Ready to upgrade - Silvia Pro or Profitec Pro 300?

zguy

New member
Nov 17, 2021
5
1
Midwest
Hello,

I am new here. I started my espresso journey back in 2017. I started with a Silvia M (with PID) and Rocky doserless grinder which I currently still have. I make at least one drink per day and sometimes up to three. I make milk based drinks solely. I recently upgraded my grinder to a Niche Zero and I am now looking to upgrade my espresso machine. Since I make milk based drinks a dual boiler is a must. I also want to have a PID as well as a gauge to monitor brew pressure.

My dream machine is Linea Mini but I honestly can't justify it due to the volume of drinks that I currently make. Next in line after the Linea Mini would be the Lelit Bianca. However I don't believe I need to spend $3k to get what I need. My research so far shows that the Silvia Pro and Profitec Pro 300 should be sufficient.

Thoughts? Opinions?

Thanks!
 

Musicphan

Active member
May 11, 2014
1,522
9
Kansas City
I had an OG Silvia which I DIY PID'd... ran than that for 10 years. Currently have a Rocket Apartmento at home / Rocket R58 Dual Boiler at work. I honestly don't see a big difference between the two (high end HX & dual boiler) for home use. I'm not a heavy milk drinker but both machines can rock good microfoam for the few drinks I need at a time. I think you would be surprised at how well high end HX machines would do - at least they are pretty comparable IMO (obviously pro/cons of every model). I would take a look at James Hoffman YouTube review of espresso machines. It was pretty thorough and pointed out a lot of pros/cons. I know the Silvia Pro got knocked a bit for a small drip tray. I think you will be pretty happy with anything in those price ranges... if your getting up to $4K take a serious look at the Decent espresso machines. Love their ability to really vary pressure/waterflow/temps.
 

shadow745

Active member
Aug 15, 2005
1,605
9
Central North Carolina
The Silvia Pro is certainly a very capable machine. I rarely bother with steam, but if I do I know it's available anytime I might happen to need it. Basically got the Pro version for the build quality and it doesn't disappoint. Rancilio is releasing a Pro X version soon which offers a brew pressure gauge and adjustable 'soft infusion' as well as a few color options. Those things make no real difference for my use as I'm not a fan/believer in needing a brew pressure gauge or any sort of pre-infusion. No doubt machines these days are being marketed to appeal to those looking for quality espresso/textured milk with minimal involvement. I get that not everyone wants to live, eat and breathe espresso, but I do take pride in applying serious effort/determination in everything I do.

I had briefly considered the Profitec Pro 300, but not totally convinced of their design/build quality as some inherent flaws have popped up being mentioned on various forums. Granted anything mechanical can/will have issues, but some certainly more than others. Regarding the Linea/Bianca... personally think the Linea is overrated for that price point and also don't care for Lelit's build quality as corners are clearly cut for a lower price point compared to other brands. Once you get to a decent level of equipment the end result in the cup doesn't really get better, just different. Higher cost usually gives a bit better build quality and possibly the features you look forward to using as well as the costly bling factor if that's your thing. I will honestly/gladly state that a dialed in Silvia is easily on par with anything else regardless of price, which is why after quite a few machines it's what I roll with and have no intention of ever changing that. Same can be said for grinders as well...
 
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Z

zguy

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Nov 17, 2021
5
1
Midwest
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I had an OG Silvia which I DIY PID'd... ran than that for 10 years. Currently have a Rocket Apartmento at home / Rocket R58 Dual Boiler at work. I honestly don't see a big difference between the two (high end HX & dual boiler) for home use. I'm not a heavy milk drinker but both machines can rock good microfoam for the few drinks I need at a time. I think you would be surprised at how well high end HX machines would do - at least they are pretty comparable IMO (obviously pro/cons of every model). I would take a look at James Hoffman YouTube review of espresso machines. It was pretty thorough and pointed out a lot of pros/cons. I know the Silvia Pro got knocked a bit for a small drip tray. I think you will be pretty happy with anything in those price ranges... if your getting up to $4K take a serious look at the Decent espresso machines. Love their ability to really vary pressure/waterflow/temps.
Thanks for the feedback. I am pretty sold on getting a dual boiler over a HX machine if I upgrade. I'll take another look at James Hoffman's videos but I believe I saw his review on the Silvia Pro and his complaint about the drip tray and weird water level sensor. To be honest, because of how problem free my Siliva has been since 2016, it makes me want to stay with that brand.
 
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zguy

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Nov 17, 2021
5
1
Midwest
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The Silvia Pro is certainly a very capable machine. I rarely bother with steam, but if I do I know it's available anytime I might happen to need it. Basically got the Pro version for the build quality and it doesn't disappoint. Rancilio is releasing a Pro X version soon which offers a brew pressure gauge and adjustable 'soft infusion' as well as a few color options. Those things make no real difference for my use as I'm not a fan/believer in needing a brew pressure gauge or any sort of pre-infusion. No doubt machines these days are being marketed to appeal to those looking for quality espresso/textured milk with minimal involvement. I get that not everyone wants to live, eat and breathe espresso, but I do take pride in applying serious effort/determination in everything I do.

I had briefly considered the Profitec Pro 300, but not totally convinced of their design/build quality as some inherent flaws have popped up being mentioned on various forums. Granted anything mechanical can/will have issues, but some certainly more than others. Regarding the Linea/Bianca... personally think the Linea is overrated for that price point and also don't care for Lelit's build quality as corners are clearly cut for a lower price point compared to other brands. Once you get to a decent level of equipment the end result in the cup doesn't really get better, just different. Higher cost usually gives a bit better build quality and possibly the features you look forward to using as well as the costly bling factor if that's your thing. I will honestly/gladly state that a dialed in Silvia is easily on par with anything else regardless of price, which is why after quite a few machines it's what I roll with and have no intention of ever changing that. Same can be said for grinders as well...
I appreciate the feedback. I didn't know that Rancilio was coming out with a Pro X version. The reality is that I am not going to spend more than 2k for an espresso machine. I normally go overboard when buying something but since the Silvia has done so well, all I am looking for is the additional features. E.g., dual boiler, native PID.

If I only made espresso, the Silvia would be more than sufficient. However, waiting to steam and then purging to get the boiler temperature down to make a second drink does take time. Considering I do this almost every day it gets to be a lot of time wasted. It's not that I don't enjoy the process but the reality is that the extra time can be better spent for me.
 
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shadow745

Active member
Aug 15, 2005
1,605
9
Central North Carolina
I appreciate the feedback. I didn't know that Rancilio was coming out with a Pro X version. The reality is that I am not going to spend more than 2k for an espresso machine. I normally go overboard when buying something but since the Silvia has done so well for me all I looking for is the additional features I mentioned. E.g., dual boiler, native PID.

If I only made espresso, the Silvia would be more than sufficient. However, waiting to steam and then purging to get the temps down to repeat the cycle does take time. Considering I do this everything it gets to be a lot of time wasted. It's not that I don't enjoy the process but the reality that extra can be better spent for me.
I didn't 'need' a double boiler, but my V1 had some heavy use on it. Although I meticulously cared for it I knew in time the element would go out and that would involve a bit of downtime to replace the boiler, etc. Decided to splurge on the Pro version as it should last the rest of my lifetime and has that same old school Silvia build quality/performance with a few added features that enhance it a bit.

Yes the drip tray is a bit shallow, but the Silvia design doesn't send much to the tray. Some machines circulate quite a bit of water to the drip tray and require a larger design. With all the machines I've had I do any group flushing into a mug and never let it make it to the tray, so the only flow going there is from the 3-way. I keep 2 sponges in it and simply rinse them out daily, wipe the tray out and it's clean/dry like new every morning. Some people get a bit lazy with basic cleaning/preventive maintenance leading to messes. The complaint of the low water feature in the Pro is a bit much too as it's rather simple and very effective. Most machines use switches, magnetic triggers, etc. and often clog/fail. I don't ever rely on that sort of thing as the tank gets topped off every day regardless of use. Have no clue as to why so many 'enthusiasts' don't check the tank daily and then whine when they run things dry mid-extraction.
 
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zguy

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Nov 17, 2021
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Midwest
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I didn't 'need' a double boiler, but my V1 had some heavy use on it. Although I meticulously cared for it I knew in time the element would go out and that would involve a bit of downtime to replace the boiler, etc. Decided to splurge on the Pro version as it should last the rest of my lifetime and has that same old school Silvia build quality/performance with a few added features that enhance it a bit.

Yes the drip tray is a bit shallow, but the Silvia design doesn't send much to the tray. Some machines circulate quite a bit of water to the drip tray and require a larger design. With all the machines I've had I do any group flushing into a mug and never let it make it to the tray, so the only flow going there is from the 3-way. I keep 2 sponges in it and simply rinse them out daily, wipe the tray out and it's clean/dry like new every morning. Some people get a bit lazy with basic cleaning/preventive maintenance leading to messes. The complaint of the low water feature in the Pro is a bit much too as it's rather simple and very effective. Most machines use switches, magnetic triggers, etc. and often clog/fail. I don't ever rely on that sort of thing as the tank gets topped off every day regardless of use. Have no clue as to why so many 'enthusiasts' don't check the tank daily and then whine when they run things dry mid-extraction.
I hear you with the maintenance. I have been pretty meticulous with mine. The drip tray on my V3 has not been a problem for me. Like you, I flush the group into a small container and not directly into the drip tray. I have never run out of water on my V3 as well, so I imagine having any sort of gauge for the water level is a plus. I have only had two issues with my V3 so far. The plastic cowl around the group broke off about a year ago. I am sure that was from many heat cycles. I ended up replacing it with a flat black one which looks better. The other issue is a slow drip from the steam wand. I am waiting to get a rebuild kit from Espressoparts.com but they are currently out of stock.
 

shadow745

Active member
Aug 15, 2005
1,605
9
Central North Carolina
I hear you with the maintenance. I have been pretty meticulous with mine. The drip tray on my V3 has not been a problem for me. Like you, I flush the group into a small container and not directly into the drip tray. I have never run out of water on my V3 as well, so I imagine having any sort of gauge for the water level is a plus. I have only had two issues with my V3 so far. The plastic cowl around the group broke off about a year ago. I am sure that was from many heat cycles. I ended up replacing it with a flat black one which looks better. The other issue is a slow drip from the steam wand. I am waiting to get a rebuild kit from Espressoparts.com but they are currently out of stock.
My V1 had the stainless piece around the group that never had any wear. The Pro has that nice flat black plastic type and it's fine by me as the thing really helps keep the group insulated and is just warm and no issues with being burned making contact with it.

Never ordered from EspressoParts, but can honestly vouch for Stefano @ https://www.espressocare.com/products/rancilio-home-machines as he usually has plenty of OEM parts in stock and has great customer service. He is my go-to for things I've replaced in the V1 over the years. Never had a single part failure, just did for preventive maintenance as I keep my machine(s) on 2-3 hrs and am averaging 7 doubles daily currently.
 
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zguy

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Nov 17, 2021
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Midwest
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Ended up ordering a Silvia Pro X in black. Got a really sweet deal on it. It's still on backorder so I will not have it for sometime. Decided against the Pro 300 just simply for the steam boiler size. I make milk based drinks so I didn't want compromise there. I was on the fence for a bit as I started considering machines in the $3k price range. E.g., Pro 700, etc. Reasoning being is that a machine like the Pro 700 has everything I would ever want. E.g., Rotary pump, plumbable, drainable drip tray, etc. The Pro X and even the Pro have everything I need as opposed to what I want. We will see...
 
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