Breville Bambino Vs Gaggia Classic Pro: A Head-To-Head Comparison

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If you’re passionate about espresso but constrained by budget and counter space, don’t lose heart! Here’s a detailed comparison just for you: Breville Bambino vs Gaggia Classic Pro. Both machines are excellent choices for those who already own a quality espresso grinder or are in search of a compact machine that doesn’t compromise on delivering superb espresso and decent steamed milk.

Still, at the end of the day, the Breville Bambino takes down the Gaggia Classic Pro for several reasons. The Bambino boasts a faster heat-up time and is equipped with a pre-infusion function, which enhances the flavor and aroma of the espresso. Additionally, it includes a PID controller for precise temperature control and features a more powerful steam wand.

Breville Bambino Vs Gaggia Classic Pro: Specs & Features Comparison Chart

Image
THE WINNER (#1)
Breville Bambino Espresso Machine BES450BSS, Brushed Stainless Steel
THE RUNNER-UP (#2)
Gaggia RI9380/47 Classic Pro Espresso Machine,1.3liters, Cherry Red
Model
Breville Bambino
Gaggia Classic Pro
Dimensions/Weight
7.7 x 12.6 x 12.2 inches/10.7 lbs
14.2 x 9.5 x 8 inches/18.7 lbs
Interface
Button-Operated Interface
Button-Operated Interface
One Touch Drink Options
2
2
Built-in Grinder
Grinding Settings
Heating System
Single ThermoJet
Single Aluminum Boiler
Pump Pressure
15 Bars
15 Bars
Pre-Infusion
Milk Frothing System
Manual Steam Wand
Manual Steam Wand
Spigot Type/Cup Clearance
Dual/4 inches
Dual/3.3 inches
Water Reservoir/Bean Hopper
1.4 L/None
2.1 L/None
Filter
Compatible With Pre-ground Coffee
App Connectivity
User Profile
What I Like
Price
$295.95
$499.00
THE WINNER (#1)
Image
Breville Bambino Espresso Machine BES450BSS, Brushed Stainless Steel
Model
Breville Bambino
Dimensions/Weight
7.7 x 12.6 x 12.2 inches/10.7 lbs
Interface
Button-Operated Interface
One Touch Drink Options
2
Built-in Grinder
Grinding Settings
Heating System
Single ThermoJet
Pump Pressure
15 Bars
Pre-Infusion
Milk Frothing System
Manual Steam Wand
Spigot Type/Cup Clearance
Dual/4 inches
Water Reservoir/Bean Hopper
1.4 L/None
Filter
Compatible With Pre-ground Coffee
App Connectivity
User Profile
What I Like
Price
$295.95
More Info
THE RUNNER-UP (#2)
Image
Gaggia RI9380/47 Classic Pro Espresso Machine,1.3liters, Cherry Red
Model
Gaggia Classic Pro
Dimensions/Weight
14.2 x 9.5 x 8 inches/18.7 lbs
Interface
Button-Operated Interface
One Touch Drink Options
2
Built-in Grinder
Grinding Settings
Heating System
Single Aluminum Boiler
Pump Pressure
15 Bars
Pre-Infusion
Milk Frothing System
Manual Steam Wand
Spigot Type/Cup Clearance
Dual/3.3 inches
Water Reservoir/Bean Hopper
2.1 L/None
Filter
Compatible With Pre-ground Coffee
App Connectivity
User Profile
What I Like
Price
$499.00
More Info

Last update on 2024-04-21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Breville Bambino Vs Gaggia Classic Pro: Detailed Comparison

So the Breville Bambino defeated the Gaggia Classic Pro with a score of 3-1. Feeling thrilled to know how are they different from each other? Just keep reading!

Coffee Flavor & Brewing System

Winner: Breville Bambino

Built-in Grinder

As you might have surmised, these machines don’t come with a built-in grinder, and whether this is a downside or not really depends on your personal preferences and circumstances. 

From my perspective, I appreciate the flexibility that comes with having a separate grinder. Since it is easy to replace or upgrade either component. What’s more, it’s always easier to unclog the separate grinder.

But not everyone shares my preferences. If you’re working with limited space, for instance, you might lean towards an espresso machine with an integrated grinder. It’s a neat, all-in-one solution that saves on counter space and simplifies the coffee-making process.

If you’re comfortable using pre-ground coffee, then the lack of a grinder might not be a significant issue for you since both of these machines come with pressurized filter baskets. 

Dosing & Tamping

I just said that these machines include pressurized filter baskets, right? They are more forgiving for beginners or those using less expensive grinders, helping to compensate for inconsistencies in grind size or tamping technique. 

But to truly unlock the full potential of your coffee beans, non-pressurized baskets are the way to go, and that’s what the Breville Bambino lacks. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but I always appreciate a machine that comes with both pressurized and non-pressurized baskets, like the Gaggia Classic Pro.

Speaking of the portafilter, the Classic Pro once again takes the lead with a 58mm portafilter versus the Breville Bambino’s 54mm portafilter. The 58mm portafilter offers a larger surface area for the coffee grounds. This size allows for a more even distribution of water through the coffee, leading to a more balanced and consistent extraction.

the classic pro uses a larger 58mm portafilter
The Classic Pro uses a larger 58mm portafilter

While I hold great admiration for the portafilter of the Classic Pro, my sentiments are quite the opposite regarding its tamper, which feels disappointingly flimsy and plastic. It’s even worse than the one that comes with the Breville Bambino, which is also made of plastic. Anyway, I strongly recommend that if you opt for either machine, upgrading to a stainless steel tamper should be your first step.

Heating System 

I’ve got a mix of news for you – some good and some not too bad. The not-so-bad news is that they only have one boiler, which results in a brief wait when switching between brewing and steaming. 

What about the good news? They heat up very quickly!

The Classic Pro boasts an upgraded aluminum boiler that’s ready in about five minutes. The Breville Bambino, on the other hand, steals the show with its 3-second heat-up time, all thanks to a thermocoil system.

Brewing System

It’s just reassuring to know that the Breville Bambino comes equipped with a pre-infusion function. This step of moistening the ground coffee at low pressure is crucial in the initial phase of espresso extraction since it helps in the development of the coffee’s aromas.

The Classic Pro lacks this pre-infusion feature, but there is a workaround. You slightly open the steam wand knob before hitting the brew button to reduce the flow rate at the group head, allowing you to pre-moisten the coffee puck for a few seconds. After this brief period, you can shut off the steam wand and commence full extraction.

Another important distinction to note is that the Breville Bambino features a PID controller, whereas the Classic Pro doesn’t. Don’t care what it stands for, my friends! You just need to know that it’s basically just a sensor that continuously regulates and stabilizes the temperature at the brew head, which is key to achieving optimal espresso extraction in the filter basket.

Without a PID, the Gaggia Classic Pro necessitates “temperature surfing'” to achieve a consistent temperature from one shot to the next. It’s possible to modify it with a PID upgrade kit, but regardless, this demands a certain level of expertise and isn’t beginner friendly.

Design & Convenience

Winner: Breville Bambino

Dimensions & User Interface

Breville BambinoGaggia Classic Pro
Dimensions7.7 x 12.6 x 12.2 inches8 x 14.2 x 9.5 inches
Weight10.7 lbs18.7 lbs

Who wants to see a lot of plastic in their espresso machines? No, not me. This is precisely why I’m so fond of these machines (more precisely, their build quality). Both are crafted from stainless steel, which isn’t just about looks but also about longevity and reliability. Both also come in a variety of color options.

Both are very compact, and the Breville Bambino is significantly lighter. Yet, this lighter weight of the Breville Bambino introduces a new challenge: When you’re attaching the portafilter to the brew head, you might find that the machine doesn’t stay. So you might need to hold the machine firmly with one hand while you lock the portafilter in place with the other.

the gaggia classic pro's user interface
The Gaggia Classic Pro’s user interface

The control panels on these machines are remarkably user-friendly, by the way. The Classic Pro has three big switches for power, brewing, and steaming. The Breville Bambino also features a pair of buttons for single shot, double shot, steam, and hot water functions. 

the breville bambino's control panel
The Breville Bambino’s control panel

Spout Type & Cup Clearance

Breville BambinoGaggia Classic Pro
Spout TypeDualDual
Cup Clearance4 inches3.3 inches 

The Breville Bambino can fit larger espresso cups, which is a significant bonus. If you really need extra room, for a latte macchiato glass or a travel mug, for example, you could remove the drip tray. And as far as I’m aware, there’s no explicit prohibition against doing this in the user manual. So just go ahead!

Water Reservoir & Bean Hopper

Breville BambinoGaggia Classic Pro
Water Reservoir1.4 liters2.1 liter
Bean HopperNoneNone

The Classic Pro boasts a water tank that is impressively large, especially considering the machine’s compact size. This tank is significantly more capacious than the one located at the back of the Breville Bambino, enabling you to brew a greater number of shots before calling for a refill. 

Their tanks are removable, which is a highly practical aspect. After all, it’s much more convenient to take the tank to the sink for refilling rather than having to transport the entire espresso machine each time the water reservoir needs to be topped up.

Milk Frothing System

Winner: Breville Bambino

These machines use professional-style steam wands, meaning you’ll be engaging in the hands-on process of manual milk steaming. First of all, I must express my enthusiasm about the fact that manufacturers have thoughtfully included a stainless steel milk jug with these machines. You hear me, Jura?

they use manual steam wands
They use manual steam wands

As for what they have in common, they don’t have quite the steam power of a commercial steam wand. They take a while to ramp up and then turn completely off. 

The Breville Bambino’s wand can rotate 360 degrees, allowing you to find the perfect angle for steaming your milk. If you’ve had experience with espresso machines where the steam wand is limited to just two directions, you’ll understand how much of a game-changer this can be.

Unlike the Breville Bambino, the Classic Pro’s wand isn’t attached to a ball joint, which means it has very limited movement. This restriction can make it somewhat awkward to position the milk jug properly for steaming. Plus, when you’re working with a decent amount of milk in the jug, this limited movement can make it challenging to remove the jug without spilling. 

the classic pro's wand has no ball-shaped joint, so it is less flexible
The Classic Pro’s wand has no ball-shaped joint, so it is less flexible

Moreover, the Classic Pro falls short in its ability to produce the finely textured, creamy microfoam that is essential for a high-quality latte. In contrast, the Breville Bambino is capable of creating microfoam that is sufficiently good for practicing latte art. Therefore, if you’re particularly fond of lattes, the Breville Bambino would be a more suitable choice for you.

Drink Options & Programmability

Winner: Gaggia Classic Pro

Drink Options

Breville BambinoGaggia Classic Pro
Espresso 
Hot water
Espresso 
Hot water

Both the Classic Pro and the Breville Bambino come equipped with a hot water function, which is a fantastic feature for tea drinkers or those who enjoy Americanos. The Classic Pro features a separate spigot specifically for dispensing hot water, while the Breville Bambino dispenses hot water through the same wand used for steaming milk.

the classic pro has a separate outlet for hot water
The Classic Pro has a separate outlet for hot water

Still, I must say, I have a preference for the Classic Pro’s approach. Having an outlet for hot water means there’s no risk of cross-contamination between the water used for steaming milk and the water dispensed for other uses.

the breville bambino's wand can double as a hot water outlet
The Breville Bambino’s wand can double as a hot water outlet

Programmability

Adjustable SettingsBreville BambinoGaggia Classic Pro
Coffee StrengthNoNo
Coffee TemperatureNoNo
Milk Foam TemperatureNoNo
Milk Foam TextureNoNo

When it comes to customizing your espresso, your options are somewhat limited. You can’t adjust anything except timing your shot volume manually. This does provide a level of control, but it’s fairly basic and might not satisfy those who love to tweak and fine-tune every aspect of their brew.

Quick Rundown Of Breville Bambino

Breville Bambino Espresso Machine BES450BSS, Brushed Stainless Steel
  • Please refer to user guide or user manual or user guide (provided below in PDF) before first use
  • Low pressure pre infusion: Low pressure pre infusion gradually increases pressure at the start and helps ensure all the flavors are drawn out evenly during the extraction for a balanced tasting cup
  • Automatic Microfoam Milk Texturing: The automatic steam wand allows you to adjust the milk temperature and texture to suit your taste; Delivering Barista quality microfoam that enhances flavor and enables creation of latte art
  • Espresso Machine with precise extraction: Digital temperature control (PID) delivers water at precisely the right temperature ensuring optimal Espresso extraction

Last update on 2024-04-21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros
  • Space-saving design.
  • ThermoJet fast-heating system.
  • Affordable price.
  • Easy to use.
  • Amazing milk wand.
Cons
  • No built-in grinder.
  • Lacks brewing temperature control.

Quick Rundown Of Gaggia Classic Pro

Gaggia RI9380/47 Classic Pro Espresso Machine,1.3liters, Cherry Red
  • Solid Steel Housing, Made in Italy
  • 9 Bar Espresso Extractions
  • Stainless Steel 58mm Commercial Portafilter
  • Commercial Three Way Solenoid Valve
  • Commercial Steam Wand

Last update on 2024-04-21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros
  • Solid stainless steel construction
  • Easy to use and clean.
  • Compact footprint.
  • Both single- and double-wall baskets are included.
  • Hot water function.
Cons
  • No PID control.
  • Not good steam wand.

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References

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