If you’d love a Jura espresso machine but find the price tags daunting, the ENA series could be for you. These “entry-level” models (they’re still $1000-2000) have all of the style and usability of the more expensive options plus a good amount of the tech too. Having reviewed both coffee machines, it’s about time we compare then Jura ENA 4 vs ENA 8. Which is better? Is there even much of a difference?
With a bright, intuitive display and a lot more coffee options, the ENA 8 is the superior machine. It has the option for your milky espresso favorites whereas the ENA 4 is purely a black coffee machine. But if you only drink black coffee and aren’t looking to customize your drinks, then why pay for the extra features of the ENA 8 if you don’t have to?
To help you decide which is the best Jura ENA machine for you, we put them both to the test in a head-to-head battle. As former baristas, we ran blind taste tests on the coffee quality and put the machines through their paces. Here, we’ll break down all the key differences and similarities so you can choose the best machine for your budget.
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Choose the Jura ENA 4 if you:
- Only want espresso or coffee
- Want a more stripped-back, budget-friendly option
- Prefer a simple user interface with only a few options
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Looks & Size
Visually, you’d be hard-pressed to tell the difference between the Jura ENA 4 and ENA 8. They are both the same size (10.7 x 12.7 x 17.5 inches) and available in the same range of colors (black, white, or silver). Although, as the ENA 8 houses more tech, it weighs a little more too (18.5 lbs vs 24 lbs).
Both have the same snazzy-looking diamond effect water tank. (I like this as it helps to hide any knocks or scrapes it might have over its many years in your home.)
Where they do look different is the display.
On the ENA 4, the screen is simplistic with 4 buttons along the bottom. And on the ENA 8, you get a large touchscreen. (The version with the touchscreen was only released at the end of 2022 so there are still some versions of the ENA 8 for sale that have buttons on either side of the screen.)
Plus the spout on the ENA 8 is a little wider than the thinner version on the ENA 4. Wild differences, I know.
Both the ENA 4 and ENA 8 have the superb Aroma G3 Grinder with 7 grind settings.
While the G3 is no longer the top grinder on Jura coffee makers, it’s still superb. The grind consistency is excellent, it’s fast and it’s quiet. (You’ll find the Professional Aroma Grinder on most of their top machines and the Product Recognizing Grinder on the best of the best like the Jura Z10 – you can read our review, here.)
They also both have a bypass chute for ground coffee if required. Whilst you have to grind the beans yourself, we like this feature for the occasional late-night decaf or for a guest.
The brew group on both machines is the same. So you can vary your dose size between 6 and 10g. Plus, both coffee makers house Jura’s amazing Pulse Extraction Process (P.E.P.) technology which helps ensure great quality coffee extraction.
So the ENA 8 might have more incremental settings, giving you more choices. But, if like many people, you opt to use your machine on maximum or minimum strength, then you’re getting the same dose as you would on the ENA 4.
If you’re a tech lover with a phone surgically attached to your arm (guilty!), then the J.O.E. app is great for interacting with either Jura coffee machine.
Using the app, you can adjust settings and save your favorite coffees. Plus you can queue up everyone’s order when you’re entertaining and have the machine serve them one by one. Which is a cool trick.
This cool trick comes with a catch though – you have to pay extra for the WiFi Connect dongle that allows your coffee machine to speak to your phone. It’s one of our pet peeves when it comes to Jura – they only include it in their top-of-the-range models like the Jura Giga 6 or Z10. With a super-automatic coffee maker at this price, we’d expect it to be included. But they’ve clearly (wrongly) decided this way is better.
Cleaning & Maintenance
One of the biggest differences between the ENA 4 and ENA 8 is that the latter has milk-frothing capabilities. But that also means it has more cleaning requirements as all things milk can quickly become a breeding ground for nasties if you don’t stay on top of cleaning. Luckily, the ENA 8 will automatically rinse out the milk hose after each use. You just need to ensure the container stays sparkly clean.
Other than this, the two machines are identical to clean. You still have to rinse the drip tray and grounds bin daily and wipe down the outside to keep it looking pretty. Jura’s automatic cleaning cycle will run daily too.
No Jura espresso machine has a removable brew group for cleaning. So like it or not, that’s the same for both of these machines.
Luckily, descaling is also kept to a minimum thanks to the excellent water filters. In fact, if you keep on top of replacing the filters, you may never have to descale your machine.
But, whether you opt for filters or 6-monthly descaling, you will need to stick with Jura’s branded products. Not only do they work better and last longer, but using alternatives can invalidate your 2-year manufacturer’s warranty.
The biggest, and probably most important, difference between the ENA 4 and ENA 8 is that the ENA 8 has a milk system. So if you enjoy drinking any espresso and milk coffee combination, then the ENA 8 is the only choice between the two.
You can customize the volume of milk dispensed to suit your preferences. But not the foam level or texture so you need to decide if that’s important to you. If it is, you may have to look at splashing out for the Jura E8 instead (read our full Jura E8 review).
With a milk system comes many more drink recipes. However, since the ENA 4 can only make 2 – espresso and coffee – the ENA 8 isn’t clearing a particularly high bar by beating it.
With the ENA 8, you can choose between 8 distinct coffee options at the touch of a button which is pretty good. This includes café favorite specialty coffees such as flat white, cappuccino, cortado, caffè barista, and latte macchiato alongside the classics like espresso, coffee, and espresso doppio. So pretty much everyone is covered.
Being an entry-level espresso machine, the ENA 4 offers 3 strength levels and the ability to customize the length of your coffee. That’s all you get, and it might be all you need.
But if you’re looking for more options, the ENA 8 is your machine. It offers 10 adjustable coffee strength levels for the same sized brewing unit, so far higher precision. It also has an adjustable coffee temperature (3 levels), plus length settings for coffee and milk (if applicable for the chosen drink).
So you get a lot more to play, allowing you to get into the process of dialing in your machine to suit your chosen espresso beans. Ultimately, you’ll get good coffee either way but this way has the potential for you to get a truly great tasting coffee.
Visually, one of the main features that separates the Jura ENA 4 vs ENA 8 is the display. The former is a simplistic screen with 4 buttons along the bottom. The latter has a colorful touchscreen.
However, the touchscreen is a pretty recent addition. Older models (including the one we tested) have a colorful, intuitive screen but with buttons on either side. So make sure to double-check before you buy whether it is touch or button-operated in case your machine is from the older stock.
The Jura ENA 4 only has 3 coffee bean symbols and a scoop to indicate what is going on. This is absolutely fine as that’s all you need when the machine doesn’t have lots of functions. But it’s not the most detailed or exciting to look at.
On the other hand, the ENA 8 has a beautiful color display. This isn’t just aesthetically pleasing, I find it also makes choosing and changing settings an absolute breeze.
The ENA 8 will allow you to dispense hot water at 3 temperatures using a dial on the front of the machine.
This means Americanos are on offer and will also keep tea drinkers happy by having cooler water for green tea and hotter for black tea. This is an important difference if there’s a tea drinker in the house who needs to be placated by your expensive coffee machine purchase.
This feature isn’t available on the ENA 4.
If you love the ease and quality of Jura coffee makers but aren’t sold on either the ENA 4 or ENA 8, check out some of our other top recommendations:Jura E4 vs ENA 4 | Jura E6 Review | Jura vs Breville
The only real reason to choose the ENA 4 is if you’re a black coffee drinker who won’t use all the other settings offered by the Jura ENA 8.
Even just having the milk system option for guests may be enough to persuade you to upgrade from the Jura ENA 4 vs ENA 8. With the looks and size being identical, it’s a lot more machine to play with.
But no matter which machine you choose, you are sure to love how easy they are to use and will soon be sipping on a delicious cup of joe.
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