Delonghi Dedica vs ECP3420 Comparison Review: What Should You Buy?

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Are you looking to upgrade your home espresso machine but don’t know which one to choose? Look no further than the Delonghi Dedica vs ECP3420. Honestly, these two machines are good and easy-to-use machines for beginners; and my comparison result is a tie.

Delonghi Dedica is a great espresso machine for any coffee lover. Its sleek design and impressive features make it easy to see why this model is so popular. From its adjustable milk frother to its one-touch brewing system, the Dedica makes every cup of espresso an enjoyable experience. And with its thermoblock heating system, it can be ready to brew your hot espresso cups within under a minute.

Delonghi ECP3420 is also a good entry-level espresso machine on the market. It has a 15-bar pump pressure system, a stainless steel boiler, a removable water tank, a cup warmer, etc. On top of all that, it is relatively affordable compared to other espresso machines.

Delonghi Dedica vs ECP3420: Comparison Chart

Image
THE WINNER (#1)
De'Longhi Dedica 5-Bar Pump Espresso Machine, 35 Ounces, Black
THE RUNNER-UP (#2)
De'Longhi ECP3420 Bar Pump Espresso and Cappuccino Machine, 15", Black
Model
Delonghi Dedica
Delonghi ECP3420
Dimensions
13 x 5.9 x 12 inches
7.25 x 9.6 x 11.9 inches
Material
Stainless Steel
Plastic, Stainless steel
Weight
4 Pounds
9 Pounds
Power / Voltage
1300W / 120V
1100W / 120V
Water Tank Capacity
35.2 oz
37 oz
Heating System
Thermoblock
Stainless steel boiler
Controls
Buttons
Selector knobs
Cup Warmer
Cup Clearance
~4.7 inches
~5 inches
Bar Pump
15 bars
15 bars
Programmable Drinks
Removable Drip Tray
Coffee Temperature Adjustment
ESE Pods Compatible
Automatic Shut-Off
What I Like
Price
Price not available
$152.39
THE WINNER (#1)
Image
De'Longhi Dedica 5-Bar Pump Espresso Machine, 35 Ounces, Black
Model
Delonghi Dedica
Dimensions
13 x 5.9 x 12 inches
Material
Stainless Steel
Weight
4 Pounds
Power / Voltage
1300W / 120V
Water Tank Capacity
35.2 oz
Heating System
Thermoblock
Controls
Buttons
Cup Warmer
Cup Clearance
~4.7 inches
Bar Pump
15 bars
Programmable Drinks
Removable Drip Tray
Coffee Temperature Adjustment
ESE Pods Compatible
Automatic Shut-Off
What I Like
Price
Price not available
More Info
THE RUNNER-UP (#2)
Image
De'Longhi ECP3420 Bar Pump Espresso and Cappuccino Machine, 15", Black
Model
Delonghi ECP3420
Dimensions
7.25 x 9.6 x 11.9 inches
Material
Plastic, Stainless steel
Weight
9 Pounds
Power / Voltage
1100W / 120V
Water Tank Capacity
37 oz
Heating System
Stainless steel boiler
Controls
Selector knobs
Cup Warmer
Cup Clearance
~5 inches
Bar Pump
15 bars
Programmable Drinks
Removable Drip Tray
Coffee Temperature Adjustment
ESE Pods Compatible
Automatic Shut-Off
What I Like
Price
$152.39
More Info

Last update on 2024-03-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Delonghi Dedica vs ECP3420: Differences

The score for Delonghi Dedica vs ECP3420 competition is 1-0 for the Dedica. Specifically, I found that the Dedica is a greater option for the utility aspect. The two machines perform comparably in the other factors, such as design and build quality and the brewing and milk systems.

Coffee flavor & Brewing system

Tie!

Heating system

The heating element is one of the noticeable differences between the Delonghi Dedica and ECP3420. Specifically, the Delonghi ECP3420 utilizes a single stainless steel boiler, while the Dedica uses a single thermoblock heating system.

The thermoblock heats up relatively quicker than the stainless steel boiler. The estimated heat-up time of the two machines was about 25-30 seconds for the Dedica and ~60-80 seconds for the ECP3420.

However, the boiler heating element offers a greater temperature consistency than the thermoblock one. I noticed that the brew group of the ECP3420 got hot as the boiler heated up. The dual thermostats of the boiler heating system help ensure the temperature stability for the water and the brew group. Thus, the coffee hotness is more consistent between cups. So, I consider the slower heat-up time a trade-off for the higher temperature consistency.

The thermoblock can heat up faster, and the heating element also gets cooled down faster than the boiler heating element. Besides, the brew group of the Delonghi Dedica is not heated while the heating element is heating up. Thus, the brewing coffee temperature could be unstable, affecting the flavor of the final espresso drinks. Therefore, preheating the brew group by pulling a blank shot is necessary to ensure your shot quality.

Brewing system

  • Portafilter & Tamper

Both machines boast a 51-mm portafilter with three pressurized filter baskets. The included filter baskets are the single, double, and ESE-pod baskets, meaning that I can use pre-ground coffee, freshly ground coffee from beans, or ESE pods to pull my espresso. 

The pressurized filter baskets, also known as the dual-wall baskets, are appropriate for beginners because you can get a good espresso cup with a good crema layer without having barista skills. However, if you tend to grind coffee beans for brewing espresso, do not grind too fine because it will choke your baskets, and the machines cannot extract the coffee.

Besides, the Delonghi ECP3420 and Dedica come with plastic scoop/tamper accessories. Nevertheless, I do not like this type of tamper as it is hard to do proper tamping. Instead, I like to get a ~49-mm stainless steel tamper, which is especially suitable for single-wall or non-pressurized filter baskets.

Delonghi ECP3420: Brewing a cup of coffee
Delonghi ECP3420: Brewing a cup of coffee
  • Espresso extraction

These machines are good entry-level machines for you. They brew good-taste espresso with decent crema on the top. I often use the single-wall filter basket to pull my shot to get the true crema.

The espresso shots I got from both machines are at the right temperature, have good hotness, and taste okay, not too bad for a milk-based espresso drink. Sometimes, my shots have a taste between an espresso and a lungo. The variables can come from different factors like the bean quality, the techniques, and the grind sizes. 

These machines do not feature pressure-release valves, so the coffee tends to continue dripping after the brewing process stops. Therefore, I do not remove the portafilter immediately and put a cup under it to hold all the dripping down coffee. By doing so, I can reduce the mess of cleaning the portafilter and the machine after brewing.

Design & Convenience

Tie!

Capacity & Dimension

The Delonghi ECP3420 and Dedica are both compact espresso machines, but the Dedica is much thinner. Their height and depth are not too different, around 12 inches in height and 6-7 inches in width. Thus, they can fit under hanging cupboards and on almost kitchen counter spaces.

The Delonghi ECP3420, with a larger width, boasts a little bigger water reservoir, holding about 37 oz of water. Meanwhile, the capacity of Dedica’s water container is about 34 oz. However, the ECP3420 is a little more convenient for me because I can know the water level in the reservoir from the front thanks to the small vertical “window” on its front body. Additionally, the ECP3420 has a small tray next to the water tank for storing the filter baskets. 

The Dedica, on the other hand, has me pulling up the reservoir or tilting my head to the side to check the water level. It also does not feature a storage tray like the one on the Delonghi ECP3420.

Delonghi ECP3420's water level is visible from the front
Delonghi ECP3420’s water level is visible from the front

Programmability

In terms of programmability, the Delonghi Dedica outperforms the ECP3420 since it allows me to customize the volume of espresso in my cup with a touch of a button. After the espresso volume is programmed, the machine will save that setting for the next brews. Additionally, the Dedica offers adjustable coffee temperature with 3 levels: low, medium, and high.

On the other hand, the Delonghi ECP3420 does not have drink presets and an automatic flow-stop feature like its competitor. Thus, I have to monitor the brewing process to avoid overflowing my cup.

The controls of Delonghi ECP3420 (above) and Dedica (below)
The controls of Delonghi ECP3420 (above) and Dedica (below)

Build quality

For me, these two budget espresso machines of Delonghi have good build quality. The machine body is made of stainless steel and plastic. They are sleek and look stylish on the counter. However, one drawback I found when using the Delonghi Dedica is the machine’s vibration issue while brewing espresso.

During the coffee brewing process, I encountered a noticeable amount of vibration from the machine, even after removing the drip tray. Thus, I had to closely monitor the brewing process to prevent any mishaps like cups falling or coffee spilling outside the cup. This could be attributed to the small base dimension of the machine.

For me, this issue contradicts the very purpose of opting for an automatic brewing option of the Delonghi Dedica because I expected to be able to do other things while the coffee was being brewed after selecting the desired amount.

Meanwhile, I do not have such a problem relating to vibration when pulling my cup with the Delonghi ECP3420. Thus, the ECP340 wins my heart in this round despite the fact that the Dedica offers programmable drink options.

The Delonghi Dedica has a smaller base
The Delonghi Dedica has a smaller base

Milk system

Tie!

The Delonghi Dedica and ECP3420 have the same milk wand design and mechanism. They feature a rubber connection steam nozzle that allows me to regulate the amount of air infused for creating foam. By pulling down the rubber to select the Cappuccino option, the milk froths with increased air infusion, resulting in foamier hot milk. In the Flat position, the steam wand heats up the milk rather than aerates it.

Personally, I prefer removing the rubber steam connection nozzle and utilizing the inner steam jet nozzle for milk frothing. This technique enables me to achieve finer air bubbles and consistently produce smooth froth with a bit of practice. Here, I just want to note that it’s important to keep the milk level below the red line to avoid any overflow.

However, these machines’ steam wands are relatively short, making it challenging to reach the bottom of taller milk jugs. This may restrict control over the steaming process for some people. In addition, the steam wand initially tends to shoot out a significant amount of water, so you should purge it for about 5-10 seconds to get the dry steam before putting it into the milk jug.

Delonghi Dedica (left) and ECP3420 (right) have the same milk system
Delonghi Dedica (left) and ECP3420 (right) have the same milk system

Besides, it’s essential to clean the steam wand after each use. I recommend wiping any milk residue with a damp microfiber cloth and manually purging it to ensure no residue is left behind. You can also remove the rubber steam connection milk tube and wash it thoroughly to maintain cleanliness.

Utility

Winner: Delonghi Dedica

Auto-off function

Delonghi Dedica has an auto-off function for saving energy, which is not featured on the ECP3420. This is also called the standby mode. Additionally, the machine allows me to program the auto-off time when not used for 9 mins, 30 mins, and up to 3 hours.

Cleaning indicators

Delonghi Dedica has a descaling alert to remind you when you need to perform a descaling cycle. Additionally, the drip tray of the Dedica features an overflowing indicator, which will pop up when the drip tray is full.

The overflowing indicator of Delonghi Dedica
The overflowing indicator of Delonghi Dedica

Meanwhile, the ECP3420 has the overflow indicator but does not feature the descaling alert. Regarding the ECP3420’s manual, a descaling cycle should be performed after every 200 cups, generally being equal to every three to six months, depending on your use frequency.

In fact, you can descale your machines sooner if you notice any signs of scale buildup, such as decreased water flow or a change in the taste of your brewed espresso. The descaling cycle of both machines is quite similar and simple to perform by following the instruction in the manual.

Quick Rundown of Delonghi Dedica

De'Longhi Dedica 5-Bar Pump Espresso Machine, 35 Ounces, Black
  • Note: 1)Too coarse a grind, too little coffee, or insufficiently tamping the grounds before brewing can all lead to inadequate pressure for a proper brew. 2)It is important to note that the amount of espresso extracted will vary depending on the grind size and amount and reprogramming may be needed when the size and amount are adjusted
  • Sleek design takes up only 6 inches of counter space, while still having a 35oz water tank
  • The Cappuccino frothing system provides Barista quality foam; Cup warmer: Passive
  • Thermos block technology allows the machine to heat up to the ideal temperature in a quick 40 seconds
  • Automatic flow stop

Last update on 2024-03-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros
  • Can stop the espresso automatically
  • Fast heat up time under a minute
  • Can program the coffee volume and temperature
  • Can remove the drip tray for accommodating tall cups
  • Has a descaling alert and an overflowing indicator
  • Has a programable auto-off function
Cons
  • The machine vibrates so much that moving the cup while brewing
  • The temperature is not consistent as expected

Quick Rundown of Delonghi ECP3420

Sale
De'Longhi ECP3420 Bar Pump Espresso and Cappuccino Machine, 15", Black
  • EVERY CUP TO YOUR LIKING 15-bar professional pressure assures quality results every time, and adjustable controls allow you to make modifications for your personal taste preferences.
  • BREW LIKE A PRO Whatever your preference – single or double espresso, cappuccino or latte – the machine brews authentic barista-quality beverages just like you enjoy at your favorite coffeehouse
  • YOUR FOAM, YOUR WAY The Advanced Cappuccino System with manual frother mixes steam and milk to create a rich, creamy froth for evenly textured drinks – just the way you like them.
  • ONE ESPRESSO SHOT OR TWO? The three-in-one filter holder, included with the unit, has a holder for one espresso shot, a holder for two shots, and one for an easy-serve espresso pod – whatever your preference.
  • SLEEK SPACE-SAVING DESIGN With a sleek profile, compact design and narrow footprint, each model fits beautifully on a kitchen countertop – without taking up too much space.

Last update on 2024-03-02 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros
  • Good capacity of the water reservoir
  • The water level can be observed from the front
  • Compatible with ESE pods fro quick brewing
  • Boiler heating element provides great temperature stability for the brewing process
  • Cup warmer is available for use
  • Sturdy base, lightweight, and small footprint
Cons
  • Short steam wand
  • Does not have automatic flow stop feature

Product Videos

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Rating 5/5 - (3 votes)