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Gaggia Classic Pro Espresso Machine (Thunder Black) EXPIRED

$399
$499.00
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Amazon.com has Gaggia Classic Pro Espresso Machine (Thunder Black, RI9380/49) for $399.20. Shipping is free.

Thanks to Deal Hunter Navy-Wife for finding this deal.

About this item:
  • Rugged Stainless Steel housing
  • Commercial three-way solenoid valve
  • Commercial-style 58mm chrome-plated brass portability and brew group
  • Easy-to-use rocker switch controls
  • Included components: Espresso Machine, Water Reservoir,Reservoir Lid, Drip Tray, Drip Tray Cover, Decompression Duct Tube, Portafilter, Pressurized Double Shot Basket, Commercial Single Shot Basket, Commercial Double Shot Basket, Tamper, Coffee Scoop

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Edited May 27, 2022 at 07:56 PM by
Amazon [amazon.com] has Gaggia Classic Pro Espresso Machine (Thunder Black) for $399.20. Shipping is free.
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Lattes or straight espresso? Lattes, get the Bambino, it generates better/more consistent steam. Straight espresso, go with Gaggia. Just know there will be a steeper learning curve with the Gaggia because it doesn't have a PID to control temp, so you have to 'catch' the temp at the right point in the heating process. The Bambino does have a PID to regulate temp, but you have no control over it.

Basically the Gaggia has a higher ceiling for how great the espresso can be coming out of it, but the Bambino is simple, just push a button and go. (I'm severely overly simplifying, regardless of which machine you get you're going to have to do a LOT of dialing in before you get decent espresso.)

Edit: another big piece, the Bambino is an appliance, while the Gaggia is a machine. The Gaggia is designed to be taken apart, serviced, and be in use for many years. The Bambino can be taken apart, and serviced, but it's mostly plastic and will break over time if you have to service it multiple times.
Great machine for this price.

First the cons:
1) not newbie friendly. You will see why as you go down my cons list. In short, this machine has the potential to pull shots that a 1000-2000 machines can, but some quick modding and/or learning how to temp surf is needed. If you want a semi machine that already comes right out the box with thermoblock PID, 9 bar pressure, and good steaming power, Bambino will be a much better choice for the same price range (only cons being it is a 54mm portafilter machine that isn't made in Italy).

2) That said, yes, if you want 9 bar of pressure, a OPV spring swap is a must. 15 bar is too high and tends to give you much harsher and more bitter shots. But it's like a very easy mod for 8-10 bucks (ebay has a seller that is the cheapest that I know, vs buying from Mr. Shade which needs to ship from UK. They are all springs made in some Chinese factory, and make little to no difference).

3) Temp surfing is needed if you want to maximize the potential of this machine without adding more mods. This machine (or any other boiler machine in this price range) has no PID and wosre the default temp setting for this machine is kinda suck. Shots tends to be too cold and steam power is a a bit weak if you just use the default instruction. BUT, there is a work around with temp surfing, which essentially is flipping the steam button to let your machine heat above its preset brew temperature so your shot comes out higher, and timing your start to steam right before the machine stops heating the boiler so as you keep steaming the machine will keep heating. You can also do a poor-man preinfusion by turning on the steam wand to lower the group head pressure. It's a handful, so just Youtube some videos on how to temp surf and poor man preinfusion on GCP for more details.

4) Aluminum boiler may be a deal breaker for you. No evidence I know of that says aluminum boiler has any adverse health effect, and quite frankly it's only about 30-40 mL of liquid that goes through this boiler that you will be drinking per shot, so it's really not a lot. But I understand some people may get turned off by this. Also boiler is a bit small.

Pros:
1 ) Very cheap for a quality 58mm portafilter espresso machine. Long history Italian company that build espresso machines, and this one is also built like a tank from Italy, designed to last you 10+ years. Very simple design: it pumps water through a hot boiler that goes into the puck, and has a 3 way solenoid valve that channels excess water when pressure reaches the OPV spring pressure. Most people grow out of this machine and get ugpraditis for a 2-3000 machine, instead of the machine breaking down on them. Very reliable.

2) Insane modding capability. And I mean INSANE. You can go as simple as 100-150 dollar PID mod from Mr. Shade, rewire some, get PID temp control, and be done with it (iirc Shade is also trying to add a pressure gauge mod soon, for more money of course). You can look into Boostbox which gives your machine a ridiculously large top hat but also comes with PID and pressure gauge. Or you can go full DIY mod and grab some aliexpress parts for Gaggiuino, which is a smart Arduino control with touch screen LCD that you can add to your machine to give you temp control, additional dimmer chip that allows you to do true preinfusion at lower pressure, and pressure transducer which gives you real time pressure feedback and combined with dimmer allows you to control your brew pressure as well as smart pressure profiling. There are some new videos recently that goes into detail of what this mod does. It's an insane mod with a lot of support from their discord that allows you to add 50-100 dollars of DIY mods to your 400 dollar machines to make it do something that only 3000 dollar Decent DE1pro can do.

I personally have Gaggiuino with dimmer and still waiting for the right parts for the transducer, and it is already an amazing machines that lets me do preinfusion and gives me very quality shot every single day, only for about 550 bucks. It's not an easy mod and requires quite a bit of brain juice or experience with electrical wiring, soldering, and water pressure system to install. I went in with zero experience and took me a lot of brain storming and digesting to figure it out, and bro it was not easy. But once you got it figured out and installed, it is an absolute crazy good mod to have for this machine, and will solves any ugpraditis you will ever have for a much much more expensive machine that gives you the same capability, unless you really really want bigger boiler(s).
Have the non pro model for 8yrs now and still going strong. Highly recommended for those who are looking for a little more control over your shots. Glad to see they swapped out the steam wand which I had to buy and upgrade on my own for the older model. Pretty good price for an entry level machine.

Every time I think about upgrading to a prosumer model (>$1.5k), I hesitate because at most I'll drink 2 cups a day and the cost to quality ratio just doesn't make sense to me. I'd rather spend that on quality beans since this machine does the job.

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#3
Good price.

Was scoping this one for awhile and was so close to getting one, but after research it appears the only way to get top performance out of this machine is by adding hundreds of $$ in mods. Perfect for tinkering if that's your thing.

Adding a pid and changing the bar spring is a must apparently.
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#4
Quote from Ipa1 :
Good price.

Was scoping this one for awhile and was so close to getting one, but after research it appears the only way to get top performance out of this machine is by adding hundreds of $$ in mods. Perfect for tinkering if that's your thing.

Adding a pid and changing the bar spring is a must apparently.
Sure, but I don't think they're other machines in the same price range that are as good. Any other decent option is $1k+
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#5
Have the non pro model for 8yrs now and still going strong. Highly recommended for those who are looking for a little more control over your shots. Glad to see they swapped out the steam wand which I had to buy and upgrade on my own for the older model. Pretty good price for an entry level machine.

Every time I think about upgrading to a prosumer model (>$1.5k), I hesitate because at most I'll drink 2 cups a day and the cost to quality ratio just doesn't make sense to me. I'd rather spend that on quality beans since this machine does the job.
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Last edited by Thaineseguy May 27, 2022 at 04:25 PM.
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#6
Wow, great price. I bought mine on sale for about $425 over a year ago, and since then rhe price has only gone up. This is a great machine and I would say the bare minimum for serious espresso that won't stop working after a year. Although this machine is very basic and can definitely benefit from some costly upgrades, there's just nothing as good and reliable at this price point. Also, after getting to know your machine, you could trick it to work almost as if it had a PID installed without spending the extra bucks.
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#7
this or the bambino pro for the beginner who doesn't plan to mod?
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Our community has rated this post as helpful. If you agree, why not thank ?
#8
Quote from LivelyMusic493 :
this or the bambino pro for the beginner who doesn't plan to mod?
Lattes or straight espresso? Lattes, get the Bambino, it generates better/more consistent steam. Straight espresso, go with Gaggia. Just know there will be a steeper learning curve with the Gaggia because it doesn't have a PID to control temp, so you have to 'catch' the temp at the right point in the heating process. The Bambino does have a PID to regulate temp, but you have no control over it.

Basically the Gaggia has a higher ceiling for how great the espresso can be coming out of it, but the Bambino is simple, just push a button and go. (I'm severely overly simplifying, regardless of which machine you get you're going to have to do a LOT of dialing in before you get decent espresso.)

Edit: another big piece, the Bambino is an appliance, while the Gaggia is a machine. The Gaggia is designed to be taken apart, serviced, and be in use for many years. The Bambino can be taken apart, and serviced, but it's mostly plastic and will break over time if you have to service it multiple times.
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Last edited by cloudyview May 27, 2022 at 05:50 PM.
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#9
Quote from Ipa1 :
Good price.

Was scoping this one for awhile and was so close to getting one, but after research it appears the only way to get top performance out of this machine is by adding hundreds of $$ in mods. Perfect for tinkering if that's your thing.

Adding a pid and changing the bar spring is a must apparently.
For less than 80 I have modded it for temp control, pre infusion and pressure profiling.

check out the gaggiuino
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#10
Quote from DiMAn0684 :
Sure, but I don't think they're other machines in the same price range that are as good. Any other decent option is $1k+
I love my Breville Barista other than the porta filter. I was afraid of getting this as I'd get all the mods done and then be bored at. BUT being able to heat up the machine with an IOT smart plug would make my morning routine a bit betterSmilie
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#11
Quote from HankyPoop :
I love my Breville Barista other than the porta filter. I was afraid of getting this as I'd get all the mods done and then be bored at. BUT being able to heat up the machine with an IOT smart plug would make my morning routine a bit betterSmilie
I use Breville Barista Express, I like it a lot, but it's not the same grade espresso machine as Gaggia.
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#12
any good deals on a good grinder to go with this machine?
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#13
Quote from crazyal :
any good deals on a good grinder to go with this machine?
there's a sale on the Baratza Virtuoso+ right now
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#14
Great Espresso machine! One of the best out there. Love my Gaggia!
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#15
Great espresso machine but lots of people don't know that you need a really good coffee grinder that is just as much or more expensive than this machine. Most grinders good enough for espresso start at $400 and up.
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