Hey,

 

I have searched and scoured this site while unsuccessfully attempting to answer a question for myself: which is the "better" machine, a Rancilio Classe 6 or NS Aurelia (not WBC version)? My espresso tech here sells and services both, but I'm having a hard time getting a good answer out of him... he usually says "Rancilios are rock-solid, the Aurelia is more expensive." More expensive meaning about a $1,500 price difference between the two, and this is including install, filtration, etc. He is a straight tech — one with a great reputation among the biggest roaster and café owner in the region — but not a barista, so there are some things he doesn't feel comfy commenting on. 

 

Quick background: I have been in the coffee business for six years, about four of which were operated in a sort of ignorance where espresso is concerned. My shop has gone from $65,000 in annual sales to well above $250,000 in that time, and in a small city to boot. We've been running the same Astoria SAE that was there when I purchased the existing business, and as of late have really learn to deal with some of its flaws -- the steam wands, for some reason, are particularly painful to operate. 

 

Anyway. The one experience I had behind a Rancilio was an Epoca; I liked the steam levers, but maybe I would like the Aurelia's better? Who knows. Anyway, I get the impression that the "consensus view" around here would be to go with the Aurelia... What I am looking for, I suppose, is some informed opinion on this. (And yes, I know, La Marzocco is the best. Put that out of your mind.) 

 

Appreciation ahead of time, 

 

--Justin

 

 

 

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Sounds like you're liking the machine. I'd love to have one on our bar right now too :).

 

Hey, if you're interested, there are several other steam tips available for that wand. Options include a competition tip which is a little tighter pattern 4-hole one as well as a smaller diameter 4 hole one. I spec'd the latter for a customer that only did 10z and smaller drinks and they've been really happy with the extra time and control that it gives them. Let me know if this is something that interests you and we can talk about it.

 

Congrats on getting a great machine!

Msg me the details, Mr. Dealer...

Brady said:

Sounds like you're liking the machine. I'd love to have one on our bar right now too :).

 

Hey, if you're interested, there are several other steam tips available for that wand. Options include a competition tip which is a little tighter pattern 4-hole one as well as a smaller diameter 4 hole one. I spec'd the latter for a customer that only did 10z and smaller drinks and they've been really happy with the extra time and control that it gives them. Let me know if this is something that interests you and we can talk about it.

 

Congrats on getting a great machine!

So this is the tip that I was referring to, as presented by our friends at Espresso Parts. Since they are catalog parts, any Nuova Simonelli dealer or service tech can obtain these tips. Will post the part number when I find it.

An approach that might make sense would be to swap out the tip on one wand so that you can keep full speed with the other.

Hope this helps.

Just got a hold of this discussion and, if not too late, let me contribute.

 

I have only had RANCILIO machines, an Epoca that i still use and a three group class 6 that i bought for a venture that went sour, i used it 5 months. Both are manual.

 

I can tell you that the Class 6 is a rolls royce compared to the Epoca and they are both workhorses.  The Class 6 works very silently if that is an issue with you. The first time i operated it I thought i was not on, that is how smoothly it runs.  But dont think the Epoca is bad, is just that the Class 6 is a much finer machine.

 

My biz gets a lot of customers in groups, tour buses, so there are times where i have to literally make dozens of espressos in a matter of minutes and they both respond well.  if i have a budget constraint, i will go for the Epoca, the Class 6 would be a luxury, specially in a small town where you say people are not very sophisticated about coffee.

 

Both Rancilio machines will give you great extraction and frothing if you need to do both simultaneously.  i am very happy with the brand.

OK, I'm going to have to disagree with you there, Matias. As much as I support Rancilio and have recommended their machines to customers, I would not recommend the Epoca at all. It is meant to be a low-cost, entry-level machine... and to achieve that it is made mostly of ABS plastic. The bottom tray, side panels, and control panel are all plastic, and will wear, fade, stain, and break over time. I've worked on several that have been in the field for several years, and though many of their internal components are shared with the rest of the lineup, they just don't seem to hold up as well as their better-made brethren.

 

They might be ok for a lower-volume environment, like a church cafe or a restaurant, but considering how close they are to the Classe 6 in price, there is no valid reason to choose the Epoca for a coffee shop. The Classe 6 is just that much better, and still an outstanding value.

well, i might skewed by the rancilio prices in Costa Rica.  The Epoca is half of the cost of the Class 6 here, but if they were close in price, i will definitely take the Class 6.  Actually, my class 6 was a special order. 

And yes, a lot of the Epoca is plastic, but i have used my Epoca non stop for almost 4 years now and it is in good shape.  Nothing broken so far.

 

I would really like to see how many shots you consider restaurant/church cafe, i think it is interesting for me to compare.   There are days that i can easily do 200 shots, sometimes a dozen in a matter of minutes, and there might be hours where there is nothing.

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