Ihomekee CM6810 3.5 Bar Espresso Machine: A Budget-Friendly Espresso Maker for Beginners

Published on July 15, 2023, 5:53 p.m.

The Ihomekee CM6810 is a compact, entry-level espresso machine that aims to bring the barista experience into your home without breaking the bank. With its sleek black exterior, single-switch knob operation, and 3.5 bar pressure system, this budget-friendly machine allows anyone to brew cafe-style espresso, cappuccinos and lattes. But how does it actually perform? Read on for a detailed review of the features, build quality, ease of use, and performance of the Ihomekee CM6810 espresso maker.

 Ihomekee CM6810 3.5Bar Espresso Machine

Ihomekee CM6810 3.5Bar Espresso Machine is a single boiler, pump driven espresso machine with a 240ml brewing capacity. It has a built-in steam wand for frothing milk and a dedicated hot water dispenser. The machine comes equipped with a cup warming plate and detachable drip tray to catch spills and drips.

Overview

  • Brand: Ihomekee
  • Model: CM6810
  • Product Dimensions: 10.62”D x 13.38”W x 7.48”H
  • Special Features: Preheating function, cup warmer, milk frother
  • Coffee Maker Type: Espresso machine
  • Capacity: 240 ml

Key Features

  • 3.5 bar pressure for espresso extraction
  • 240 ml water reservoir
  • Single dial control for steam and brew
  • Cup warming tray on top
  • Manual steam wand for frothing milk
  • Pre-heating function
  • Easy to use and clean

Features

Sleek, Compact Design

The Ihomekee CM6810 3.5Bar Espresso Machine features a modern, streamlined design in black plastic. It has a relatively small footprint, making it a good option for small kitchens or apartments. The top-mounted controls are simple to use, with a single dial for switching between steam and brew modes.

Powerful Pump Pressure

With 3.5 bars of pressure, this affordable machine can extract rich, flavorful espresso shots. The pump pressure is suitable for beginners while still allowing experienced users to dial in their preferred shot parameters.

 Ihomekee CM6810 3.5Bar Espresso Machine

Milk Frothing Wand

A manual steam wand makes it easy to prepare creamy cappuccinos and lattes. The wand can be used to froth and steam milk for cafe-style coffee drinks.

Cup Warming Tray

The metal tray on top of the machine pre-heats cups before pulling your shot, helping maintain optimal coffee temperature.

 Ihomekee CM6810 3.5Bar Espresso Machine

Build Quality and Design

The Ihomekee CM6810 3.5Bar Espresso Machine has a plastic exterior housing and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) internal components. While the plastic body feels lightweight and cheap, it does make the machine more portable and easier to store. The steaming wand, portafilter, and filter baskets are made from stainless steel for durability.

Overall, the build quality is decent but not outstanding. The exterior could be more refined and the inclusion of more metal parts would make it feel more sturdy. However, at this price point, the construction is acceptable. The design is modern and compact enough for small kitchen counters.

Design and Material

The modern aesthetic of the Ihomekee CM6810, with its sleek black finish, fits well in various kitchen styles, from traditional to contemporary. The use of acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) plastic offers a lightweight advantage, though it may not provide the same durability and premium feel as metal components. Nevertheless, the design prioritizes practicality and compactness, making it an ideal choice for users with limited space.

Espresso Extraction and Crema Formation

Understanding the science behind espresso extraction is crucial for evaluating an espresso machine. The 3.5 bar pressure of the Ihomekee CM6810 plays a pivotal role in the extraction process, determining the richness and intensity of the espresso shot. While traditional espresso machines utilize 9 bars of pressure, the CM6810’s 3.5 bar pressure can still produce a flavorful shot, albeit with a different texture and crema quality. This section explores how the machine’s pressure affects the extraction process and the resultant crema, essential for a genuine espresso experience.

Ease of Use

This Ihomekee CM6810 3.5Bar Espresso Machine is designed for beginners and optimized for simplicity. The single knob control and indicator light makes operation straightforward. To brew, you load ground coffee into the portafilter, lock it into the group head, and turn the steam knob to the espresso setting. The light turns green when it’s ready to extract.

The steam wand is easy to use after some practice. It can foam milk for cappuccinos and lattes. One downside is the lack of adjustable temperature and pressure controls. But overall, it’s a user-friendly machine that produces decent espresso quite conveniently.

Performance and Coffee Quality

Thanks to the 3.5 bar pressure pump, the Ihomekee CM6810 3.5Bar Espresso Machine can extract espresso and produce a creamy layer of crema. However, the maximum pressure is still lower than the ideal 9+ bars needed for professional extraction. As a result, the espresso has more bitterness and less richness than higher end machines.

The steaming performance is also mediocre. It takes 30-60 seconds of waiting before enough steam is generated for frothing milk. The final microfoam is a bit thin, but usable for topping milk based drinks. Those looking for serious steaming power will be disappointed.

Coffee Making Quality

The CM6810’s ability to deliver a flavorful espresso shot with a decent layer of crema showcases its competency in coffee making. However, the 3.5 bar pressure, while sufficient for basic espresso, falls short of the ideal 9 bars, which might affect the extraction quality and taste for more discerning coffee aficionados. The quality of milk froth produced by the manual wand is commendable, providing a satisfactory texture for milk-based beverages, though not achieving the ultra-fine microfoam preferred by some espresso enthusiasts.

Choosing the Right Coffee Beans for Espresso

The type of coffee beans you choose plays a crucial role in the flavor, aroma, and body of the espresso you brew. Arabica and Robusta are the two primary types of coffee beans available, each with distinct taste profiles and characteristics:

  • Arabica Beans: Known for their sweet, soft taste and higher acidity, Arabica beans are favored for their complex flavor profiles which often include hints of fruit and sugar, with a higher acidity compared to Robusta. They are predominantly grown in Latin America and are generally preferred for making espresso due to their nuanced and aromatic qualities.

  • Robusta Beans: These beans are typically stronger and more robust in flavor with a grainier mouthfeel, and they contain more caffeine. Robusta beans often have a nutty, earthy flavor profile and are cheaper and easier to cultivate. They are known for producing a creamier, thicker crema and are often used in espresso blends to add body and richness.

For the Ihomekee CM6810, using a blend of Arabica for its flavor nuances and a small percentage of Robusta for a richer crema could enhance the espresso’s overall quality. Understanding these differences can help you tailor your coffee experience to match your personal taste preferences.

Milk Frothing Ability

The built-in steam wand deftly froths milk for cappuccinos and lattes. With some technique, home baristas can even create creamy microfoam and latte art - not bad for a budget model! The steam power is impressive for the price.

Comparing Frothing Techniques

Frothing milk is an art and science that significantly impacts the taste and presentation of espresso-based drinks. The manual steam wand on the Ihomekee CM6810 allows for a hands-on approach to milk frothing, providing users with the flexibility to create their desired foam texture. This section compares the CM6810’s frothing technique with automated and more advanced manual frothing methods found in higher-end machines, highlighting how the CM6810’s method is particularly suited for beginners and home baristas looking to explore the nuances of milk frothing.

Cleaning

While not self-cleaning, the Ihomekee CM6810 3.5 Bar Espresso Machine is easy to maintain with removable, dishwasher-safe parts. Rinsing the stainless steel boiler takes just seconds. Overall, cleaning is straightforward and prevents mineral buildup.

Noise Level

Users note the Ihomekee CM6810 3.5 Bar Espresso Machine has surprisingly quiet operation - a major plus for small kitchens. Besides some minor pump noise when extracting espresso, the brewing process produces little sound. Steam hisses softly when frothing.

Power

The Ihomekee CM6810 3.5 Bar Espresso Machine uses 110V electricity and includes a 26-inch power cord. No batteries or charging required. The 600W heating element provides ample steam power.

 Ihomekee CM6810 3.5 Bar Espresso Machine

Ideal Use Cases

The Ihomekee CM6810 3.5 Bar Espresso Machine is perfect for:

  • Beginner home baristas on a budget
  • College students looking to make café-style drinks
  • Small households that occasionally want rich espresso
  • Office workers seeking an affordable machine for the break room

With its approachable design and price, the Ihomekee CM6810 3.5 Bar Espresso Machine makes it easy for novices to start craftingquality espresso at home without breaking the bank.

User Feedback

Looking at feedback from real-world users provides invaluable insight into the Ihomekee CM6810 3.5 Bar Espresso Machine’s strengths and weaknesses.

Simple and Approachable

An oft-repeated sentiment is that the Ihomekee CM6810 3.5 Bar Espresso Machine is wonderfully easy to operate, even for complete beginners. Customers relish the straightforward single-button brewing that delivers smooth, intense espresso every time. The intuitive design makes DIY espresso accessible for novices. Many mention how the process becomes second nature after just a few uses.

Frothing Satisfaction

Users searching for a built-in frother are delighted by the Ihomekee CM6810 3.5 Bar Espresso Machine’s steaming abilities. The wand expertly turns milk into airy, microfoam perfection that makes cafe-worthy cappuccinos a breeze. Latte art is achievable with some technique. By exceeding expectations, the frother is a major selling point.

Compact Yet Powerful

Fans of the Ihomekee CM6810 3.5 Bar Espresso Machine praise how the petite size squeezes excellent espresso performance into a slim, space-saving design. Despite occupying a small footprint, it pulls flavorful shots with Café-quality crema. The preheating and steam power impress for the diminutive size.

Excellent Value

Almost universally, customers agree the Ihomekee CM6810 3.5 Bar Espresso Machine provides tremendous value. For an affordable price, it delivers features and brewing capabilities rivaling pricier competitors. Many say it’s the ideal entry-level model for beginners that don’t want to overspend. Overall, a fantastic espresso maker under $100.

Not Built Like a Tank

The most common complaint is that the all-plastic construction feels flimsy or cheap. A few users report defects or malfunctions after limited use. Others dislike the plastic odor during initial operation. While not a deal breaker, the build quality leaves room for improvement.

The Verdict

For novice home baristas seeking their first espresso machine, the Ihomekee CM6810 3.5 Bar Espresso Machine hits the sweet spot of affordability, ease of use and surprisingly good performance. Despite some minor build quality concerns, it punches far above its weight given the bargain price point. For basic espresso and milk frothing, this compact machine delivers the goods.

Pros

  • Extremely affordable price
  • Compact size good for small spaces
  • Produces decent espresso shots
  • Easy to use controls
  • Fast heat up time
  • Can steam milk for lattes/cappuccinos

Cons

  • Mostly plastic construction
  • Some users report plastic smell
  • Questionable durability/longevity
  • Limited temperature control
  • No auto-frothing for milk

Value

Given its sub-$100 price point, the performance and build quality align with expectations. While falling short of pro-level machines, the Ihomekee CM6810 3.5Bar Espresso Machine offers an inexpensive introduction to crafting espresso at home. For those unwilling to commit to a large upfront investment, this Ihomekee CM6810 3.5Bar Espresso Machine lets you get your feet wet without breaking the bank.

With some technique honing and realistic expectations, the Ihomekee CM6810 3.5 Bar Espresso Machine can be a worthwhile purchase. It will not compete with the quality of expensive commercial equipment. But as an affordable stepping stone on the journey to espresso mastery, it provides honorable service.

 Ihomekee CM6810 3.5Bar Espresso Machine

Conclusion

For the casual caffeine lover, the Ihomekee CM6810 3.5Bar Espresso Machine is a reasonably priced gateway into the world of homemade espresso. While the plastic construction leaves something to be desired, the machine’s compact footprint and intuitive controls lower the barrier of entry. Novices should not expect barista-level creations, but with some practice the Ihomekee CM6810 3.5Bar Espresso Machine can produce palatable drinks at a palatable price. In the sub-$100 category, this little Brewer earns its place as a gateway gadget for amateurs looking to dip their toes into craft coffee creations.

Future Outlook

As the coffee culture continues to evolve, consumers are increasingly seeking convenience without compromising on quality. Future iterations of the Ihomekee CM6810 might benefit from integrating smart features, like app connectivity or voice control, offering users a more interactive and customized brewing experience. Additionally, sustainability will be a key focus, with potential enhancements in energy efficiency and eco-friendly materials, aligning with growing environmental consciousness among consumers.

Specifications

  • Brand: Ihomekee
  • Model Number: CM6810
  • Product Dimensions: 10.62” x 13.38” x 7.48”
  • Weight: 4.75 lbs
  • Material: Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene plastic
  • Capacity: 240 ml
  • Pressure: 3.5 bar
  • Voltage: 110V
  • Steam Wand: Built-in milk frother
  • Controls: Single button w/ indicator light
  • Color: Black

Box Includes:

  • Espresso machine
  • Filter basket
  • Coffee scoop
  • Tamper
  • Detachable drip tray
  • Milk frothing pitcher
  • User manual

How to Use

  1. Fill reservoir with water
  2. Grind coffee beans, dose into filter basket
  3. Tamp grounds flat
  4. Attach portafilter to the group head
  5. Place cup under portafilter spouts
  6. Turn dial to espresso mode
  7. Brew pulls automatically
  8. Steam milk by inserting wand into pitcher
  9. Froth until microfoam achieved
  10. Enjoy your homemade espresso drinks!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the capacity of the water reservoir?

The capacity of the water reservoir is unknown based on the provided information. The total capacity listed is 240 ml, but it is unclear if this refers to the reservoir capacity or output capacity.

What type of filter does it use for the portafilter?

The filter type is not specified. It comes with 1 filter and funnel included, but details on the filter are unknown.

Does it have a built-in grinder?

No, the Ihomekee CM6810 does not have a built-in grinder. It requires pre-ground coffee placed in the portafilter.

What is the recommended coffee grind size?

The manufacturer recommends using a medium-coarse coffee grind for best flavor extraction. Too fine of a grind can lead to issues.

How many grams of coffee can the portafilter hold?

The portafilter capacity in grams is unknown. Dose will depend on filter basket size which is not listed.

What is the maximum shot volume?

The maximum espresso shot volume that can be extracted is unknown. Shot volumes will vary based on grind size and dose.

Does the steam wand automatically froth milk?

No, the steam wand requires manually frothing the milk using the wand. It does not have automatic milk frothing capabilities.

How long is the power cord?

The length of the power cord is not specified.

What is the pump pressure rated for?

The pump pressure is rated for 3.5 bars of pressure.

Does it come with any accessories?

Yes, it comes with 1 spoon, 1 detachable drip tray, 1 carafe, and 1 filter and funnel.

Tips

  • Use freshly ground medium-coarse coffee for best espresso flavor.

  • Distribute the coffee evenly and tamp firmly before locking the portafilter in place.

  • Let the machine preheat until the light turns green for optimal extraction temperature.

  • Froth milk before pulling shots so coffee and milk are ready simultaneously.

  • Clean the steam wand immediately after use to prevent buildup.

  • Descale regularly according to manufacturer guidelines.

  • Disassemble and wash removable parts after each use for longevity.