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8 Best Espresso Machines with Pre Infusion

Best Pre Infusion Espresso Machines

Think about whether you have a favorite restaurant, bar, or coffee shop you go to. If you do, is there something you order regularly?

Regular customers with favorite menu items ultimately want one thing: consistency. They don’t want the quality of their orders to vary depending on who’s working or change naturally with each visit.

That means consistency is something you should demand from your espresso machine, and that’s something an espresso machine with pre-infusion can help you with. In the event you’re not sure where to begin, we’ll be giving you a list of the best pre-infusion espresso machines here.

We also want to help you learn about them, which is why we’ll be discussing the following topics:

  • What pre-infusion does
  • The importance of pre-infusion
  • How long the pre-infusion period should last
  • Our picks for the top pre-infusion espresso machines

Let’s jump right in…

Quick Summary 

Don’t want to read? Here’s a quick list of our favorite pre-infusion espresso machines for a variety of purposes:

  • Top Pre-Infusion Espresso Machine for Overall Commercial Use: Nuova Simonelli Aurelia Wave - It has plenty of group heads to generate a commercial-level output, it’s available in custom colors to fit any business’s aesthetics, and it’s user-friendly.
  • Top Pre-Infusion Espresso Machine for Home Use: Nuova Simonelli Musica - Has an affordable price tag, it looks attractive, and its automatic brewing design is suitable for less experienced espresso machine users.
  • Top Pre-Infusion Espresso Machine Under $2,000: Nuova Simonelli Oscar II - Available for an incredibly budget-friendly price, ergonomic design, and attractive red or black color options.
  • Top Pre-Infusion Espresso Machine for Beginners: Rocket Espresso R Nine One - Sleek design, compact size, and the ability to have it turn on automatically ahead of time so it’s warmed up by the time you need it.
  • Top Pre-Infusion Espresso Machine for Offices: La Cimbali Casa – Small size, sturdy build, and quiet rotary pump that won’t interrupt office employees at work.

What Does Pre-Infusion Do in Espresso? 

There are many steps that go into every single shot of espresso you make. Grinding the beans and then tamping the espresso grounds are steps that must be taken prior to brewing.

Tamping is surprisingly important. If you tamp too lightly, your espresso is loosely packed in the portafilter, and water is able to rush through the grounds without picking up flavors adequately. On the opposite end of the spectrum, packing your grounds too hard can make it difficult for water to seep through them. The result is something bitter and unpleasant.

See Also: Top 10 Commercial Espresso Machines

Force isn’t the only area where baristas can make mistakes. If you don’t tamp straight down on the espresso, you can create an uneven puck that leads to an imbalanced flavor.

Pre-infusion aids in correcting some of these common tamping errors. Prior to extraction, an espresso machine with pre-infusion will release a gentle trickle of water that runs through the grounds, settling irregularities. When the full water pressure of extraction is applied, the water is able to run through the puck much more evenly, ending in a well-rounded taste.

Is Pre-Infusion Important? 

Unless you’re a barista with years of experience who can perfectly tamp espresso every time, pre-infusion is important. Everyone makes mistakes. Pre-infusion can correct some errors to ensure a greater degree of consistency in the drinks you make.

It’s easy to see why this kind of tool is revolutionary in a commercial setting. If you have new employees, you’ll have one less area to worry about variation. The machine will be able to compensate a little for poor tamping technique.

However, this could also be beneficial for someone using the machine at home. No one wants to grimace through a bad cup of coffee. If you’re still learning the ropes of making espresso at home, a machine with pre-infusion will get you closer to barista-level drinks even more quickly.

How Long Should Espresso Pre-Infusion Last? 

The length of the pre-infusion step can vary. What we can definitively say is that it shouldn’t exceed a range of several seconds.

Generally, pre-infusion goes anywhere from eight to just over ten seconds. Some baristas may choose a pre-infusion cycle that lasts even shorter than this depending on their familiarity with espresso machines and their desired flavor profile.

You can experiment with different pre-infusion lengths and resulting flavors. That way, you can determine the perfect time for your preferences.

Top Pre-Infusion Espresso Machines 

Nuova Simonelli Oscar II

 Nuova Simonelli Oscar II

If someone were to ask us what we’d recommend for an affordable espresso machine that still has high-end features, one of the first machines we’d suggest is the Nuova Simonelli Oscar II. There’s a lot to love about it.

First, it’s a budget-friendly machine. You can get it at a fraction of the price you’d find other similar models for. You don’t have to feel as if you’re sacrificing on quality by choosing it.

Second, it has a heat exchange boiler made from copper. This means the boiler is naturally antimicrobial, and it can handle simultaneous steaming and brewing.  

To top that all off, it has an integrated cup warmer built on top. You can keep a few mugs toasty and free up some storage space elsewhere by simply putting them on top of the Oscar II.

  • Majesty Coffee Price: $1,295
  • Machine Type: Semiautomatic + Timed Dosing Button
  • Plumbing: Pour-over
  • Groups: 1
  • Cup Warming Shelf: The top of the machine doubles as a convenient shelf that will keep your mugs warm.
  • Copper Heat Exchange Boiler: Aside from being able to steam and brew at the same time, the Oscar II’s boiler is naturally antimicrobial.
  • Push-Pull Steam Trigger: To protect your wrists from discomfort, the steam can be turned on and off with the effortless push of the trigger on top.
  • Programmable Dosing Buttons: Want to ensure even greater levels of consistency in your drinks? You can program timing for doses into the Oscar II, so you don’t have to worry about keeping an eye on each espresso.
  • Extended Steam Arm: The longer steam arm can reach further into the milk pitcher to guarantee even aeration of the milk.

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Rocket R Nine One

 Rocket Espresso R Nine One

If you know much about espresso machines, then you’ve probably heard the name Rocket before. They’re best-known for making compact, polished machines with stylish designs worthy of pictures.

The R Nine One is one of their most recent developments. Everything we’ve seen so far indicates to us that it’s a promising espresso machine, too.

It has two boilers inside it, which gives it a large degree of brewing and steam power. It also has PID temperature controls so you can tweak the internal temperatures of the machine with extreme accuracy. On top of all that, it has a case made entirely from stainless steel to give it a refined look and durability.

  • Majesty Coffee Price: $6,850
  • Machine Type: Automatic
  • Plumbing: Pour-over or Direct-Connect
  • Groups: 1
  • Stainless Steel Case: No one likes the look or feel of flimsy plastic, and with the R Nine One, you don’t have to. Its case is made entirely from stainless steel.
  • Dual Boilers: With two built-in boilers, the machine can brew and steam simultaneously, reducing customers’ wait times.
  • PID Temperature Control: Allows you to control the temperature of the boilers so you can perfect the flavor profile of your preference.
  • Auto-On Timer: No more having to worry about whether or not you turned the machine on on time – you can program it to turn on by itself at particular times.

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Nuova Simonelli Aurelia Wave

 Nuova Simonelli Aurelia Wave

Nuova Simonelli is another trusted name in the espresso universe. Some of their machines have been used at barista world championships. That’s why we can’t help but include another one of their models on this list: the Aurelia Wave.

Its name comes from its gracefully curling silhouette. If you look at it from the side, it’s easy to see its resemblance to a wave curving over a sandy beach.

Like the wave it resembles, the Aurelia Wave was made to sweep through customer orders without breaking a sweat. You can use it in either an automatic mode for greater uniformity or in manual mode when your more creative baristas want to play with espresso flavors.

Furthermore, you can choose different numbers of group heads on its various configurations. It can go up to three group heads, maximizing its output volume to extremely high levels.

  • Majesty Coffee Price: $10,400-12,240
  • Machine Type: Automatic + Manual Dosing
  • Plumbing: Direct-Connect
  • Groups: 2-3
  • Custom Color Options: Have a particular look you’re trying to achieve in your business? Order the machine in a custom color so it fits in perfectly.
  • Raised Group Heads: Higher group heads permit you to brew into larger cups, which is perfect for establishments with multiple drink sizes on the menu.
  • Cool Touch Steam Wand: Baristas will never have to worry about burning themselves on the steam wands, because they don’t overheat.
  • Ergonomic Steam Controls: The steam switches on top were specifically designed to prevent baristas’ wrists from getting sore after long hours of frothing milk.
  • Surface LEDs: LED lights built into the surface of the machine give it an appealing glow and provide workspace lighting.

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Victoria Arduino Black Eagle Gravimetric

 Victoria Arduino Black Eagle Gravimetric

If espresso machines were cars, the Victoria Arduino Black Eagle Gravimetric would be like a Ferrari. This luxury espresso machine is packed with all the bells and whistles you can imagine.

One example is its gravimetric feature. To guarantee that each drink is as uniform as can be, there’s an integrated scale in the machine that weighs every shot as it brews. It will then stop at the same weight for each drink, guaranteeing uniformity.

Another example is its high-tech T3 system. This means it has multiple boilers to allow simultaneous steaming and brewing, and each boiler’s temperature can be tweaked individually.

  • Majesty Coffee Price: $23,850-30,105
  • Machine Type: Automatic
  • Plumbing: Direct-Connect
  • Groups: 2 or 3
  • Custom Color Options: There are several different appealing color combos to choose from, or you can have your own custom design put on the machine.
  • Gravimetric Technology: The Black Eagle will weigh out each shot of espresso to guarantee they are all uniform.
  • T3 System: Baristas can make adjustments to any of the Black Eagle’s boilers, giving them more freedom to experiment with tastes.
  • Cool touch Steam Wands: Since they stay cool, milk doesn’t burn onto the ends of the steam wands.

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Victoria Arduino Eagle One

 Victoria Arduino Eagle One

The Eagle One is one of Victoria Arduino’s latest creations. It possesses all of the features experienced baristas are used to demanding from the brand, including an artistic design and advanced features.

This espresso machine is available in a handful of different colors. That means you have even more flexibility to ensure the espresso machine you get is one that fits right into your business.

You can also choose whether the machine has two or three groups. As a result, you can effectively customize the output capacity of the Eagle One. If you have an extremely high volume of espresso demand, then choose three groups. Two groups, on the other hand, will likely be more than enough for the average medium coffee shop or restaurant.

But what’s truly remarkable about the Eagle One is its energy efficiency. Thanks to the newly optimized engine and the thermal energy recovery system, the Eagle One uses far less energy than the average espresso machine.

  • Majesty Coffee Price: $16,650-19,350
  • Machine Type: Automatic
  • Plumbing: Direct-Connect
  • Groups: 2 or 3
  • Thermal Energy Recovery System: By recycling discarded water and using it to heat up incoming water, the Eagle One reduces the amount of water it needs to use.
  • Engine Optimization: Its engine has been completely redesigned to reduce its energy consumption, and consequently your utility bills.
  • Ergonomic Steam Lever: The steam is operated with easy switches, ensuring barista comfort all day.
  • Custom Colors: You can choose which color you get the Eagle One in, so you can pick the perfect visual fit for your establishment.

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La Cimbali Casa Espresso

 La Cimbali Casa Espresso

Many of the espresso machines on this list have been large machines with a massive output capacity suitable for professional establishments and baristas. But what if you need something that’s on the smaller side?

In that case, we’d recommend something like this La Cimbala Casa machine. With only a single group head, it has a much more compact size than many of the options on this list. An additional benefit to the single-group design is that’s more affordable than multi-group espresso machines.

The Casa is also made to last. It has an all-stainless steel shell to protect its innards, as well as a durable rotary pump. Another benefit to the rotary pump is that it also allows the machine to run more quietly than many of its competitors.

  • Majesty Coffee Price: $2,995
  • Machine Type: Automatic
  • Plumbing: Direct-Connect
  • Groups: 1
  • Compact Size: The Casa’s compact size means it won’t need a lot of room on your counters, making it potentially an excellent fit for home baristas.
  • Rotary Pump: Rotary pumps are naturally long-lasting and quiet, so it won’t interrupt your customers or family.
  • Boiler Insulation: Since the boiler is insulated, the temperature inside the machine is stabler.
  • Stainless Steel Case: Beyond protecting the machine from damage, the stainless steel case also simply looks classically attractive.

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Nuova Simonelli Musica

 Nuova Simonelli Musica

Another excellent option for small coffee shops or homes is the Nuova Simonelli Musica. This modestly portioned espresso machine is a beautiful and luxurious work of art that you’ll love displaying on your counter.

The Lux configuration of the Musica comes with gorgeous LED edges. Not only do these edges look stunning on the machine, but they help provide soft lighting for you to work by.

Additionally, the Musica is a flexible model. You can purchase it in direct-connect or pour-over versions depending on your needs. If you need it to be mobile, you can get it in the pour-over configuration. On the flipside, you can purchase the direct-connect one if you don’t want to deal with refilling its water tank.

  • Majesty Coffee Price: $2,245-3,240
  • Machine Type: Automatic
  • Plumbing: Direct-connect or pour-over
  • Groups: 1
  • Indicator Lights: The Musica has built-in lights that will tell you when you need to refill the water tank or when the machine is heating.
  • Optional LED Edges: Purchase the Lux version to get LED edges that give the machine an almost space-age look.
  • Boiler Insulation: With boiler insulation, the Musica is able to guarantee consistent temperatures.
  • Programmable Hot Water Dispenser: You can program a certain amount of hot water to come from the nozzle, allowing you to make uniform teas and Americanos without having to manually measure the water each time.

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La Pavoni Bar Star

 La Pavoni Bar Star

If you need a particularly fast espresso machine with the bonus of pre-infusion, one model we like to recommend is the La Pavoni Bar Star. There’s a two-group configuration, as well, but we’ve put the three-group one on this list because it’s a masterclass in speed.

With three groups and a steam wand on either end, the Bar Star has earned its name. You can have two baristas working on the machine at once, increasing the number of customers you’re able to take orders from at one time.

It also incorporates energy efficiency into its design, much like the Eagle One. This machine has a four-position power switch. You can turn it into a standby mode in your off hours to reduce the amount of power it uses by approximately 33%.

  • Majesty Coffee Price: $7,800
  • Machine Type: Automatic
  • Plumbing: Direct-Connect
  • Groups: 3
  • Telescopic Side Handles: There are handles on the sides so you can easily move the machine whenever necessary.
  • Anti-Vacuum Valve: Prevents milk from getting sucked back up into the steam wand and clogging it.
  • Four-Position Power Switch: Allows you to adjust how much power the machine consumes, cutting down on energy waste.
  • Manual Dosing: It has a continuous brew button that baristas can use to pull extra-long or short shots.

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Rocket Appartamento

 Rocket Appartmento

Many home baristas have chosen the Rocket Appartamento for their own kitchens. This is another Rocket espresso machine that offers users a lot to love for a relatively small cost.

For one thing, there’s its design to consider. It has a traditional stainless steel case that gleams and additional circular cutouts on the sides for some extra flair. You can purchase it with either copper or white cutouts depending on your preferences.

Beyond looks, it’s simply an efficient machine. The Appartamento uses an E61 commercial brew group, which not only has automatic pre-infusion but boosts temperature stability by circulating water continuously from the brew group to the boiler.

  • Majesty Coffee Price: $1,690
  • Machine Type: Semiautomatic
  • Plumbing: Pour-over
  • Groups: 1
  • Cup Warmer: The flat space on top of the espresso machine functions as a shelf that keeps your mugs warm.
  • Low Water Sensor: The Appartamento will notify you when it’s running low on water.
  • 304 Stainless Steel Case: Its case is made from solid stainless steel that you can rely on.
  • Pressurestat: A built-in pressurestat will always keep the pressure within the boiler at safe levels automatically.

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Wrap Up

Whether you’re making espresso at home or making it for customers, you probably want consistency. Every time your machine produces a shot, you want it to taste the best it can be. This is something pre-infusion can help you achieve, thanks to its natural ability to boost the evenness of your extraction.

If you’d like to see more espresso machine options than just the ones we included on this list, be sure to check out the machines below. Otherwise, you may also give us a call at 888-978-5224 for further advice.



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★ Customer Reviews ★

MajestyCoffee Verified Customer Testomonials

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A great purchase every decade

My fourth Stradivari purchase — a great machine, not a lifetime investment. Makes a great espresso, steams a fine latte, looks handsome in the kitchen. The rosewood filter holder handle will crack in a few years from the expanding metal basket insert, and you may want to keep a spare fuse in the cupboard. My last machine served me well for ten years with those part replacements, but ultimately the gaskets started to leak and you couldn’t make two lattes before the steam ran out. Obviously I keep buying this model despite the shortcomings since you have full control over a great pull.

Very hard to pull a good shot

Amazing Grinder!!

Exactly what I needed. A great quality grinder that grinds so perfectly. It was such an amazing price too. I love buying from majesty coffee.

Superb Machine!

Speed, accuracy and consistency of timed dose is excellent. Convenience of single dose with low retention. Easy maintenance! The shot quality is superb. I am quite happy with my purchase.

Compak E10 Conical Grinder

The staff at Majesty Coffee are wonderfully professional. They worked with me regarding providing a commercial pricing quote. Unfortunately, their website contains old information regarding the Compak E10 grinder. I was looking to purchase a Polished Aluminum model which looked to come with a Single Dosing grinder funnel. Both the color option and the dosing funnel were no longer options with the manufacturer. Knowing that, I may have opted with another distributor who had a different color and options in stock, such as a version with a smaller hopper.