|Ratings and Summary|
Gaggia Anima Prestige
|Ease of Use||4.5||5|
|Summary||This standard superautomatic is very affordable with basic, user-friendly features. We recommend it for people who like to manually froth their milk or those on a budget who want a quality espresso machine.||This mid-range superautomatic has the same features as the original, except with an automatic steam wand. It’s ideal for people who like the convenience and don’t care about learning how to froth milk.|
Superautomatics give coffee lovers the freedom to brew delicious coffee drinks at home with the push of a button. It’s like having your own personal barista!
But there is one challenge: searching through all of those feature-rich models to find the perfect one for your needs.
We’ve got you covered with our Gaggia Anima review! It provides a detailed breakdown of the two models featured in this highly-rated series.
Gaggia Anima Espresso Machine Design Overview
|Specifications & Features||Gaggia Anima||Gaggia Anima Prestige|
|Dimensions||16.9” x 8.7” x 13.4”||16.9” x 8.7” x 13.4”|
|Weight||25 lbs||25 lbs|
|Materials||Black plastic||Black Plastic/Stainless Steel|
|Water Tank Capacity||60-oz||60-oz|
|Bean Hopper Capacity||8.8-oz||8.8-oz|
|Bean Grinder||Ceramic burr grinder||Ceramic burr grinder|
|Milk Frothing System||Manual||Automatic|
|Boiler System||Single Boiler||Single Boiler|
|Interface||LCD screen/ 6 buttons||LCD screen/ 6 buttons|
|Price Range||Low range||Mid-range|
Gaggia’s Anima series is all about ease-of-use, giving coffee lovers across the spectrum access to high-quality espresso without having to struggle through a steep learning curve or pay thousands of dollars.
There are currently two models in this series:
- Gaggia Anima: Costs under $1000, offers more manual options
- Gaggia Anima Prestige: Costs $1000+, fully automatic
There was a third model in the series called the Anima Deluxe, but it is no longer available.
However, we are focusing on the Anima and Prestige for this Gaggia Anima review. If you’ve already skimmed our features comparison chart, you might have already noticed how similar they are, especially from a design standpoint.
Both models share the same sleek, compact build suitable for any sized kitchen, especially if you have limited counter space.
A difference between the two is the materials used, which also impacts the pricing.
The Gaggia Anima is made of black plastic, which isn’t ideal for durability. Plastic tends to look cheap, and it wears out over time, causing parts to break. This could mean a shorter lifespan for this model.
The Gaggia Anima Prestige, on the other hand, is made of both plastic and stainless steel. The front of the machine is silver, so it looks more high-end and offers more reliability for long-term use.
Besides the milk frothing system and the price, these two superautomatics are almost identical in how they operate. They’re designed to be functional and convenient, with seamless LCDs, automatic cleaning, and integrated ceramic grinders.
What you’ll want to decide is how much money you’re willing to spend on a superautomatic. We’ll explain more later, but enough rambling- let’s dive into the features!
Gaggia Anima Automatic Coffee Machine Features
Since both of these models share the same build, you can count on the capacities and brewing to be similar, as well. The key takeaway from the features is that the Gaggia Anima is more manual than the Prestige.
60-oz Water Tank
The foundation of any good espresso drink is the quality of the water used for brewing. For the best results, you want to use filtered water to remove any impurities for the most aromatic brew and untainted flavor possible.
You also want to make sure that the reservoir is easy to access, removable, and an ideal size to keep refills at a minimum.
The Gaggia Anima and Prestige have a 60-oz tank located on the top left side of the machine. It’s removable so that you can pour the water in without much effort, and both models utilize a filtration system to ensure optimal water quality.
Regarding the size, this moderate capacity is ideal for a household of multiple coffee drinkers. You might be pushing it for an office setting unless you need an excuse to stay away from the cubicle and not mind constantly refilling the tank.
You get the same bean hopper setup for both Anima models, which holds up to8.8-oz of whole roasted beans. You’ll find it located on the top right side of the machine for effortless loading.
If decaf is more your vibe, there’s a bypass doser built-in for pre-ground coffee.
One gripe we had about the bean hopper is that there isn’t an airtight lid to preserve the beans. This is essential because coffee bean freshness deteriorates quickly, leading to a stale, unsavory taste.
You’ll need to be careful about the number of beans you grind and brew at a time, storing the rest in an airtight container.
This can be inconvenient, especially when other models on the market include an airtight lid for the hopper. It seems like an easy addition, and we’re not sure why Gaggia overlooked it.
Ceramic Burr Bean Grinder
One of the highlights that set superautomatics apart from semiautomatics is the inclusion of a bean grinder. In the case of the Gaggia Anima series, they treated users to a top-of-the-line ceramic burr grinder.
Burr grinders crush whole beans to a precise fineness, and because it’s ceramic and not stainless steel, you won’t have to worry about the grinder overheating and burning the beans.
There are five grind settings offered on both models, which is the bare minimum when many models on the market offer more than eight.
That’s not surprising for the Gaggia Anima, as this is a low-range model anyway. But for the Prestige? We were surprised that there aren’t more options considering the price.
Another word to the wise: you may want to avoid grinding oily beans, such as a dark roast, with these models. Some Gaggia Anima Prestige reviews mention problems with the grinder clogging due to the oily residue.
Milk Frothing System
The milk frothing technology is where we see the biggest difference between the Gaggia Anima and the Gaggia Anima Prestige. This is where you need to think about your preferences and whether milk-based drinks are important to you.
The Gaggia Anima is the most basic machine of the series, with a manual Pannarello wand that works by shooting streams of air into the milk, resulting in silky foam fit for decadent cappuccinos and lattes.
With this model, you need to be involved in the frothing process and willing to practice to get the foam to your desired consistency. You’ll also have to guess the milk temperature by feeling the outside of the carafe or inserting a thermometer.
The Anima Prestige is the opposite, making it easy to get a thick foam with the press of a button.
The Gaggia Anima Prestige milk carafe is included in the package for easy milk storage and handling. Simply attach it to the machine, choose your drink options and milk settings on the display screen, and you’re good to go.
So do you want to experiment with your milk, or do you want it fast and easy? The Anima gives you full freedom to dabble in the foam arts, while the Prestige takes care of everything for you.
The brewing technology of any superautomatic is the beating heart of the whole operation, and with Gaggia, you can always count on top quality.
The brew group and heating are the same for both Anima models, consisting of a single boiler with a rapid heating element to ensure no waiting around.
We love the automatic pre-infusion function. It sprays the coffee puck before brewing to extract as much flavor as possible from the grounds, so you can expect a full-bodied sensory explosion with every sip.
Honestly, we were surprised to see the Prestige sporting the same boiler set up as the basic Anima. We would’ve expected at least a dual boiler for the price, as this is the industry standard.
Nevertheless, you still get fast heating for pulling multiple shots at a time, which leaves no room for complaints.
You must use the digital display for both models to choose your drinks and adjust the drink settings. They offer the same adjustments for coffee strength and volume, including three temperature settings.
Again, we were surprised that the Prestige doesn’t offer more variety for the price because it’s as basic as it gets- especially with the drink menus. You can make six types of drinks with each model:
- Espresso Lungo
- Decaf Espresso
To operate, select the drink and shot type, then hit the start button to dispense the coffee in seconds. One neat detail is that the Anima will remember your size next time, adding convenience.
You can make tea and Americanos, too, as the spout doubles as a hot water dispenser.
Gaggia Anima Coffee and Espresso Machine Warranty
For the Anima series, Gaggia offers a 1-year warranty. You can read the fine print here.
Gaggia Anima Cleaning Process
The Gaggia Anima and Gaggia Anima Prestige cleaning process will make you breathe a sigh of relief. It couldn’t be easier to implement because both machines more or less do it all for you.
It starts by alerting you to any maintenance needs via the interface, letting you know the water is low, the drip tray and grounds tray needs to be emptied, or that it’s time to descale.
The main cleaning function is The Quick Clean button, and it will automatically flush out the entire system with hot steam, including the milk carafe on the Prestige.
You can set up a standby timer on the interface, so instead of the machine waiting for you to initiate cleaning, it will automatically flush the system once the timer is up. Once complete, the machine shuts off on its own.
You’ll have to do some tasks manually, like removing the brew group once a week to rinse it out and cleaning the system thoroughly by inserting a tablet once a month.
It’s recommended to empty the drip tray once a day, which some Anima reviews have mentioned the drip tray is too small. Still, this isn’t a dealbreaker by any means.
Descaling typically needs to be done every 2-3 months, but you may not need to do it as often if you use a water filter.
Anima Coffee Machine Pros vs. Cons
- Sleek, compact design is suitable for small kitchens
- Ceramic burr grinder
- User friendly
- Diverse price range between models
- Automatic cleaning process
- Bypass chute for pre-ground coffee
- Small drip tray means you have to empty it frequently
- No airtight bean hopper lid
- Prestige offers basic features for the high price
- Gaggia Anima is made of plastic; less durable
When it comes down to quality and reliability, you can’t go wrong with Gaggia- this brand is one of the pioneers of coffee machine technology. That same innovation is on display in the Anima Series, keeping it simple, functional, yet pleasurable to use.
And that’s all we really want in life when drinking coffee, right? The less hassle, the better.
Of course, there’s more than one type of coffee drinker in this world, and the Anima Series has two different models that offer users a slight variation of features in an affordable package.
While the Anima Gaggia is the first model (and the most basic), you get a low-priced superautomatic strictly for brewing espresso, coffee, and some milk drinks.
It’s easy to operate thanks to the minimal feature set and clear LCD. The machine comes equipped with a high-quality ceramic burr grinder, manual milk frother, pre-infusion function, and tall spouts to make barista-worthy coffee an effortless endeavor.
We can’t forget the pricier Anima Prestige in the other corner, but what can we say? Both models are as identical as it comes, save for the Prestige having a couple more drink options and an automatic milk frothing system.
When we compare the two models in this series, we feel that since they are so similar, with the only difference being the milk frothing tech, it’s best to look at your preferences and, of course, the price.
Who is the Anima Machine Recommended For?
While these espresso machines will produce exceptional coffee, the Prestige is significantly more expensive than the Anima. Here are our recommendations.
The Gaggia Anima Coffee Machine is Perfect For…
- Beginner espresso makers who want a standard, affordable superautomatic.
- People who enjoy manual milk frothing or who love milk-based coffee drinks.
- Small to large households
The Gaggia Anima Prestige Espresso Machine is Perfect For…
- Large households who want a fully automatic machine for fast brewing.
- People who aren’t passionate about milk foaming and are happy with hands-free frothing.
- People who prefer the look of silver stainless steel instead of black plastic.
- People who can afford a mid-range superautomatic.
Saeco PicoBaristo Super Automatic Espresso Machine
This is a great alternative to the Anima Prestige if you want more variety and bang for your buck. It’s around the same price, sporting a compact stainless steel finish, except you get 15 drink specialties and 10 grind settings to choose from.
Also, check Saeco Xelsis
Philips 2200 Series Fully Automatic Espresso Machine
This high-quality superautomatic costs well under $1000, with a ceramic burr grinder, classic milk frother, and a removable brew group. It has an impressive 12 grind settings and a futuristic touchscreen display.
Philips 4300 Fully Automatic Espresso Machine with LatteGo
For a mid-range option that offers convenience and quality, this superautomatic gives you that bang for your buck. The LatteGo tech gives you an automatic milk frother for just under $1000.
Gaggia Anima Review Conclusion
Our Gaggia Anima review looked at the Gaggia Anima coffee machine and the Gaggia Anima Prestige coffee machine. The basic Anima is suitable for those on a budget and who prefer to froth their milk manually. The Prestige has an automatic milk frother, making it suitable for those who prize convenience.
Our pick for the best value is the Gaggia Anima super-automatic. Both models are the same in terms of design and functionality, so you can get the same features as the Prestige except at half the cost. Sure, you’ll have to learn how to froth your milk- but once you master it, you have more flexibility to make your milk drinks exactly as you prefer.
References & Resources:
- Gaggia Milano, Official Brand Website.
- Gaggia Anima User Manual.
- Gaggia Anima Prestige User Manual.
- How to Clean a Coffee Machine Milk Frother, WonderHowTo.com.
- Production of Milk Foams By Steam Injection: The Effects of Steam Pressure and Nozzle Design, ScienceDirect
- The Facts About Milk Foam, RICARDO.