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Phillips 3200 Review

A machine that definitely prioritizes speed and convenience over taste
Phillips 3200
Credit: Phillips
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Price:   $1,000 List | $799 at Amazon
Pros:  Super convenient and easy to use
Cons:  Expensive, lacks cafe quality taste
Manufacturer:   Phillips
By Michelle Powell and Max Mutter  ⋅  Mar 18, 2021
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56
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#16 of 19
  • Taste - 40% 5
  • Ease of Use - 30% 8
  • Ease of Cleaning - 15% 6
  • Milk Steaming - 15% 2

Our Verdict

We had high hopes for this machine with its super-automatic convenience and intuitive touchscreen interface. Unfortunately, we walked away from our experience with the Phillips 3200 mostly disappointed. Yes, it is incredibly convenient and super easy to use, but we found its espresso to taste weak and over extracted, and its steamed milk to lack any real texture. Overall, we think you can get a more reasonable facsimile of a cappuccino from a capsule machine and an inexpensive milk frother for a much lower price, and still enjoy almost the same level of convenience.

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Phillips 3200
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Phillips 3200
Awards  Editors' Choice Award  Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award 
Price $1,000 List
$799.00 at Amazon
$600 List
$545.99 at Amazon
$300 List$700 List
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$500 List
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Pros Super convenient and easy to useExcellent espresso, achieves near-perfect microfoam in its steamed milk, relatively easy to use for a semi-automatic machineGreat espresso, great milk steaming performance, compact designGreat taste, cafe quality lattes and cappuccinosGreat taste, exceptional lattes and cappuccinos, mostly automated milk steaming
Cons Expensive, lacks cafe quality tasteExpensive, requires more effort/practice than fully-automatic machinesNo built-in grinderExpensive, requires some effort and a learning curveExpensive, no built-in grinder
Bottom Line A viable option if you're more concerned with convenience than how your coffee tastesA cafe-quality machine that manages to still be friendly towards beginner baristasOne of the smallest machines we've found that can achieve cafe quality resultsIf you don't mind a little learning curve and elbow grease, this is the best espresso you can make at homeAn excellent choice for those trying to recreate cafe drinks at home, especially if you already have an espresso-quality grinder
Rating Categories Phillips 3200 Calphalon Temp IQ Breville Bambino Breville Barista... Breville Bambino...
Taste (40%)
5
9
9
9
9
Ease Of Use (30%)
8
7
6
7
7
Ease Of Cleaning (15%)
6
7
7
6
6
Milk Steaming (15%)
2
9
10
9
8
Specs Phillips 3200 Calphalon Temp IQ Breville Bambino Breville Barista... Breville Bambino...
Dimensions 9.5" x 17" x 14.5" 5.6" x 14.5" x 17.3" 7.7" x 12.6" x 12.2" 13.2" x 12.5" x 16" 7.7" x 12.6" x 12.2"
Warranty 2 Year Limited 3 Year Limited 1 Year Limited 1 Year Limited 1 Year Limited
Milk Frother Automatic Steam Wand Steam Wand Steam Wand Automatic Steam Wand
Water Tank Capacity 60 oz 94 oz 47 oz 67 oz 65 oz
Cost per Shot $0.45 $0.45 $0.45 $0.47 $0.47
Lifetime Cost per Shot $0.87 $0.70 $0.58 $0.72 $0.72
Number of Cafe Replacement Shots to Make p list price 392 235 118 237 237
Number of Cafe replacement lattes to make up list price 234 141 70 141 141

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Phillips 3200 offers push-button-get-cappucino convenience, but we feel it's a bit lacking in the taste department. If you're not fussy about how your coffee tastes and don't mind making an investment in a convenient morning routine, it may be a worthwhile purchase. Otherwise, we think there are better options out there.

Performance Comparison


Credit: Jason Peters

Taste


No matter how much we tinkered with the settings of the Phillips 3200 its espresso always came out tasting a bit over extracted and bitter and slightly weak and watery. Adding steamed milk to create a cappuccino or latte somewhat covered up these defects, but we generally found the milk this machine steamed to be somewhat lackluster.


That's not to say the espresso and milk drinks this machine serves up are bad. If you're not expecting a cafe quality drink, there's a decent chance this machine can satisfy your craving. However, we think there are a lot of machines that far outstip this machine's taste quality, though most can't match its convenience.

All of the drinks we made with the Philips 3200 came out tasting...
All of the drinks we made with the Philips 3200 came out tasting acceptable, but far short of great.
Credit: Jason Peters

Ease of Use


This is where the Phillips 3200 shines. It uses an intuitive touchscreen interface to navigate between making straight espresso shots, cappuccinos, and lattes. You can also adjust the strength of the espresso. Once you press brew the machine grinds and tamps the coffee beans, brews the espresso, and steams the milk, all automatically. It doesn't get much easier than that.


The only reason this machine didn't get a perfect score in this metric is its initial setup. This is the one time we felt the need to consult the instruction manual, as the machine is otherwise so intuitive to use. However, we found the manual to be a bit unclear and accordingly found the initial setup process to be a bit clunky.

The sleek interface and super-automatic nature of the Phillips 3200...
The sleek interface and super-automatic nature of the Phillips 3200 make it impressively easy to use.
Credit: Jason Peters

Ease of Cleaning


The Phillips 3200 is relatively easy to clean, with a few small caveats.


The container that holds the milk is the one thing that will need to be cleaned with each use, or at the very least stored in the fridge in between uses. Cleaning this container is not difficult, but takes a bit more time than just wiping down the steam wand of more traditional machines.

One small annoyance we ran into was the fact that the drip tray snags on the grind catcher when you pull it out, so you have to remove the grind catcher before you empty the drip tray. This is a minor thing but we found it slightly annoying.

The grinds container is easy to empty and clean.
The grinds container is easy to empty and clean.
Credit: Jason Peters

The descaling process for this machine is very easy and straightforward, but you will need to purchase a descaling solution separately from Phillips.

Milk Steaming


This is our major complaint with the Phillips 3200 — throughout our tests it failed to create a good texture with its milk. It only slightly aerated it, leaving just a bit of foam on the surface. Because of this we never felt like it got close to recreating a cafe cappuccino or latte. Still, if you're not too fussy about taste, it can still create a reasonable imitation of one of those drinks.


The automatic milk steamer tends to create little texture apart from...
The automatic milk steamer tends to create little texture apart from some very fluffy foam on the surface. This works somewhat well for cappuccinos but not so much for lattes.
Credit: Jason Peters

Value


The Phillips 3200 is quite expensive, and you're largely paying for convenience while (in our opinion) sacrificing a good bit of taste quality. If you're not too picky about how your coffee tastes and greatly value convenience, it may be a worthwhile investment. Otherwise, we would think your money would be better present elsewhere.

Conclusion


The Phillips 3200 fills a niche for people that want an incredibly convenient, hassle-free espresso machine, that aren't too particular about how their lattes taste, and don't mind making an investment in their morning coffee routine.

Michelle Powell and Max Mutter