Caffeine Fiend is reader-supported. When you buy a product via links on our site, we may earn a commission at no extra cost to you. Learn more.

The 5 Best Vacuum Coffee Makers (Siphon): Brew Coffee Like A Chemist!

What exactly is a vacuum coffee maker? Nowadays, the technology that you can get for your home is astounding. You could potentially watch TV on your refrigerator or control your lights and appliances with your smartphone. So, if I told you that you could use your vacuum cleaner to brew coffee, would you believe me?

Honestly, I wouldn’t blame you if you thought that this was true but sadly that’s not the case. Still, a vacuum coffee maker (also known as a siphon coffee maker) is without a doubt one of the most ingenious coffee brewing devices out there.


Editor’s Favorite Vacuum Coffee Maker: Bodum K1218-16 Pebo

Price – 5/5
Craftsmanship – 4.5/5
Brew Quality – 4.5/5
Design – 4/5


Bodum might not have created the most extravagant vacuum coffee maker, but the K1218-16 Pebo will consistently deliver an exquisite tasting brew into your cup, at an affordable price.


Vacuum Coffee Makers: What You Should Know

Generally speaking, it is safe to assume that a vacuum coffee maker is not going to be someone’s very first coffee machine – nowadays, that’s usually an automatic drip coffee maker. Seasoned coffee lovers and coffee aficionados are definitely the primary target audience of this brewing method.

Another important thing to keep in mind is that the vacuum brewing method is an immersion style brewing method – like the AeroPress or the French press. This means that the water and the coffee are in direct contact with each other although the brewing process. Many coffee drinkers will cite clearer flavors as the main reason why they prefer immersion brewing.

The namesake “vacuum” in this style of coffee maker is actually created when heat is applied to the apparatus. The heat forces water into the top chamber while creating a vacuum in the bottom one. The coffee grounds and the water intermingle in the top chamber and then the brewed coffee drains out into the bottom chamber.


How We Ranked These Vacuum Coffee Makers: Criteria Breakdown

Even though for many people, a vacuum coffee maker is definitely a pseudo art piece, we first and foremost considered the primary function – how well did they make a cup of coffee.

This was then contrasted with their retail price; after all, would you pay twice as much for the exact same cup of coffee.

The next step was to then weigh the coffee quality and the price against the durability and overall craftsmanship. Was the coffee maker more affordable because it was made from subpar materials? Would it potentially break or lose its integrity after just a few uses?

Lastly, after all of this was taken into account, we then looked at aesthetics. Did the vacuum coffee maker feature a minimalist design or was it intricately crafted? Was it potentially a great conversation piece or just another coffee brewer?


The 7 Best Vacuum Coffee Makers: Side-By-Side


Name & Price

Notes/Features



Bodum K1218-16 Pebo Vacuum Coffee Maker

Check Latest Price
+ Relatively affordable
+ Minimalist design
+ Consistently produces a rich tasting brew

Handle could be sturdier



HARIO Technica Three Cup Coffee Siphon

Check Latest Price
+ Affordably priced
+ Sturdy craftsmanship

* Not everyone will love cloth filters



Yama Glass 8 Cup Stovetop Coffee Siphon

Check Latest Price
+ Compact design
+ 32 ounce and 20 ounce versions

* Not everyone will love cloth filters

Not as durable as some competitors



Kendal Glass Tabletop Siphon Coffee Maker

Check Latest Price

+ Affordably priced

* Almost identical in appearance to the HARIO Technica
* Not everyone will love cloth filters

Not as durable as some competitors



Nispira Belgian Luxury Balance Siphon Coffee Maker

Check Latest Price
+ Exceptional craftsmanship
+ Great conversation piece
+ Metal parts instead of plastic

* Luxury price for a luxury design
* Higher price doesn’t mean better tasting coffee

Vacuum Coffee Maker In-Depth Reviews

Now that we’ve shown you what we consider to be the 5 best vacuum coffee makers, let’s go into detail about what’s so great (or not so great) about each of them.

Bodum K1218-16 Pebo Vacuum Coffee Maker – Our Top Pick

As we said before, the Bodum K1218-16 Pebo Vacuum Coffee Maker is definitely our top pick. Still, all things considered, it just barely managed to edge its way above some of the other vacuum coffee makers on our list.

The first things that initially drew our attention to this coffee maker was it fell into (what we considered to be) a reasonable price range. Initially, this wasn’t all that significant to us; however, our opinion changed after we had tested various vacuum coffee makers. The Bodum Pebo manages to brew coffee that tastes just as good (and often times better) that vacuum coffee makers that are two or three times more expensive.

When it comes to coffee makers and other appliances, we have to wonder what the manufacturer had to sacrifice in order to make their product cheaper for consumers.

In this regard, the most noticeable thing about the Bodum Pebo is the fact that it has one of the most minimalist designs out of all of the vacuum coffee makers that we looked at. This isn’t inherently a bad thing, sometimes simple is better. However, if you’re purchasing a vacuum coffee maker to be a brewer and a conversation piece, then the Bodum Pebo might not be the best choice.

The only other nitpick that we could make about the Bodum Pebo is that maybe the handle could be a bit sturdier. All in all, if you want a relatively affordable way to make an exceptional tasting cup of vacuum brewed coffee, then you can’t go wrong with the Bodum K1218-16 Pebo Vacuum Coffee Maker.

How to use the Pebo:

Making coffee using a Pebo is a bit more technical than say, an ordinary French press. That being said, it is a rewarding process, and quite a spectacle to perform if you have some guests over. 

  • Start by removing the upper glass chamber from the bottom, and make sure that your filter is in place by securing the spring on the glass lip of the neck. Set it aside on the holder while you focus on the next task.
  • Next, place the bottom glass chamber on your stove or heat source, but don’t turn it on yet. 
  • Add water to the chamber – about 120ml of water for every cup of coffee you want to make. When you’re satisfied with the volume, turn on your stove to medium to high heat.
  • While the water heats, grind your beans to about the same consistency that you would use for ordinary filter or pour-over coffee. You can even go slightly finer for added flavor extraction, but don’t overdo it or you risk it all turning to sludge and blocking up the filter.
  • Measure out your coffee. Use about 7g of grinds per cup of coffee that you intend to make. The brew ratio used by professional baristas is 60g of grinds per liter of water.
  • Once the water has started to boil, insert the top glass chamber into the bottom one. Use a bit of pressure to secure it but don’t press too hard or you risk damaging the entire device.
  • Once the water starts boiling, you’ll see it leave the bottom chamber and enter the top one. At this point, add in your coffee grinds to the top chamber, give it a gentle stir, and keep it on the heat for about 45 seconds.
  • Then, take it off the heat and let it rest. As the glass starts to cool, a vacuum develops and pulls the coffee through the filter into the bottom chamber.
  • Once this process is complete, remove the top chamber, set it on the holder, and the brew left in the bottom chamber is now ready to be served.

As we mentioned above, you want to use around 120ml of water for every cup of coffee you intend to make. Since the Pebo has a capacity of one liter, you can get around eight cups per brew, which, personally, I think is plenty. Of course, the more water you use, the longer it will take to brew. But even if you’re maxing the Pebo out, it will still only take a maximum of 10 minutes to complete. This means that Pebo isn’t ideal for making coffee first thing in the morning before you dash off to work, but it is great for making coffee at your leisure. 

Since the Pebo is pretty fragile all things considered, and operating it is a bit of an art and a science, it’s not really the type of contraption that you want to keep around the family home with a bunch of kids running around. If you have a family and want some good coffee with the same serving capacity, something hardier and long-lasting, like a Moka Pot from Bialetti is going to be better suited to the task.

Ideally, you want to invest in a Pebo if you’re a coffee fanatic and enjoy the finer minutiae of making coffee. If you’re someone who hosts guests frequently then it will also appeal to you, as brewing coffee with the Pebo is something of a performance.

What sets the Pebo apart from other vacuum coffee makers on this list is consistency when it comes to brewing. Its minimalist design removes a lot of the variability and complexity from the brewing process, meaning that brewing is simple, predictable, and repeatable. The body itself is slightly bigger than the Yama coffee maker and made from higher quality materials.

You may have read that the Pebo is the next iteration of Bodum’s previous vacuum coffee maker model, the SANTOS, but don’t be fooled – they’re the exact same product. What feels like a difference in size, quality, or brew strength is just marketing.

While the Pebo is a wonderful vacuum coffee maker, it’s not suitable for all types of coffee. If you’re someone who enjoys espresso and is thinking of just grinding up your favorite beans and brewing them with a Pebo, think again. I personally tried this only to discover that using darker roasts results in an extremely bitter cup of coffee – more than is enjoyable. 

HARIO Technica Three Cup Coffee Siphon – The Runner-Up

The HARIO Technica Three Cup Coffee Siphon is the runner-up in our vacuum coffee maker ranking and it definitely gave our top pick a good fight. In fact, we can definitely understand if the HARIO Technica is someone’s top pick.

One of the things that the HARIO Technica has going for it, is the fact that it is affordably priced compared to similar devices in this niche. Since we love it, you know that there are obviously a slew of great things about it. The most evident ones are its sturdy craftsmanship, its simplistic design, the great tasting coffee that it makes.

There is one polarizing feature that it has that definitely contributed to it being our runner-up – the cloth filter. Not to brag or anything but we’re coffee aficionados, so we definitely know that reusable cloth filters do have their benefits. However, these benefits don’t exist in a vacuum (no pun intended) and so they have to be weighed against the negative factors.

Since they are reusable, cloth filters are more economical than paper filters; however, they also absorb more of the delicious coffee oils compared to a metal or plastic filter. Perhaps one of the main reasons why people love cloth filters is the fact that they drastically reduce the amount of “coffee mud” in the bottom of your cup. On the other hand, one of the main reasons why people dislike cloth filters is because they are annoying to clean.

How to use the Hario Coffee Siphon:

Using the Hario Siphon is quite similar to the Pebo, except for two major differences. Instead of using a stovetop as the primary source of heat, the Hario makes use of a burner placed directly beneath the lower glass carafe. And instead of a reusable steel filter, you need to use paper or cloth filters every time, and this requires a bit of extra preparation. The process looks like this:

  • Start by separating the top carafe from the bottom and placing it in the holder.
  • Next, unscrew the filter holder, insert a paper or cloth filter, and then re-screw the contraption.
  • After making sure the filter is tightened, insert it into the top carafe.
  • Grind your beans to the desired consistency, then add them to the top carafe.
  • Fill the bottom carafe with water (again, about 120ml per cup of coffee you intend to make), and then set it on the holder above the bunsen burner.
  • Light the bunsen burner and adjust the flame to light a medium heat. Once the water begins to boil, place the top carafe on the bottom one.
  • As the water begins to enter the top carafe, stir it gently to ensure even saturation, then simply wait until the bottom carafe is empty.
  • When this happens, turn off the bunsen burner to allow the coffee to cool. As it does, pressure will force the brew back into the bottom carafe.
  • Remove the top carafe and spent grinds, then the coffee is ready to serve.

Performance and quantitative measurements:

The Hario Technica Three Cup Coffee Siphon is quite a bit smaller than the Pebo. It’s available in two different sizes – 600ml and 360ml – which is enough to brew five and three cups of coffee respectively. Not bad, but definitely not as large as the Pebo’s eight cups of brewing potential. That being said, the lowest volume means that from grind to pouring, the entire brewing process using the Hario is a lot faster. And while the standard model works with cloth filters, you can switch it up with a steel filter like this one from Diguo if you’re a bit more environmentally conscious and want something more reusable.

Best and worst use cases:

Given the Hario’s compact stature, this vacuum coffee maker is ideal for smaller kitchens. If you live in a small apartment with your significant other or one or two roommates, then the Hario is the ideal siphon coffee maker. For larger groups, you might want to look into either a large vacuum coffee maker or a different type of coffee maker altogether. The Bodum French Press, for example, can brew up to 1.5 liters of coffee at a time should you need larger volumes of coffee. In terms of aesthetics, however, the Hario is hard to beat and will look great alongside any number of modern kitchen appliances. 

What sets it apart from competitors:

The first and most obvious thing that sets the Hario apart from its competitors, especially the Pebo and Nispira Syphon Coffee Maker, is the price. You save quite a lot of money while still getting the same functionality and, some would argue, a more attractive design. In terms of longevity, the Hario is also way tougher than other vacuum coffee makers, and the glass is unlikely to break from frequent usage (that doesn’t give you license to drop it on the floor, however).

Product evolution/compared to previous iterations:

No previous iterations.

Personal experience/personal usage tips:

While the burner that comes with the Hario does the job, I would suggest switching it out with a butane burner. Avoid using isopropyl alcohol (also known as rubbing alcohol) as a fuel source as it doesn’t burn hot enough. If you can see if you can find denatured alcohol or ethanol. It’s quite cheap, burns consistently hot enough to see your brew through to completion.  

Yama Glass 8 Cup Stovetop Coffee Siphon – The Compact Choice

“Small’ is definitely the keyword whenever you’re talking about the Yama Glass Stovetop Coffee Siphon.

It comes in two sizes; a 32 ounce version and a smaller 20 ounce version. It is small in stature, being more compact than the small Bodum Pebo. Last but not least, it also has a relatively small price tag.

This is another vacuum coffee maker that has a relatively simplistic design; however, we found that it didn’t seem to be as sturdy as our top pick or the runner-up. This was perhaps most evident in the seal between the chambers. It didn’t fail us while we were using it but it is safe to assume that it would cause problems before the HARIO Technica and the Bodum Pebo.

Last but not least, it is worth mentioning that it uses a cloth filter – it’s up to you to decide if that is a positive or a negative.

How to use the Yama 8 Cup Siphon Coffee Maker:

  • Add water to the bottom carafe and then place the carafe on your stovetop.
  • Prep the filter by attaching a disposable filter, then thread the chain through the top carafe and secure it in place on the lip of the stem.
  • Add the top carafe to the bottom carafe and make sure it fits snugly.
  • In the meantime, grind your coffee to the desired consistency.
  • Once the water begins to boil and passes into the top carafe, add the ground coffee, give it a stir and then let it steep for a minute.
  • Next, remove the whole device from the stove or just turn the stove off. Once the bottom carafe begins to cool, it will suck the brew through the filter and collect at the bottom.
  • Remove the top carafe, and your coffee is now ready to serve. 

Performance and quantitative measurements:

In terms of volume, the Yama is beat only by the Bodum Pedo. With a 950ml capacity, you can easily brew eight cups of coffee, enough for the whole family. Realistically, you probably won’t need to brew that much, but it’s good to have the option available. It’s said that the glass used to construct the Yama is thinner than the Pedo, but after using this vacuum coffee maker multiple times we can’t say that it makes any difference to the overall design quality.

Best and worst use cases:

As we mentioned above, the Yama is ideal for large groups. So if you’re planning a brunch and want to put on a show, then this is definitely a vacuum coffee maker to consider. If you live alone or are a couple then having such a large coffee maker is going to be a bit of a burden, especially when it comes to clean. We suggest using the Yama Siphon Three Cup Tabletop Coffee Maker instead. While you can’t use the model with a stove, it’s small enough to work on your dinner table, and it’s small size will give you a lot more control over the steep time. If you’re determined to stick to the stovetop model but still find the eight-cup too big, then check out Yama’s five-cup version.

What sets it apart from competitors:

When it comes to affordability without sacrificing on quality, it’s hard to beat Yama’s vacuum coffee makers. They’re quite similar in many respects to some of the models offered by Hario, but overall they’re sturdier and less prone to breakage.

Product evolution/compared to previous iterations:

No previous iterations.

Personal experience/personal usage tips:

We found that when using the Yama vacuum coffee maker, sometimes turbulent bubbling occurred in the upper carafe. If you see that this starts to happen, turn down the heat on your stove to reduce the boil and stabilize the temperature. It’s also really helpful if you have a thermometer on hand so that you can closely and accurately monitor the temperature of the brew. 

Kendal Glass Tabletop Siphon Coffee Maker – The Other Runner-Up

Yes, technically the HARIO Technica is the vacuum coffee maker that we gave second place to but if we’re being perfectly honest, that title could have easily gone to the Kendal Glass Tabletop Siphon Coffee Maker.

This isn’t really a surprise, since design-wise, the Kendal Siphon Coffee Maker seems like a carbon copy of the HARIO Technica. In fact, we first thought that we had made a mistake and were brewing with the wrong device during our testing!

This is part of the reason why the Kendal Siphon Coffee Maker couldn’t beat the HARIO Technica in our ranking, it just doesn’t do anything better than its twin. Granted, it is noticeably cheaper than the HARIO Technica but we can’t give it extra points for that because the materials are noticeably cheaper and the craftsmanship doesn’t seem up to par.

Still, if you like the HARIO Technica but it is out of your price range, then the Kendal Siphon Coffee Maker may be what you’re looking for.

How to use the Kendal Glass Tabletop Siphon Coffee Maker:

The Kendal Glass Tabletop Siphon Coffee Maker is, for all intents and purposes, the exact same model as the Hario vacuum coffee maker, but with different branding. Using it requires a very similar process:

  • Start by separating the top carafe from the bottom and placing it in the holder.
  • Next, unscrew the filter holder, insert a cloth filter, and then re-screw it into place. Insert it into the top carafe and use the wire to secure it in place.
  • Grind your beans and then add it into the top carafe.
  • Fill the bottom carafe with water and then place it above the burner (we recommend using butane gas as a fuel source as it burns more evenly).
  • Once the water begins to boil, secure the top carafe into the bottom one.
  • Once boiling water is forced into the top chamber with the grinds, give it a stir to ensure even saturation, and wait until most of the water has transferred.
  • Next, turn off the burner and allow the bottom carafe to cool and extract the finished brew back down.
  • Remove the top carafe and put the spent grinds to one side.
  • Enjoy your coffee.

Performance and quantitative measurements:

While cloth filters are the standard type of filter used on the Kendal Glass Tabletop Siphon Coffee Maker, we found that switching to paper filters made quite a difference when it came to the flavors and aroma of the finished brew. 

Best and worst use cases:

Given the Kendal’s capacity for brewing a maximum of five cups of coffee, it’s ideally used for families and small dinner parties. For any bigger gatherings, you’ll need to upgrade to an eight-cup device (the siphon coffee maker by Yama is great in this regard). Since brewing coffee this way takes up to fifteen minutes every time, you might want to consider investing in something like a Moka Pot, or even an espresso machine if you need your coffee delivered in a hurry.

Nispira Belgian Luxury Balance Siphon Coffee Maker – The Real Conversation Piece

The Nispira Belgian Luxury Balance Siphon Coffee Maker definitely has one thing over the rest of the coffee makers on our list, it is absolutely the best conversation piece.

Remember when we mentioned that some vacuum coffee makers have price tags that are double or even triple the cost of our top pick (the Bodum Pebo)? Yeah, well the Nispira Siphon Coffee Maker is one of those.

Still, we were pleasantly surprised to find out that you aren’t just paying for the flashy (and arguably gaudy) design. The Nispira Siphon Coffee Maker is a well made piece of equipment that will definitely last for a long time if you take care of it.

In addition to this, many of its components are made of metal – a lot of the vacuum coffee makers on the market use plastic instead. So it can definitely stand up better to general wear and tear.

All in all, the Nispira Siphon Coffee Maker brews a great tasting cup of coffee and it is great to look at. However, it is a bit sad to see that cheaper and less complex machines can easily brew up a similar tasting or even better cup of coffee.

How to use the Nispira Belgian Luxury Balance Siphon Coffee Maker:

This siphon coffee maker works a little bit differently to the other ones we’ve mentioned on the list so far. Here’s it works:

  • Place the burner on the right hand side of the base and suspend the gold chamber above it on the stand.
  • Fill the chamber with about 400ml of water.
  • Place the receiving carafe on the opposite side and fill it with about 35g of ground coffee.
  • Attach the transfer tube from the gold carafe and insert it into the receiving carafe, making sure that the filter is sitting in the coffee grounds. Place the cover on the receiving carafe once you’re done.
  • Open the cap on the burner and then light it.
  • The water in the gold carafe will start to boil and transfer through the tube into the receiving carafe filled with coffee grounds.
  • Kill the flame and let the carafe cool. As it does so the finished brew will be sucked back into the golden carafe.
  • When the entire process is finished, open the spigot attached to the golden carafe to pour your coffee, and enjoy.

Best and worst use cases:

The Nispira Belgian Siphon coffee maker is definitely designed to not only brew amazing coffee but also function as a stylish kitchen accessory. It’s ideal if you’re looking for a beautiful addition to an already stylized kitchen, especially if you’re not brewing coffee for too many people. While good-looking, it’s not the most practical coffee maker out there. If you want something more no-frills and practical but with the same brewing capacity, then we recommend trying the Hario Technica Three Cup Coffee Siphon.

Product evolution/compared to previous iterations:

No previous iterations.

Personal experience/personal usage tips:

While this device does make a pretty good cup of coffee, we found that It’s not really the most practical device or well-suited for large batches. It’s ideal for making about two cups of coffee per brew. It might make you feel like you’re a scientist in a steampunk novel, but overall it’s definitely more of a decorative piece than a serious coffee maker. 


A Buyer’s Guide to Vacuum Coffee Makers: Here’s What to Look For When Buying

If you want to shop around for the perfect vacuum coffee maker on your own, here are a few things that you should keep in mind.

  • Brew size will vary between brands and models. This is perhaps the most obvious thing to keep in mind because this can be said for any type of coffee maker. We found that the average range from vacuum coffee maker brew sizes was 3 to 8 cups.
  • Standalone or stovetop is definitely something that you should keep in mind. Far too many buyers have unknowingly purchased stovetop devices when they actually wanted a standalone version. We haven’t found any significant difference in flavor between these two styles, so we just recommend that you go with the one that suits your needs best.
  • Coffee maker or conversation piece; which do you want more? Vacuum coffee makers are definitely not in the running for cheapest brewing method but even then, there are some models that are way more expensive and intricate than others. Do you just want a simple device that can brew a great cup of coffee or do you also want a conversation piece that you can brag about?

Vacuum Coffee Maker – FAQs

What Type Of Filter Is Best For Vacuum Coffee?

The correct answer will vary depending on what you want in your cup. Paper and cloth filters have the benefit of greatly reducing the amount of residue that make it into your cup. However, they also absorb a lot of the oils from your coffee beans and the oils are what give your coffee most of its flavor.

On the other hand, metal and plastic filters won’t stop those oils from making their way into your cup. However, your coffee will most likely have some residue in it.

What Does Vacuum Coffee Taste Like?

Like we said before, a vacuum coffee maker uses immersion style brewing. So, you can expect to get rich flavors in your cup, especially if you use a medium-coarse grind size for your coffee.

Like we stated previously, you should also keep in mind that the type of filter that your vacuum coffee maker uses will also affect the final taste that you get.


How to Brew Coffee With A Vacuum Coffee Maker

Here’s a simple, easy to follow guide on how to brew coffee with a vacuum coffee maker.

  1. Preheat the water that you are going to be using for brewing. This step is optional if you’re using a stovetop brewer. However,  if you’re using a standalone brewer that has alcohol wick burner, we highly recommend that you don’t skip this step.
  2. Using your scale or other measuring device, determine the necessary amount of water and ground coffee. For your first time, we recommend a ratio of 100ml of water for every 7g of ground coffee.
  3. Place the water in the bottom chamber and apply the heat. The water will start to boil and then make its way into the top chamber.
  4. Then add the coffee to the water that is in the top chamber. Make sure that all of the coffee grounds are submerged, give the mixture a light stir once all of the water has made it way into the top chamber (we recommend using a wooden spoon or stirrer).
  5. Start a timer for one to one-and-a-half minutes and wait until it has elapsed. Then, turn off the heat source and then give the mixture a few quick (and careful) stirs.
  6. Now watch as gravity and that cool vacuum effect draws the coffee back down into the bottom chamber.
  7. That’s it! Once the coffee has finished filtering through, all you have to do is pour it into your cup and enjoy.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *