Coffee is something that many people drink every morning, it is delicious, gives you that boost of energy, and is just an awesome hobby as well. Many people that are first starting out will stumble upon two very popular ways of making coffee, the Aeropress, and of course the pour over coffee makers.
Many people may wonder which is better, and which one they should buy.
I have both the Aeropress Go (you can read more about it here), and a Bodum 8 Cup Pour Over coffee maker, and here is my comparison and opinion on each, and you will learn which I prefer at the end!
Okay fine, if you don’t want to read through the whole thing, it’s going to be the Aeropress, and you should just buy it here.
Now that I have let the cat out of the bag (PRO TIP: never put your cat in a bag), let’s really see why I think this!
Recap for those that don’t like to read here is a table of what you will learn!
|Ease of use||✓|
|Flexibility of brew||✓||✓|
|Buy Now||My Choice|
Ease of Use – Winner: Aeropress
If you got a chance to read through the article about my Aeropress Go, you probably found that I finally stored away my automatic coffee maker once I started using the Aeropress Go. This is because it is incredibly easy to use, and is an extremely quick brew.
This means that even though I may not have a ton of time in the morning to make coffee, I know I can still get a cup without an issue and won’t need to resort to a quicker method.
Alternatively, pour over coffee makers tend to be one of the more involved coffee makers out there. While you may be able to make a bit better coffee, I find for the normal person, it just becomes too much work to be a primary coffee maker.
If you want that extra effort, then by all means get a pour over, as many people do prefer to have that level of involvement, I just find that if someone is just wanting to replace an automatic coffee maker, it just may be a little bit too involved.
Cost of the coffee maker – Winner: Pour Over
Of course, every time you buy something, the cost of it is always going to be weighed. Thankfully, a good pour over, and the Aeropress are both extremely value oriented. Neither are the cheapest thing out there, but both are below the cost of a “below average” automatic coffee maker.
The Aeropress can be purchased for under $35 in some places online. However because there really is only one (two including the “Go” version) Aeropress, it is what it is, and there really aren’t any budget brands to speak of.
The pour over on the other hand can come in the form of tens or hundreds of different brands. Meaning you can buy a cheap $5 pour over, all the way up to some incredibly expensive pour overs. Thankfully companies like Chemex or Bodum offer a good value and can be bought for less than the Aeropress.
Tools needed – Winner: Tie
Every coffee maker out there needs tools to go with it, whether it be filters, or something a little more in the case of manual coffee makers. This category doesn’t necessarily have a true winner, as both of them need about the same amount of tools.
Both coffee makers need:
- A way to get ground coffee, whether that be getting whole beans and a grinder, or just some ground coffee from the store
Pour Over needs:
- Pour over coffee maker
- Long spout pour over kettle
- Filters (unless you are using a metal filter)
- A way to heat some water
- The Aeropress (it comes with everything else you need)
Brew time – Winner: Aeropress
Yet another winning category for the Aeropress, not only because it takes less time to brew, but also because it just isn’t quite as involved.
An Aeropress is an immersion brewer, meaning you mix coffee grounds and water and let them sit. This means that during that minute or so you are letting it brew you don’t have to actively be watching it. I like to get other breakfast items set up during that time.
It also just takes less time overall as well, as you basically boil water, put your ground coffee in the Aeropress, let it sit, and press it through the filter, really easy.
Pour over however does tend to take a bit longer, and is definitely more involved. You are going to be actively pouring a constant stream of hot water over top of the grounds for a longer time than the Aeropress needs.
Mix that with the cleanup time that we will learn about later, and it’s just hard to compete with the Aeropress.
Coffee Capacity – Winner: Pour Over
Here is one where the pour over definitely wins out. Aeropress tends to be a cup by cup coffee maker. Basically you make a cup of coffee, then start from scratch and make another, and so on. If you have more than one person in your house that drinks coffee, then this probably isn’t going to solve your problem.
On the flip side, pour over coffee makers come in a large variety of shapes and sizes. They can range from a single cup, up to 8 or even more cups of coffee.
Flexibility of brew – Winner: Tie
Both coffee makers end up having a lot of flexibility for sure.
Pour over, you can adjust the amount of coffee, how slow or fast you pour the water and more.
The Aeropress has just as much flexibility, as you can adjust brew times, amount of water, amount of coffee grounds, and more.
However I personally have added on a Prismo by Fellow Products that makes the coffee even stronger, and in my opinion better tasting.
Materials – Winner: Tie
This is an interesting category, and in the end is in the eye of the beholder!
Firstly, let’s talk about the pour over coffee makers. These tend to be made of glass, some plastic, some cork, or leather depending on which one you are looking to buy.
The upsides to this, is that their styling is definitely considerably better than an Aeropress.
This makes the pour over great for keeping on your kitchen counter as a conversation piece.
Meanwhile we have the Aeropress, and it is completely made of plastic. It by no means is what you would consider elegant.
However it is extremely durable, can be thrown in a backpack without any issues, and could probably roll around in your car’s floorboards for a year without causing an issue.
In the end, it’s up to you what you prefer though! If you don’t plan on taking it anywhere, and are happy to leave it on your counter, the pour over might be perfect.
For myself, I like to keep it in my cabinets, making the Aeropress a perfect solution.
Storage – Winner: Aeropress
We talked on this point a little bit in the materials end of things! The pour over coffee maker is not overly able to be stored out of sight, and in areas where it can get hit and broken.
The Aeropress is considerably smaller, easier to shove into areas, and just more storable in general.
Cleanup – Winner: Aeropress
I’m not quite sure why I have this section so far down the list, however it probably is the top of my list when I am looking for a good coffee maker.
Aeropress? You just push the puck of coffee out of the bottom, rinse it in the sink, and bam, it’s clean. It literally takes like 30 seconds, no joke. Am I still lazy, and don’t clean it up until my next cup of coffee? Yes…
On the pour over side, it definitely ends up being a little more involved. Why? Because you do need to make sure the inside is clean, and pour over coffee makers have a small neck that you
The Aeropress is a relatively unique tool. It combines pressure, with an immersion style brew. However there are a couple similar products that you may want to take a look at.
The Delter Press is a very similar looking product, but acts very differently. However if you are looking for another simple way to make coffee, it could be a great solution.
Other than that, I also would recommend the “It’s American Press”. I personally own this less well known coffee maker, and it makes some awesome coffee!
I would say it is more fun to use, but less flexible in the brew process.
Pour Over Options
If you really like a pour over coffee maker, but don’t quite like the work, an automatic pour over coffee maker is going to be your best bet. The Ratio Eight, and The Ratio Six are both my personal favorites.
Much like the Ratio coffee makers, Chemex makes the Ottomatic 2.0, which also tries to simulate the pour over experience.
As for actual pour over coffee makers that I recommend, here are a couple good options of pour overs.
Who is each coffee maker for?
Pour over coffee, and Aeropress coffee are very different styles of brew for a cup of coffee. So let’s see which one fits each person.
The Aeropress is awesome for people that are looking to be more involved in the coffee culture. Although they may not want to spend the time and effort for just a bit better coffee that a pour over would make.
It basically would be for the intermediate coffee enthusiast, that really has no intention on becoming an expert.
On the flip side, dedicating the time to learn pour over is for those that want to be as involved in the coffee process as physically possible. They want to spend the time, and effort it takes to make the exact cup that they want.
I would say the person using pour over is the intermediate coffee enthusiast, that fully intends to become an expert.
Where can you buy them?
You can easily find a pour over coffee maker in many different stores, including Walmart.
However you are going to get the best selection here. I gave a link to a couple great pour overs a little earlier in the article.
The Aeropress and Aeropress Go however are a bit more difficult to buy. You don’t see them often in brick and mortar stores (except some coffee shops, and randomly TJ Maxx one time).
It really isn’t worth trying to physically hunt one down, so I would recommend buying one online here, or here.
Ultimately it really is up to who you are, and what you are trying to get out of your brew of coffee.
For me, and I think a large majority of people are looking to ditch the standard coffee machine or even find a good camping coffee maker, the Aeropress and Aeropress Go is going to be the overall best solution for that.
Aeropress is just ridiculously good in many ways including cleanup, speed of brew, and so many other things, without sacrificing quality.
Side Note: If you really want to feel really cool, I found the patent for the original Aeropress here.
As I am writing this article right now, I am sitting next to a brewed cup of coffee made by my Aeropress Go in a double walled glass mug from Ikea. I really do use this coffee maker, a lot, and you should at least try it.
If you have gotten this far in the article, and thought I missed anything, make sure to leave it in the comments below!