Coffee machines are fast becoming a very popular item for use at home as well as in the office or other work premises. Buying a new coffee machine can take a bit of research as you'll want a machine that's easy to use, as well as one that makes consistently good coffee. But what about the cost?
Price will differ according to a number of factors; from brewing preference right through to brewing quality, and brand will also influence the cost. Add to that the latest and best features and you've got a lot of boxes to tick for your money. But don't get too bogged down in detail just yet. Instead, read on to find out how much you might need to spend to get the best tasting cup of coffee you can afford.
Smooth, Milky or Robust?
What type of brewing method do you prefer? Whether it be filter, espresso or a brew that comes from a pod or capsule, there's a machine to suit all budgets.
If you can't choose between filter and espresso, there are also some very affordable combination machines that can deliver great coffee for all tastes. However, if espresso is your coffee of choice, then you'll have an even wider model and price range to choose from.
Filter machines are ideal for quick coffee making with little or no fuss and minimum cleaning. A simple filter coffee machine from a reputable brand can cost around $20. This type of machine will be fairly small and will fit neatly into most kitchens or small office spaces.
They may not hold the temperature of the coffee for very long and you'll have to use what you make fairly quickly, however these cheap and cheerful coffee machines are a great choice for low budgets and can easily cope with day to day continuous use.
For around $60 - $80 you could get a filter coffee machine that would suit a small to medium sized office, or one that sits proudly on a kitchen worktop. With these pricier filter coffee machines comes a more reliable hot plate and a permanent filter - usually plastic - that cuts down on the need to buy filter papers.
Bean to cup filter machines will take the price to new level. Mostly used in commercial establishments, but sometimes by coffee enthusiasts at home, these machines can start from as little as $102 and go up to approximately $699.
Learn more: Small business coffee machines
This type of coffee machine is usually referred to as a manual or pump machine. All espresso machines are manual, and 'pump' refers to bar pressure. The higher the bar pressure, the better the espresso extraction, and also the higher the price.
Most recent and current models of espresso coffee machine will have 15 bar pressure, but there are some 19 bar pressure models on the market that will cost you more for the pleasure of a very rich espresso.
These machines can start at around $55 and reach a price as high as $650 for machines suitable for home use. Commercial espresso machines start well upwards of $1,000 and rise to approximately $6,000 - $7,000, depending on the features required.
Learn more: Office & Commercial Espresso Machines
Pod or Capsule Coffee Machines
These machines make a variety of espresso based coffee drinks and they are the simplest of machines to operate. As the name suggests, all you need to do is pop a pod or capsule into the machine without the worry of what roast or grind to use.
Prices start from as little as $50 for some of the more basic machines with few features, and can rise to about $85 - $90. After that, there are some very impressive models boasting 19 bar pressure that can satisfy the most discerning of espresso connoisseurs! These models could cost you anything from $110 - $479 and are very much geared towards style and design as well as delivering excellent espresso.
Learn more: Compare Coffee Machine Models & Features
A combination machine will make filter coffee on one side and espresso on the other. Most models will also have a milk wand for frothing, and because they have separate water tanks, you can be brewing a pot of filter coffee whilst drawing an espresso or frothing milk.
This type of machine is excellent where coffee preference varies and you won't necessarily have to pay a lot of money to own one. Prices average around $120 - $160 for basic to mid-level performing models, but if you really want to have it all, you could spend around $200 for a machine that will give you a few more features such as better filter brewing or increased bar pressure when extracting an espresso.
For the Love of Good Coffee
With so many different types of coffee machine and brewing functions on the market today, it's little wonder that the prices vary so much from brand to brand. As with most things, the most expensive model doesn't always equal the best coffee, and some of the cheaper models can satisfy even the most discerning of coffee drinkers.
However, what you end up with in your cup is also dependent on the type of coffee you use, so whatever model of coffee machine you end up buying, do it justice by using the best possible coffee you can afford.