With so many different kinds of espresso machines available on the market right now, it’s easy to become overwhelmed and end up unable to choose one.
To make your purchasing decision easier, determine whether you want to make your espresso from scratch and control the brewing process every step, or you’re OK with a machine that does the majority of the work for you. If you’re fine with an espresso machine doing most of the work, then an automatic espresso machine is the best choice.
An automatic espresso machine is a perfect alternative for those who love drinking espresso but dislike the effort required to make one.
A super-automatic espresso machine provides an almost hands-free espresso-making experience, although it’s more expensive than a regular coffee maker.
Short Answer: To further help you out, I’ve listed the best automatic espresso machines on the market, which are the Saeco Incanto Carafe Automatic Espresso Machine, the Gaggia Anima Prestige, and the JURA ENA 8 Fully Automatic Espresso Machine.
Let’s take a closer look at the various kinds of automatic espresso machines and how they work. In addition, I’ll be giving reviews of the 3 best automatic espresso machines I mentioned above towards the end of this post.
So let’s start!
What counts as an automatic espresso machine?
An automatic espresso machine is kind of hard to describe because there are various kinds of them, but the most common thing about all of them is that they have a built-in mechanical pump. That means you’ll not need to exert pressure with your hand.
Although automatic machines have programmable settings, they don’t provide much user control. The following are the various types of automatic espresso machines on the market.
Super-automatic espresso machines do everything for you – it’s like having a robot barista at your fingertips. It grinds, measures, and tamps the beans before pulling a shot. It can even froth your milk to make a latte. And it does all of these with just a push of a button.
Fully-automatic espresso machines are somewhat similar to super-automatic espresso machines. You’ll have to grind, measure, and tamp the beans yourself before leaving the rest of the brewing process to the machine.
Semi-automatic espresso machines are something in between a super-automatic and a fully automatic espresso machine. You must still grind the beans, measure the grounds, and tamp them. But what makes it special and popular among espresso enthusiasts is that they can control the timing of the shot, allowing them to customize the espresso to their liking.
Are automatic espresso machines worth it?
When it comes to convenience and ease of use, an automatic espresso machine is a helpful device that is worth having if you don’t want to go through all the trouble of preparing a shot of espresso. Also, you get consistently the same tasting espresso every time.
However, not everyone enjoys the way an automatic or super-automatic espresso machine takes complete control of the espresso-making process. This is true for sophisticated espresso connoisseurs who love their espresso in their own unique way.
When you’re using a super-automatic machine, you have no control over how your drink is made. Some automatic machines allow you to change the pull by a few seconds, but there’s no assurance that it’ll turn out to your liking, especially if you’re very particular in the way your espresso tastes.
You can’t also make latte art with a super-automatic machine since it steams the milk for you.
Automatic espresso machines: pros and cons
- Easy to use due to its simple design
- Requires less effort than a manual espresso machine
- Gives consistent results
- Not customizable like a manual or semi-automatic machine
- Not as convenient as a super-automatic machine
How long do espresso machines last?
On average, an espresso machine lasts 5 to 15 years. However, the actual longevity of your device is totally reliant on its kind, brand, frequency of use, functionality, and a few other factors.
Fully automatic espresso machines often have a longer lifespan than semi-automatic and manual types. However, regardless of the type of machine you have, if you want it to last longer, you must keep it clean and perform routine maintenance on it. I have an in-depth post you can read right here if you want to know more about how to clean your espresso machine.
Drip filter devices have the shortest lifespan, lasting only about 6 years.
The following table shows the average lifespan of the different types of coffee machines.
|Coffee Machine Type||Average Lifespan|
|Fully Automatic Espresso Machine||10 years|
|Semi-Automatic Espresso Machine||7 years|
|Hard Cap Espresso Machine||7 years|
|Pod Filter Espresso Machine||7 years|
|Drip Filter Coffee Machine||6 years|
You may increase the lifespan of your espresso machine by keeping it clean, as explained in the video below.
Best automatic espresso machines
With tons of espresso machines on the market and each claiming to be the best, it’s difficult to identify the one that is truly the best. I did some research and I’ve chosen 3 of the best automatic espresso machines that I believe do an excellent job.
Saeco Incanto Carafe Espresso Machine
The Saeco Incanto Carafe Espresso Machine is a super-automatic espresso machine that will simply satisfy your espresso cravings. It’s excellent in terms of size and design.
This automatic espresso machine is compact and portable, with a 60.9 oz water reservoir container large enough to make numerous cups of coffee without needing to refill it frequently. It’s made of stainless steel, with a sleek design, and horizontal buttons to complement any fashionable and modern kitchen.
- Large water reservoir and bean holder
- Equally large container for used grounds
- Automatic cleaning and descaling function
- Brewing unit is easily removeable
- A bit bigger than its contemporaries
Gaggia Anima Prestige
The Gaggia Anima Prestige has raised the bar for super-automatic espresso machines, particularly for coffee lovers who enjoy experimenting with their cup of joe. It includes an automatic milk frother in addition to the grinder, tamper, and built-in water heater.
Yes, many other espresso machines have these features, but they’re mostly the manual types. Most automatic machines require you to froth the milk separately. The Gaggia Anima model froths it for you and pours it into your cup effortlessly.
It boasts a beautiful stainless steel panel and a large reservoir, making this machine very appealing.
- Large water reservoir
- Single touch operation
- Three-temperature settings
- Programmable brew settings
- Customer service needs improvement
JURA ENA 8 Fully Automatic Espresso Machine
The Jura Ena 8 is one of the smallest fully automatic espresso machines on the market, so if you’re looking for something compact and less bulky to fit into a smaller space, this is the one you should get.
With just the push of a button, you can make around 10 specialty drinks such as macchiato, latte, flat white, and many more. By the way, if you’d like to learn more about the differences between an espresso and a macchiato, I have an article that you can check out right here.
Its water reservoir can carry up to 32 oz., so you won’t have to worry about constantly refilling it. It also allows you to choose the coffee strength level based on how strong you want your coffee to be.
Aside from all of these features, you can also access the machine’s settings via your phone using the J.O.E. app, which is really convenient.
- Better coffee flavor
- Offers different coffee variants and serving sizes
- User-friendly interface
- Compact design
- Smaller bean hopper and water reservoir
To sum it all up
Who knew you could prepare your coffee in the way you want with just a push of a button?
In this fast-paced age, automatic coffee machines have become a necessity for many households. Previously, these were only seen and used in large offices and restaurants. However, technological breakthroughs in the manufacturing sector have customized these machines for home use too.
These automatic coffee machines are so consistent and efficient that they’re compared to a skilled barista. Automatic espresso machines are quick, convenient, and come with additional benefits like being able to control them with your phone.
Of the 3 top automatic espresso machines I reviewed, my personal favorite is the Gaggia Anima Prestige because of its sleek and compact design, its ability to froth milk, its customizability and it’s not as expensive as the other 2 super-automatic machines.
If you’re an espresso lover and don’t have an automatic espresso machine yet, I urge you to pick one of the devices I recommended in this post and you surely won’t regret it.