As known, in 2009 Philips bought the famous Italian Saeco. Today the company offers the models under the Philips brand in the budget and mid-budget segments, and a wide range of Saeco coffee machines. In the spring of 2019, the company introduced Philips Series 1200, 2200 and 3200 on the new platform. A year later, the company expanded this line with the super popular Philips Series 4300 and 5400 on the same platform.
Probably the newest Saeco GranAroma lineup with a 6000 series article can be positioned as a further improvement of the Philips 5400 series. The list of its improvements includes:
– innovative LattePerfetto cappuccino maker;
– ‘CoffeeMaestro’ profiles;
– setting the milk froth height for each program with milk.
The new coffee machine has already won two prestigious industrial design awards, including the ‘reddot 2021’ and the ‘iF Design Award 2021’.
Its platform is almost identical to the Philips EP54xx. GranAroma has a similar design with a touchscreen display on a beveled panel, similar containers for water, coffee and cake for 1.8 l, 300 grams and 12 servings, respectively. Ceramic coffee grinder with flat burrs and stepless adjustment, removable brew unit with a capacity of 7 ÷ 11 grams for ground coffee, ULKA water pump 15 bar, and 1500W thermoblock are also unchanged. The height of the paired coffee dispenser is designed for cups with a height of 87 ÷ 147 mm.
Saeco GranAroma lineup can be conditionally divided into two series, which contain in the title the second number 4 or 5. Other numbers correspond to a specific color and design:
– Saeco Gran Aroma SM6480 / 00 is a black model with black and white touch buttons on the control panel, but without chrome trim around its perimeter. It has 4 user profiles for all drinks and an additional ‘guest’ profile with factory default settings;
– Gran Aroma SM6580 / 10 is a dark gray coffee machine with color touch buttons on the control panel and chrome edging around its perimeter. It also supports 4 custom profiles for all drinks;
– Gran Aroma SM6580 / 20 differs only in a white case.
The more expensive Saeco Gran Aroma SM6582 / 30 and SM6585 / 00 support 6 user profiles, and additional ‘Flat White’ and ‘Travel Mug’ recipes. The black Saeco Gran Aroma SM6582 / 30 has colored touch buttons, chrome-plated control panel trim and silver front panel. Gran Aroma SM6585 / 00 with identical design has a metal trim on the front panel.
LattePerfetto cappuccino maker
Of course, LattePerfetto is not fundamentally new, but previously Philips Saeco only used it in the flagship Xelsis series. It allows the coffee machine to draw milk through a tube from a tetra-pack or other container.
In fact, LattePerfetto is a milk frothing module and is located directly in the coffee dispenser. It can be easily disassembled into 5 separate components for rinsing.
What’s more, the fast automatic rinsing the milk tract immediately after milk dispensing eliminates the need to wash them frequently. In this mode, powerful water-steam treatment effectively removes milk residues within a few seconds. A more thorough HygieSteam rinsing is also very easy.
This process is activated via any ‘Clean’ menu. Previously, the tube is fixed in a special slot at the bottom of the left panel. The machine then dispenses hot water and steam through the tube and cappuccino maker module. But unlike the fast auto clean, this cycle lasts longer. For convenience, GranAroma has a dedicated 20ml container on the left panel to collect this water. However, its volume usually does not exceed 2 ml per cycle. Accordingly, the container needs the emptying after 10 HygieSteam cycles.
Additionally, the model comes with a 600ml clear plastic jug.
A special hinge on its lid securely closes the tube hole, which is convenient before placing it in the refrigerator with milk residues.
The temperature of the frothed milk with LattePerfetto slightly exceeds 60°C.
In addition, LattePerfetto has LatteDuo mode, dosing milk and froth from two nozzles at once into two milk drinks.
Compared to previous LatteGo, LattePerfetto is significantly quieter, and froths the milk more evenly, making a finely dispersed ‘wet’ froth.
Saeco GranAroma uses the new ‘CoffeeMaestro’ option, which contains three preinstaled templates. When you select one of them, the coffee machine displays the basic settings on the screen, including strength, volume, and temperature.
The list of profiles includes:
– Delicato – a ‘light’ drink;
– Intenso – more intense and ‘strong’;
– Forte – a ‘boosted’ drink.
In fact, the Forte profile is analogous to the Extra shot mode (adding a fixed 30 ml portion of espresso, which is prepared in a separate grind).
Presets, for example for Ristretto, include:
– Delicato – coffee strength is 1 in 5, 35 ml, max temperature;
– Intenso – 5 / 5, 25 ml, max temperatur;
– Forte – Extra shot strength, 30 ml, medium temperature.
To a certain extent, the new system continues the company’s trend of increasing the automation level. For example, Bean Adapt technology in Delonghi PrimaDonna Soul uses 6 grinding profiles. This option is realized with the help of an additional precision motor that moves the millstones, adjusting the gap between them and, accordingly, the grinding degree. The grain profiles of the Bean Adapt system are switched with a button on the coffee machine. Unfortunately, profiles can only be created and edited via a smartphone using the Delonghi Coffee Link app.
Of course, the function requires a Wi-Fi connection.
Without a doubt, the profiles are convenient for beginners with no experience in using automatic coffee machines. But many experienced coffee lovers prefer to experiment with their own settings. Unfortunately, CoffeeMaestro makes, for example, Delicato Pistretto only at the maximum temperature.
However, profiles affect some important parameters. For example, the pre-wetting time in the Delicato profile is half vs traditional one (0.5 sec vs 1 sec).
Six main programs are launched from the control panel, others through the additional ‘More Drinks’ menu.
By default, the temperature is set to a medium level, but the coffee machine supports setting and saving one of three temperatures for each drink. The foam height is also adjustable in 4 steps, including ‘no foam’, ‘low foam’, ‘medium foam’ and ‘high foam’.
– ‘Espresso’ – default 40 ml / setting range 30 ÷ 70 ml;
– ‘Coffee’ (‘Lungo’) – 120 ml / 90 ÷ 220 ml;
– ‘Americano’ (espresso + hot water, unlike Philips Series 5400, the amount of coffee is adjustable) – 40 ml coffee + 80 ml water = 120 ml / 30 ÷ 90 ml coffee + 60 ÷ 180 ml water = 90 ÷ 270 ml;
– ‘Cappuccino’ (maximum frothing, milk first, then coffee) – 120 ml milk + 40 ml espresso / 90 ÷ 210 ml milk + 20 ÷ 80 ml coffee.
– ‘Latte macchiato’ (maximum frothing) – 200 ml milk + 40 ml espresso / 80 ÷ 340 ml (80, 140, 200, 270, 340 ml) milk + 20 ÷ 80 ml coffee;
– ‘Caffe Lattè’ (minimal frothing, first coffee, then frothed milk) – 60 ml espresso + 140 ml milk / 30 ÷ 90 ml coffee + 80 ÷ 340 ml milk (80, 140, 200, 270, 340 ml).
Extra Shot: 90 ml coffee + 30 ml Extra shot + 340 ml milk = 460 ml.
‘More Drinks’ menu
– ‘Cream Cafe’ – 140 ml / 110 ÷ 220 ml;
– ‘Ristretto’ – 30 ml / 20 ÷ 40 ml;
– ‘Espresso Lungo’ – 80 ml / 60 ÷ 180 ml;
– ‘Espresso macchiato’ (max frothing) – 30 ml milk + 40 ml espresso / 20 ÷ 60 ml milk + 30 ÷ 70 ml espresso;
– ‘Italian cappuccino’ (‘inverted’ cappuccino, max frothing) – 40 ml espresso + 120 ml milk / 20 ÷ 80 ml espresso + 90 ÷ 210 ml milk;
– ‘Cafe au Lait’ (without foaming) – 90 ml coffee + 90 ml milk / 50 ÷ 150 ml coffee + 50 ÷ 150 ml milk;
– ‘Flat White’ (no frothing) – 80 ml milk + two espresso 80 ml / 60 ÷ 140 ml milk + two espresso 60 ÷ 140 ml;
– ‘Travel Mug’ (first introduced in Philips Series 5400) – 240 or 360 ml coffee from two lungo in a row.
All modifications have:
– milk foam (max foaming) – 180 ml / 40 ÷ 320 ml;
– warm milk (without foaming) – 180 ml / 40 ÷ 320 ml;
– hot water – 150 ml / 100 ÷ 300 ml.
As known, Extra Shot mode was first implemented in Philips Series 5400. In this mode, the program will add a second espresso to the cup. Except for ‘Flat White’, GranAroma supports Extra Shot for any program. It maximizes the drink strength by adding a 30 ml espresso. In this case, the drink is made according to a given recipe with a max strength + 30 ml espresso. For example, 120 ml of Cream Cafe with Extra Shot will be prepared: 120 ml + 30 ml = 150 ml.
GranAroma may be positioned as an improved version of the popular Philips 5400 series. For roughly the same price, GranAroma offers:
– innovative LattePerfetto cappuccino maker with HygieSteam and LatteDuo options;
– adjustment of the milk froth height for each recipe with milk;
– ‘CoffeeMaestro’ profiles.
The list of minor cons is very short:
– no quick flushing of the hydraulic circuit in the ‘Clean’ menu;
– the coffee machine regularly prompts you to select a profile when entering the CoffeeMaestro menu;
– no separate setting for the ‘Extra shot’ portion volume in the general settings menu.
In fact, the GranAroma has great LattePerfetto cappuccino maker and new ‘CoffeeMaestro’ profiles, and supports virtually all of the flagship Xelsis options, including a dispensing two milk drinks at the same time, Extra shot function, and milk froth height adjustment for each program.
Differences between the SM6582 / 6585 and the cheaper SM6480 / 6580 include:
– different design of the front panel;
– two additional user profiles (6 vs 4);
– additional ‘Flat White’ and ‘Travel Mug’ programs.
But additional user profiles can only be useful for a very large family. Analogs of “Flat White” and “Travel Mug” are easy to create yourself.
Of course, the choice between them depends on the budget, but the SM6480 / 6580 wins in terms of value for money. For comparison, today some sellers offer the SM6480 for $ 790 (€ 680), while the SM6585 price reaches $ 1,045 (€ 900).
This video demonstrates the correct care of the brew group in the latest Saeco GranAroma espresso machine.