Like the Sage Express, Panasonic’s NC-ZA1 is a “bean to cup” espresso machine: it takes whole beans, grinds them and pushes hot water through them at pressure to produce a cup of coffee. That’s pretty much where the similarities end, however, because unlike the old-school Express, the NC-ZA1 makes almost the entire process automated – and controllable via touchscreen.
I have owned this for about 9 months and gotten nearly 1000 uses out of it (it counts for you). It can equal most coffeehouse product you are likely to find, but as others point out, it is far short of what an enthusiast can create from more traditional equipment. You may also find the crema coffee settings to be something of an acquired taste (but you can make an Americano in just one more step, which is always great).
On the downside, the bean storage is temperamental, after filling sometimes the beans won't feed into the grinder requiring a prod to continue and despite using a drier roast, not all beans get fed into the grinder when it is "empty." The final minor irritation is that the control button requires multiple rotational clicks before it functions.” James U., Amazon Customer
Super automatic espresso machines generally will produce superb macchiato, cappuccino, and chocolate drinks in addition to espresso drinks (such as ristretto). You will pay for the convenience of super automatic, automatic, or semi-automatic espresso machines, but they are a convenient way to produce and re-produce great drinks. Typically, super automatic espresso machines cost from $400 and up. These espresso machines come in multiple styles and sizes. Some automatic espresso machines provide a compact form factor which can attractively sit on a kitchen counter, whereas others are large and best suited to for the truly serious espresso aficionado or as a commercial super automatic espresso machine. The choice is yours.
In just 60 seconds, the Impressa C9 will steam or froth milk, tamp, grind, brew and clean itself. And if you’re looking to brew other drinks, you can use the hot water dispenser for tea, or to enjoy a cup of foamy hot chocolate. You have options to choose the cup size and strength of your coffee for a truly personal brew. Of course, the Impressa C9 also uses a water filter to ensure your coffee tastes as fresh and pure as possible.
The Jura J90 is an award winning design for a great automatic one-touch coffee machine. It is capable of easily producing at the touch of a single button the entire range of beverages from ristretto to latte macchiato. These specialty espresso drinks are selected using the Rotary Switch. This Jura machine has what they call an Aroma+ grinder which uses specially high grinding speeds to provide a superior coffee grind while preserving the full aroma of those beans. Jura’s revolutionary fine foam technology yields an extra light milk foam crown on every latte macchiato and cappuccino.
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.
Jura designates a new line of coffee machines whenever a major technological breakthrough is achieved. We will review these technologies in-depth in the following section, and provide more specs when we cover each individual machine. If you see a term that you don’t immediately understand, don’t worry, just reference the glossary in the next section!
Everything we discussed points to the Jura’s mission of making great coffee and espresso beverages at home easier. The Swiss made precision and modern design is simply an added bonus. Want your coffee freshly ground on a cup-by-cup basis? The Jura does that as a matter of course. Don’t feel like dirtying and cleaning several different pieces of equipment just to froth milk? The Jura takes care of this by warming, frothing and dispensing the milk for you. It will also clean the lines so you don’t have to word about old milk in your system. Best of all, as a consumer you can choose the coffee you want to drink while still having the convenience of single serve brewing.
The first machine I received never worked correctly. The milk would not steam and the espresso would start to come out and then stop. Upon stopping a message would display on the screen asking to press a button to fill the pump. This would occur 2-3 times before an expresso could actually be made. I experimented with several different grind settings, coffee strength, water temperatures, etc, but with no success. The machine continued to pump a few drops of espresso, asking to refill the pump, and waste the previous grinds. I literally wasted 2-3 cans of Illy espresso without ever getting espresso. In addition, with each espresso cycle, a large amount of water would precede any espresso. For example on a 1oz shot, about 0.1oz would be water that didn't run through the coffee.
Aside from the display, another feature of the Jura Impressa F8 that is worth mentioning is the Expert Mode. As the name suggests, this feature is ideal for coffee connoisseurs as it allows changing or adjusting the settings for all drinks programmed on the machine. It also gives users the option of adjusting the volume of the shot once it starts to brew.
Capresso offers a significant list of help resources that include comparison charts, instruction booklets, quick-reference guides and a list of FAQs. In addition, the company offers information on its warranties and product registration. You can contact Capresso using its toll-free customer service hotline. The nice thing about this company's customer service is that there are people available to answer your questions on Saturdays.