Breville Barista Touch vs Barista Express

Aspect Barista Touch Barista Express
Automation & Interface Touchscreen, automatic milk texturing, personalized settings Manual grind size dial, hands-on steaming wand
Price Higher, but user-friendly automation Lower, appeals to traditional methods
Grinding More adjustability settings for grind size Built-in grinder for fresh beans
Brewing Technology ThermoJet heating system, faster heat-up, automatic temperature control Thermocoil heating system, manual extraction pressure monitoring
Milk Texturing Automatic steam wand with preset levels Manual steam wand for user control
Maintenance Automatic cleaning function for steam wand Regular cleaning, descaling, and manual maintenance
User Experience Intuitive touchscreen, suitable for novices More hands-on experience, rewarding for tactile enthusiasts
Customization Save customizable settings and profiles Adjustable grind size and dose control
Coffee Quality Consistent flavor with pre-set options Manual fine-tuning for personalized flavor profiles
Dimensions & Weight Slightly larger, around 12.7" x 15.5" x 16", 26.8 pounds More compact, around 13.2" x 12.5" x 15.8", 23 pounds
Water & Bean Capacities 2-liter water tank, half-pound bean hopper 2-liter water tank, half-pound bean hopper
Cleaning & Storage Cleaning prompt, magnetic tamper storage Removable drip tray, alert system for cleaning

Choosing between the Breville Barista Touch and the Barista Express can be quite a decision for coffee enthusiasts looking to bring a piece of the café experience into their home. Both machines offer a unique set of features that cater to different preferences in espresso making. The Barista Touch, the more high-tech model of the two, boasts a touch screen interface, automatic milk texturing, and personalized coffee settings, which streamline the coffee-making process. For lovers of traditional methods, the Barista Express stands out with its manual grind size dial and hands-on steaming wand, appealing to those who prefer a more hands-on approach to crafting their espresso.

While the Barista Touch comes at a higher price point, it compensates with its user-friendly automation and convenience, saving time during those busy mornings. In contrast, the Barista Express invites users to hone their barista skills by offering finer control over the coffee-making process, from the grind to the pour, and may appeal to those who enjoy the art of espresso-making as much as the beverage itself. Each machine comes with a built-in grinder, making it easy to use fresh beans for the perfect espresso shot.

Key Takeaways

  • The Barista Touch offers more automation and a user-friendly interface, while the Barista Express suits those preferring manual control.
  • Both machines have built-in grinders for fresh espresso, but they cater to different levels of user involvement.
  • Assessing both machines' features against personal preferences and budgets will determine the best choice for individual coffee experiences.

Comparing Key Features

In this section, we'll explore the defining aspects that set the Breville Barista Express and Barista Touch apart, focusing on design, user interface, grinding technology, and brewing capabilities.

Design and Aesthetics

The Breville Barista Express sports a robust and professional design that's reminiscent of traditional espresso machines, with more manual controls visible on its exterior. Its quality build gives it a durable feel, and its size is more compact, keeping kitchen space in mind. In contrast, the Breville Barista Touch features a sleek, modern design with a streamlined look that includes a touchscreen interface, adding to its clean and contemporary aesthetic.

Interface and Display

A significant difference lies in the interface; the Barista Express uses a combination of buttons and dials to navigate its functions. On the other hand, the Barista Touch boasts a high-resolution touchscreen display that simplifies the selection process and allows for more intuitive control over custom coffee making.

Grinding Capabilities

Both models come equipped with an integrated conical burr grinder, enabling users to grind beans right before brewing to ensure the freshest taste. However, the Barista Touch's grinder offers more adjustability settings, which gives us greater control over the grind size and consistency.

Brewing Technology

When it comes to brewing, the technology underpinning both machines is impressive. They operate with precise temperature control and utilize pressure to extract espresso with a rich and full-bodied flavor. The Barista Touch slightly edges out with its ThermoJet heating system, which heats up faster and allows for almost instantaneous transitions from brewing to steaming. This feature not only speeds up the process but also maintains the optimal temperature throughout the coffee-making experience.

Performance and Functionality

In comparing the Breville Barista Express and the Barista Touch, we observe significant differences in performance and functionality. These differences cater to various user preferences and skill levels, directly affecting the espresso quality, milk texturing, and overall machine durability.

Extraction and Temperature Control

Breville Barista Express:

  • Utilizes a thermocoil heating system with PID temperature control to ensure stable brewing temperature.
  • Includes a pressure gauge to manually monitor extraction pressure.

Breville Barista Touch:

  • Equipped with an advanced thermojet heating system, achieving the optimal temperature in 3 seconds.
  • Automatic temperature control ensures consistency without the need for a pressure gauge.

Milk Texturing Abilities

Breville Barista Express:

  • Features a manual steam wand, giving users control over the milk texture and temperature for microfoam.
  • Ideal for those who want to practice and perfect their latte art techniques.

Breville Barista Touch:

  • Comes with an automatic steam wand that adjusts the milk temperature and texture using preset levels.
  • Enables even beginners to achieve a consistent milk texture suitable for various coffee beverages.

Maintenance and Durability

Breville Barista Express:

  • Requires regular cleaning and maintenance, which includes descaling and cleaning the drip tray and steam wand.
  • May have a longer lifespan with proper care due to fewer electronic components.

Breville Barista Touch:

  • Features an automatic cleaning function for the steam wand and simplified maintenance routines.
  • Offers a similar warranty period which ensures repair or replacement under certain conditions.

By evaluating the specific capabilities of each machine in these domains, we can better understand their suitability for different environments and user needs.

User Experience

When comparing the Breville Barista Touch with the Barista Express, we notice they differ significantly in user experience aspects, from interaction with the machine to the final espresso quality. Let's explore these in detail.

Ease of Use

The Breville Barista Touch stands out for its intuitive touch screen interface that simplifies the selection and brewing process for users. This ease is a result of the machine's smart features, allowing even a novice barista to confidently operate it. On the other hand, the Barista Express requires a more hands-on experience, which can be daunting for some but rewarding for those who appreciate a more tactile approach to their coffee-making routine.

Customization Options

In terms of customization, both machines offer considerable control over the espresso-making process. The Barista Touch excels here with its ability to save customizable settings and profiles, allowing us to recreate the perfect cup with consistency. The Barista Express does allow for adjustable grind size and dose control, but it lacks the user-friendly ability to save particular flavor profiles.

Coffee Quality and Flavor

Both the Barista Touch and the Express can produce high-quality espresso with rich flavor. However, the Barista Touch, due to its enhanced automation, tends to offer a more consistent espresso flavor, especially when we employ its pre-set coffee options. With manual fine-tuning of grind size, pressure, and temperature, we can extract premium espresso shots from both models, though the Barista Express may cater more to those who like to experiment and refine their espresso's flavor profile through a more manual process.

Machine Specifications

We're examining the design and practical features that differentiate the Breville Barista Express and Barista Touch, focusing on how their dimensions, capacities, and maintenance elements can affect your coffee experience.

Physical Dimensions and Weight

The Breville Barista Express boasts a more compact frame, with dimensions typically measuring 13.2 inches x 12.5 inches x 15.8 inches and a weight of about 23 pounds. In contrast, the Barista Touch is slightly larger, usually around 12.7 inches x 15.5 inches x 16 inches and tends to weigh a bit more at 26.8 pounds. The added weight and size in the Barista Touch accommodate its advanced features.

Water and Bean Capacities

Both machines are designed with user convenience in mind, featuring respectively sized water tanks and bean hoppers. The Barista Express comes with a 2-liter water tank and a half-pound bean hopper. Alternatively, the Barista Touch also has a 2-liter water tank and the capacity for a half-pound of beans. These similar capacities ensure that each machine can serve multiple espressos before needing a refill.

Cleaning and Storage

Our maintenance assessment reveals that each model offers distinct cleaning features. The Barista Express is equipped with a removable drip tray and an alert system for when it's time to clean, which keeps the machine performing well. As for the Barista Touch, it simplifies the process with a cleaning prompt and a magnetic tamper storage, streamlining the upkeep. Both machines advise regular cleaning to sustain peak functionality and coffee quality.

Differences and Similarities

In our examination of the Breville Barista Touch and Barista Express, we discern crucial distinctions and parallels in functionality, design, and value proposition that cater to a diverse consumer base with varied preferences and expertise in coffee brewing.

Barista Touch vs. Barista Express


  • The Barista Touch includes an integrated touchscreen display, offering a more intuitive user interface with programmable settings, while the Barista Express sports a traditional button and dial interface.
  • The Touch model provides a more automated experience, featuring pre-programmed café drinks and a faster heat-up time due to its ThermoJet heating system. In contrast, the Express demands more manual involvement, particularly in grind settings and milk texturing.


  • Both models come with a built-in grinder to deliver bean-to-cup freshness and taste. They also share a similar footprint, making either a suitable option for kitchens with limited counter space.

Comparison to Other Breville Models

  • When compared to the Breville Bambino Plus, both the Barista Touch and Express are more advanced, with the Touch being similar in size but offering more features and the Express standing out with its manual settings and lower price point.
  • The Oracle Touch represents Breville's high-end offering, with even more automation and features than the Barista Touch. It's designed for those who desire the utmost convenience and quality in their espresso preparation.
  • For beginners, the Breville Duo Temp might be a more appropriate match compared to the Barista models due to its simpler operation and focus on temperature control.
  • Lastly, the Breville Barista Pro falls between the Touch and Express. It offers a faster heat-up time like the Touch but maintains more of the hands-on control that is similar to the Express.

Value and Investment

When considering the Breville Barista Touch and the Barista Express, we recognize that budget and long-term value are significant factors in making an informed choice. Let's explore the cost differences and value prospects for these espresso machines.

Price Comparison

The Breville Barista Express is generally considered a budget-friendly option compared to the more advanced Barista Touch. We've observed that the Barista Express has a lower initial price point, often seen as an excellent value for those just venturing into home espresso making.

  • Breville Barista Express: Often found under $700
  • Breville Barista Touch: Typically ranges above $1,000

These price points may vary based on sellers and available discounts.

Long-term Value

Despite the higher upfront cost, the Breville Barista Touch suggests long-term savings due to its incorporated grinder and automatic features, potentially reducing the need for future accessory purchases or upgrades. Conversely, while the Barista Express is less expensive, additional costs may be incurred if opting to purchase a separate grinder or due to its more manual process which could lead to a desire to upgrade sooner.

  • Breville Barista Express: May require additional investment in a grinder.
  • Breville Barista Touch: Its all-in-one functionality can constitute savings over time.

We must also consider the durability and the cost of maintenance for each machine, as these can influence the overall long-term investment.

Frequently Asked Questions

In this section, we address some of the most common questions about the Breville Barista series, focusing on the nuanced differences and functionalities to help guide your decision.

What are the main differences between the Breville Barista Touch and the Breville Barista Pro?

The Breville Barista Touch emphasizes ease of use with its touchscreen interface and automatic milk texturing, while the Barista Pro offers more manual control and a faster heat-up time due to its ThermoJet heating system.

Can the Breville Barista Express accommodate beginners in espresso making?

Yes, the Breville Barista Express is user-friendly and suitable for beginners, offering simple controls and an integrated conical burr grinder to streamline the process from bean to espresso.

What distinguishes the Breville Barista Express Impress from the standard Barista Express model?

The Barista Express Impress features automatic tamping technology, which compacts the ground coffee with optimal pressure, creating a significant ease of use and a more consistent espresso shot compared to the standard Barista Express model.

How does the Barista Touch compare to the Sage Barista Express in terms of functionality and performance?

While the Breville Barista Touch and Sage Barista Express may share a brand name in different markets, their functionality and performance are often similar, with the Barista Touch typically offering more automated features and a touchscreen interface.

Is there a significant difference in the espresso quality between the Breville Barista Touch and the Oracle Touch?

The main difference lies in the Oracle Touch's dual-boiler system and automatic tamping, which can lead to more precise temperature control and consistency, potentially improving espresso quality over the Barista Touch's single-boiler system.

Does the Breville Barista Express come with an integrated grinder, and how does it affect the machine's performance?

The Barista Express includes an integrated conical burr grinder, which ensures fresh grinding and contributes to a better-tasting espresso. However, the quality of the espresso also depends on the beans used and the user's ability to dial in the grinder settings.

Tony Barlow

Tony Barlow

Majesty Coffee Technical Sales Expert - Meet the Team

Tony Barlow, with over a decade of experience in the coffee industry, is the go-to technical sales expert at Majesty Coffee. He's passionate about helping businesses find the right espresso equipment for their needs.