So you appreciate good coffee but don’t have the budget for an expensive espresso machine, what can you do? We’ve taken a look at two upstart devices: the Aeropress, which debuted in 2005, and the Minipresso, the result of a successful Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign in 2014.

The Aeropress resembles a giant syringe. Hot water is mixed with ground coffee, then pushed through a paper filter into a cup. The result is similar to coffee you’d get from a drip or filter.

The Minipresso looks like a small thermos flask with a bulge. Ground coffee is placed in a basket at one end, hot water into a tank at the other, and the bulge becomes a pump handle used to force water through the grinds. It claims to turn out a double shot of espresso coffee complete with crema.

Technical writers George Block and Erin Bennett – both experienced coffee drinkers and home baristas – made and tasted a few coffees. After they’d stopped shaking they shared their thoughts.