Best Espresso Machine Under $500
Looking for the best espresso maker under $500 thats available in 2013. We have listed the top rated machines in that price bracket right here so that you can find the best espresso machine for the money.
There are some great espresso makers available from Delonghi, Gaggia, Breville and more. The great thing about these machines is that they are higher quality than the entry level machines and will be much more consistent in making espresso shots so you can get great coffee to your taste every time.
The best budget expresso makers which we would think of as being under $200 or under £300 are still good machines, but the main problem is going to be that they are still not that consistent.
Once you get into the $500 price bracket your are getting into quality espresso coffee makers that can produce consistent coffee shots time after time. If you are serious about the taste of your espresso then this is where you really need to be.
Top Rated Semi Automatic Espresso Machines Under 500
Gaggia 14101 Classic
The Gaggia Classic is an espresso maker that has been around for a long time. And for good reason. Its one of the best rated espresso machines with a rock solid construction, designed along the lines of commercial machines.
Made with high quality materials and a design that ensures it is a semi automatic espresso maker that easy to use, easy to clean and gives great results. If you are serious about the production of your espresso then this is the machine to start with on your journey.
The Gaggia Classic will heat the water to the right temperature for espresso coffee quickly and then produce you some great tasting espresso coffee. The machine is known for being well made with heavy duty parts and assembly that means it will stand the test of time. This is a quality machine for the price that will reward again and again with some great tasting coffee. Look after this machine and it will look after you.
The best features of the Gaggia 14101 Classic are:
- Single and double shot stainless steel filter baskets
- Brews a great espresso coffee with a nice rich crema
- 72-ounce water reservoir
- Three-way solenoid valve allowing efficient production of shots
- Industry standard 58 mm filters
- Integrated cup warmer
- Dispenser for hot water for tea and other hot drinks
Types Of Espresso Makers
Of course the type of machine you get depends on how hands on you want to be with the espresso making process.
If you really want to become a mini barista and get involved in grinding, tamping, brewing times, pouring the shot and working to get the perfect coffee, which can be quite fun in itself, then you really want to get yourself a good semi automatic maker.
When looking at the best expresso machines in the $500 dollar price range you will find that there are various types of espresso machines. Semi automatics are going to be the most common, but there are automatic espresso makers available for around $500 too such as the Philips Saeco Vienna Plus. Automatic and super automatic espresso machines make things a little bit easier by allowing to use presets for many things so you dont have to be such an artist in the ways of espresso.
Picking the right espresso maker can be a complicated business especially with the vast choice out there. There manual, semi automatic, automatic or fully automatic, and the top of the tree the super automatic. With a manual machine the pressure is created by a combination of the machine and by hand. This means you need a lot of skill to use these machines and even many experienced baristas would struggle so these are best left to the artists who want the pleasure of being completely in control of the whole espresso process.
Semi automatic have an electric pump but the boiler temperature is controlled by the machine. These machine have consistent temperature and pressure, and the semi part if the fact that the operator controls the stop and start of the espresso shot. The semi automatic is the most popular type of true espresso maker are the most reasonably priced. Fully automatics are similar to semi automatics but control the shot too. Many of these can still be used in semi automatic mode if there is a preference.
The super automatic machines are the rolls royces of the espresso world. Basically these machines do everything or almost everything for you. Many of these machines are bean to cup as the feature integrated grinders, so in many cases literally all you have to do is push one button and wait and you will be gifted with a wondeful cup of espresso. Many super automatics also feature integreated milk frothing abilities either by an included milk container or a seperate container that you can attach to the machine. These machine can make you a full espresso based drink such as a cappuccino or latte at the push of one button. If you have no interest in getting your hands dirty the super automatics are for you but they do come with a slightly more expensive price tage in many cases.
Breville BES860XL Barista Express Espresso Maker with Grinder
If your looking to get that great espresso taste, you need a good espresso maker, but you also need great coffee. And part of getting a great coffee is the grind of the beans. So what can be better than a good automatic espresso maker with an integrated grinder like the Breville BES860XL.
Ground coffee beans start to lose their aromas and flavors as soon as they are ground, so if you can go straight from grind to brew then you will be preserving maximum flavour and taste for the resulting espresso. This is where the BES860XL with its integrated grinder comes into its own ensuring a straight path from grind to brew.
The BES860XL is another very well made machine. It also has a really nice design that will look good on your kitchen countertop. It doesnt just look good it also allows you to make a great cup of espresso with ease. This machine is also very easy to clean and is very consistent in making espresso.
The highlights of the Breville BES860XL Barista Express are:
- Integrated burr grinder for freshest and most aromatic coffee
- Programmable espresso shot buttons allow you to preset the length of the espresso shot and use those setting on subsequent shots
- Magnetic Tamper
- Single and dual wall filters included
- Good steam wand for frothing milk
- Easy to clean parts
Breville Barista Express Video Review
Breville Semi Automatic Espresso Machine
If you want to just push a button and get espresso and espresso based drinks then its probably wise to invest in a pod machine like a Nespresso, or a super automatic espresso maker that will literally do everything at the push of one button.
DeLonghi ESAM3300 Magnifica Super-Automatic Espresso Coffee Maker
The ESAM3300 espresso maker is a super automatic espresso machine. These are the machines that will do most or all of the espresso making process for you at the push of a button. If you are not interested in becoming a home barista and have no inclination to grind or tamp or temperature surf etc, then a super automatic maker is what you need. Of course you get what you pay for and the convenience of a super auto comes at a price of course, in that you pay a little more for the best coffee machine.
This machine as super autos do features an integrated grinder so you get the freshest grind possible as the beans are ground on demand just before the coffee is brewed, rather than hanging around for a few days after being ground losing their aromas and flavors. It also offers simple controls on the front panel to ensure that this machine is super easy to use too.
The best features of the Delonghi ESAM3300 are:
- Small boiler means the machine doesnt take up a lot of space
- Great tasting espresso as beans are ground fresh each time with integrated grinder
- Water tank and bean hopper are easy to remove for refilling and cleaning
- Simple control panel on front make this machine easy to use
- Allows easy setting of strength and volume of coffee
Delonghi ESAM3300 Magnifica Video Review
Other Great Sites
Gear Patrol – 10 Best Espresso Machines and Buyers Guide
Seattle Coffee Gear – Espresso Machines Under 500
About.com – Top Espresso Machines Under $500best espresso machine under $500
best espresso machine under 500