We’re going to start with a rundown of the features of the Impressa F8, so that you know what you’re getting if you choose to buy. A lot of machines offer the same core functions, so we tend to focus on what stands out, so rest assured, if we rate a machine highly (as we do with this one), it’s going to be a good all rounder unless we specifically say otherwise.
The Impressa’s control panel is based around a central colour display that’s used to guide you though the process, which helps to turn a maze of functions into an intuitive set of menus (or a carousel as Jura call it). The control of the menus is achieved by a ‘rotary switch’ located on top of the machine at the front, neatly sandwiched between the power and program buttons. The buttons either side of the screen vary in purpose, depending what’s on the screen at the time. in general though, the screen splits into four zones, with each button used to select the corresponding zone.
As previously mentioned, this grinder is a bit less sturdy than its new revision, the 565. The 560 has the same issues with its mechanical timer, with the grind mechanism starting before you have had a chance to set the time. This results in a somewhat inconsistent grind quantity. The hopper lid is also not completely airtight, so it isn’t recommended that you keep your beans in it for more than a few days. The same issue with static buildup is also present, and may lead to a messy countertop.
With a built-in coffee grinder, the Ena Micro 1 will grind your beans just before brewing, and store your beans in an airtight, aroma-preserving chamber on top of the machine. The variable brewing chamber allows for you to choose the individual preparation and strength of two cups at one time. And the included filter ensures your water is as pure as possible for the best-tasting espresso around.
To that end, the MT600 will attempt to keep track of when you last dropped in a fresh charcoal pack. Just press the "filter" button on the control panel, and after six weeks an associated green light will begin blinking. If you unplug the machine, however, all bets are off, as the clock and internal filter replacement timer lose track when power is lost.

For those who tend to like their java a bit more robust and flavorful, this espresso machine offers a coffee and steam wand that you can use to adjust the potency of your coffee. If you prefer a bit less vigor to your morning espresso, simply move the wand to the steam side to add a bit more water. This will allow you to share your espresso maker with those around you who prefer a stronger or milder taste you do and still keep everyone happy.
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As an anecdote, I once failed one of my shots, it happens to everyone. The biggest problem with that cup was that it had almost no crema. I sipped it anyway, I wanted to see how it was. I was absolutely stunned by the taste of that shot. The unique combination of tamping and grind size made that cup more flavorful. It just didn’t have enough crema. Never judge an espresso by its looks. This is why some people hate Nespresso with a passion, it is very consistent, and it gives you a great shot with ample crema every time, but it is never fantastic. I love “fantastic”, but for the convenience, I settle for good, so Nespresso is one of my favorite coffeemakers. If convenience is what you are looking for mostly, take a look at our article that compares capsule-based espresso machines.
Flipping open the tank lid reveals a plastic wand that houses a charcoal water filter pod (one is provided in the box). The filter setup sits within a special receptacle on the tank's interior left side. According to Capresso, the gadget will remove up to 82 percent of "the chlorine and other impurities found in tap water, and will do so for about six weeks, assuming you make one pot (10 cups) daily. It's a nice option to have, especially if you live in an area with substandard water, although remembering to swap in a new filter can be a drag.
For those who tend to like their java a bit more robust and flavorful, this espresso machine offers a coffee and steam wand that you can use to adjust the potency of your coffee. If you prefer a bit less vigor to your morning espresso, simply move the wand to the steam side to add a bit more water. This will allow you to share your espresso maker with those around you who prefer a stronger or milder taste you do and still keep everyone happy.
I received my machine on Jan 20th. I have to say it was a huge let down. Niether the coffee or milk were hot enough. I would think spending this amount of money on a coffee machine you should at least get hot coffee and milk without having to use cupwarmer or running hot water through it. I will say that amazon was a pure joy to work with on the return. They made everything simple and easy with no fuss. Thank you amazon for that.
The new Gaggia Brera is a very impressive super automatic espresso machine that has a small form factor, making it perfect for use on small kitchen countertops. Not only that, but it seems that the company has focused, among other things, to ensure that the Brera fully maximizes user convenience. For instance, the water tank, drop tray and the dregs drawer are all within reach and can be easily accessed from the machine for simple, swift maintenance and regular cleaning. With this model, beverage selection and machine programming has been greatly simplified, allowing users to easily navigate through the options which are certainly more than you’d expect from such a small machine.
A “proper” machine that can deliver both single and double shot espressos, its spout has a dual opening allowing you to make two coffees simultaneously. There’s also a steam wand for foaming milk, and the water tank has a decent 1.2l capacity, meaning you won’t need to refill it after making three cups o’ joe. In addition to ground coffee, it’ll also accept E.S.E. coffee pods (we weren’t able to test these, but as they’re made in almost precisely the same way as regular espressos, we imagine they’ll work just fine).

There's one other area needing fixing, not only in these machines but in all super automatics I've ever tried - tiny puck sizes (diameter) = bad extraction. That's not me saying it. That's Dr. Illy and a wide range of scientific tests that the Illy labs have done finding the optimal puck size for superior extraction. At 46mm, these pucks are too tiny.

When ditching the K-cup and grinding the coffee yourself, you open yourself up to better, earthy-friendly options. Many single-serve coffee manufactures source their coffee from large plantations, and as a consumer you have very limited choice about where your coffee comes from and how it’s produced. When you grind your own with the Jura coffee machine, you are able to make more eco-conscious decisions about the coffee you purchase. We prefer to buy organic, single-origin roasts that have been certified by the rainforest alliance. We understand that this isn’t always possible, but when you are grinding your own coffee, there are more options available to you as a conscious consumer.
It might seem like a trivial point, but not all machines have thought about this. The Jura’s power cable emerges at the bottom of the rear of the machine, making it very easy to plug it in and neatly arrange any excess cable out of sight. There’s also a ‘master’ power switch in the same location – worth noting as we discovered, having thought the machine was dead on arrival after pressing the power button on top and nothing happening!
Some of the more popular mass market coffee machines are starting to look a little bit dated (not least the hugely popular and bestselling ESAM4200 by Delonghi), but that couldn’t be further from the truth with the Jura Impressa F8. It’s a very stylish and sophisticated looking machine, that wouldn’t look out of place in an upmarket cafe or bar. Jura have managed to pack a lot of controls in to the unit to give near unparalleled control over coffee making, yet retain a fairly minimalist look. There’s something about a black and silver finish that just looks the part, particularly on kitchen appliances that sit on the worktop – you don’t want something ugly to look at as a permanent fixture in the kitchen!
Anyone who is looking for the perfect espresso machine, should certainly take a closer look at the Cuisinart EM-600. This model is able to brew excellent traditional coffee beverages and espresso shots at the touch of a button and without you having to worry about moving the cup. The EM-600 incorporates a removable milk tank (22 oz) which sends frothy, creamy and hot milk right into your cup for barista quality, hands free latte and cappuccino. If you want to use it with the Illy Espresso capsule system, you’ll be very happy to know that this model offers innovative froth controls, flavor strength and temperature control with the push of a button.

You also get programmable push-button controls for milk, hot water and espresso outputs and given the fact that the 1003380 Accademia dispenses great beverages on demand, it’s great for those who don’t like to wait for long before their drink is ready. In total, there are 7 buttons that you can use in order to prepare one of the following drinks hot water, latte macchiato, latte, cappuccino, cafe lungo, cafe and of course, espresso.
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