Sunbeam EM7000 Cafe Series Coffee Machine Review

The Sunbeam EM7000 is one of the most popular mid-range coffee machines on the market, with a range of features (such as its dual heating system) generally only found on higher-end machines. It does, however, come with a sizeable price tag and a steep learning curve for beginners, which may put some people off.

In the review below we cover the pros and cons of the EM7000 to help you decide if this is the right machine for you. We also list our top alternatives so you can compare this with similar products on the market.

Who is the Sunbeam EM7000 for?

The Sunbeam EM7000 Cafe Series espresso machine is a high-quality coffee maker suitable for users looking to upgrade from an entry-level set-up. This semi-automatic machine requires a solid understanding of espresso brewing in terms of operation and maintenance. Likewise, this product is not suitable for consumers looking for a fully automated machine as this device requires users to grind, tamp, and manually steam milk.

Unlike other mid-range espresso machines on the market, the Sunbeam cafe series EM7000 does not include a built-in coffee grinder. Users who want the convenience of an all-in-one espresso maker may want to consider a different product. The EM7000 is a device that requires a medium to espresso fine grind and isn’t always compatible with the grind size of beans sold in-store, so pairing this machine with a burr grinder is a must.

For users looking to begin their at-home espresso journey, this machine may be too large an investment. Entry-level users may want to invest in a less expensive machine to gain brewing experience and knowledge prior to purchasing this device. 

Getting started with the Sunbeam EM7000

For users looking for a machine that is a great value for money, the build quality of this cafe series espresso machine outshines others in its price range. This device is constructed entirely of die-cast metal, and its housing and components are built of stainless steel. Designed and engineered in Australia, this coffee machine is constructed to last for years if well-maintained.

As a part of the new generation of Sunbeam’s coffee machines, the EM7000 is designed for maximum brewing efficiency. With a group head in the machine’s centre, a steam wand on the left, and a hot water wand on the right, users can easily navigate between pulling shots and steaming milk with ease.

On the device’s interface, there is a line of controls on the top right. Users can turn on the device, select serving sizes, program the device, and select a manual mode all in the same spot. To the left, users can find a pressure display for espresso and a heating meter for milk.

The steam wand dial is located to the left side of the machine, which allows for separation between coffee and milk texturing controls. A cup warming tray is included on the top of the machine to heat and store espresso cups prior to brewing.

The EM7000 comes equipped with a control board that houses a low water indicator, twin gauges, and large control buttons for easy viewing.

Along with the coffee machine, Sunbeam includes a 600ml stainless steel milk jug, tamper, and water filter. Furthermore, a cleaning disc and specialized cleaning tool are included for easy machine maintenance. 

Noteworthy Features

3 Litre Water Tank Capacity

Unlike other Sunbeam models, the EM7000 comes equipped with a 3-litre water tank. This larger tank capacity provides users with the convenience of refilling the water less often. With an easy-to-read water level display and low water indicator, users can easily determine when refills are necessary. While most coffee machines on the market come equipped with 1-2 litre water tanks, this unique feature allows more coffee to be brewed per tank fill.

58mm Group Head

Inspired by commercial-grade espresso machines, the EM7000 coffee machine uses a 58mm group head. Constructed from materials like brass and phenolic, the group head and collar rival professional-grade devices. Its larger size can accept more ground coffee beans and extracts more flavour than smaller sizes. Users can ensure a cup of coffee packed with prime flavours with each brew.

The EM7000 comes equipped with two single-wall filters that fit into the group handle. Users can select between a single, 30 ml filter size or the larger 60ml filter basket size. These filters are removable for easy cleaning.

Twin Thermoblock Heating Technology

While this feature is usually exclusive to commercial espresso machines, the Sunbeam EM7000 comes equipped with a twin Thermoblock heating system. Similar to a dual boiler system, users don’t have to wait to heat up water for the steamer after pulling espresso.

When comparing the Sunbeam EM7000 to alternative products such as the Breville Barista Express, Gaggia Classic Pro, and Breville the Infuser, this technology can shorten the brewing process by up to five minutes because the machine is capable of heating both Thermoblocks for espresso and milk together.

PID Temperature Control

With the PID temperature control in place for this device, users can repeatedly produce cafe-quality coffee without worrying about inconsistencies during brewing. This feature uses an algorithm to maintain the desired water temperature for optimal coffee extraction and espresso taste. With the EM7000, users can maintain the default setting, or program the system to their preferred temperature level.

Temperature Sensing Steam Wand

Unlike most entry-level espresso machines, this mid-range maker provides users with a way of monitoring the temperature of the milk while steaming. Users can easily control the 4 bar pump pressure and pace of the steam wand by using the dial on the left side of the machine. While in use, the EM7000 makes texturing milk easy by providing a milk temperature gauge to reference along the way. 

While most other espresso machines will include a hot water feature within their milk wand, this Sunbeam cafe series espresso machine includes a separate want for hot water. Whether you’re using the milk frother for dry froth or microfoam, the EM7000 milk frother provides users manual control over the milk consistency from flat white to cappuccino.

What do users say about the Sunbeam EM7000?

Positives

Many reviews for this coffee machine rave about the fast heat-up time and the added convenience the twin Thermoblock system provides. This coffee maker’s ease of use and efficient design makes brewing great coffee easy. With the proper maintenance and regular cleaning, many users have voiced their machine has been working for years without major issues. 

Unlike other espresso machines, the Sunbeam cafe series EM7000 is built to withstand multiple uses without breaking a sweat. While certain entry-level makers can only pull 1-2 shots before overheating, the EM7000 is built to withstand consecutive uses without major strain on the machine.

While the machine’s build quality and available features outshine most machines on the market for its cost, the Sunbeam EM7000 is far from indestructible. Many a Sunbeam EM7000 review has praised the company for their quality customer service and 12-month replacement warranty as a result. Users can easily order replacement parts on Sunbeam’s website.

“All in all, I’ve been very happy with the Sunbeam line of Cafe Series espresso machines for well over a decade now, and my current model certainly does not disappoint. This is a machine made with commercial touches rather than commercial components per se, however this is what makes it such value for money in this segment of the market.”

Pete Denison

Negatives

One of the primary issues users have observed is inadequate filter baskets. Since this Sunbeam model comes with single-wall baskets, the machine is unable to generate enough pressure within the group handle. This can lead users to think the pressure gauge is faulty or that the grind size is wrong. Likewise, this issue can lead to poor extraction and a lack of crema on top of the espresso. Users are able to purchase dual-wall filters for the machine, but doing so can be expensive to add.

Another observation reviewers have made involves the steam wand overrunning after its used. While this can be a common issue with milk frothers, some users may find additional steam to be a safety hazard. While regular cleaning of the steam wand may eliminate the extent of the overflow, this may be a deal-breaking flaw for some, and only a minor problem for others. 

One final quirk is the size of the double cup serving on this machine. While the pre-programmed setting and Sunbeam site advertises a 60ml double espresso, many users have observed the setting producing shots that range from 80-100ml.

Is the Sunbeam EM7000 right for you?

When looking at a mid-range espresso machine, some users are looking for more automated features, while others are looking for refined manual settings to take their brewing skills to the next level. The Sunbeam EM7000 offers users a sampling of commercial-grade features, while still maintaining the value of manual brewing.

Pros

  • 3-Litre tank
  • Twin thermoblock technology
  • Great value for money
  • Good build quality
  • 12-month replacement warranty

Cons

  • Pressure inconsistencies with single-floor filter basket
  • Steam wand overruns after use
  • Double shot measurement can be larger than advertised

While this coffee machine may not be suitable for users looking for a fully automatic machine, this machine does offer users access to a surplus of advanced features at an affordable cost.

Alternatives

How does the Sunbeam Cafe Series EM7000 compare to its competition? We’ve lined it up against some comparable coffee machines below.

Breville Barista Express

The Breville Barista Express is comparable to the EM7000 when it comes to cost, but offers a variety of different features in its design. Unlike the Sunbeam Cafe Series espresso machine, the Breville comes with a built-in burr grinder. With 18 adjustable grind settings and dosage control, users can easily grind fresh espresso to brew in under a minute. With the added grinder feature the machine comes with a two-litre tank and a 250 mg coffee bean reservoir. 

Both devices have a quick heat-up time, but the Breville uses a Thermocoil heating system instead of a Thermoblock. For users who are looking for a more all-encompassing espresso machine, the Breville Barista Express may be a more suitable match.

Gaggia Classic Pro

For users looking for a more affordable alternative to the Sunbeam EM7000, the Gaggia Classic Pro is a product to consider. Like the Sunbeam Cafe Series, this coffee machine comes equipped with commercial-grade features such as a 58mm group head and cafe-quality milk wand. As a boiler machine, the Gaggia Classic Pro has a slower heat up time in comparison to the Sunbeam model. Likewise, users have to wait for the coil to reheat for the steamer after pulling the espresso.

The Gaggia Classic Pro makes for a great entry-level semi-automatic espresso machine. For users looking to begin brewing at home, it is a great start-up device to invest in.

Breville The Infuser

The Breville Infuser model is a more cost-efficient espresso machine in comparison to the Sunbeam EM7000 and offers similar features for its price. This coffee maker comes equipped with volumetric control, 15 bar pressure, and an auto-purge feature that adjusts the temperature from steam to espresso. With its Thermocoil heating system, the Infuser rivals the EM7000 in terms of a quick heat-up time. 

While the water capacity is smaller than the EM7000, the Infuser does provide users with a smaller countertop footprint. This model is able to pack many features into a smaller machine, which makes it a great contender for consumers looking for a quality espresso machine with limited kitchen space.

To wrap up

Whether you’re looking for a reliable mid-range espresso machine to take your coffee routine to the next level, or are looking for an efficient model that creates cafe-quality beverages in half the time as its competitors, the Sunbeam Cafe Series EM7000 is a device that stands out among others at a similar cost. 

FAQ

How do you clean a Sunbeam Cafe Espresso Machine?

Most Sunbeam espresso machines have cleaning and descale programs for the espresso and steam Thermoblock systems. When it is time to clean your machine, it’s important to complete certain steps to ensure your machine stays functional. We recommend cycling water through the group head, purging steam through the milk wand and wiping the wand clean after each use. 
Likewise, it’s important to remove the filter basket from the handle and remove old coffee oils, grounds, and build up from previous uses. Regularly emptying and rinsing the drip tray is an important part of the cleaning process, too.

What is a twin Thermoblock system?

Twin Thermoblock is a system that includes separate Thermoblocks for espresso extraction and milk texturing. This allows users to pull espresso shots and froth milk simultaneously, while single Thermoblock systems only allow users to complete one task at a time. Similar to a dual boiler espresso machine, the twin Thermoblock system allows users to prepare specialty drinks at a faster rate.

How long does a Sunbeam coffee machine last?

While there is no explicit time stamp on how long a Sunbeam coffee machine can last, regular maintenance and cleaning ensure the machine stays in working condition. Likewise, the frequency in which you use the coffee machine changes its shelf life. Most users who have regularly maintained their Sunbeam coffee machine have claimed it has lasted between 5-7 years.

Review Summary

Cafe Series Coffee Machine

Whether you’re looking for a reliable mid-range espresso machine to take your coffee routine to the next level, or are looking for an efficient model that creates cafe-quality beverages in half the time as its competitors, the Sunbeam Cafe Series EM7000 is a device that stands out among others at a similar cost.

Product SKU: EM7000

Product Brand: Sunbeam

Product Currency: AUD

Product Price: 899

Product In-Stock: InStock

Editor's Rating:
3.7