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DeLonghi La Specialista Arte vs Breville Barista Express – Top Differences You Need to Know

Breville Espresso Machines, DeLonghi Espresso and Coffee Machines Mar 19, 2023
DeLonghi La Specialista Arte vs Breville Barista Express

Breville Barista Express has the lead as it has been around for at least 10 years now, while DeLonghi La Specialista Arte is a newcomer and comes as a direct comparison to the Barista Express.

This post is a full comparison between the Breville Barista Express vs DeLonghi La Specialista Arte, to help you decide between these two espresso machines.

Key Differences:

1- Number of Grind settings (Breville wins this point)
2- Temperature is more stable in Breville than DeLonghi
3- Breville Barista Express offers a more professional portafilter with larger capacity. 

For details on each of these differences, keep reading...

DeLonghi La Specialista Arte vs Breville Barista Express

Both Breville Barista Express and DeLonghi La Specialista Arte are entry-level machines in their range, so it only makes sense that we compare them head to head.


Breville Barista Express has metal housing that is more durable, while DeLonghi La Specialista Arte is now available in two models: plastic housing (model name EC9155MB) or metal housing (model name EC9155MB). The metal housing model will cost you more.

La Specialista Arte vs Barista Express Grinders

Built-in Grinder

Breville Barista Express has 16 grind settings on the machine, but has additional micro-step adjustments on the grinder itself, which gives you a lot more adjustment than DeLonghi La Specialista Arte, which has only 8 grind settings.

These additional adjustments can be quite intimidating for a beginner, but they usually mean that you can micro-adjust according to your bean type or roast, which can lead to better results.

The bean hopper on the Breville Barista Express is removable, which is useful if you ever need to clean the burrs or wash the hopper.

DeLonghi La Specialista‘s hopper is not removable, but can be taken apart which is a more complicated process than just picking up the hopper or putting it back in place.

Water Reservoir

Other than capacities, Breville Barista Express does not have a water sensor to let you know that you’re low on water, so you have to check for your water level before you start your brew cycle.

DeLonghi La Specialista Arte has a sensor that will alert you once you are low on water.

Portafilter Size and Capacity

Breville Barista Express Portafilter Size

Breville is known for including commercial-style or semi-commercial tools with their espresso machines. This goes for breville Barista Express’s 54mm portafilter size, which can hold up to 20 grams of coffee grounds.

DeLonghi La Specialista Portafilter Size

La specialista arte portafilter

DeLonghi La Specialista, like most DeLonghi Espresso machines, uses a 51mm portafilter, which can hold up between 16 to 18 grams of coffee for a double shot.

Both espresso machines include pressurized and non-pressurized filter baskets, which is great.

Steam Wand

Both espresso machines have professional style, single-hole steam wands.

Breville Barista Express’s wand has more range and movement than DeLonghi La Specialista Arte’s. However, it gets pretty hot and you should be careful not to touch while while steaming.

DeLonghi La Specialista Arte’s steam wand still has some good range of motion, but most importantly, it’s made of non-burn material so it won’t burn you if you accidentally touch it.

As both Breville Barista Express and DeLonghi La Specialista Arte are single-boiler machines, you’ll need some time to switch between espresso extraction and steaming. DeLonghi La Specialista Arte is much faster in getting the steam ready in as little as 15 seconds, while it can take Breville Barista Express up to 30 seconds to be ready.

Control Panels

DeLonghi La Specialista Arte vs Breville Barista Express

Both espresso machines have similar button controls as well as a pressure gauge to show you where your machine is at, temperature wise.

DeLonghi La Specialista Arte vs Breville Barista Express - Top Differences You Need to Know

I do like DeLonghi La Specialista Arte‘s interface better as it has some easier to use options like temperature levels, dose level and it actually has brew options like: espresso, Americano and coffee.

In DeLonghi La Specialista Arte, the Americano option will pull a shot or two of espresso, as per your choice, and then automatically add hot water to it using the dedicated hot water spout. The coffee option is not your average drip coffee but a long black, which is a longer shot of espresso.

Breville Barista Express does not have any preset drinks, other than the single or double shot buttons. But it does have a dedicated hot water spout, so you can make an Americano but you’ll have to press the hot water button manually after espresso extraction.

Included Accessories

DeLonghi La Specialista Arte vs Breville Barista Express - Top Differences You Need to Know
Barista Express Accessories
DeLonghi La Specialista Arte vs Breville Barista Express - Top Differences You Need to Know
DeLonghi’s Barista Kit

You pretty much get similar accessories with both machines: a stainless steel frothing jug, a tamper, portafilter with single or double shot baskets. DeLonghi La Specialista also includes a tamping mat and a funnel, which is a nice addition, too.

Which Should You Buy? DeLonghi La Specialista Arte Or Breville Barista Express

Usually, price plays a big part in which machine you should buy, provided that you are on a strict budget.

In the case of Breville Barista Express and DeLonghi La Specialista Arte, they are usually sold for the same price. (But are always subject to change)

Price aside, though, the winner in this comparison is the Breville Barista Express, for several reasons:

  • It has a more stable temperature than DeLonghi La Specialista, which will provide you with better-quality coffee.
  • It has more grind settings, which is something that you need to dial in different coffee beans and roasts and get the best results. It will be messy at first, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll get perfect espresso every time.
  • It has better housing and materials for the price.
  • You get a larger portafilter with the Breville Barista Express. More coffee grounds mean more flavor.

Unless the DeLonghi La Specilasta Arte is available at a discounted price and you can give up on some of these features, Breville Barista Express should be your first pick.

DeLonghi vs Breville Espresso Machines – Which Is Best?

This is a never-ending comparison between Breville and DeLonghi, especially when it comes to espresso machines. With some espresso machines, Breville has the lead and innovation, but DeLonghi is a more established company that knows exactly what its consumers need and want.

I can’t give you a clear answer on which is best, because each brand has its own advantages and disadvantages. What I can tell you is, don’t compare brands, but specific espresso machine models so you can buy the exact features you need at the price you can afford. Both of these brands have proven to be excellent in what they do and provide, so I wouldn’t worry about them. I’d pay more attention on getting the right model, from either brand, that is suited for my needs.

Related Comparisons

Breville Barista Express Specs

Included Accessories

  • Razor Dose Trimming Tool (remove excess grounds)
  • 54mm Stainless Steel Portafilter
  • 1 & 2 cup Single & Dual Wall Filter Baskets
  • Coffee Scoop
  • Tamper
  • Stainless Steel Milk Jug
  • Cleaning Disc
  • Brush Tool & Allen Key
  • Water Filter & Filter Holder
  • Tablets

DeLonghi La Specialista Arte Specs

Included Accessories

  • Professional tamper
  • tamping mat
  • dosing funnel
  • Total Hardness Test
  • Cleaning Brush
  • Descaler 100mL
  • Single coffee filter, Double Coffee Filter
  • Stainless Steel Milk Frothing Jug
  • Cleaning needle for steam nozzle