I used to have the same problem. I don’t have anything against Elizabeth – in fact, I love its design. However, it’s not as sturdy and durable as other models in the same price range. As someone who values those qualities, if I had to choose between these two machines, I would definitely go with Mara X.
The Profitec Pro 300 is another option if you’re not worried about other manufacturers. I ended up buying the Profitec Pro 300 for myself.
I’ve had experience with both machines. I’ve owned Elizabeth for more than a year and I’ve also tested Mara-X. Both are great machines.
Elizabeth has a major advantage in the fact that you can program how the coffee is pre-infused (by temperature and pressure) and when it is extracted. With Elizabeth, you can set the temperature of your coffee boiler and steam boiler separately.
Mara is more straightforward. You can set a fixed temperature. In X-mode the steam will change between 0,5-2,0bar… The workflow is more manual.
Out of the 8 milk drinks in the queue, I will choose Mara-X to benefit from its large boiler.
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Lelit Mara X Vs Elizabeth
With either of these machines, you can’t go wrong. They both have great value for your money and are exceptional machines. I would recommend the Elizabeth because it has more features. Some people say those features don’t matter or just make the machine less dependable.
The main reason I would go with a dual boiler is that it heats up faster than some other models – it has a smaller brew boiler, which helps quickly boil water. Other people may argue that all one needs is a timer so that when they want to drink coffee, the heat exchanger will turn on well before then.
For me, I don’t really care for the looks of e61 machines and prefer not to have them in my kitchen. Both the MaraX and Elizabeth have clever features to them (MaraX has temperature control and preinfusion). You should also look at the Pro 300 if you want a different machine from an e61 machine.
Overall, these are both great products and you’ll be happy with whatever choice you make!
The machine came in two versions. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed with either one. It’s really about appearance with this choice. If you don’t like how boxy the Elizabeth is, then maybe the Mara X will work better for you.
The main reasons why Elizabeth is better than Mara X
- Accurate temperature control means one less variable for beginners to worry about and mess up.
- Programmable shot buttons. Even with this I often forget something from my routine (eg. Taring the scale before pulling a shot). I can’t imagine how frequently I’ll stuff up shots using E61 grouphead. Once again, this is another variable I don’t have to worry about.
- Programmable pre-infusion
- Less time it takes to warm up. One of my favorite things is having coffee on demand, so a WiFi plug alone is not sufficient.
On the whole, Elizabeth is going to be much easier for beginners to take clearer pictures more of the time.
The Elizabeth is more appealing to me than the Mara X because of the appearance and cheaper purchase cost.
The Elizabeth is going to be more temperature stable and has more steam power. It will probably take longer to warm up, with a little less time than on the Mara X. The Elizabeth has more features, like pre-infusion and timed shots. The machine will shut down on its own after you’ve reached your desired brew time.
The Mara X gives you the option of flow control if you want to experiment with it eventually, which allows for a more nuanced set of profiling techniques. The Elizabeth does PID if you want more control over your water temperature. Generally, darker roasts taste best at cooler water temperatures (between 195 and 205 F).
Correction: The Oak House might be more temperature stable.