Delonghi Eletta Cappuccino Evo coffee maker with grinder test: the mid-range that plays premium

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Judit Llordes
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The little Eletta Cappuccino Evo gets a makeover. This mid-range automatic coffee maker with grinder flirts with excellence by bringing together all the Delonghi fundamentals: performance, interaction and simplicity.

Presentation

Delonghi is updating its Eletta Cappuccino Evo ECAM46.860.B coffee maker. Inside this new automatic machine with grinder, the Italian manufacturer has put all its know-how: a steel grinder (as always), a Thermoblock system responsible for heating the water to the right temperature (up to 95 °C) and a catalog of 12 customizable recipes. Added to this is the LatteSystem service to ensure the preparation of milk drinks. Launched under the bar of 899 €, this Eletta Cappuccino therefore occupies the mid-range segment while flirting with the premium options of the Italian manufacturer.




The nozzles adjust in height to adapt to the size of the cups.

Ease of use

The size of this new Eletta Cappuccino Evo is between that of the Maestosa and the Magnifica S from the same manufacturer. Deeper than wide, this automatic coffee maker will not find its place in a narrow kitchen.



As so often with Delonghi, the finishes are very neat. The plastics used are of very good quality and less subject to fingerprints than the coatings of certain PrimaDonnas. The assembly is irreproachable and even makes us forget the absence of stainless steel finishes to which this Eletta Cappuccino could have claimed by its price positioning.

Because it occupies the mid-range segment, this automatic coffee maker does not have a touch screen and is therefore equipped with an LCD display which gives pride of place to 6 drinks illustrated and written in full, available in direct access: milk, latte macchiato, cappuccino, espresso, coffee, long. For each of these drinks, the user will be able to modify the intensity of the aroma on 5 levels.

The my menu gives access to additional drinks: espresso lungo, ristretto, doppio+, cappuccino, latte macchiato, hot milk, caffe latte, flat white, cappuccino mix, hot water. The same goes for these recipes: they are all customizable insofar as the user can choose the aroma again as well as the amount of water in cup or the temperature (on three levels too). To launch two preparations in a row, press the icon twice so that the machine continues the preparations. Unlike the Perfecta Deluxe model, this coffee maker does not offer the possibility of saving the settings according to the different user profiles.

If the control panel of this Eletta is neither the most sophisticated nor the most complete - on some models, it is possible to define the desired quantity of milk -, it still has the merit of offering most of the settings to prepare a "tailor-made" coffee. Admittedly, a careful reading of the user manual is always welcome and it will take a few manipulations to be perfectly familiar with the workings of this control panel, but the fact that each drink is written in full makes the ergonomics more fluid. We are a long way from less advanced models like the Beko CEG5031X, which require simultaneous button presses for short or long periods of time to change the temperature of the drink.



The milk carafe can be installed and removed very easily, to the left of the coffee dispensing nozzles. In order to provide a perfectly creamy milk froth, it has a wheel to vary the thickness of the froth. When the carafe is not in use, the machine has a steam nozzle in this location that can serve hot water.

Regardless of the positioning in the range, all automatic coffee makers house the water tank in the same place, that is to say on the right side of the device. Its very generous capacity, 2 litres, does not force the user to refill it too regularly.

The same goes for the bean container, the capacity of which climbs to 400 g, which is rare enough to be underlined. At the right time, it is closed by a lid equipped with a seal which will not only preserve the aroma of the coffee, but which should also serve to camouflage the work of the grinder a little. There is also a hatch for ground coffee (often used to prepare a small decaf). As for the grinding fineness adjustment wheel, it is located on the top of the machine.

Easy maintenance

To be cleaned, all Delonghi must comply with the same protocol. To begin with, the nozzles are systematically cleaned when switching on and off – which is always very appreciable –, while the milk dispensing nozzle must be cleaned after each preparation of a milk drink.



The presence of the LCD display also facilitates the maintenance of the machine. It will indicate if a maintenance operation is necessary, such as filling the water or coffee tank, emptying the grounds container or the drip tray.

As always, the cup rest also accommodates the drip tray and the grounds container. If the tray is too full, emptying can be dangerous, with the risk of dropping it into the sink.

The cleaning and descaling steps are done automatically: the user only has to introduce the necessary products.

Finally, access to the extraction chamber always passes through the same place: simply remove the water tank, then open the hatch, and finally remove the chamber by pressing the buttons on each side of the extractor. In general, it is recommended to clean the extraction group weekly to prevent mould.

Fast

True to its reputation, Delonghi once again signs a fairly fast coffee maker. Our speed measurements take into account the start-up of the device, preheating, rinsing of the nozzles and the flow of coffee (a classic 40 ml espresso). Our test model takes 1 min 15 s to complete all these steps. The second morning coffee is prepared 47 seconds later. These results are standard at Delonghi.

Noise

The Eletta Cappuccino knows how to be discreet by emitting 65 dB(A) when grinding and 50 dB(A) when the coffee is dispensed. By way of comparison, the Delonghi Magnifica S, which does not have a lid with a waterproof seal, is noisier and sends 68 dB(A).

Power Consumption

When the machine is off, it consumes 0,3 W. It's very little, but we would have preferred zero consumption. At rest, this reaches 2,6 W. According to our measurements, taken from start-up until the preparation of three espressos and three long coffees, the Eletta Cappuccino consumes 0,074 kWh, which generates an expenditure of around 16 centimes a month (at the rate of six coffees a day). Its consumption is therefore in the low average, unlike that of the PrimaDonna Soul, whose bill amounts to around 24 cents per month.

After 15, 30, 160 or 180 minutes of non-use, the machine switches off automatically.

Highlights

  • Finishes and assemblies.

  • 12 customizable recipes in the catalog.

  • Fast and silent.

  • Simple to maintain.

  • Capacity of water tank and bean container.

Weak points

  • Lots of plastic.

  • Control panel to tame.

Conclusion

Note globale

If the Eletta Cappuccino Evo ECAM46.860.B is perhaps not the most complete of Delonghi's automatic coffee makers, it brings together all the know-how of the Italian manufacturer. Elegance, speed, personalization of drinks, milk system… all the functions that equip the top-of-the-range models are part of the game, the intuitive interface and the stainless steel finishes less.

Sub Notes
  • Ease of use
  • Easy maintenance
  • Fast
  • Noise
  • Power Consumption
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