Size – an aspect of modern products which is often overlooked. When choosing a coffee machine for a coffee shop or just for your own home, size should be one of the most important factors. It reflects on so many other features, such as sturdiness, boiler volume, and so on. What the designers over at Delonghi did is attend to the needs of a certain portion of the market. People have been wanting a quality espresso maker with a tiny footprint for a long time now, and they finally got it. The Dedica is a beautiful machine which doesn’t sacrifice your coffee’s quality when cutting down on size.
There are a lot of reviewers saying that this machine works well behind a bar in coffee shop conditions, but we would want you to know that that’s not the case. In our opinion, the Delonghi EC680M is made solely for the home enthusiasts. It sure can have a high output of let’s say 60 cups per minute if you try hard enough, but that will just push it above its limits and shorten its service life. If you want to open a bar, the best possible choice you can make is the Breville BES920XL Oracle. It is by far the best espresso machine we’ve reviewed, in the range of acceptable price tags. If it is out of your budget, though, the Rancilio Silvia will gladly take its place with half the price tag.
Features That Make Delonghi EC680M Dedica Stand Out
Well, right off the bat, the size of this thing is applaudable. It fits literally anywhere and even looks rather good! It has a solid construction and various premium materials all over it, such as the stainless steel shell and the stainless steel Pannarello, used for steaming and frothing. We discussed materials used in espresso machines in our Buyer’s Guide. Check it out if you want to find out more on the topic.
The Dedica utilizes a thermal block instead of a traditional boiler. This reduces the price greatly but also is considered a downside by many people who prefer the traditional boiler method of getting the water to the right temperature. Either way, your water won’t take more than half a minute to heat up with this thing, and that is more than good enough. When everything reaches the right conditions, your espresso won’t taste any different than it would with a more expensive machine, which is perhaps the biggest advantage of this unit. It brings a professionally made tasteful cup of a coffee right to your kitchen at your disposal.
If you want to further improve the taste of your coffee, we recommend getting a pack of water purifiers for the machine’s water tank.
Another amazing thing is that it has programmable water temperature. You can choose from low, medium, or high. If you want your espresso to be even hotter, raise the standby time to 30 minutes (or 3 hours). The water hardness function (soft, medium or hard) also improves the brewing quality, but taste, as most things are subjective, so try finding the perfect combination for you.
Lastly, there is a cup warmer on top of it, which can be used either to pre-warm your cup, or dry the ones you just washed.
A thing that has to be mentioned here is that the weight can also be a downside. When twisting the portafilter around, the little weight of the Dedica can make the whole unit wiggle, thus causing trouble.