- Updated Mar 26, 2020
- Writen by Robert Smith
Jura vs. Saeco: A Comparison of Automatic Espresso Machine Brands
- Updated Aug 27, 2019
- Writen by Robert Smith
As an espresso enthusiast or keen coffee aficionado, you should know that there is a huge selection of automatic espresso machines out there, and so when shopping for one, you will have a huge variety of products to choose from.
But you cannot go wrong with something from Jura or Saeco as they are two of the most reputable brands offering top-notch automatic espresso machines which besides making some amazing brews are also well-built and feature-rich.
Both brands have diehard fanatics who would never use anything else, but the pick between Jura and Saeco is not always easy for everyone as many coffee lovers will find things very confusing.
Because automatic espresso machines do not come cheap, you need to make sure that you make the right pick. But the good news is that we are here to help you choose between Jura and Saeco by providing more information on the two and showing you how they differ.
Stainless steel conical burr grinder
Ceramic conical burr grinder
Mostly Rapid Steam Technology and double boilers
Mostly Rapid Steam Technology and double boilers
Fine foam frothing technology
Both manual Panarello wand and auto one-touch frothers
Display and User Interface
Rotary-switch button interface for entry-level models and full-color digital touch screen for top-end models
Rotary-dial or a backlit LCD button for entry-level models and digital display for top-end models
Ease of Maintenance
Costlier to clean and maintain
Easy regular rinsing
Appearance and Aesthetics
Sleek, professional look with sharp lines
Compact size with soft lines and rounded angles
Jura vs. Saeco
Unless you have used one or more coffee makers from both Jura and Saeco, you cannot easily tell which one will work for you. Worst yet, you will not know what each brand has to offer until you have firsthand experience with it.
But, understanding different aspects of the brand should make things easier for you. Here we look at some of the important things that set Jura apart from Saeco starting with their origin.
1. Overview and Origin
Although what the brand is all about and where it comes from is not always an indication of the quality of the product that you will get, it can give you some idea of what to expect. Both Jura and Saeco have been producing coffee makers for many decades now and one brings you Swiss ingenuity while the other is an Italian masterpiece
Jura is a Swiss home appliance manufacturer and distributor that is famous for its fully automatic espresso machines which currently account for a huge chunk of the company’s sales.
The company was established in 1931 by Leo Henzirohs and although it used to operate its own factory where the products were manufactured, it outsourced the production in the 1990s in an attempt to increase efficiency and reduce the cost of production.
Jura now has a reputation of making high-quality coffee makers meant to last a lifetime but this does not come cheap as their machines are not only more expensive than what Saeco has to offer but also most other competing brands.
Saeco is an Italian company established in 1981 by Arthur Schmed and Sergio Zappella. It specializes in making super-automatic espresso machines like Jura, but it also has a line of capsule-based espresso machines and other home appliances like irons and toasters.
Although they produce some high-quality machines just like Jura, their products are relatively more affordable. The brand is currently owned by Philips which is an electronics giants with a global presence.
Now that you know a little about the two products, let us jump straight to the different elements that set their products apart starting with the grinders given that the types of coffee makers that both make have built-in coffee beans grinders.
Coffee machines from both Jura and Saeco make use of the more efficient conical burr grinders, and this is more so for their popular automatic espresso machines. However, the point of departure between the two is that Jura uses stainless steel conical burr grinders while Saeco machines have ceramic ones.
Here Saeco beats Jura since the ceramic grinders will not produce a lot of heat like the stainless steel ones, and they will also not dull easily.
Boilers are the means through which the heat is transferred from the heating element to the brewing head to brew your espresso or froth the milk. For most machines, the boiler can either be single or double but top brands like Jura and Saeco also add in other technologies to improve the performance of the boilers.
For their entry-level models like the Minuto Pure, Saeco will use a single boiler, but for their other pricier models the company makes use of then more efficient Rapid Steam technology and double boilers.
Jura, on the other hand, will also have a single boiler on their smaller models like the Micro 1 which does not need double boilers since it does not have a milk frother. But, most of their other models use Rapid Steam technology and double boilers just like the high-end Saeco models.
4. Milk Frothers
An automatic espresso machine is never complete without a milk frother as it is crucial for making cappuccinos and other espresso-based milk beverages. Both Jura and Saeco machines will include some kind of frothers.
Jura machines will mostly make use of the Fine Foam technology which is an integrated automatic frothing system that produces thicker and creamier foam consistently. With Saeco, you can get both the manual Panarello wand and auto one-touch frothing system depending on the model.
5. Display and User Interface
Since Jura and Saeco are high-end brands, they will offer more customizable options and will allow you to choose from a wide range of beverage options when using most of their machines.
But, with both brands, the display and user interface that allows you to navigate through the different options will depend on the price point of the machine that you are buying. For Saeco, the entry-level models will mostly have either some backlit LCD buttons or a selection dial while the higher end models have digital displays and interfaces.
The scenario is also the same for Jura given that their entry-level coffee makers have button-based interfaces or rotary-switch controls while the medium level and high-end models feature a more intuitive digital display and full-color touchscreen for the pricier models.
6. Ease of Maintenance
Maintenance is part of owning any coffee maker, and how easy it ease should be a key consideration when trying to choose between Jura and Saeco.
Here, Saeco machines seem to have a slight edge because they come with removable brewing units that will make them easy to rinse and hence eliminating the need to buy the expensive cleaning tablets.
For the Jura machines, things can be a little hectic and expensive because you will need to invest in cleaning tablets, replacement filters, and descaling solutions and supplies.
7. Appearance and Aesthetics
Before settling on any coffee maker, you will also need some assurances that it will look good on your kitchen. The good news is that both Jura and Saeco coffee machines have a very pleasant high-end look that sets them apart from what other brands have to offer.
But when it comes to the specific appearance, Jura coffee machines will have a sleek, professional look accentuated by sharp angles and lines, and they generally look expensive given the high-quality materials used to make them.
Saeco coffee machines are also not far behind, and their small and compact size is perhaps their most distinctive feature. However, they will also have some nice rounded angles spiced up by soft lines.
When it comes to the price, there is no competition between the two brands as they are on different ends of the scale given that Jura is quite an expensive brand and Saeco offers more affordable products.
For an entry-level Jura espresso machine like the Micro 1, you will pay at least $1,100 which is around double of what you would pay to get Saeco's entry-level model the X-Small that will cost between $500 and $600.
Which One Is Better?
You will still be able to make some fantastic brews regardless of what you choose between Jura and Saeco because both companies have some amazing coffee machines in the market. And both will also have both entry and high-end level models to suit all kinds of consumers.
However, when it comes to choosing between the two, you need to strike a perfect balance between features, built quality and cost of the machine.
Saeco coffee makers will cost significantly less than what Jura has to offer, and will hence be a perfect choice for budget shoppers. But, it is important to note that the lower price tag and low maintenance cost also means you have to sacrifice other things like high-quality construction, more user-friendly interface, and many others amazing features you would get with Jura machines.
Hence, if budget is not a significant concern for you, Jura is the better brand for you as it has way much more to offer. Looking at it from another angle, Saeco will be a good choice for the beginners buying their first espresso machine while Jura is the go-to brand for seasoned coffee drinkers and pro baristas.