Delonghi Esam3300 Review + Comparisons
What are the functions Delonghi Esam3300 Magnifica super automatic espresso coffee machine can perform? Is it any good? Well, it’s a solid choice for those who want to be able to drink tasty espresso without going outside to your local cafe or even driving to your favorite coffee spot. With this model, you won’t really have to make it yourself, the machine pretty much does everything. It still needs to be maintained and operated by someone, of course, despite being called “super automatic.” And if you feel in favor of a cappuccino or some other drink that requires steamed milk, you will have to froth it manually using the attached steam wand and add it into the cup.
At this point, you are probably wondering how can this machine be considered a good choice at all? Well, sure, there are fully automatic coffee machines capable of making dozens of drinks with as many actions as simply placing the cup and pushing the button (or touching a screen). They, however, come from a much higher price range than Delonghi Esam3300, and so do the company’s Esam 3500 & 4500 models that will froth and pour milk into the cup automatically.
If you are mostly interested in making espresso (or double espresso) or don’t mind getting involved in the coffee-making process, then you may want to examine other strong sides of this machine. In the mind of many people, this and similar Delonghi models are actually the top picks you can get for the money they cost.
- Operated solely from the front
- Control panel with rotating dials
- Detachable brewing module
- Easy use and high reliability
Aesthetics and build quality
Unlike its boiler and burrs, the body of the machine is made of plastic that has a somewhat metallic look. This coffee maker cannot boast the best design, yet everything can be easily reached from the front, which is a huge advantage. The main power switch is located at the back of the machine, though, but there is completely no need to use it often. For everyday use, the machine can be activated and de-energized with the power button on the control panel.
This Delonghi Magnifica model is far from the smallest, but not too bulky either, considering the unit’s functionality. It can be placed into a tight spot without the concern of blocking the sides.
Just like the drip tray, the water tank conveniently slides out of the machine towards an operator. Unfortunately, there are no fixations for a water filter on it, so you need to remember that and monitor the hardness of the water (there is a testing strip that comes in the box) you fill it with or use external filtration.
The machine is built in a clever way to utilize most of its body. On the top, you will find the beans container on the left, a bypass hopper for pre-ground coffee in the middle that can be used for decaf, and a warming tray for cups on the right.
One thing that is definitely different from what the company advertised is the volume of Esam 3300’s operation. It’s not quiet, on the contrary, it’s pretty loud. You can check video reviews to try and evaluate how much noise it makes, but one thing is certain, you will hardly be able to treat yourself to a cup of coffee in the morning without waking people in the house. And still, despite that drawback, Delonghi machines get a lot of praise from people who have been using them for years.
Ease of use
This Magnifica coffee maker model has no display whatsoever, and all the parameters and coffee modes are set by adjusting the buttons and a couple of dials. One of those dials is responsible for the quantity of coffee that will be poured into a cup, and the second one lets you adjust its flavor from weak to strong. This gives the process a bit old-fashioned feel. Besides, if you do not need to adjust these settings often, the dials remain in the same position, and you will only need to punch in a button to get your daily espresso. Manual controls like this also seem to last longer.
The lack of settings and possible combinations make Delonghi Esam 3300 easy-to-use, and for some people, the available options will be just enough. So, depending on what your expectations and budget are, a small number of adjustments you need to make to enjoy your espresso may be seen as a total win.
The double nozzle allows either pouring a double amount of brewed coffee into one cup or single amounts into two cups set close to each other. All you need to do is press either the 1 cup or 2 cups button.
Considering that the regular pressure necessary for espresso is around 9 bars, the machine’s pump is quite powerful. And nevertheless, there are instances of Delonghi’s pump failing to drive the water through pressed coffee. This problem can be solved by setting a higher level of the grain fineness.
When you think about other coffee makers that do not have easily detachable brewing modules and cost more at the same time, this machine’s unique feature may not seem like such an advantage. Unlike those fully automatic devices, you are supposed to clean this part regularly, about once per week, and do so with your own hands. But if you don’t consider it a hassle and quickly get used to it, it’s actually a great feature. By manually cleaning your brewing module regularly, you can extend its life. And should it fail and break, you can avoid taking the machine to a repair center. It will be enough to just buy a new part and replace it in a matter of seconds.
The good thing is, like anything else, getting to the brewing module requires no more efforts than taking out a drip tray. As you open the front door, removing and rinsing it is an easy weekly task. Now, if you recall, it was previously mentioned in this Delonghi Esam3300 review that there is an activation button on the control panel and the master switch at the rear. It is important to always remember to use the front button first if you want to send the machine to sleep for the day. That way, you will be sure that the brewing module returns to its position and can now be extracted. If you cut off the power using the master switch, you can discover that the brewing device is stuck. Just know not to force it since that issue can be easily fixed by turning the machine on and shutting it down using the front button this time.
Due to the inability to install a filter, the machine has a descaling system that will notify you when it needs to be activated. It’s calculated from the number of served cups, but even if you use filtered water, you should not ignore the decalcification indicator light. Use the advised liquid to run the descaling process, and it will only help your machine to last longer. Usually, this procedure is necessary once or twice a year, depending on how frequently you make coffee.
Money for the value
Esam 3300 is an affordable option that will be perfectly suitable for espresso lovers and those who want to be their own baristas. It does offer fewer variations and adjustable coffee parameters than some other machines with an automated brewing process, but those come at a considerably higher price. When this is taken into account, the few of Delonghi’s disadvantages are easy to be overlooked and get used to.
The machine is pretty durable, and there are multiple witnesses of its reliability. Even used models tend to work for years without any trouble provided some basic maintenance. It is very affordable and is undoubtedly worth the money, although buying a brand new device will be even more reassuring. Check the current price for this model to help you decide.
If the price is not an issue for you, you may consider Jura Z6 as an alternative superautomatic espresso machine equipped with an automatic dispenser of steamed and frothed milk, a colorful display, and a larger number of programmable options.
Saeco PicoBaristo may be a more preferable choice if you are looking for something closer to the price range of the Delonghi model under discussion. You may find this coffee machine’s design slicker and more modern.
If something compact and having stood the test of time attracts you more than the looks, Rancilio Silvia fits that description well, and it’s one of the more affordable options.
Delonghi automatic espresso machine is a splendid choice both in terms of reliability and moneywise. It offers tasty espresso and other options once you use the attached steam wand to get frothed milk or hot water. The machine is convenient in operation and maintenance, and you can easily find instructions and repair it yourself thanks to its well-thought-out construction. Its main attraction is an affordable price, making its drawbacks insignificant, as the upgrade of those features comes at a price if you look at other companies and similar models.