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The thermoblock is designed of aluminum for fast warm up times and thickness for good temperature stability. The inside pipe for which water comes in contact for heating is made of stainless steel. This is advantageous since the thermoblock in this case is less prone to limescale build up from magnesium and calcium - limescale is a major factor in causing problems on espresso machines. The other advantage is the aluminum avoids 'pitting' in cases where purified water is used.
Version 2 machines also have a microprocessor that pulsates the pump so water in the reservoir continuously fills the thermoblock for continuous steam - until the reservoir runs near empty.
Another enhancement is the steam valve design. Previous models had metal-to-metal closure for shutting off the steam/how water valve. The version 2 models were upgraded with compression steam valves so there is a rubber gasket that makes the closure. This newer design lowers the chance of limescale buildup as seen on previous models.
In addition, the Dream UP includes a 3 way solenoid valve, adjustable overpressure valve, and aluminum tamper. The Ascaso Dream Up Version 2 does NOT have a pipe into the drip tray on the left side. There is a black plug sealing the hole, and the three way solenoid valve returns to the reservoir. The manufacturer changed this from feedback from customers who had difficulty removing the drip tray for cleaning because the pipe was in the way. The boldest outline, a wink to the past and a best to the future. The Dream UP Versatile espresso and cappuccino machine is the flagship of the Ascaso line. Its classic retro look is combined with the best that modern technology has to offer in a traditional style machine.
This series is dubbed the "Versatile" machine because the Dream UP Versatile machines can use either ground coffee or proportioned single serving espresso pods, also known or labeled as E.S.E. - with a simple change of the filter basket in the filter handle. This offers a lot of versatility in the way you brew your coffee or espresso. Not only does this machine look great in any kitchen, but it also allows you to make cafe quality espresso drinks, lattes, cappuccino, and cafe mochas.
Espresso enthusiasts wanted it, and Ascaso delivered! The last improvement is the inclusion of the ground coffee kit. While the machine is designed to be VERSATILE, the Version II includes the adapter and screen which can be added to the grouphead so only ground coffee can be used. However, the end result is even a better cup for most espresso enthusiasts.
We also like the aluminum body! Unlike other machines made of steel and painted enamel, the Ascaso Dream UP has no chance of rusting. Remember, we are using water and steam to make our favorite drinks, so steel machines will rust at some point. The aluminum base does have a polish. Therefore, be careful of distilled or purified water which can ruin its finish. also, keep in mind, the aluminum is hand buffed and polished. Hence, each base will have its character.