VA388 Black Eagle T3 - Big downgrade in espresso, how to nail the temperature?

Hey there,

I’ve recently received the new machine for our shop, a 2-group VA388 Black Eagle T3 with gravitech. A massive improvement from our old La Marzocco Mistral and then a GS-3 we used recently, on paper that is.

Having all the black eagle controls over temperature are great but bringing new challenges to dial in the coffee we use.

As soon as we started pulling shots the coffee was tasting extremely bitter, that was with all the set points set to 93°c.

I’ve been adjusting the different temperature set points to try and get a more balanced shot but without much success. Current settings are as follow:


  • Boiler setpoint: 89.6
  • Boiler temp: 96.6
  • Group setpoint: 83
  • Group temp: 82.5


  • Boiler setpoint: 90.8
  • Boiler temp: 96.1
  • Group setpoint: 83
  • Group temp: 82.1

I noticed that the offset between the boiler setpoint and actual actual temperature varies a lot, as soon as we start pulling a few shots in a row the realtime temperature spikes up and reaches as far as +7°c from the setpoint.

Anyone has some experience with this machine and tips for this?