Nespresso machines have been around since 1976, enabling consumers to enjoy barista quality coffee from the comfort of their own home. In 1999 they released the first of their OriginalLine machines which brewed great coffee using just a small capsule revolutionizing the home coffee industry. Since then a plethora of companies have developed their own Nespresso compatible capsules in an attempt to benefit from Nespresso’s framework. To tackle this rising competition, Nespresso developed a new line of machines called VertuoLine in 2014. The VertuoLine machines integrated new espresso brewing technology with a barcode scanner to ensure that only official Nespresso capsules are compatible, thereby eliminating the competition.
When deciding whether you should purchase a Nespresso OriginalLine or a VertuoLine, there are few details to consider. Although the elimination of third-party capsules can be a large aspect of the decision-making process, there are other factors that can contribute to making a choice between the two.
For many, cost is an important factor not only when purchasing a Nespresso machine, but in life. So it is understandable that the cost of owning and using a machine can determine which one you buy.
VertuoLine machines range from $199 for just the machine, or $249 for the bundle. OriginalLine machines vary from $149 - $500. Although you may be tempted to choose the VertuoLine since you receive a newer model of the machine for a potentially lower price, it’s important to factor in the price per capsule when considering how much money you want to spend. See the table below for a price comparison of the VertuoLine and OriginalLine machines:
These comparisons verify that although a VertuoLine machine may be cheaper initially, the cost of buying Nespresso brand capsules can increase the price significantly if you have a coffee every morning for the whole year.
The technology used to brew coffee varies for each machine. VertuoLine machines offer new centrifusion technology to make their coffee. Centrifusion is a term coined by Nespresso referring to the combination of centrifugal force and water infusion. When a capsule is placed in the machine, water is injected into the centre of the capsule which then spins at 7000 rpm. This rapid spinning method allows the water to fuse with the coffee dispensing it through 20 openings around the edge of the capsule and down into the cup. This creates a smooth, flavorful cup of coffee.
OriginalLine machines rely on a pump to brew coffee. The pump uses pressure to push water through the capsule extracting the coffee in the process. Some OriginalLine machines use up to 9 bars of pressure. The benefit of using a pressurized system is that the water is heated more thoroughly creating a hotter cup of coffee.
VertuoLine machines also allow the option to brew a full cup of coffee up to 17 oz, whereas OriginalLine machines do not.
Despite the many technological benefits of the VertuoLine machine, they have a big drawback… capsule variety. When purchasing a Nespresso, you are not just enjoying the machine, but the capsule experience also.
Nespresso brand capsules offer a limited number, so regardless of which machine you buy you will have the choice of 24 different capsules. However, non-Nespresso brand capsules raise that number remarkably. Freedom of choice can be a huge factor for those wanting to purchase a Nespresso machine and capsule variety definitely reflects that.
OriginalLine machines allow the use of third-party capsules whereas VertuoLine machines do not. some interpret this as a scheme by Nespresso to eliminate the competition and compel users to buy their capsules. Nespresso’s plan to do this is reminiscent of the Keurig 2.0 who implemented digital rights management (DRM) technology to their machines, denying any “unlicensed” pod access and rendering them incompatible.
Health and the Environment
Nespresso’s VertuoLine range offers little in the environmental awareness category. This line of capsule does not offer organic, Fair Trade or non-GMO options in their range whereas OriginalLine does.
The freedom of OriginalLine machines means that users can drink whatever coffee they please, being able to choose your favorite brands and flavors for your morning brew. For example, through using an OriginalLine machine, you can drink organic coffee. Artizan Coffee offers Nespresso compatible capsules that are 100% organic and USDA and Fair Trade certified. They are the number one choice for organic coffee capsules as they were the first company to be USDA and Fair Trade certified for Nespresso compatible capsules. They have a wide variety of blends and tastes suitable for any taste bud, Check out their line of coffee here.
Making a choice on which line of machine is better can be difficult, but it all boils down to personal preference. If you are willing to spend a little more money to ensure a smoother or bigger coffee, then the VertuoLine machine is perfect for you. However, if you would like a cheaper, wider variety of capsules and a hotter brew, then the OriginalLine is your machine of choice. Overall, for an avid coffee drinker, both lines of Nespresso machines are great producers of coffee and are incomparable to other brands. Regardless of what you choose, you are guaranteed a great cup of coffee.