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Breville Precision Brewer Review

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Last updated: December 18, 2023

Quick Answer: I would recommend the Breville Precision Brewer, especially if you are looking for a drip coffee maker that lets you control every aspect of the brewing process

This is my Breville Precision Brewer review. 

I own the Breville Precision Brewer and have used it two to three times a week for the last six months.

I also spent half a day researching other users’ experiences with this machine online to put together this review.

Should I Buy the Breville Precision Brewer (Quick Verdict)?

You should only buy the Breville Precision Brewer if you care about controlling minute brewing variables like bloom time and brewing temperature, and are willing to pay a premium for this control.

There are cheaper drip coffee makers that make a similar standard coffee to the Breville Precision Brewer. However, they do not give you control over these aforementioned brewing variables.

Ultimate Brewing Control
Breville Precision Brewer
$329.95 $299.95

The Breville Precision Control gives you more control over your brewing variables like temperature and brew time than any other drip coffee maker. I can’t help but feel that there are good brewers out there for cheaper, however.

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04/02/2024 07:07 pm GMT

Breville Precision Brewer

Quality of Coffee
9/10
Functionalities
10/10
Ease of Use and Cleaning
7/10
Design and Build Quality
8/10
Value For Money
6/10

If you aren’t bothered about controlling these minute brewing variables, then I would recommend the Technivorm Moccamster over the Breville Precision Brewer.

The Technivorm Moccamaster makes at least as good a drip coffee as the Breville Precision Brewer. The two machines are similarly priced, but the Technivorm Moccamaster is a more durable machine, meaning that it will offer you better value for money over time.

The Tecnivorm Moccamaster does not give you control over brewing temperature and bloom time, unlike the Breville Precision Brewer.

More Durable than the Breville Precision Brewer
Technivorm Moccamaster KGBT 10-Cup
$349.00
The Technivorm Moccamaster’s stripped-back design gives it a longer lifespan than the Breville Precision Brewer. The two machines make a similar standard of coffee.
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04/03/2024 01:52 am GMT

Product Overview

The Breville Precision Brewer is a premium automatic drip coffee maker with a thermal carafe and without a built-in grinder

The main differentiator between the Breville Precision Brewer and other top-end drip coffee makers is that the Breville allows you to customize more aspects of your brew than other machines.

It does this by having five brew “modes” (Fast, Strong, Gold, Over Ice, Cold Brew) including a fully customizable MyBrew mode with five settings.

No other drip coffee machine has this number of functionalities, save for the Gevi 4-in-1 which typically costs three times as much as the Breville.

The table below shows the key specifications of the Breville Precision Brewer:

SpecificationBreville Precision Brewer
DescriptionAutomatic drip coffee maker with thermal carafe and without a built-in grinder
Dimensions14” W, 9” D, 16” H
Maximum serving size5.2 oz
Maximum serving size63 oz
Preset serving sizesNo, the machine uses all the water in its tank each time
Is the water tank removable?No
Can it bloom your coffee?Yes
Does it have a built-in grinderNo
Can you control the brew temperature?Yes
Can you control brew timeYes
Can you control bloom time?Yes
Does it have a drip spout valve?No
Does it tell you when it needs to be descaled?Yes
Does it have a descaling mode?Yes
Where to buy it?Buy the Breville Precision Brewer on Amazon

Quality of Coffee

The Breville Precision Brewer can make an excellent drip coffee, however, it needs to be paired with a high-quality grinder to do so.

I’m not going to lie, at first I was disappointed with the Breville Precision Brewer’s coffee. I found it a bit flat-tasting, even on Strong and Gold settings. James Hoffmann said that this was the drip coffee maker that he uses, and I really didn’t understand why.

However, for some strange reason, I thought that grind uniformity did not matter as much with drip coffee as it did with espresso, so I was using a cheap blade grinder with it.

As soon as I started using my fancy burr espresso grinder (the one built into my Breville Barista Pro – see review), the coffee’s flavor got waaaayyy better. 

I now get what the fuss is about and am more than a bit embarrassed that it took me three months to actually start using a decent grinder with this machine.

The Breville Precision Brewer can create excellent drip coffee. It easily meets SCAA brewing requirements to make optimal drip coffee. This basically means that you are unlikely to find a machine that makes significantly better coffee than the Breville Precision Brewer. Any differences between this and a superior machine would be marginal.

One of the big reasons why it makes such good drip coffee is that its brew basket has two different inserts, one for a smaller conical filter and one for a larger flat-bottomed filter.

The large flat-bottomed brew basket (left) and its conical filter insert (right)

This, combined with the fact that you can “tell” the machine which inserts you are using in settings, means that it can both brew to its capacity while staying at the ideal 18:1 brew ratio and that its showerhead will always achieve very even coverage of the ground coffee.

This helps ensure a thorough and even extraction of your coffee, meaning that it can make excellent coffee regardless of your serving size.

Just remember to use a good-quality burr grinder with it. If you do not have one then I would factor this additional cost into the cost of the machine.

Quality of Coffee Rating: 9/10

Functionalities

The Breville Precision Brewer has one of the highest numbers of functionalities of all drip coffee machines. It performs all these functionalities well.

The Breville Precision Brewer can brew coffee in five different ways, as well as having a completely customizable “MyBrew”.

Here are the five different brewing “modes” that the Breville Precision Brewer has (along with my verdict on each of them):

  • Fast: Brews your coffee for 1 minute per cup (5 oz), without blooming. This is meant to make a decent cup of coffee as quickly as possible. Marketed as “for busy mornings where you don’t have time to wait”, I’m not sure why anyone would brew like this when it saves you at most a couple of minutes and really doesn’t brew your coffee all that well.
  • Gold: Brews according to SCAA’s best practices for making drip coffee. Brew your coffee for 1 minute per cup, and blooms your coffee before brewing. You are meant to use the conical filter basket and conical filter papers with this and are not meant to brew more than 15 oz (450 milliliters) in one go on this mode. While I do like this setting, I feel like it is a lot of work to set up and not really worth it.
  • Strong: Brews at its maximum temperature (208 Fahrenheit (98 Celsius)) and brews one cup of coffee in around 80 seconds. This is the mode I usually use. It makes an excellent drip coffee and is very forgiving in terms of your brew ratio (how much coffee and water you use).
  • Over Ice: This brews at the machine’s lowest temperature (176 Celsius – 80 Fahrenheit), but at a brew speed of about 100 seconds for one cup of coffee. Breville recommends that you do not brew more than 15 oz (450 milliliters) at a time in this mode and to use double the amount of ground coffee that you normally use. This makes pretty good iced coffee, however, you need A LOT of ice to cold down 15 oz of coffee. I stick to making coffees of no more than 8 oz on this mode and brew straight into a pint glass full of ice. My method does work well though.
  • Cold Brew: Brews at room temperature from a preset time between 90 minutes and 24 hours. It will dispense into your carafe when the brew timer finishes. I have never used this mode before because I don’t really like cold brew but if you do like cold brew then this saves you from having to buy a separate cold brewer. It certainly does the job better than a French Press which is what a lot of people use for cold brew.

The Breville Precision Brewer also has a fully customizable “MyBrew” mode where you can customize the following:

  • Brewing temperature: From 176- 208 Fahrenheit by the nearest degree
  • Flow rate (brewing time): On an arbitrary scale from one to five
  • Bloom time: No minimum/maximum. Measured to the nearest second

Bloom flow rate: On an arbitrary scale from 1-5

So as we can see, the Breville Precision Brewer has a lot of functionalities.

What I really like about this machine is that it performs all of these functionalities well. None of these “modes” feel like they are there just to make the machine seem like it can do more than it actually does, saves for maybe the “fast” brew which I will never see the need for.

To put this into perspective, the only drip coffee machine that has more functionalities than the Breville Precision Brewer is the Gevi 4-in-1. The Gevi is around three times the price of the Breville.

Functionalities Rating: 10/10

Ease of Use and Cleaning

The Breville Precision Pro is easy to use, especially considering how many functionalities it has. Its lack of a removable reservoir and the silver finish does mean it is some work to keep clean, however.

Set Up and Loading with Ground Coffee and Water

The Breville Precision Brewer is easy to set up, however, its non-removable tank makes it a bit of a pain to load with water.

The Breville Precision brewer was very easy to set up. It took about 25 minutes, however, there was no point where I was confused about what to do. It was just the standard steps of testing water hardness (they provide a strip to do this), installing the filter, and running a rinse cycle.

The digital display screen on the machine’s control panel tells you what to do at every part of this process.

You have to load the machine with water and ground coffee manually, and for best results, you have to weigh out your coffee and measure your water. It’s easiest to do this in grams, as one milliliter of water weighs one gram so you do not actually need to weigh your water.

This is a bit of effort, especially as it needs to be done for every pot of coffee you make. 

The Breville Precision Brewer does not help you much in doing this, especially as you cannot remove the water tank from the body of the machine. This means you’ll need to fill a separate vessel with water and slowly pour it into your water tank to hit the measurements.

In his video roundup of the best drip coffee makers, James Hoffmann pointed out that the measurements on the Breville Precision Brewer were horribly inaccurate (watch about one minute of this to see his discovery).

This means that you’ll need to pour water into your machine with a measuring jug and measure it before you pour it in. This adds just another step to the coffee-making process.

Control Panel

The Breville Precision Brewer has a superbly designed and built control panel that makes the machine easy to make all types of coffee with.

The Breville Precision Brewer is operated by a button and dial with a digital display screen to walk you through how to make each coffee.

The control panel is well-designed and very responsive. It makes using all the machine’s functionalities really easy, and can also walk you through descaling the machine.

I do have two small issues with the control panel, however. They are:

  • Lack of a back button: You’d be able to navigate through the machine’s menus much faster if you had a back button. Instead, you have to scroll all the way to “exit” every time you want to go back a step. Sometimes, once a process has started you cannot go back to cancel which is a bit annoying.
  • The machine resets when it is unplugged: The machine’s clock and settings reset when you unplug it. I like to keep my machine unplugged when I’m not using it to save electricity, so this makes the auto-brew mode unusable.

Please bear in mind that these are tiny nitpicks. Overall I am very impressed with the machine’s UI.

Cleaning and Descaling

The Breville Precision Brewer’s descale mode makes it easy to descale. Keeping its water tank and exterior clean is a bit more challenging, however.

The Breville Precision Brewer needs to have its brew basket and carafe cleaned after every coffee you have.

While its thermal carafe is dishwasher safe, its brew basket is not. The brew basket is still easy to rinse, and every drip coffee machine has a brew basket that needs to be hand-cleaned.

The Breville Precision Pro should be descaled every 2-4 months depending on the hardness of your water. The machine’s filter has a timer that tells you when to do this. 

The machine has a descaling mode that is activated by holding down the brew button for 5 seconds. This walks you through the descaling process. It’s really easy and just involves brewing a whole tank with a descaling solution and water in the water tank, followed by a couple of rinse cycles.

The two parts of the machine that are a bit of a pain to clean are its exterior and water tank.

  • Exterior: The Breville Precision Brewer is finished with a “brushed silver”. This smudges really easily (see image below). Unfortunately, you cannot get the machine in a darker color.
  • Water tank: Grime will eventually build up in the bottom corners of the machine’s water tank. Because the tank is not removable, it can be hard to get a sponge into these bottom crevices to clean them out.
The body of the machine smudges as easily as the carafe

I’d say that overall, the Breville Precision Brewers’ silver finish makes it slightly harder to keep clean than other drip coffee makers.

Ease of Use and Cleaning Rating: 7/10

The Breville Precision Brewers’ additional functionalities make it slightly more complicated to use than other premium drip coffee makers. It is still not that hard to use, however.

Design and Build Quality

The Breville Precision Brewer has superb internal and external build quality, save for the inaccurate measurements on its water tank.

Internal Build Quality

The Breville Precision Brewer has a very high internal build quality. This is evidenced by two facts:

  • It can brew to the SCAA requirements for making excellent drip coffee: Brewing to these requirements necessitates an excellent heating unit and insulated brew basket to maintain a constant temperature throughout brewing. This is not possible if the manufacturer cut corners on the machine’s internal brewing mechanism.
  • Its brewing variable controls are accurate: The machine’s offered brewing variables, like brewing temperature and speed, are accurate. Again, it’s not cheap to engineer machines that can do this accurately, indicating that no corners have been cut with the machine’s brewing system.

In short, there are no obvious flaws with the Breville Precision Brewer’s internal build.

External Build Quality

The Breville Precision Brewer has a good overall external build quality. Particularly highlights in this regard are:

  • Thermal carafe: The machine’s thermal carafe can keep your coffee at drinking temperature for pretty much an entire day. It also does not get drippy when you pour from it which cannot be said for most thermal carafes.
  • Brew basket: The machine’s brew basket is very well insulated. This allows the machine to achieve optimal extraction as its brewing temperature will not go down during the brewing process.
  • Control panel: As I’ve spoken about earlier, the machine’s control panel is both very responsive and intuitive.

Here are two weaker points as far as the Breville Precision Brewer’s external build quality is concerned:

  • Water tank: The measurements on the machine’s water tank are incorrect. This has been noted by reviewers on YouTube, and I have found this myself. If you want an accurate brew ratio you need to measure out your water with a separate measuring jug.
  • Chord length: The machine’s chord is a bit on the short side. While it was fine in my kitchen, I wanted to move it to my office but I could not get it to reach a power outlet without being at full stretch (this is bad for the chord as it causes wire stress).

So while the external build of the Breville Precision Brewer, is not without its flaws.

Any Known Technical Issues?

Aside from incorrect measurements on the machine’s water tank, the only technical issue that I could find people having with the machine online had to do with its descaling system.

Users have reported two problems with the Breville Precision Brewer’s descaling system:

  • That it tells you to descale too often: This is annoying because you cannot make a coffee with the machine when it tells you to descale. You can find someone talking about this here.
  • That the machine cuts off while descaling: This is quite rare and seems to be fixed by turning the machine on and off again (you will need to redo your settings). You can find people discussing this problem here.

Overall I could not find many reports of either of these problems, suggesting that they are few and far between.

Design and Build Quality Rating: 8/10

Value For Money

The Breville Precision Brewer is expensive but backs this up with its quality. You can get better value drip coffee machines than this one, however.

As I’ve said earlier, the Breville Precision Brewer sees you pay a premium for all its available functionalities and customizations.

You will only get good value for money from this machine if you use most of these functionalities and customizations. If you do not then it is a bit expensive for what you get and there are better value options elsewhere (like the Bonavita 8 Cup).

Value For Money Rating: 6/10

What Users Say

The Breville Barista Pro has been reviewed 1,963 times on Amazon and has an average rating of 4.4 stars out of five.

Positive reviews of the machine often talk about the excellent-tasting coffee it makes:

Amazon review, February 2023: In truth, I’ve had it for a month and haven’t messed with all the settings. I just set it to “Gold” mode and brews an amazing pot of coffee every time.”

Negative reviews of the machine tend to talk about specific technical issues of the machine, with the universal sentiment being that Breville’s customer service is very poor at dealing with these specific issues:

“Temp from shower head is 175 even when programmed for 208. Called the company and they claim the set temps are internal in the boiler and it’s correct. so they want me to believe the water drops 33 degrees from the boiler to the shower head. Yeah…I don’t think so. They won’t say it’s an issue and say it’s working as expected but I can return it if I wanted. Thanks Breville.”

Again this high average product rating, with a large sample size, suggests that these technical issues are few and far between.

Product Alternatives

Two alternatives that I would recommend to the Breville Precision Brewer are the Technivorm Moccamaster and the Bonavita 8 Cup.

Technivorm Moccamaster – A More Durable Machine For A Similar Price

More Durable than the Breville Precision Brewer
Technivorm Moccamaster KGBT 10-Cup
$349.00
The Technivorm Moccamaster’s stripped-back design gives it a longer lifespan than the Breville Precision Brewer. The two machines make a similar standard of coffee.
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04/03/2024 01:52 am GMT

The Technivorm Moccamaster is a simpler designed, but just as high quality, drip coffee maker as the Breville Precision Brewer.

They are at a similar price.

While the Technivorm does not have anywhere near as many functionalities as the Breville Precision Brewer (it basically just has “on” and “off” buttons), this stripped-back design means that it will be more durable, and be less likely to have technical issues than the Breville.

If you just want a good, basic drip coffee, then the Techivorm is a better choice than the Breville. For more information on this machine please see my Technivorm Moccamaster review.

More Durable than the Breville Precision Brewer
Technivorm Moccamaster KGBT 10-Cup
$349.00
The Technivorm Moccamaster’s stripped-back design gives it a longer lifespan than the Breville Precision Brewer. The two machines make a similar standard of coffee.
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04/03/2024 01:52 am GMT

Bonavita 8 Cup – A Better Value Machine than the Breville 

Value Pick
Bonavita 8 Cup
$189.99 $179.99
The Bonavita 8 Cup makes as good-tasting coffee as the Breville Precision Brewer for about half the price.
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04/02/2024 11:01 pm GMT

The Bonavita 8 Cup costs around half the price of the Breville Precision Brewer, but still makes as good a coffee as the Breville.

The sacrifice with the Bonavita is that the machine does not have the functionalities and customizations that the Breville has and that it is not a very durable machine, rarely lasting more than 5 years.

Still, if the price of the Breville Precision Brewer puts you off, then the Bonavita 8 Cup may well be a good option for you.

Value Pick
Bonavita 8 Cup
$189.99 $179.99
The Bonavita 8 Cup makes as good-tasting coffee as the Breville Precision Brewer for about half the price.
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04/02/2024 11:01 pm GMT

Final Verdict

I’d recommend the Breville Precision Brewer, especially if you want control of every aspect of your drip coffee brewing.

The machine offers you unparalleled control over your brewing conditions and can make consistently excellent coffee, brew after brew.

Breville Precision Brewer

Quality of Coffee
9/10
Functionalities
10/10
Ease of Use and Cleaning
7/10
Design and Build Quality
8/10
Value For Money
6/10

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