Gaggia Syncrony Digital Review 10/09/2004

skelm

New member
Oct 9, 2004
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I have created a "newbies" review for the above superautomatic. I know they are not popular, I know better can be created by hand but for someone wanting better than drip and ease of use they fill a spot. When I first purchased this device I could find very little non-affiliated reviews. So here it is for better or worse

http://www.shebeen.com/gaggia/

Thanks all
 

Rock

New member
Nov 3, 2004
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Thanks for the great review, I narrowed down my search for a Super Auto based on all the Bells and Whistles this machine offers (using the wholelattelove.com comparison feature) and after lots of googling I could only find this review along with one other on coffeegeeks.

In your coffeegeek review you mentioned you purchased it for $800, can you please tell me from where as that's a great price.

One note of concern I have, the other reviewer on coffeegeeks mentioned they purchased it from 1st-Line.com, but when I went to that site they say they will no longer be selling Gaggia machines because of some quality issues, here's the link: http://www.1st-line.com/machines/home_m ... /index.htm

Any opinions on that?

Thanks,

Mark
 
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skelm

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Oct 9, 2004
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I found a few stores selling it for 849 including shipping. I called WLL and price matched it to one of them. Then I filled in the 50 rebate also found in WLL. As for the boiler issue I am unsure if that is a real problem or not.
 

MattK

New member
Nov 25, 2004
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My first post here. :)

I'd also like to say thanks for a great review!

I've been researching super automatics and my understanding is that they Synchro isn't a match for the Saeco Magic Deluxe but for the Royal Exclusive - I can't guarantee it but I've read it on Coffeegeek IIRC.

That said, you might be interested to know that costco.com is currently offering the Saeco Royal Deluxe for $750 through the 29th and espresso people agreed to pricematch that deal.

/MattK
 

tori

New member
Dec 15, 2004
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I ordered a Syncrony from WLL. It arrived broken. They accepted to take it back and scheduled a fedex pickup and stil lwaiting after three days for Fedex to show up.

I feel more confortable buying from a brick and mortar and picking it up myself, but cant find any strore in the Boston area carying Gagia, so I'll be switching to a Jura E8, how do they compare?

Thanks

Tori
 
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skelm

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Oct 9, 2004
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I am not sure having never used the Jura 8. However there are several reviews on the Jura online. My machine arrived double boxed from WLL with no damage. You might want to give them another shot at it
 

MattK

New member
Nov 25, 2004
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Rock -
Sorry to hear you had a problem. My Saeco Royal Deluxe from Espressopeople AKA Wholelatte AKA aaabree was working great until a few days ago. Tood, one of their techs spent a ton of time on the phone with me trying to resolve it and yesterday, when the problem recurre they said, 'send it back - we're sending a new replacement.'

I've found the customer service and tech staff at WLL etc to be simply fantastic - friendly, helpful and sympathetic. I didn't want to hear they were gonna fix my 2-3 week old machine and send it back - I wanted a fresh start and they didn't hesitate to give me that.

The reality is that pretty much no 'brick and mortar' will have the tech staff and experience to help you the way they can with your machine.

So, while I too had a problem with a machine I can't blame it on WLL - they didn't build it (mine was dbl boxed fyi) what I can hold them responsible for is how they react to a problem and frankly I couldn't have asked for more.

Kudos to Tracy, Kimmi and Todd at WLL - they're been great. I have zero regrets having bought from WLL etc and couldn't imagine buying elsewhere.

/Matt
 
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skelm

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Oct 9, 2004
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Any other's with this machine please post your comments on it here. Would be good to add some other points of view to this thread

thanks
 

Kaaikop

New member
Jan 6, 2005
2
0
Montreal
Hello to all! I'm new here, glad I found this forum! :lol:

Well I just received my Synchrony, ordered from kitchen-universe.com
Service was okay, and received in good shape!
This machine was recommended to me by a friend who bought one.

Well as far as the machine itself... well I haven't got to a satisfactory cup
of expresso yet... been playing with the settings (and have a caffeine overdose just about now :-D :)
I've tried more coffee, less coffee, more grinding, less grinding, less water, etc. using Lavazza beans right now.

What is the magic formula here? 8)
 

MattK

New member
Nov 25, 2004
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tuning the machine

With my Saeco Royal Exclusive which I understand to be basically the same machine I find that a maximum dose with a grind of 4 works great for most coffees.

If you're using lazazza d'oro coffee the problem is the coffee - it sucks.

With Lavazza Super Crema (yum) the max dose/ grind 4 works great plus I've preprogrammed the water dose on the espresso button to deliver a ristretto at about .75oz.

I'm feeding my baby Poland Spring from the 1gal clear bottles - seems to work very well.


/Matt
 

Kaaikop

New member
Jan 6, 2005
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Montreal
Thanks for your input! 8)
Right you were about the coffee!
I dumped the Lavazza and put some Illy beans instead, big difference!
Next time I'm at the coffee shop, i'll try the super crema!

And now, I really need to burn off all this caffeine! :)
 

MattK

New member
Nov 25, 2004
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I don't understand why they gave out the Lavazza Oro - it's truly terrible IMO and makes the machine look bad. Sometimes nothing is better.

The Illy IMO is just okay - I've had appreciably better results with the Super Crema.

FYI, if you call in to aabree/etc they'll give you the 'quantity' pricing on split lots if you buy the equivalent of the quantity buy - I recently bought a bag of super crema, 2 cans of Illy, a bag of malabar gold, a bag of Joe's and they gave me 50% of the 'single lb' pricing. It was a great way to taste lots of different blends.

I've also bought some of the most highly reviewed and expensive blends on the market - paradise roasters, code brown and Terroire's Dattera etc and while they were all fantastic I'll be making the Super Crema our daily brew for a while as it's very satisfying and 1/2 the price.

The Terroir was particulary interesting, truly unique FYI.

I've found the espresso from the superauto isn't the greatest (compared to what I can do with a good lever machine) and I've been found myself drinking a lot of milk drinks.

Try this one - it's become my morning drink of choice:

Steam Milk (get a pitcher/thermometer - it really helps)

Run out the overtemp water.

Run a bypass round with no coffee.

Into a 10oz mug do 2 mediums and 1-2 shots of espresso with 2 tsp. sugar. pour in a few oz of milk, top with foam.

MMMM

/Matt
 
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skelm

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Oct 9, 2004
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I have to agree - good fresh coffee makes all the difference. I have a local coffee house that does roasting. Almost anything that is 24-48rs after roast tastes much better than any of the more exotic stuff that is vacume sealed and unknown age. The one exception as noted is the Lavazza Super Crema. Great stuff
 

BAW

New member
May 13, 2005
2
0
Gaggia & Fresh Coffee

I am probably the king of procrastinators. I have been researching superautomatics for quite awhile and when someone has a negative comment I decide I don't want that one. But finally I purchased the Gaggia and I have been very happy with it.

As Skelm said the key to a good cup of coffee in any machine is that the coffee is freshly roasted. While I haven't tried some of the premium brands mentioned in this thread, I am under the belief that the best way to get fresh roasted coffee is to roast it yourself. You don't need to buy an expensive roaster either. I purchased a couple of the old Westbend Poppery II popcorn air poppers a couple of years ago on EBAY and have been roasting my own since. It takes a little practice as roasts develop quickly with an air popper but to me it is well worth it.

It was also previously mentioned that you can pretty much use any premium coffee for expresso. For the most part I believe that is true. But I also beleive you can improve the cup by getting or creating expresso blends. Blending is not a science and is in fact often used to mix lower grades with premium grades. I am no expert on blending but I plan to experiment. However, a good start from what I read would be 40-50% Brazilian coffee, 25% -35% Columbian, and 25% -35% central american coffee to add brightness. Robusta beans are also used but remember they contain twice the caffeine.

While I plan to experiment with blends I started with a expresso blend I purchased from a green bean supplier and I defintiely noticed the difference from the single batch of premium beans I had used first.

They are many sites that provide green beans but I prefer sweetmarias.com as they provide cupping evaluations and a lot of information on how to roast the bean you may decide to purchase. For the expresso blend I just bought I paid $25 (plus shipping) for 5 pounds.
 

jet_silver

New member
Nov 19, 2005
1
0
San Narciso, CA
Brew group longevity

The review has a comment: "how long will that brew group last?" The brew group shown on the newbies' review page looks a whole lot like the one from my Saeco Via Venezia, which I bought around Thanksgiving of 1997. With no repairs in the eight years I have had it this machine produces coffee the same as it did when I bought it, though it seems to leak a little more into the drain pan beneath the cups. I have been pretty casual with the maintenance and have generally treated it like any other appliance.

Perhaps I have been lucky with my machine. It certainly seems rugged and reliable, and it has given me about seven thousand shots of coffee over its lifetime.
 
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