Breville Dual Boiler Vs Oracle: Detailed Comparison

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Breville Dual Boiler vs Oracle are two stars shining brightly at the top of Breville’s lineup. But here’s the million-dollar question: which one takes the crown? Well, the short answer is the Breville Oracle.

The Breville Oracle is exorbitantly expensive for good reasons. This one is designed to keep babysitting to a minimum throughout the entire process. Yes, it automatically grinds the beans, doses and tamps the grounds, and froths the milk. Additionally, it boasts a built-in grinder equipped with an impressive range of up to 45 grind settings!

As for the Breville Dual Boiler, it has no built-in grinder and lacks automated features. But it remains a notable option for those who don’t mind, or even prefer, some manual involvement in their coffee-making process. On top of that, it’s significantly cheaper than the Oracle, even when paired with a top-notch standalone grinder.

Breville Dual Boiler Vs Oracle: Specs & Features Comparison Chart

Image
THE WINNER (#1)
Breville BES980XL Oracle Espresso Machine, Brushed Stainless Steel,Silver
THE RUNNER-UP (#2)
Breville BES920XL Dual Boiler Espresso Machine,84 oz, Brushed Stainless Steel
Model
Breville Oracle
Breville Dual Boiler
Dimensions/Weight
17.8 x 14.7 x 16.1 inches/36 lbs
20.1 x 17.2 x 17.2 inches/30 lbs
Interface
Non-touch Display
Button-Operated Interface
One Touch Drink Options
3
2
Built-in Grinder
Stainless Steel Conical Burr Grinder
Grinding Settings
45
Heating System
Dual Boilers
Dual Boilers
Pump Pressure
15 Bars
15 Bars
Pre-Infusion
Milk Frothing System
Auto-Frothing Wand
Manual Steam Wand
Spigot Type/Cup Clearance
Dual/4 inches
Dual/4 inches
Water Reservoir/Bean Hopper
2.5 L/0.3 Kg
2.5 L/None
Filter
Yes (Optional)
Yes (Optional)
Compatible With Pre-ground Coffee
App Connectivity
User Profile
What I Like
Price
$2,179.94
$1,599.95
THE WINNER (#1)
Image
Breville BES980XL Oracle Espresso Machine, Brushed Stainless Steel,Silver
Model
Breville Oracle
Dimensions/Weight
17.8 x 14.7 x 16.1 inches/36 lbs
Interface
Non-touch Display
One Touch Drink Options
3
Built-in Grinder
Stainless Steel Conical Burr Grinder
Grinding Settings
45
Heating System
Dual Boilers
Pump Pressure
15 Bars
Pre-Infusion
Milk Frothing System
Auto-Frothing Wand
Spigot Type/Cup Clearance
Dual/4 inches
Water Reservoir/Bean Hopper
2.5 L/0.3 Kg
Filter
Yes (Optional)
Compatible With Pre-ground Coffee
App Connectivity
User Profile
What I Like
Price
$2,179.94
More Info
THE RUNNER-UP (#2)
Image
Breville BES920XL Dual Boiler Espresso Machine,84 oz, Brushed Stainless Steel
Model
Breville Dual Boiler
Dimensions/Weight
20.1 x 17.2 x 17.2 inches/30 lbs
Interface
Button-Operated Interface
One Touch Drink Options
2
Built-in Grinder
Grinding Settings
Heating System
Dual Boilers
Pump Pressure
15 Bars
Pre-Infusion
Milk Frothing System
Manual Steam Wand
Spigot Type/Cup Clearance
Dual/4 inches
Water Reservoir/Bean Hopper
2.5 L/None
Filter
Yes (Optional)
Compatible With Pre-ground Coffee
App Connectivity
User Profile
What I Like
Price
$1,599.95
More Info

Last update on 2024-03-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Breville Dual Boiler Vs Oracle: Differences

The Dual Boiler won against the Oracle with a score of 4-1. Let’s take a deep dive into my comprehensive comparison for more details about these beasts!

Coffee Flavor & Brewing System

Winner: Breville Oracle

Built-in Grinder 

Let’s start with the biggest difference between the Dual Boiler and Oracle. The Oracle comes with a 45-level stainless steel conical burr grinder right there at the top, fed by its bean hopper. The Dual Boiler doesn’t have one, so if you’re leaning towards it, just remember you’ll need to pair it with a good grinder.

the breville oracle has up to 45 grind settings
The Breville Oracle has up to 45 grind settings

No matter which grinder you end up choosing, make sure it’s designed to handle espresso-grade grind sizes, which are super fine. Why? Because some grinders are really more about manual coffee-making methods, like pour-over, which need coarser grinds.

Feeling a bit lost on where to begin? I’ve got a solid recommendation for you – Breville’s Smart Grinder Pro. They come bundled together in a combo called the Dynamic Duo, and the Smart Grinder Pro itself is also worth the money.

the dual boiler with the smart grinder pro
The Dual Boiler with the Smart Grinder Pro

Dosing & Tamping

The Oracle is designed to take the manual labor out of your coffee brewing routine with its automatic grinding and tamping station. This is great for those who just dip their toes into the barista world and are most likely to make mistakes during these stages.

Yep, it takes care of the grinding, dosing, and tamping for you. All you need to do is install its 58-millimeter portafilter into the tamping station and then move it to the group head. No need for expert skills. No mess to clean up on your counter.

The Dual Boiler is a non-auto-tamping machine, so you will need to tamp and dose yourself. It also comes with a 58mm commercial-grade portafilter and a well-made magnetic tamper. 

The Oracle Touch comes with non-pressurized filter baskets, which a pro barista would use at work. Meanwhile, the Dual Boiler has both pressurized and non-pressurized baskets, so you don’t need to shop for any extra accessories to use pre-ground coffee.

Heating System

Both the Dual Boiler and Oracle have two independent boilers, allowing you to pull espresso and steam milk at once. Even better, each of these boilers is equipped with its own PID temperature controller, allowing for super-accurate temperature settings and maintaining that temperature with minimal fluctuations.

Brewing System

Let’s talk pre-infusion – a crucial step in the espresso extraction process that’s all about unlocking that rich aroma. During this initial phase, water is gently applied at low pressure to the coffee puck. These few seconds of gentle soaking allow carbon dioxide to escape, setting the stage for a perfect extraction.

Therefore, I am glad both the Dual Boiler and Oracle have pre-infusion and allow you to play with adjusting the pre-infusion’s pressure and duration. It’s all about having space for experimentation to fine-tune your shot.

By the way, both use a mighty 15-bar Italian pump for extraction. In the espresso world, it’s been known for quite some time that a pressure of 9 bars is the golden standard for the minimum pressure needed to pull a good shot. So you can rest assured that these machines more than meet that standard.

Design & Convenience

Winner: Tie

Dimensions & User Interface

Breville Dual BoilerBreville Oracle
Dimensions20.1 x 17.2 x 17.2 inches17.8 x 14.7 x 16.1 inches
Weight30 lbs36 lbs

They are bulky, feel indestructible with a steel finish, and sit on a wheel system.  No, I’m not describing tanks or armored vehicles. Just about these seriously well-built espresso machines!

both have a wheel system
Both have a wheel system

Yes, rather than sitting on feet like the rest of the coffee world, they have retractable wheels. This nifty feature comes in handy when refilling the water reservoir, especially if the machine lives under the cupboards. 

The Dual Boiler has a small LCD screen that gives you the lowdown on your shots as they happen and a huge pressure gauge that’s super helpful for perfecting your shot. Meanwhile, the Oracle has a large LCD screen and two smaller screens: the left one for adjusting grind size and the right one for tweaking the milk foam’s temperature and texture.

the user interface
The Dual Boiler’s user interface

Both machines are decked out with a couple of buttons and knobs, and I’m willing to bet that you’ll master them in no time (with a quick glance through the user manual, of course). Operating these machines will feel like second nature before you know it!

the breville oracle's user interface
The Breville Oracle’s user interface

Spout Type & Cup Clearance

Breville Dual BoilerBreville Oracle
Spout TypeDualDual
Cup Clearance4 inches4 inches

These machines have a pretty generous amount of space under the portafilter. Whether you’re aiming for espresso cups or regular mugs, they’ll fit right in without a hitch. But if you’re thinking about brewing directly into a taller travel mug or a latte macchiato glass, just pop out the drip tray first, and everything will be fine.

Water Reservoir & Bean Hopper

Breville Dual BoilerBreville Oracle
Water Reservoir2.5 liter2.5 liter
Bean HopperNone0.3 Kg

Both of these machines come with roomy water tanks that are totally removable. You can swivel these heavy machines around to reach their water tanks or just top them off from above.

you can top the tank off from above
You can top the tank off from above

Each has the option to install a water filter. Not only does it help your coffee taste better by filtering out any impurities in the water, but it also means less descaling for the machine. It’s like killing two birds with one stone!

Milk Frothing System

Winner: Breville Oracle

The Dual Boiler boasts a professional steam wand that has a three-hole tip and is placed on a 360-degree ball joint. It is a pleasure to use, but there is a bit of a learning curve if you want to achieve that café-quality steamed milk for your milky drinks or latte art.

the dual boiler's 3-hole steam wand
The Dual Boiler’s 3-hole steam wand

The steam wand is powerful and surprisingly easy to control. It has three holes for better aeration and heat distribution. Breville also throws a stainless steel milk jug, so you can start practicing your latte art right out of the box.

The Oracle has an automatic steam wand, steaming your milk automatically and creating hands-free microfoam for latte art. But if you can do better than the machine, you can take manual control. That said, the wand brings good things from both worlds.  

the breville oracle has an automatic wand
The Breville Oracle has an automatic wand

When it is in its automatic state, you just set the steam temperature and how much foam you want in your milk, place the milk jug under the wand, and watch the magic happen. The wand even has a sensor at the tip to detect when your milk hits your desired temperature and then shut off the steam.

the breville oracle allows changing the temperature and texture of milk foam
The Breville Oracle allows changing the temperature and texture of milk foam

Drink Options & Programmability

Winner: Breville Oracle

Drink Options

Breville Dual BoilerBreville Oracle
Espresso
Hot Water
Espresso
Americano
Hot Water

None of these have a full menu of specialty drinks. I’m not surprised or dissatisfied here because this is a trait that the majority of semi-automatic machines share. 

I’m even glad that both have a separate hot water outlet, which is certainly better than dispensing hot water through the steam wand.

In addition to one-touch espresso and hot water, the Oracle also has a dedicated knob for Americano with three programmable settings for size and strength – a welcome addition!

Programmability

Adjustable SettingsBreville Dual BoilerBreville Oracle
Coffee StrengthYesYes
Coffee TemperatureYesYes
Milk Foam TemperatureYesYes
Milk Foam TextureNoYes

The Dual Boiler gives you a ton of control over the process, allowing you to fine-tune pre-infusion, shot volume, brewing temperature, and the temperature needed for steaming. 

Likewise, the Oracle provides flexibility in customizing various aspects such as tamping pressure, brew strength, shot length, pre-infusion time, wait time, and brewing duration, among others. Well, this one can also be programmed to turn on and off automatically.

Quick Rundown Of Breville Oracle

Breville BES980XL Oracle Espresso Machine, Brushed Stainless Steel,Silver
325 Reviews
Breville BES980XL Oracle Espresso Machine, Brushed Stainless Steel,Silver
  • Earn up to $200 cashback with a Beanz coffee subscription when you purchase a selected Breville espresso machine. Valid Aug 1, 2023 until Jun 30, 2024
  • The Breville Oracle fully automatic delivers third wave specialty coffee at home using the 4 keys formula; It has a professional Dual Boiler construction that delivers unparalleled temperature control and simultaneous extraction and steaming
  • DOSE CONTROL GRINDING: The integrated precision conical burr grinder automatically grinds, doses and tamps 22 grams of freshly ground coffee, for maximum flavor
  • OPTIMAL WATER PRESSURE: The Over Pressure Valve limits the maximum pump pressure throughout extraction, helping prevent bitter flavors; Low pressure pre infusion gradually increases water pressure to gently expand grinds for an even extraction
  • PRECISE ESPRESSO EXTRACTION: Dual stainless steel boilers and heated group head controlled by digital temperature control (PID) delivers water at precisely the right temperature, ensuring optimal espresso extraction

Last update on 2024-03-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros
  • Automatic grinding, tamping and steaming.
  • 45 grinding settings.
  • Both manual and automatic milk frothing.
  • Easy to use and clean.
  • Dual boilers.
Cons
  • Costly.
  • Few one-touch drinks.

Quick Rundown Of Breville Dual Boiler 

Breville BES920XL Dual Boiler Espresso Machine,84 oz, Brushed Stainless Steel
  • Please refer to user guide or user manual or user guide (provided below in PDF) before first use

Last update on 2024-02-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros
  • Dual boilers.
  • Large and easy-to-refill water tank.
  • Powerful steam wand.
  • Intuitive control panel.
  • Adjustable steam temperature.
Cons
  • No built-in grinder.
  • Bulky.

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References

5/5 - (3 votes)