ECM Synchronika Dual Boiler Espresso Machine
As low as $2,999.00
ECM is about refinement and top-of-the-line build quality. As such, ECM presents us with the Synchronika; their preeminent dual boiler machine that thrilled us from the moment we first unboxed it. What you’ll first notice is the quality of German design combined with Italian conventions in the stainless steel housing, polished to a mirror finish. What isn’t immediately clear is that the Synchronika is a machine equipped to brew truly exquisite espresso, with a heft of steam power to back it up. With the technical improvements made to this class of machine, ECM has created a powerful espresso machine for the person with a shrewd attitude for curated coffee.
To start, we looked at the Synchronika’s iconic E61 brew group, which ECM has updated with stainless-steel internal components, as well as a single top cap for a decidedly cleaner aesthetic that other machines lack. These stainless-steel internals add much greater durability and resistance to calcium build-up for straightforward maintenance. The solid brass brew group features a pre-infusion cylinder to lightly soak grounds for an even extraction. A notable feature of the Synchronika is its capacity for longer, low-pressure pre-infusion when plumbed in, which let us bring out the more unique flavor notes in specialty coffee. All of this adds up to fewer variables getting in the way of expertly crafted espresso.
Brewing is governed by the Gicar PID controller to monitor brew and steam temperatures, adjustable to your preference. The PID offers a shot timer as well for precision extraction and can be set to notify you when to backflush the group. So as not to distract from the brushed metal finish, the PID can turn off the display.
Another of ECM’s improvements can be found in the stainless-steel joystick controls for steam and hot water. These new joysticks swivel on a ball-joint and can lock in any position for effortless, instant dispensing. After running our own tests with these new joysticks, it was difficult to go back to the more conventional knob, which needs to rotate several times to open up the valve. One small detail that our technicians greatly appreciated is the positioning of the insulated “no-burn” wands, which angle away from the machine at about 45° for a lot more freedom of movement when frothing milk.
The finishing touch can be found in the updated ECM custom-styled gauges. The built-in steam and brew pressure gauges offer an expert sense of control; the bold print on flat white make the gauges easier to read than we would see on more industrial machines, with a presentation not unlike a simple clockface.
Inside the machine, you’ll find the internal components to be incredibly well-organized, which is an often underappreciated touch that you don’t see in many other machines. Copper coils and water lines trace from one brass fitting to the next. Even the more delicate electronics are shielded from any humidity, neatly tucked away to one side of the machine. All of this speaks to ECM’s standards for quality engineering, which most people would never need to see.
When paired with the proper grinder, the ECM Synchronika has pulled shots for us that compare with some of our best local cafes. The subtleties in technical improvement and ECM’s nuanced innovation shine in the Synchronika, making it one of the best-equipped prosumer machines on the market.
- ECM 58mm Convex Tamper
- 1 Single Spout Portafilter
- 1 Double Spout Portafilter
- 1 Single-Shot Basket
- 1 Double-Shot Basket
- 1 Blind Filter Basket (Backflush Disc)
- 1 Instruction Manual
- One-piece frame
- Rotary pump
- Integrated shot-timer
- Articulating insulted no-burn stainless steel wands
- Multi-tiered drip tray