Breville Dual Boiler Vs Rocket Appartamento: Which One Wins My Heart?

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Today, let’s dive into a comparison between the Breville Dual Boiler vs Rocket Appartamento. These commercial-grade machines are bulky and costly but mighty. If you’ve been wrestling with entry-level machines and are ready for an upgrade, both of these contenders are worth a serious look.

And after sizing them up in various key aspects, I’ve landed on the Breville Dual Boiler as my top pick. Why does it edge out the Rocket Appartamento, you might wonder?

The Dual Boiler comes with a more comprehensive set of accessories right out of the box, can fit larger cups, and is surprisingly mobile thanks to a handy wheel system. What’s more, it allows you to fine-tune the temperature (both for brewing and steaming).

Breville Dual Boiler vs Rocket Appartamento: Specs & Features Comparison Chart

Image
THE WINNER (#1)
Breville BES920XL Dual Boiler Espresso Machine,84 oz, Brushed Stainless Steel
THE RUNNER-UP (#2)
Rocket Espresso Appartamento Espresso Machine, Copper
Model
Breville Dual Boiler
Rocket Appartamento
Dimensions/Weight
20.1 x 17.2 x 17.2 inches/30 lbs
17 x 14.2 x 10.5 inches/44 lbs
Interface
Button-Operated Interface
Knob & Lever
One Touch Drink Options
2
2
Built-in Grinder
Grinding Settings
Heating System
Dual Boilers
Heat Exchanger
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/3.5 inches
Water Reservoir/Bean Hopper
2.5 L/None
2.3 L/None
Filter
Yes (Optional)
Compatible With Pre-ground Coffee
App Connectivity
User Profile
What I Like
Price
$1,599.95
$1,950.00
THE WINNER (#1)
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
THE RUNNER-UP (#2)
Image
Rocket Espresso Appartamento Espresso Machine, Copper
Model
Rocket Appartamento
Dimensions/Weight
17 x 14.2 x 10.5 inches/44 lbs
Interface
Knob & Lever
One Touch Drink Options
2
Built-in Grinder
Grinding Settings
Heating System
Heat Exchanger
Pump Pressure
15 Bars
Pre-Infusion
Milk Frothing System
Manual Steam Wand
Spigot Type/Cup Clearance
Dual/3.5 inches
Water Reservoir/Bean Hopper
2.3 L/None
Filter
Compatible With Pre-ground Coffee
App Connectivity
User Profile
What I Like
Price
$1,950.00
More Info

Last update on 2024-02-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Breville Dual Boiler vs Rocket Appartamento: Differences

The Dual Boiler edged out the Rocket Appartamento with a score of 3-2. Now, let’s delve into a detailed comparison to explore how these two espresso machines stack up against each other!

Coffee Flavor & Brewing System

Winner: Tie

Built-in Grinder 

Both the Dual Boiler and Rocket Appartamento are non-grinder machines. This implies that the manufacturers want you to scout out a top-notch grinder to team up with the machine.

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

Sure, you can totally use pre-ground coffee with these machines, no one’s stopping you, but to really tap into their full potential, fresh ground coffee from whole beans is the way to go. Would anyone splurge on these high-end machines just to brew decaf? I think not!

Dosing & Tamping

These commercial-grade machines use well-built 58mm spouted portafilters and I’m certainly not complaining one bit. These machines also come with solid, weighty tampers, and that’s a big deal in my book. 

I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve had to call out reputable manufacturers for pairing their pricey machines with something better than flimsy plastic tampers. But fortunately, not this time. The Dual Boiler’s tamper has a magnetic feature and can be attached directly to a slot on the left side of the machine for neat storage.

The Dual Boiler includes both single- and dual-wall filter baskets, whereas you only get single-wall baskets with the Rocket Appartamento. Single-wall baskets are best, but dual-wall ones come into their own in certain scenarios, like if you’re just starting out in the espresso world or if pre-ground coffee is your go-to.

Heating System

The Dual Boiler, true to its name, comes with two boilers, meaning you can pull a shot of espresso and froth milk at the same time. The thing is that the Rocket Appartamento can also multi-task even with just a single boiler, so let me dive into that a bit more for you.

The Rocket Appartamento uses a heat exchanger, not a traditional boiler. Inside, there’s a nifty little isolated section that keeps the water moving out and running around the group head, cooling the water to a temperature appropriate for brewing. Meanwhile, the rest of the water in the boiler is kept perfectly hot for steaming milk.

The Dual Boiler maintains precise temperature for brewing and steaming using digital PID controller, whereas the Rocket Appartamento goes for an old-school pressurestat.

Sure, a pressurestat might not have the pinpoint accuracy of a PID, but many baristas favor using a heat exchanger equipped with a pressurestat. Not only is a heat exchanger generally more cost-effective than a dual-boiler system, but it also offers quicker heat-up times since the machine only needs to heat one boiler.

Brewing System

For the coffee connoisseurs out there, we all know that pre-infusion is a game-changer in espresso extraction, right? And it is a programmable feature on the Dual Boiler. Yes, the Dual Boiler lets you program both the duration and pressure of the pre-infusion step, which is something not a lot of machines can boast about.

As for the Rocket Appartamento, you need to position the portafilter into the group head and lift the lever to the halfway point. This action initiates a gentle flow of water without applying pressure, and voila,  you get a manual pre-infusion. An added advantage of this method is the complete control you grant over the duration of the pre-infusion stage.

the rocket appartamento's e61 brewing group
The Rocket Appartamento’s E61 brewing group

By the way, the Rocket Appartamento features a cool exposed group head called “E61.” As I already mentioned, constant water circulation through the group head ensures a consistent temperature, and this feature of thermal stability is a significant factor in achieving a perfect shot of espresso. Just note that the group head gets very hot, and the manufacturer has warned you via a warning label.

Design & Convenience

Winner: Breville Dual Boiler

Dimensions & User Interface

Breville Dual BoilerRocket Appartamento
Dimensions20.1 x 17.2 x 17.2 inches17 x 14.2 x 10.5 inches
Weight30 lbs44 lbs

Both the Dual Boiler and Rocket Appartamento are bulky and heavy, meaning they could potentially dominate a limited kitchen counter space. I mean, in scenarios where counter real estate is at a premium, this might necessitate relocating other kitchen appliances, like the toaster or blender, into storage.

The Rocket Appartamento features a gleaming stainless steel casing with some fancy circular accents cut into the sides, which are available in two options: copper and white. I have to admit that I’m in love with its design. It reminds me of the killer machines from the Terminator series. But don’t worry! This one doesn’t kill you with machine guns. Its weapon of choice is delivering killer shots of delicious coffee!

The Dual Boiler also boasts a stainless steel finish, and you have a couple of color options to consider, including rugged stainless steel, cranberry red, and black sesame. Just choose one that suits you best and, of course, is still available!

the dual boiler’s user interface
The Dual Boiler’s user interface

In terms of the control panel, the Dual Boiler has a small screen, a pressure gauge, and a few buttons. The Rocket Appartamento opts for a more traditional and tactile experience with two super big knobs and a lever, which are easy enough to get used to within a few tries.

It’s worth mentioning that the Rocket Appartamento is equipped with a gauge as well, but it’s designed to monitor boiler pressure, unlike the Dual Boiler, which uses its gauge to track pump pressure. That isn’t a big deal, and having the option to monitor pump pressure could be advantageous, especially when preparing multiple shots consecutively.

the rocket appartamento gauge for tracking boiler pressure
The Rocket Appartamento gauge for tracking boiler pressure

Spout Type & Cup Clearance

Breville Dual BoilerRocket Appartamento
Spout TypeDualDual
Cup Clearance4 inches3.5 inches

The Dual Boiler has the capability to accommodate larger cups compared to the Rocket Appartamento. Yet both machines are primarily designed for espresso cups. 

If your intention is to brew directly into a travel mug or a latte macchiato glass, space constraints might become an issue. In such cases, you’ll need to make a decision on whether to remove the drip tray to fit bigger things under the portafilter.

Speaking of the drip tray, the Rocket Appartamento’s isn’t somewhat big, but it does feature magnets to ensure it stays securely attached to the machine. Little features like this always make my heart flutter.

Water Reservoir & Bean Hopper

Breville Dual BoilerRocket Appartamento
Water Reservoir2.5 liter2.3 liter
Bean HopperNoneNone

Their water tanks are removable, so you’re spared the hassle of hooking them up to a water line or lugging these Hulk-sized machines to the sink for a refill.  These tanks are also generously sized for home use, meaning you won’t be interrupting your coffee flow to refill them all the time – and if you do, it’s as easy as pouring over.

the small window for water level monitoring
The small window for water level monitoring

The Dual Boiler boasts a front-facing window for convenient real-time monitoring of water levels. It also comes with a water filter so every single shot stays delicious since it’s brewed with high-quality water and the machine rarely needs to be descaled.

Milk Frothing System

Winner: Rocket Appartamento

These machines are armed with professional steam wands, so if you’re new to the art of manually steaming milk, brace yourself for a bit of a learning curve. But, trust me, once you’ve got it down, you’ll be whipping up cafe-quality microfoam in mere seconds, just like your second nature.

manual steam wands
Manual steam wands

These steam wands pivot on a 360-degree ball joint, giving you the freedom to experiment with different angles while frothing. The Rocket Appartamento doesn’t come with a stainless steel milk jug like the Dual Boiler does, but it’s just a minor investment.

When it comes to steaming the same volume of milk, the Rocket Appartamento is significantly faster. What’s more, its wand features a double-wall design, meaning the outside doesn’t get scorching hot, so you can say goodbye to the risk of burning your fingers.

Drink Options & Programmability

Winner: Breville Dual Boiler

Drink Options

Breville Dual BoilerRocket Appartamento
Espresso
Hot water
Espresso
Hot water

As semi-auto machines, the Dual Boiler and Rocket Appartamento don’t offer an endless list of programmable one-touch drinks. Nope, you’ve got to roll up your sleeves and put in a bit of work to craft those milk-based drinks. It can be a creamy cappuccino, a delicious latte, or just a mixture of coffee and hot milk – the end result hinges on your barista skills.

the hot water wand on the rocket appartamento
The hot water wand on the Rocket Appartamento

The Dual Boiler has a separate outlet to dispense hot water, which is great for preparing something called hot water. Likewise, the Rocket Appartamento features a hot water wand that mirrors the double-wall design of its steam wand. It’s nice to be able to brew tea without any traces of milk residue.

Programmability

Adjustable SettingsBreville Dual BoilerRocket Appartamento
Coffee StrengthNoNo
Coffee TemperatureYesNo
Milk Foam TemperatureYesNo
Milk Foam TextureNoNo

Now is the time when the Dual Boiler really shines with its PID. You can set the steam temperature between 265 and 285℉ and the brew temperature from 190 to 205℉. Changing one doesn’t impact the other because the two boilers are independent. The Rocket Appartamento, on the other hand, has no PID so there is no option to play around with the brewing temperature.

Quick Rundown Of Breville Dual Boiler

Breville BES920XL Dual Boiler Espresso Machine,84 oz, Brushed Stainless Steel
  • 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 Dual Boiler with commercial features 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: Achieve a consistent and balanced espresso using the right amount of ground coffee; The 58mm porta-filter with 19-22 grams is the key for full flavor and third wave specialty coffee
  • 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) brings water to precisely the right temperature (+/- 2?F) to extract maximum flavor potential every time

Last update on 2024-02-28 / 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.

Quick Rundown Of Rocket Appartamento

Rocket Espresso Appartamento Espresso Machine, Copper
  • Heat Exchange Boiler: A 1.8-liter heat exchange steam boiler allows you to brew espresso and froth milk at the same time.
  • Heated Group Head: A small flow of water off the boiler keeps your machine's group head warm for more consistent shot temps.
  • Small Footprint: The reduced dimensions of the Appartamento suit it for small counters and space-restricted kitchens.
  • Manual Control: Learn to brew all on your own with mechanical steam and brew controls.
  • Three Year Warranty: We're proud to offer three years of parts and labor support for every Rocket machine purchase.

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

Pros
  • Eye-catching design.
  • Brew and steam at once.
  • Great steam pressure.
  • Double-wall steam wand.
  • Heat exchanger boiler.
Cons
  • No PID.
  • Small cup clearance.

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References

5/5 - (1 vote)