I replaced my Rancilio Silvia on a whim. There is nothing wrong with her and she has not missed a beat in 7 or so years. Miss Silvia and I worked well together, we had refined our technique and could make great coffee at any time. I was excited about the Technika arriving but unsure of what actual benefit I would find.
But on opening the box and seeing her gleaming body I knew she was a bit special. Set up didn't take very long and within minutes of getting up to pressure we were drinking good coffee. A few days later we had exquisite coffee and I was steaming milk just to give me an excuse to use her, and she was given a name.
Practically speaking the ergonomics are great, everything is where it should be, nothing fouls the flow of the coffee making. The steam wand is on the opposite side to Silvia which I thought would be a challenge but it wasn't, and the steam itself is just wonderful. Not having to wait for it come up to temperature is fantastic, multiple coffees are made quickly and easily and stay at temperature.
The build quality is all there, wonderful German precision. The levers are great and I enjoy the feeling of using a solid machine. There is no need to brace to lock in the portafilter like with the Silvia. The cup warmer is great, cups are warmed. Having lived with the nagging fear that I would let Miss Silvia's boiler run dry the automatic low water cut off is such a relief. She is also very quiet to run, heat up and during operation. The drip tray is large and deep so there have been no spills on the walk to the sink.
The couple of little negatives are that the spouts on the double portaflter are wider than a measuring shot glass so it made setting up the initial shots a bit tricky. It is noted on the machine, but catches me by surprise sometimes that everything gets hot! I have a couple of little love burns from not paying attention. The coffee dose is quite sensitive, if it is a few grams out the portafilter won't fit. I have apparently become imprecise in my coffee dosing so I am working on that.
After a few weeks of getting to know each other Miss Griff is now an integral part of the household and I sometimes wonder how I ever made coffee without her.