This is rather unfortunate as i seem to have got through a lot of types machines trying to get that taste. I have stuck with the bottom end delonghi corso for the past four years, and there are reasons why as well as niggles. Why do you want a bean to cup?coffee shops are ridiculously expensive and create unrecyclable waste. The machines where you tamp down the grounds are very messy and require a lot of skill, especially when you are still peeling your eyes open. Cafetieres produce muddy coffee. Instant is dull (makes my stomach churn)pods are expensive, have a limited choice and gave me heartburn. Bean to cups are expensive initially, do need some maintenance, but pay for themselves because you reduce your coffee shop addiction (and stop eating those soggy blueberry muffins). Why do you want a delonghi?hygiene. They are one one of the few open unit machines.
With my delonghi magnifica having served me well for a number of years and being on its last legs i figured it was time for a replacement and this model has more than done that. Its shiny, well made, easy to use, easy to clean and makes a damned fine cup of coffee. In the box was a ‘how to prepare an espresso in 5 easy steps’ guide to get me going and a more detailed user guide that told me everything i needed to know about setting it up properly, adapting it to my preferences and maintaining it, all well set out, easy to follow and put somewhere safe for future referencewhat i love about this prima donna machine;• i can adjust the strength of the coffee• i can adjust the temperature• i can adjust the length of my drink• i can adjust the amount of froth• i can adjust the grind• i can use beans or ready ground coffeewhilst it comes with automatically selectable caffelatte, cappuccino, latte macchiato i can also adjust all of thosethe led display pretty much tells me what to do, if i select a cappuccino and have forgotten to attach the milk container it tells me to do it, if i need more water in the tank it tells me to ‘fill tank’, if the grounds container needs emptying, yep it tells me to do that too – even i can’t get it wrong. There’s a lot of positives to this machine and as already said it makes a great cup of coffee.
This is my third delonghi bean to cup machine and the second in the top end prima donna range. My first machine was a prima donna which i purchase back in 2007 and it still works. The major difference between the higher end de longhi machines and the cheaper ones are a) exterior build quality (stainless steel and chrome versus plastic) and the milk frother (all in one frother jug versus froth your own milk with the steam wand). The innards of the machines are the same – the grinder, pump, diffuser unit (which brews the coffee) so you are just paying for the look and convenience of pressing one button versus making your own frothy milk. I’m pleased to see that the range has had a revamp since my last machine (which i got about 5 years ago). The diffuser unit is a new design and is accessed from the side of the machine and the water container is at the back, rather than the side. The result is a slimmer, more compact machine that is easier to fit on a cluttered kitched worktop. I particularly like the following touches:the milk jug is a much improved design and easier to use and store in the fridgethe milk jug produces a much better froth than the earlier models – virtually indistinguishable from the silky texture you get from a professional baristathere is a led light in the coffee spout so you can see when the coffee is ready even in low light conditionsthe grounds container is easier to emptythe milk jug is easier to clean than previously and runs through a clean cycle at the push of a buttonthe bean storage area is sealed with a lid which keeps the beans fresher for longercomes with a water filtercup heating element has its own buttonslight niggles (and i mean slight)it is slightly more difficult to clean the machine as you have to access the diffuser from the side (you will have to regularly clean the machine as after a month or two bits of ground coffee end up in the corners – a vacuum cleaner wand and the cleaning brush provided are your best friends here and make light work of it)the coffee bean storage capacity is a bit less than beforeno place to store the ground coffee dispense inside the machine like in the old models (just keep it in the ground coffee container instead)the water jug doesn’t have a handle and you have to lift up the lid and grab the inside of it to lift it out (slightly akward)cup heating area smaller than on previous models (although i never use this function)the diffuser design has changed and it seems more difficult to take apart to clean and change o-rings. On the old model this was easy and you could do it without needing any tools. All in all the positives hugely outweight the negatives.
The de’longhi prima donna xs produces a good cappuccino at the touch of a button, as well as espresso, caffelatte, latte macchiato, plain filter coffee or just hot or frothed milk. It is possible to adjust many aspects of coffee production to your own requirements, such as the strength of the coffee, temperature and volume dispensed. The quality of coffee produced is consistently good and, as long as you follow a good maintenance regime (regular cleaning and descaling) there is no deterioration in taste over time. Bear in mind that, despite this being the xs model, it is still a large machine and, although it will fit underneath wall-mounted cupboards, filling the coffee beans may be tricky in that position. Furthermore, the water tank lifts out from the rear for filling, so you will need to slide the machine out to access this. You will need a sizeable work surface area, but it looks good on display and is worth the space occupied. It is a good coffee machine and worthy of consideration. If you want a longer read, the following are my additional observations. Otherwise, consider double-walled glass coffee cups for the best temperature drink and keep the box so that you can return the machine when it needs to be serviced or repaired. • build qualitygood, with a solid chrome cover to the drip tray and metal outer body with the rest of the components being made of good quality plastic or metal.
First off, this is actually a pretty heavy bit of kit. You’ll possibly need one strong person or two medium strength persons to help you move this monster. The set up is very straightforward – all the pieces basically slide in to each other with ease and the most work is getting it unwrapped and installed, getting it rinsed and started. It is noticeably heavier than other models i’ve tried, and it takes up an immense amount of counter space so be prepared – unless you have a big kitchen or office with a large counter, you might want to look at the slimmer and slightly smaller model. After getting everything set up (the instructions make it very straightforward) everything is really as easy as pressing a button. Filling your water, your beans, your milk is very easy that even a child could do it (wouldn’t recommend, obviously) without needing much instruction. It makes a cracking latte but i am finding problems sizing the cups right. Sometimes i’m selecting standard coffee on the display and i’m getting barely half a cup, while sometimes choosing the same will later provide a full cup – a long coffee will overflow on a tall mug sometimes but not others – in uncertain if the machine reads how much milk is in the flask and decides contrary to that. Have noticed that warmer milk ( i.
Dear trusty old coffee machine, i’m afraid to say i have taken another…i didn’t mean this to happen but i’ve moved on, to an exciting new world of convenience and perfect coffee every single time. I wasn’t even looking for it, but a flashy new italian model came into my life and i now can’t get enough of her……a few weeks ago i left the steam setting on my trusty old gaggia classic turned on…. Not something that should cause major concern if the machine wasn’t old and in need of some attention but in this particular case it was a bad move. I first noticed a weird smell of burning plastic and realised that the thermostat was clearly playing up and the machine had just got hotter and hotter. Now fully blown out and not working i started contemplating whether to fix it for the second time or if it was time to move on and get something new. The romance started to twinkle when at the perfect opportune moment i was given the chance to test out this de’longhi prima donna xs bean to cup machine. A premium level machine with impressive looks and an enviable list of features but one which at first i was worried would be too “machiney”. You know the episode of father ted where they buy mrs doyle a machine that makes the tea – “it’ll take the misery out of making tea”. Well i was a bit like mrs doyle – “maybe i like the misery”.
For shear ease of use i have a nespresso and dolce gusto machines but when i really want to push the boat out a de’longhi bean to cup machine is the ultimate in coffee experience. However, my current de’longhi machine is getting old now and things have started to not work as they used to. Perhaps it is time to put it out to pasture… hence i was overjoyed when asked to review this latest “de’longhi prima donna xs bean to cup” machine. It is slimmer than my old model but still quite heavy and solid – a beauty of a machine in its polished silver and does all of the stuff you could ever want of it – and more. On setting up you can check your water hardness and adapt as necessary. I didn’t need to as i have done this before and the water hardness pre-set is about the right one for my area. So, just fill up the beans in the top, water at the back and turn on the machine. It allows you to grind the beans coarser or finer, set short, medium or long coffees, one or two cups, beans or ground coffee. You can only do one cup of ground coffee at a time (i assume that is because of the small compartment for the ground coffee).
- Five Stars
- The best bean to cup machine just got better.
De’Longhi ETAM 36.365.M Prima Donna XS Bean to Cup
This is my first bean to cup coffee machine after many years of using pod machines and have bean (sorry) really impressed. At first it seems a little overwhelming in terms of all the different settings etc but it is actually very straightforward. Reasonably small machine so doesn’t take up too much counter space. Temperature adjustment is great, i can crank the temp up, fill a thermal cup with my coffee and it’s still hot by the time i get to the office. Standard measurements are pretty small for uk standards, even the maximum custom setting of 180ml is pretty stingy for my taste. Easily solved by just using a single cup and the ‘two cup’ function.
The machine comes securely packaged in a nice looking presentation box. All the necessary documents are easily found on top. It’s a good idea to read through them prior to getting it plugged in just so you can get your head round it. It does at first seem like it could be complicated, but once you are familiar with the machine, it’s pretty straight forward. Once out of the box you can take a look and see it has a nice brushed stainless steel finish. A milk carafe that would hold a pint or so of milk and also a seperate milk frother attachment if you wanted to warm / froth milk yourself to add to other drinks. The milk carafe has a rubber tube inside that easily comes off after using it. Manual says to rinse that and also the steam head after using. Doing that will stop any old milk remaing in the system and is good to keep it clean.
Fantastic machine – have enjoyed trying out all the options. You can customise the pre-defined coffees and for our taste we reduced the amount of milk in the drinks. As the machine is small you do need to fill the water and beans regularly, but i guess this is obviousordered on amazon. De, where it was considerably cheaper than the uk and still only took 2 days to arrive.
I have always rejected the idea of using coffee pods, for obvious reasons. Here is a machine that delivers any coffee that you would like, completely fresh with minimal effort. I am delighted at the full control that i have over the grind, temperature, quantity and strength. I am also very pleased that it is easy enough to give the insides a thorough clean. We have found the controls straightforward to use. The format of the machine has been designed to be a narrow as possible, making this machine practical in most kitchens. The only thing this machine cannot do is turn poor quality beans into a superior quality drink. At the moment we are buying from a well established local independent coffeehouse, that has its own roastery, as a guarantee of freshness. Aesthetically there are probably more attractive looking machines.
This is an excellent coffee maker which doe spretty much everything except bake your croissant, and was good value from 3rd party supplier. Paid £700 and it arrived within 24 hours.
- Five Stars
- The best bean to cup machine just got better.
De’Longhi ETAM 36.365.M Prima Donna XS Bean to Cup