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Best Espresso Machine Under 800 | Buyer’s Guide

Best Espresso Machine Under 800

If you’re ready to seriously invest in a home espresso experience, $800 and under is a great budget.

At this price point, you can expect a machine with some professional quality features that allow you to enjoy a lot of the luxuries of a commercial machine, but without the commercial price tag or size.

When looking for an espresso machine under $800, you should compare the ease of use, construction and customization features to find a machine that will be the best fit for your home.

Programmability starts to enter the game at this price point and you should expect to have control over variables like grind coarseness and amount, shot volume, water temp and sometimes steaming and frothing.

shot

The Final Shot: The Breville Barisa Express is the top pick in this range. The built-in grinder really improves the smoothness of the brew process. Other top features include the espresso pressure gauge, range of customization settings and frothing wand.

The three machines in this article are designed to brew any espresso beverage with some tailoring and top level extraction. 2 of the options offer a built-in grinder, which I really feel you should expect at this price point.

The Breville Barista is the machine that I ended up choosing when working with an under $800 budget.

I use it every day and it really makes my morning routine enjoyable. The refined processes call for just enough involvement on my part and the end result rivals what I order in most local coffee shops. Most times, I would prefer to have a latte at home, which is just crazy to think about.

Top Espresso Machine under $800

  • Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machine
    Product Name
  • 4Rating
  • $$$Price
  • Semi AutomaticMachine Type
  • Breville BES920XL Dual Boiler Espresso Machine
    Product Name
  • 4.5Rating
  • $$$Price
  • Semi AutomaticMachine Type
  • De’Longhi ESAM3300 Magnifica Super-Automatic Espresso
    Product Name
  • 4Rating
  • $$$Price
  • Super AutomaticMachine Type

#1 Choice – Breville BES870XL Barista Express Espresso Machine Review

The Breville Barista Express is packed with style and some sleek tech functionality that is really impressive in a home machine.

You can customize your espresso by varying the grind amounts, sizes and tamping pressure (you do this by hand) with the two single-wall filters. For those who are new to the art of espresso making, the two dual-wall filters make it pretty seamless to extract the perfect shot.

When I first purchased this machine and was new to using a portafilter and tamping my own beans, I found it pretty intuitive to use and it didn’t take long for me to calibrate it to the beans I was into at the time.

The stainless steel casing gives it a sleek look that fits well in any modern kitchen. The circular buttons offer volumetric control over the cup volumes, filter size, grind size and grind amount.

Measuring at 12.5 x 13.25 x 15.75 inches and weighing 23 pounds, the design is fairly roomy and it feel solid. I’ve been using mine for over 2 years and it works as well now as it did fresh out of the box.

The Barista Express is also surprisingly quiet while brewing. The grinder isn’t as loud as some of the machines I’ve used and the hopper seals and stores just enough beans at a time.

The portafilter clicks right into place in the hands-free grind cradle and you simply push it inward to initiate the grind process. After tamping and locking the portafilter under the grouphead, you just press the brew button to start extraction.

I really enjoy the pressure gauge on the front because I like to be able to monitor the extraction and see if I’m in the ideal range.

The grinder itself it a conical burr style and it’s pretty fast. The grind time varies based on shot size, but its always under 45 seconds.

The 15 bar pump and 1600-watt thermocoil heating system regulates the water temperature to ensure the espresso is brewed to the optimal flavor. The 2 liter removable water tank holds plenty of water and I find I’m only refilling every few days.

The Barista Express also comes with added convenience features, like a cup warmer on the top of the machine. The steam wand for frothing milk can be rotated a full 360 degrees and is pretty easy to get the hang of.

If you are like me and often forget to clean, this espresso machine includes a small kit and the front display light notifies you when the machine needs to be cleaned. There is also separate indicator pop up (it’s kind of cute even, according to my wife) for when the removable drip tray is full.

Some users have found that it takes a while to adjust the tamp pressure depending on the type of beans that you use. I didn’t really run into this but I think it depends on the beans in a lot of cases and setting the grind to the right level. You can play around with 3 or 4 shots and measure your success by looking at the extraction pressure gauge.

With 4.4 out of 5 stars and ranked at #3 in the Semi-Automatic Espresso machines, the Breville Barista is my top pick in this price range.

hotfeatures

Breville Barista Express Hot Features:
  • 15 bar pump pressure
  • Purge Function: automatically adjusts water temperature after steam for optimal espresso extraction temperature
  • Hands-free grinding cradle
  • Integrated burr grinder with ½ lb. bean hopper
  • 2 liter removable water tank
  • 1600-watt thermocoil heating system
  • 360 swivel froth wand
  • Espresso pressure gauge
  • Sleek stainless steel casing
  • 54mm tamper
  • Attached no slip feet

#2 Choice – Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machine Review

The Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machine is the highest price machine on this list and the only option without a grinder, but I included it because the quality of the espresso is so high.

This is also a semi-automatic machine that uses a professional quality grouphead to stabilize the heat level and extract the maximum level of flavor from every pulled shot.

The 58mm portafilter has an ergonomic handle and it seamlessly clicks into the cradle after tamping. You can choose from the single or double filter size depending on the amount of espresso you prefer.

The Silvia measures at 9.2 x 11.4 x 13.3 inches and weighs at 30.8 pounds which is comparable to other machines in its class.

The Silvia features a chrome plated brass boiler that creates a lot of steaming power and recovers quickly after each shot. The 12 ounce capacity of the boiler features the highest volume of machines in its class.

I also like that you don’t have to remove the water reservoir on this machine to refill it, just pour water into the top at any time to fill up the two quart interior container. The water tank on the Breville as at the back, so refilling requires removal.

The construction on this machine is also high-quality and durable with an iron frame coupled with stainless steel paneling.

If you are into the convenience of espresso pods or capsules, you have the option to purchase the kit separately that will accept pre-packaged coffee grounds, though I’m a big proponent of using fresh whenever possible.

The steaming knob on the Silvia is another nice feature that allows you to control steaming pressure for a more nuanced steam or froth. This is something the Breville does not offer that I think is a great option to have.

The only downside to this espresso machine is that it doesn’t come with a built-in burr grinder. You will need to invest in a high quality burr grinder and grind freshly roasted beans to get the best results. This was a pretty big disappointment for me and one of the main reasons I went with the Breville.

The Rancilio Silvia has nearly 250 reviews on Amazon with a solid 4 out of 5 star rating, which makes it a great choice for under $800.

hotfeatures

Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machine Hot Features:
  • 15 bar pump pressure
  • Traditional linear design
  • Commercial level grouphead
  • Portafilter with ergonomic handle
  • Adaptor kit available for pod and capsule use
  • Rotating steam wand with adjustable steaming knob
  • 12 ounce chrome-plated brass boiler
  • Includes single and double filter baskets

#3 Choice – De’Longhi ESAM3300 Magnifica Super-Automatic Espresso/Coffee Machine

The De’Longhi ESA3300 Magnifica Super-Automatic Espresso machine has all the key features of a full-size super-automatic machine packed into an elegant, compact design.

This is the only super-auto on this list and a great place to start if you are looking for ultimate automation and less of a hands-on experience.

The De’Longhi has fully customizable features to program in your ideal coffee beverage, with the machine remembering your selections for size, strength and temp.

Like the Breville, the Magnifica comes with an integrated burr grinder that can be adjusted to various grind coarseness and volume levels.

This machine measures at 15 x 11 x 14 pounds and 28.5 pounds, making it a great mid-range size addition that works with most kitchen sizes.

I love that on the Magnifica, you don’t need to wait for the machine to warm back up in between cups as De-longhi’s Rapid Cappuccino System consistently maintains the ideal temperature for consecutive brews, without loss of heat.

The manual Cappuccino System is also adjustable so you can create thick, long-lasting foam for your favorite cappuccino drinks. You’ll just place your milk container under the nozzle to make a rich tasting froth for your latte.

If you prefer to use pre-ground coffee, you can use the second compartment to pour in your coffee grounds of choice. Although, if you are a coffee die-hard like myself, you know the best results come from freshly ground beans.

This machine is also equipped with convenience features such as a removable drip tray and cup warmer. The drip tray and brew unit can both be removed for easy, hassle-free cleaning.

The Delongi ESAM3300 is ranked at 4.1 out of 5 stars on Amazon and is featured as the #2 best seller in the Super-Automatic espresso machines category.

hotfeatures

DeLonghi ESAM3300 Magnifica Hot Features:
  • Built-in conical burr grinder
  • Stainless steel double boiler
  • Instant reheat function via Rapid Capp
  • Removable bean compartment and water tank
  • Adjustable coffee spigots
  • Patented cappuccino system
  • Cup warmer tray
  • Compact design

I hope this guide helps you to choose the best espresso machine that fits your preferences and ups your home espresso game! Thanks for reading.

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Chatting about coffee is my passion! Leave me a question in the comments, I answer each and every one and would love to get to know you better.

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About the Author Michael York

I am a die-hard espresso fan. I love every form of the drink from straight espresso shots to lattes and cappuccinos. I currently use a Breville BES870XL Barista, it is an awesome machine. BUT, my dream machine is definitely an Italian Quickmill Andreja. Those bad boys make badass espresso. I love answering your questions, leave a comment or question below!

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