Buying an espresso machine can be a pretty daunting and difficult task because there are a lot of different features and technical aspects that you can compare between the various models that exist in the market. The question of whether it is worth it to pay that 'bit' extra for a more feature rich model can get to become a rather tough one, and, just like with the question of the BES860XL vs BES900XL, the answer isn't actually always that obvious. In this review account we do a full comparison of these two highly rated Breville espresso machines including an in-depth analysis at the features and technical specifications in order to help you make a better and more informed decision about which model is best for your needs and preferences.
Is Breville a Good Choice in the First Place?
Breville is a very well known and reputable brand in the kitchen appliance market and they have a long history of making espresso machines and other coffee-related products. The performance of various models can always depend on their exact specifications but Breville has maintained a very positive brand name in this market overall. The advantage of Breville over other brands is that they position themselves as reasonably affordable products for customers looking for high-end performance. Whilst you could pay a lot more for a brand targeting coffee-making professionals, Breville offers similar performance at much lower price points. However, this isn't to say that they are the cheapest option on the market and if you are more interested in an inexpensive espresso maker above all else then you may be best off with another brand. In all, Breville is generally for those who are looking for a premium coffee machine but aren't going to be held to ransom to obtain one.
BES860XL Vs BES900XL
The BES860XL - This offering from Breville features a '15 bar' italian pump, a built in half pound bean grinder and a solid mixture of pre-sets and manual operations and control options. This is all powered by its substantial 1450W motor, which gives it plenty of power for pretty rapid coffee brewing. Moreover, it contains a built in grinder and 67-ounce water tank which both make for an extremely convenient brewing experience. The BES860XL also comes with all of the expected trimmings that you would expect form a quality coffee machine such as a removable drip tray, volumetric controls and a pressure gauge being present.
Amazon Price: $799.99 $500.99 Buy Now
(price as of Jun 5, 2016)
The BES900XL - This coffee machine features dual boilers and pumps for simultaneous steaming and brewing. In addition to this you have a huge 84 ounce water tank and also comes with a built in 58 mm tamper. The simultaneous brewing and steaming is powered through a huge 1700W motor, which is controlled via an electronic temperature and pressure control and LCD display panel. Again, the standard trimmings are all there e.g. removalbe drip tray (all the features with that of the BES860XL) and even contains a few extras like a drop down swivel foot for manoeuvrability as well specialised cleaning tools and tablets.
Amazon Price: $2,280.00 Buy Now
(price as of Jun 5, 2016)
The Comparison - Granted the BES860XL is a pretty large machine in itself however when compared to the BES900XL it is better suited to that of those who are interested in occasional brewing. The dual pumps and increased functionality of the BES900XL means that it can much better handle rush hour coffee times in small but busy cafes i.e it is more commercially suited. Obviously both machines are extremely feature-rich and the real difference comes down to the convenience of the Breville 860 versus the output capabilities of the 900.
Customer Reviews and Opinions Comparison
Both machines are littered with positive reviews all over the internet from customers who have been using them for a good whole. Admittedly, there are fewer reviews available for the BES900XL and that is simply because it's a more expensive machine. The BES860Xl received an average review score of 4.4 out of 5 stars on Amazon whilst the BES900XL received an average of 4.7 out of 5. These are both excellent scores (especially relative to the coffee machine market) and speak volumes about the quality of the models and the Breville brand. Reviews of the 860 focused ultimately on the quality and ease of use the machines offers while reviews for the 900 focus on perfect operation and great value.
Based on the comparison of these two models which machine is the best one for you? The BES860XL or the BES900XL? It's impossible to make a recommendation that fits everyone because both of these machines are very good value and do their respective jobs incredibly well. That being said, the two models can be said to be suited to two different tasks and this makes the decision a bit easier.
If you are looking for a high-end machine for home use then the BES860XL is your best bet, offering you tremendous value for your buck. Although, you could spend up and get the 900 model but ultimately you will never be able to make proper use of all of the available features in this setting i.e for the extra $600, you won't notice any real difference. Again however, if you are wanting a machine for a small but busy cafe and don't want to go for an industrial sized machine then the BES900XL will serve you extremely well. It doesn't have the built in convenience features with that of the 860 but you can't beat it's potential output capacity.
If you have any questions, comments or concerns regarding either the Breville BES860XL or the BES900XL then please do not hesitate to make them in the comments section below and I will get back to you as soon as possible.