Are you trying to decide between the Victoria Arduino E1 Prima and GS3?
Your decision is going to be a tough one. Victoria Arduino and La Marzocco are both some of the most legendary espresso machine manufacturers in the business.
This doesn’t mean your decision will be impossible, though. We’ll guide you through it by comparing both the machines in-depth here.
Here are the topics we’ll be discussing:
- Similarities between the two machines.
- Features that are different from one to the other.
- Information on their prices.
- How to choose between them.
Let’s jump right in.
If you keep up to date on Victoria Arduino news, you’re probably well aware of the brand’s new Eagle One line. The Prima is a miniature version of the Eagle One, created to have a smaller footprint so it can fit into tighter spaces. This machine is the picture of efficiency, with a newly optimized engine and boiler insulation so it enjoys the utmost thermal stability. It’s the choice for you if you need an energy-efficient espresso machine for a home or small business.
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La Marzocco GS3 AV
The La Marzocco GS3 AV is an extremely classic-looking espresso machine, but don’t let its appearance fool you. It’s a surprisingly high-tech option with the ability to connect to La Marzocco’s Home app, adding all kinds of functionality. We recommend this one for small coffee shops and tech-savvy home users who want an easy-to-learn espresso machine.
The most basic similarity that the Prima and GS3 AV have is that they are both volumetric machines. This machine type is also sometimes called “automatic.”
Basically, volumetric machines time the brew cycle for you. You start the extraction, but they will end it at the proper time, freeing you up to focus on something else while the espresso is brewing.
The bottom line is that the Prima and GS3 represent consistency. You won’t need to worry about espresso being over or under extracted, since the machines handle the dosing for you.
Another similarity is one you’ll likely notice right away: the Prima and GS3 each only have a single brew group. As a result, either one can, at the most, brew two shots of espresso at the same time.
Their single-group design is what makes them best suited for homes or small businesses. They won’t have the output necessary to meet the demands of larger establishments.
However, one huge benefit to single-group espresso machines is the focus they allow you to put on each shot of espresso. Since you’re likely not making multiple drinks at a time on them, you can pay careful attention to the development of each one, producing the best you can.
More Like This: Best 1 Group Commercial Espresso Machines
Plumb-in or Pour-Over Compatibility
Both the machines in this comparison can be set up as pour-over or plumbed-in. There are huge differences between these plumbing formats, so think carefully about which one is best for your situation.
As pour-over machines, the Prima and GS3 would need you to add water to them by hand when they’re running low. This can take time to do, especially when you’re using the machines more often. The good thing about this format, though, is that the machines are mobile since they’re not anchored by a water line connection.
When you plumb-in the machines, they get connected to your water line. Because of this, they can refill themselves without any effort on your part, making them even more user-friendly.
Related Article: Best Plumbed Espresso Machines with Water Line Hookup
Cool-Touch Steam Wand
If you’ve used espresso machines before, you’ve probably encountered one of the most common barista injuries at least once: a steam wand burn. It’s easy to understand why steam wands get hot, given that hot water flows through them. Unfortunately, you have to touch the steam wand at various points to reposition it or clean it.
The good news is that either of these espresso machines offers a solution to that problem. They have cool-touch steam wands that are insulated so their exteriors remain at safe temperatures. No more dreading having to touch the steam wand.
An extra bonus to this design is that milk doesn’t get burnt onto the outside of the wands. You won’t need to spend as much time cleaning them off.
Single-group espresso machines like the Prima and GS3 AV have one huge benefit: they’re extremely compact. As machines have more groups, they understandably get larger to accommodate each group head, so it makes sense that those with one group are simply smaller.
If you’ve ever worried that your home or business didn’t have enough room for a high-end espresso machine, these machines are proof that doesn’t have to be the case.
Read More: Best Mini Commercial Espresso Machines
If ever there was one stat you really needed to pay attention to on your espresso machine, it’s internal pressure. Pressure is a vitally important aspect to espresso – you need it both for brewing the espresso and for foaming the milk.
Because of the importance of pressure, the Victoria Arduino E1 Prima and La Marzocco GS3 AV both have pressure gauges on their front panel. You can use the pressure gauges to quickly confirm that the machines have built up the amount of pressure necessary for steaming and brewing.
Another benefit to pressure gauges is that they function as a sort of health readout for your machine. If your machine can’t seem to build up enough pressure, you’ll be able to confirm it by glancing at the pressure gauge. This could mean you may need to make adjustments or repairs.
Hot Water Spigot
An espresso machine isn’t just for making espresso. Many models, including the Prima and GS3, also have hot water spigots.
These spigots are perfect for making other coffee shop hits like Americanos or fresh tea. You can even use them to make instant foods such as noodles.
One quality that really displays how cutting-edge both machines are is their app compatibility. Either one has a manufacturer app that they can connect to for greater control.
With the GS3 especially, the app adds a ton of functionality. You can use it to turn the machine on, adjust the temperature of the boilers, and keep track of how many shots of espresso you’ve made.
Using the Prima’s app can also be useful. You can make changes to the temperature, as well as check how well the machine is performing.
A standard feature on many espresso machines today is an integrated cup warmer. Any experienced barista will tell you that pouring a hot drink into a cold cup is a recipe for disappointment. It just makes the drink get cold even faster.
It’s for this reason that the Prima and GS3 have cup warmers on top. The flat portion on top of either machine can be used to store a few mugs. Heat from the inside of the machine radiates out the top, preheating your mugs for you.
Pouring your drinks into these preheated mugs will make a huge difference. Each beverage will stay warm for as long as possible.
The first difference we’d like to highlight is a superficial one. There are many espresso machines that look virtually identical. This couldn’t be further from the truth for the Victoria Arduino E1 Prima and the GS3; at a glance, they couldn’t be more distinct from one another.
If you love an elegant, modern style, the Prima is the pick for you. Its gently rounded sides, delicate-looking legs, and steel-colored panels make it look like a piece of art.
The GS3, on the other hand, has a slightly more classic look. It has angled sides and a boxy drip tray that convey stability and durability.
Don’t be afraid to consider aesthetic differences like these ones. Nailing the perfect look can be important for both homes and businesses.
Victoria Arduino E1 Prima Color Variations
You can go even further with the discussion on aesthetics when it comes to the Prima. Out of the two machines in this comparison, it is the only one available in multiple colors.
To be specific, you can purchase the Prima in black, white, or silver. Color variations like this grant it more visual flexibility, so it can visually fit in to a wider range of settings.
La Marzocco GS3 LCD Display
To make operation of the GS3 easier, the machine uses a clear LCD display located on the top of the front panel. It shows you which settings you’ve selected so you can be sure you’re building drinks correctly.
Although you could use the machine just fine whether or not it had a screen, the screen is a nice touch. New baristas or home users may find it less intimidating to control as a result.
Learn More: La Marzocco GS3 Manual vs Automatic
Victoria Arduino E1 Prima Boiler Insulation
When Victoria Arduino started to design the Prima, they set out with one overarching goal in mind: to make the machine as energy-efficient as possible. As we grow more conscious of our impact on the environment, this manufacturer wanted to create an espresso machine that you could feel good about using.
One aspect that reflects this thoughtfulness is the Prima’s insulated boiler. Boilers have to use a lot of energy to stabilize your machine’s temperature. With the insulating layer on the Prima’s boiler, it doesn’t need to expend the same amount of energy to keep itself warm enough.
Victoria Arduino E1 Prima Ghost Display
Another thing we love about the Prima is the ghost display. This incredibly futuristic quality puts a screen on top of the group head itself.
On top of giving the machine an undeniably cutting-edge feel, the ghost display preserves the overall aesthetic. It minimizes any interruption to the otherwise flawless expanse of the machine’s front panel.
Victoria Arduino E1 New Engine Optimization
The Victoria Arduino E1 Prima’s engine is also created with the utmost efficiency in mind. In the traditional espresso machine, temperature is maintained at all points. It must work harder to ensure that everything stays up to temp, expending energy needlessly.
The Prima eliminates this design flaw. Rather than struggle to keep the water warm constantly, it simply heats up the water just before it enters the brew group.
In this design, less energy is needed to keep the water up to temperature. Not only is this environmentally friendly, but it saves you money in operating costs.
More Information: Victoria Arduino Prima Review
Victoria Arduino E1 Prima Auto-Purging
The Prima isn’t just energy-efficient – it’s efficient in general operation, too. One of the best examples of this efficiency is its auto-purging.
Purging your group head after use is something baristas are taught early on in their training. It keeps your machine clean and promotes temperature stability.
Unfortunately, when your baristas are slammed with orders, forgetting small things like purging happens. This was an eventuality the Prima was prepared for, thanks to its auto-purge function.
After brewing a shot, the machine will purge its group head for you, ensuring that it is consistently cleaned with no effort.
At Majesty Coffee, our mission is to bring the highest-quality coffee and espresso gear to our customers for the lowest possible prices.
That’s why we have the beautiful Victoria Arduino E1 Prima in our store for $5,990. We do not currently have the La Marzocco GS3 AV in our store, but we do have a collection of other La Marzocco machines you can check out.
Which One Should You Get?
Still wondering which espresso machine is better for you? Let’s start by saying that either machine would work beautifully in small coffee shops, restaurants, and even high-end home kitchens.
But there are still a few compelling reasons to choose one or the other.
If you’re looking for the most environmentally friendly espresso machine possible, we’d point you towards the Prima. Energy-conscious design was implemented in it from the very beginning, so it boasts a whole plethora of efficient features like boiler insulation and energy optimization.
The GS3 AV is a great pick for you if what you want is a classic-looking espresso machine packed to the brim with durable features. Many businesses have had a single La Marzocco espresso machine on their counter that lasted for years and years.
You can learn more about our Prima by clicking the link below:
Need more help choosing the best espresso machine for your circumstances? We have knowledgeable representatives waiting to help you at 888-978-5224 or in our store chat.