh grinding, a richer and more aromatic drink is obtained.
Ground — used in most drip and carob coffee machines. If you prefer beans but don’t want to spend money on an automatic coffee machine, you can buy an inexpensive coffee grinder, such as the Kitfort KT-769.
There are models that allow you to use both grain and ground coffee. They are usually equipped with a separate tray for ground coffee (eg De’Longhi Magnifica S ECAM 21.117).
For home use, a coffee machine with a water tank volume of 1–2 liters is sufficient. Such models take up less space, are easier to maintain, and are cheaper. For example, a 1.4‑liter SMEG DCF02BLEU drip coffee maker is enough for home use. For the office, it is better to choose a device with a volume of more than 2 liters.
The larger the volume, the higher the power of the coffee machine should be. Power affects the speed of preparation of the drink and provides the pressure necessary for espresso. For a 2‑liter device, 1500 W is enough power; for the office, choose coffee machines with a power of 1600 W or more.
It is necessary for whipping airy foam from milk or cream for making latte, cappuccino and other coffee and milk drinks.
There are models with a manual and automatic cappuccinatore (or without it). Manual milk frother is a nozzle for supplying hot steam under high pressure. To whip the foam, you need to substitute any container with milk under it and move it up and down.
Automatic milk frother allows you to get milk foam at the touch of a button. Typically, such models are more expensive and require more thorough care (the cappuccinatore must be washed after each use, otherwise the drink may be spoiled by sour milk residues).
You can buy a separate milk frother (Kitfort KT-768 or more stylish and expensive SMEG MFF01PGEU) and enjoy latte or cappuccino from the simplest coffee maker.
Grinding degree adjustment
The degree of grinding affects the taste and tonic properties of the drink. The following degrees are distinguished:
- large or coarse;
- small or thin;
- extra for espresso;
- powdered for Turkish coffee.
Too fine grinding gives a burnt aftertaste, the drink will be bitter. The coarser the grind, the weaker the taste, the coffee will sour. The Philips EP3519/00 coffee machine has five grind settings.
Coffee strength control
You can adjust the coffee strength using buttons or a mechanical switch. In different models, this function is implemented in different ways: changing the number of grains per serving / water flow rate / temperature or reducing / increasing the preparation time of the drink.
If you want to adjust the softness or strength of the drink depending on your preferences (or mood), it is better to choose a model with this option, for example, Bosch TKA6A044.
The cost of consumables
Before buying a coffee machine, pay attention to the cost of coffee. For example, the cost of one capsule for Nespresso is from 44 rubles, coffee in pods for making espresso is about 40 rubles per bag. While 1 kg of coffee beans can be bought for 1000 rubles. It takes about 7 g of grains to prepare one cup of coffee, that is, the cost of one serving is 7 rubles.
However, capsule coffee machines do not require any special maintenance (it is enough to throw away the used capsules and periodically rinse the tank under water), and automatic coffee machines must be cleaned regularly with a descaling agent. For example, DeLonghi EcoDecalk mini costs from 740 rubles, enough for 2 applications.
- Control type — mechanical or touch.
- Existence of the display for control over all processes.
- Simultaneous brewing of two cups to save time.
- On timer to prepare a drink at a specific time.
- The presence of an anti-drip system that ensures the hygiene of the tray and eliminates the flow of coffee.
- Automatic self-cleaning of scale, deposits and oils.
- And others depending on personal needs and preferences.
To summarize briefly, then:
- for quick preparation of a variety of drinks, it is better to choose a capsule coffee machine;
- if you drink more than 3–4 cups a day, then it is better to buy a drip, carob or automatic coffee machine;
- if you prefer strong coffee, then an automatic, carob or pod coffee machine will do;
- if you are not ready to pay a large amount of money for a coffee machine, choose from drip, carob and pod;
- if saving on raw materials is more important for you, then you need an automatic, drip and carob coffee machine;
- if you rarely drink coffee and want a device that does not require additional care, choose capsule models;
- If compact dimensions are important to you, then an automatic coffee machine is not for you.