We made this guide to compare the Nuova Simonelli Aurelia vs La Marzocco Linea. We're digging deep to uncover all the details and help you pick the machine that's right for you.
In this guide, you'll learn...
- How the Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II and the La Marzocco Linea are similar.
- The key differences between these machines and what these differences mean for you.
- Which machine is the best option based on your unique professional or individual needs.
Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II
Boasting an impressive list of features from pre-infusion to T3 technology, this line of high-end commercial espresso machines is ideal for specialty coffee shops. Pick one of these models if you're looking for a combination of advanced technology and user friendliness.
La Marzocco Linea
This line of commercial espresso machines is another favorite of professional baristas. With something to offer beginners to experts, this group of models is perfect for a variety of settings from the home, to the office, to the coffee shop.
First and foremost, let's briefly go over the different configurations the La Marzocco Linea and Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II come in.
For the La Marzocco Linea, these include:
- La Marzocco Linea Mini
- La Marzocco Linea EE Semiautomatic
- La Marzocco Linea AV Volumetric
- La Marzocco Linea MP Mechanical Paddle
- La Marzocco Linea PB Volumetric
The Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II comes in the following configurations:
- Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II Semiautomatic
- Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II Volumetric
- Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II Digit
- Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II T3
These machines are outfitted with one to four groups (though the Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II doesn't have a single-group option).
Each configuration will have its specific advantages, many of which we'll be diving into below as we cover the similarities and differences between these machines.
Nuova Simonelli also has a brand new model out called the Aurelia Wave, which builds on the Aurelia II with some exciting new features.
The Aurelia Wave is available at Majesty Coffee. Check out our Nuova Simonelli Aurelia Wave Review to see what makes it different from the Aurelia II.
Semiautomatic and Volumetric Options
You have your choice of semiautomatic and volumetric configurations with both the La Marzocco Linea and Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II models.
The volumetric machines have programmable volumetric dosing, which boosts consistency. It works by automatically dispensing a programmed measurement of water, allowing you to achieve the perfect volume for every espresso.
It's a feature that lets anyone brew excellent espresso, even if they don't have much training. It also means that you can perform other tasks while the espresso brews since you don't need to wait and stop the cycle.
Brewing in semiautomatic machines works by manual dosing. You'll be stopping and starting the brew cycle, which requires some training—you'll want to be familiar with when to stop the brew process for optimal results.
However, manual dosing increases your creativity as you have more control. It's convenient when you need to pull shorter or longer shots for a customized espresso order.
You'll find combined volumetric and manual dosing in some of these configurations, like the Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II Volumetric, Digit, and T3.
Both the La Marzocco Linea and Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II come with PID technology for thermal stability.
A proportional-integral-derivative controller, otherwise known as a PID controller, uses an algorithm to regulate the machine's heating element and stabilize the temperature. It's essentially a built-in self-correcting system.
In many of the La Marzocco Linea and Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II models with PID (see configurations like the La Marzocco PB Volumetric and the Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II Digit and T3), you can control the boiler temperature electronically.
This kind of temperature control is energy-efficient, not to mention excellent for espresso quality.
Read next: Find the top commercial espresso machines on this guide.
Digital Display Options
There are digital display options in both of these models that provide easy reading of the machine's data and easy operation of the major functions.
In the Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II Digit, you can program dosages, boiler pressure, pre-infusion, and energy savings settings all through the large, high-resolution LCD display.
La Marzocco Linea digital displays will give you immediate access to functions like shot timers, boiler temperature adjustment, system alerts, and USB firmware updates. Keep in mind that available functions will vary with the La Marzocco Linea configurations.
Hot Water Spigot
Not every espresso machine comes with a hot water spigot, but these machines do. That means you can pour hot water for Americanos and teas right from the espresso machine.
If you don't have a separate water tank for dispensing large amounts of hot water at a time, this can be a huge benefit.
Baristas won't need to travel back and forth to get hot water, so they'll be able to serve customers more quickly.
Another benefit: No treacherous walks with boiling hot water from one end of the service area back to the espresso machine to finish an Americano.
With the exception of the La Marzocco Linea Mini, these machines are direct-connect, so they'll be plumbed into a water supply for a direct feed.
There are several major advantages to this system. One is that you can hook up a water filter and improve the quality of the water for better espresso flavor.
If you install a water softener (which we highly recommend), you'll be protecting your machine from heavy scale buildup that can break it over a time.
Direct-connect machines are best for fast-paced businesses as your baristas won't need to stop the drink line to refill a water reservoir as it runs out.
There are LED lights positioned around these espresso machines that will guarantee a well-lit work area, increasing safety and attention to detail.
The improved visibility will ensure that you can see what you're doing even if the lighting in the environment isn't the best.
The stainless steel back plates on the La Marzocco Linea and Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II models have a mirror shine that also works to increase visibility.
While espresso shots are pouring, you'll be able to monitor them for signs of quality without even needing to bend down.
Check the color, consistency, drip timing and any other aspect of the brew process from any angle.
Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II T3 Technology
One of the major differences between these models is the availability of different types of technology.
The T3 technology in the Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II T3 is an advanced temperature regulation system controlled by the user.
This configuration has multiple copper boilers that allow baristas to adjust the temperature in the primary boiler, the coffee groups' boiler, and each individual group head.
It's an innovative solution developed specifically to increase precision, flexibility, and overall performance for a well crafted espresso.
La Marzocco Linea Paddle Models
La Marzocco makes the Linea in MP (Manual Paddle) configurations. This means that brewing is manually controlled with a paddle valve trigger.
It's a totally different mechanism than the manual button on the Semiautomatic configurations as you'll be moving the paddle to brew the espresso.
If you're new to espresso machines, the manual paddle is probably not going to be as easy to work than even a manual button.
However, many baristas and coffee enthusiasts love the analog feel of the paddle function.
The Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II Semiautomatic, Volumetric, and Digit contain a heat exchange boiler (the T3 has the multiple copper boiler system) that makes it possible to brew espresso and steam milk together.
In a heat exchange system, the boiler has an isolated compartment inside and a copper tube running through to draw water to the group heads, heating it to brew temperature along the way.
This way, brew temperature and steam temperature can be maintained, and you can steam milk for a cappuccino at the same time that you brew the espresso.
Read Also: Espresso Machine Boiler Types
The La Marzocco Linea's dual boiler works differently but provides the same sort of results. There are two separate boilers dedicated to steaming and brewing, allowing you to brew espresso and steam milk simultaneously.
Dual boilers are known for their power and abundant steam generation as there is a separate boiler specially created for the job.
One system isn't necessarily better than the other, and especially considering the other temperature stability systems installed in these machines, you'll be getting excellent espresso drinks from each.
Pre-infusion is a process of saturating the coffee bed in the group head before the full brew cycle activates.
The goal is to introduce water to every coffee particle for even extraction, which will promote a well-developed espresso flavor with all of the coffee's nuances intact.
Pre-infusion also provides a handy way of correcting tamping issues that could otherwise throw off the extraction process.
The Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II and some of the La Marzocco Linea configurations come with pre-infusion, namely the Mini.
Traditional Cup vs Raised Group Heads
The La Marzocco Linea has a traditional cup group head structure, which means that it will fit smaller containers like espresso shot glasses and shorter cups under the group heads.
Because the Nuova Simoneli Aurelia II configurations (with the exception of the Semiautomatic T3) come with raised group heads, you can fit taller cups underneath.
If you own a business that offers multiple cup sizes, your baristas can save time (and the delicate crema on the espresso) by brewing directly into any size cup.
Traditional cup machines are common, however, and it's easy enough to transfer the espresso. It really just depends on your business and preferences.
Steam Valve vs Push Pull Steam Trigger
To operate the La Marocco Linea's steam wand, you'll turn the steam valve. This is a very common steam element in espresso machines.
The Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II has a push-pull steam trigger instead, which the user flips into the on and off positions to use the steam wand.
This is another matter of preference—some people like the steam valves while others like the push-pull triggers.
That being said, a push-pull trigger will be very kind to the wrists and easy to use during a full day of operating the machine.
Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II Cool Touch Wands
The Nuova Simonellia Aurelia II's Cool Touch Wands will help to protect you from burns while cleaning the steam wands by remaining a cool temperature.
They're also a nice addition to the user friendliness of the machine's daily maintenance as milk won't get stuck to the wands and require some serious scrubbing to eliminate.
You'll have access to automated cleaning options with both of these espresso machine models.
A machine with automated cleaning will perform the end-of-day cleaning at the press of a button so that you don't need to do all of the steps manually.
While the Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II configurations all include an automated cleaning function, only some of the La Marzocco Linea configurations come with it. You can find an Auto Backflush function in the La Marzocco Linea PB configurations.
La Marzocco Linea Saturated Groups
La Marzocco's Linea machines are designed with saturated groups, another aspect of thermal stability that the machine boasts.
Inside the Linea, the group heads are welded directly into the boiler, eliminating any chance of heat loss that might occur as water travels to the brew groups.
It's a simple and clever way to guarantee temperature consistency.
There's quite an extensive price range to check out with these machines. As always, we offer each at a competitive price to meet your budget needs.
We offer our two-group Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II models in the $8,000 to $15,000 range and our three-group models in the $9,000 to $17,000 range.
At this point in time, we don't carry La Marzocco machines in our store, including the Linea line. If you're looking for a viable alternative to the single-group version, however, we can't help but recommend the Nuova Simonelli Musica. It's a beautiful machine with built-in LED lights and pour-over or direct-connect configurations.
So Which Should You Buy?
More than likely, it's going to be a tough call between these legacy-building machines. But if you examine your business or individual needs, you should be able to start identifying the features that are a better fit for you.
If you're shopping for a home machine that can produce professional espresso drinks like the ones you get at the coffee shop, the La Marzocco Linea Mini is a great option.
Just remember that it's a pour-over machine, which means that you'll want to descale regularly.
In general, both the La Marzocco Linea and the Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II are excellent for high-volume coffee shops and businesses that offer top-quality espresso drinks. The larger and busier your establishment, the more groups you're going to need.
In many ways, the Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II makes a great choice for specialty cafes and coffee shops owing to T3 technology and pre-infusion, which will maximize the flavor in every cup.
Then again, experts may be interested in the Manual Paddle version of the La Marzocco Linea.
The La Marzocco Linea is a workhorse espresso machine whose different configurations can adapt to a wide variety of settings, from coffee shops, to offices, to restaurants.
On the other hand, the Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II is highly user-friendly with dual volumetric and manual dosing options (except for the Semiautomatic) and Cool Touch wands.
Here's the bottom line.
Either of these machines would make a great option for a high-volume business.
It's best to review each configuration in detail to see which features you would prefer, which are best suited to the skill levels of all users, and which you think you'll get the most use out of.
For expert service and the best prices online, check out the configurations of the La Marzocco Linea and the Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II here on Majesty Coffee...
- Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II Semiautomatic Espresso Machine NS-Aurelia-II-Semi-Model-2&3
- Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II Volumetric Espresso Machine NS-Aurelia-II-Vol-Model-2&3
- Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II Digit Espresso Machine NS-Aurelia-II-Digit-Model-234
- Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II T3 Traditional Espresso Machine Ns-Aurelia-Ii-T3-Model-2&3
- Nuova Simonelli Musica