Philips 5400 LatteGo Review: The Best Philips Has To Offer

After working as a professional barista for many years, Arne Preuss founded Coffeeness.

Newsflash: the new Philips 5400 Series is a significant improvement in terms of foaming noise. At least, that's what the Dutch manufacturer claims. So, I opened my ears extra wide during my Philips 5400 LatteGo review.

Newsflash: the new Philips 5400 Series is a significant improvement in terms of foaming noise. At least, that’s what the Dutch manufacturer claims. So, I opened my ears extra wide during my Philips 5400 LatteGo review.

I mean, it used to be pretty much impossible to have a conversation next to a Philips machine as it was making milk foam.

Other machines roar aggressively while grinding beans, or underline their pump pressure with a corresponding soundscape. However, throughout my super automatic espresso machine guide 2022, Philips wanted to be the center of attention while foaming.

Admittedly, this only applies to machines that rely on the tubeless LatteGo system. Still, this automatic frother is now part of the manufacturer’s standard setup. Anyway, this system is one reason why Philips, as the parent brand, now has a livelier image than the in-house premium brand Saeco.

However, the LatteGo system, or rather its loudness, was also the reason for endless customer complaints. Apparently, Philips has made it loud enough for long enough.

Still, the question remains: is this fully automatic coffee machine really necessary? I mean, wouldn’t it have been enough to clandestinely convert an earlier model? 

We were provided with the EP5447/90 by Philips. Of course, that doesn’t change the fact that I’ll be brutally honest, as always.

Philips 5400 LatteGo (4300 LatteGo version on Amazon)

This fully automatic coffee machine listens to the customers!

Much quieter milk frothing system

Easy to operate

Fantastic ceramic burr grinder

Makes great espresso

Good price-performance ratio

Milk foam isn't up to scratch

Philips 5400 LatteGo Review Overview

If it weren’t for the fresh approach to milk frothing, I wouldn’t be talking about this machine in such detail at all. At least, I don’t think so.

What’s always been special about LatteGo is that the milk container consists of only three parts. You can completely disassemble the thing , then simply rinse the parts under running water during cleaning.

You couldn’t even dream of doing that with any other integrated system. If you were to disassemble the hoses and nozzles to a similar extent, the coffee machine would be broken. Still, there are a couple of drawbacks to Philips’ ingenious idea:

  1. You can’t regulate the consistency of the milk foam
  2. Foaming has traditionally been excessively loud

On the one hand, that foaming roar comes down to the huge openings. These can’t be soundproofed as well as small nozzles. On the other hand, the container must have been badly designed from the start. Because that’s exactly what Philips has now tinkered with and completely redesigned.

The realignment has definitely improved things: previously, the foaming noise reached an adventurous 90 decibels. In case you’re wondering, that’s the equivalent of a wood milling machine at full pelt. 

With the redesigned milk container, we’re down to 72 decibels. In other words, the sawmill has been replaced by a particularly loud car engine.

Philips 5400 LatteGo First Impressions

A front view of the Philips 5400 LatteGo fully automatic espresso machine with drinks.

Even if this fully automatic coffee machine had only turned out to be pointless, you have to hand it to Philips. One look at the 5400 LatteGo is all it takes to see that the Dutch manufacturer knows how to do a smart upgrade! 

For one thing, they’ve been paying attention to the competition. The colorful picture control panel was first implemented by Siemens in the EQ.500 integral about a year ago. And it quickly proved to be a popular operating concept among people looking for simplicity.

Furthermore, Philips obviously copied the idea of having 12 grinder adjustment settings from DeLonghi espresso machines, especially considering the price. Philips’ standard is usually five settings.

Apart from the “Innovative Frothing Chamber” (i.e. the milk container system), the entire EP range is based on the same factors and settings for temperature, coffee strength and taste. Most of the innovations relate to operation and the user interface. Nevertheless, the obvious leap in quality and functionality from the old 5000 to the new 5400 is clear:

 Philips 5400 Series LatteGo EP5447/90Philips 5000 Series LatteGo EP5335/10
Number of Grinder Adjustment Settings125
Specialty Drinks128
User InterfaceColor touch buttons, color TFT displayButtons, display
User ProfilesYesNo
Water ReservoirFront loadingTop loading

All of these are mostly “minor details” – at least compared to the essentials. I’m talking about coffee quality or the ability to adjust temperature, fill quantity and coffee strength in three or five levels.

But these points are just as important to buyers as decent coffee strength or easy cleaning. And “usability” or user-friendliness seems to be a very important factor for Philips lately.

This is also noticeable in the subtle details. For example, the new water tank, which you can (thankfully) remove from the front, is a bit more flexible than the old one.

Accordingly, it’s easier to get a good grip on the thing. That means you run less risk of it slipping out of your hand when you want to replace the water filter or refill it with fresh water.

Philips 5400 LatteGo Features

Let’s keep the ball rolling in this Philips 5400 LatteGo by taking a closer look at the features I’ve already mentioned, and a few others too.

User Interface

Colorful pictures on a control panel always look a bit like a burger bar menu. However, they make general operation and adjusting settings ultra-easy.

There are six direct selection buttons for espresso, coffee, americano, cappuccino, cafe au lait and latte macchiato. The rest of the coffee specialties can be found in the menu.

A closeup of the Philips 5400 LatteGo's user interface.

Using the respective buttons, you can adjust your desired brewing temperature, aroma strength and fill quantity. Then, you can save everything or store it in one of the user profiles.

Ceramic Grinder

As I’ve mentioned elsewhere, Philips has really upped the ante by equipping its 3200, 4300 and 5400 machines with ceramic grinders. Seriously, you’ll have a hard time finding another super automatic at this price point with a high-end feature like this. 

You can easily adjust he 12-level ceramic flat burr grinder via a dial in the bean hopper. What’s more, ceramic burrs are notable for their durability and quietness in operation. By the way, I measured the Philips grinder at 74 decibels, which actually sounds pleasantly quiet or average.

More importantly, ceramic burrs don’t suffer from the heat transfer that can plague their stainless steel counterparts. That means you won’t compromise your coffee beans’ delicate aroma during grinding. 

LatteGo Milk System

I’ve already spent a lot of time talking about the Philips LatteGo system and how it’s supposedly been improved.

Even with the new LatteGo system, you can only prepare one latte macchiato or cappuccino at a time. That said, the problem doesn’t exist with café crema or espresso.

This is the general disadvantage of the tubeless design: you can’t fit two cups under the comparatively huge spout, which is positioned awkwardly on the side.

Anyway, I’ll get into the details of using the automatic milk frother later in this Philips 5400 LatteGo review.

Aroma Extract System

If you’ve spent much time researching automatic coffee makers, you’ll know manufacturers love to dream up important-sounding language for fairly standard features. The Aroma Extract system is a case in point. Let’s see what Philips has to say about this:

“The Aroma Extract system intelligently strikes the optimum balance between brewing temperature and aroma extraction by keeping the water temperature between 90 and 98°C, while regulating the water flow rate …”

Okay, so we’re talking about a feature that’s kind of essential in any espresso machine. Otherwise it wouldn’t be able to make coffee. I guess it’s good to know Philips cares!

Aroma Strength Settings

I actually really like the way you can adjust settings on the Philips 5400 LatteGo. The machine features a coffee customizer that works just like an EQ – there are sliders for adjusting coffee intensity and volume for milk and espresso. 

Anyway, as far as aroma strength settings go, you can choose from five levels, which gives you quite a bit of leeway. When you factor in those 12 grind adjustment settings, you should be able to dial in your espresso nicely.

Water Reservoir

Arne showing the removable water reservoir from the Philips 5400 LatteGo.

As I mentioned earlier in my Philips 5400 LatteGo review, the manufacturer has made noticeable improvements to its water reservoir. Not only does the plastic tank feel easier to get a hold of, it’s also convenient to access via the front of the machine. 

While that might not sound like a big deal, it’ll mean a lot if space is tight in your kitchen. Struggling with a rear-mounted water tank when your machine sits under overhead cabinets gets old really quickly!

AquaClean Filter

I shouldn’t need to tell you that using fresh, filtered water for coffee is essential to achieving good results. With that in mind, I’m happy to see that you can install an AquaClean filter in the Philips 5400 LatteGo’s water reservoir. 

Of course, the manufacturer likes to talk up the fact that you’ll only have to descale the machine once in a blue moon with the filter installed. However, I take that claim with a particularly large grain of salt. Depending on your water hardness, I’d still plan on descaling on a regular basis.

Removable Brew Group

As with the majority of super automatics, the Philips 5400 LatteGo employs a fully removable brew group. You can access the unit via a side panel door, and taking the thing out shouldn’t pose any problems. 

That’s good, because you should get into the habit of regularly removing the brew group and cleaning it thoroughly. After all, this sophisticated piece of kit is where all the magic happens, so you should keep it spick and span!

Spout Height

Again, an adjustable dispensing spout is a pretty standard feature of automatic espresso machines these days. Still, it’s worth mentioning that you can adjust the Philips dispensing spout to give up to 5.7 inches (14.5 centimeters) of headroom. 

That should be more than enough when you want to brew into your favorite travel mug. On the other hand, you can bring the spout down to just 3.3 inches (8.5 centimeters) when you’re brewing into espresso cups. That way, you’ll cut down on splashes and preserve the all-important crema.

Specialty Coffees

The Philips 5400 LatteGo offers a pretty standard menu of specialty coffees. All the greatest hits are here, including cappuccino, flat white and latte macchiato. There’s no espresso macchiato or cortado coffee setting, but it shouldn’t be too difficult to create your own version then save the settings

Of course, in order to successfully prepare all the aforementioned drinks, subtle adjustments to milk foam consistency are essential. I’ll discuss whether or not this machine can pull that off later in my Philips 5400 LatteGo review.

User Profiles

If you’re the only coffee drinker in the house, having access to user profiles probably won’t excite you. However, if multiple family members plan on using the Philips 5400 LatteGo,  you’re gonna want to make full use of this feature. 

Remember how I talked about crafting your own version of an espresso macchiato? Well, imagine coming downstairs the next morning to find all those hard-won settings had disappeared. Fortunately, the 5400 offers four user profiles, so you’ll never have to experience the anger, frustration and despair that would ensue. Well, I hope not … 

How to Use the Philips 5400 LatteGo Fully Automatic Espresso Machine

Between pouring in the beans and dispensing coffee into the cups, a lot can go wrong with a super automatic. That’s why it’s important to start with the best coffee beans for automatic espresso machines. Avoid using overly oily beans – they’ll wreak havoc on the machine’s delicate inner workings.

Arne looking on fondly as the Philips 5400 LatteGo prepares espresso.

Once you’ve added beans to the hopper and filled the reservoir with fresh water, you’re ready to start making drinks. Trust me, the Philips 5400 LatteGo is incredibly easy to operate, and the intuitive user interface makes the whole process run smoothly. 

In fact, I’d recommend putting the user manual in a drawer, rolling up your sleeves and diving right in. What could possibly go wrong?

Making Espresso and Coffee: Convincing Taste With No Surprises

Our in-house Coffee for Fully Automatic Machines by Coffeeness thrives on its chocolatey flavor profile. It plays this off in both espresso (or ristretto) and coffee (or lungo and americano). That is, if the machine plays along and can deliver the appropriate strength settings.

I’m truly proud of my fairtrade coffee, and I can’t wait for you to try it. It’ll be available to my North American readers soon, so stay tuned!

During my Philips 5400 LatteGo review, I noticed that the machine can bring out this profile really well, even if there are differences between the coffee specialties. Once again, I’m less than enthusiastic about any fully automatic coffee machine drink that purports to be “coffee.”

To prepare anything at all that remotely approaches the full body of a real coffee, you’ll want to use my hack:

Instead of setting the Philips to brew one coffee at 7 ounces (200 milliliters), set it to brew two coffees at 3.5 ounces (100 milliliters) – and then pour them both into one cup.

By doing this, the machine produces two portions of ground coffee and also runs water through each individual puck twice. The other way around, it would just be more water to the same amount of beans.

A closeup of the Philips 5400 LatteGo used grounds container.

Still, even with this trick, I find the café crema and its relatives once again too thin. that said, the coffee has a very thick crema, which should indicate higher intensity.

This clearly shows how the crema from a fully automatic machine is an optical illusion, kidding you into believing you have a perfect extraction!

However, I have nothing at all against the espresso from the Philips. It’s complex, full-bodied and aromatic. Plus, it’s delivered at a good temperature and makes a drinkable, fresh impression immediately after preparation.

That’s why I always recommend extending espresso with a shot of water to make an americano. This way you’ll have more flavor in your cup than if you leave it to the machine to make coffee automatically.

Anyway, if it’s drip-style coffee you’re after, check out a few of the machines in my coffee maker guide 2022. Trust me, these things have come a long way in recent years!

Making Milk-Based Drinks: Testing the Promise

Let’s again let Philips itself have its say. The manufacturer “justifies” its new 5400 series like this:

“The new LatteGo system is now much quieter in operation than previous models. The adjustment has also improved the quality and quantity of the milk foam.”

We’ve already confirmed the first point for the most part. However, the marketing department should have perhaps stayed quiet about the second bit. Because there’s still room for improvement in both the filling quantity and the quality of the promised foam.

A tall glass of freshly prepared milk foam from the Philips 5400 LatteGo.

If you’re making a café au lait, cappuccino or latte, whether or not you get a full cup really depends on what you’re using. As for the classic Ikea latte glass, the maximum fill level definitely falls short.

In addition, the milk foam resembles a moonscape. The pores are quite large, and the creaminess is, accordingly, rather mediocre.

You can eliminate most of the bubbles and craters by firmly knocking your cup on a solid surface. However, you won’t get more creaminess whatever you do.

The Philips 5400 LatteGo preparing a latte macchiato.

In general, milk foam from the Philips 5400 is pretty old school. In fact, I feel like it corresponds to an idea of coffee with milk as we used to have it. That said, this doesn’t make either the cappuccino or the latte macchiato worse. In fact, both taste good and the machine delivers them at a decent temperature.

It’s just that it’s always noticeable when a fully automatic coffee machine comes around the corner with coffee specialties that seem a bit out of time.

As I mentioned, this also applies to the missing (automatic) Extra Shot function, which would have done my latte a lot of good.

Philips 5400 LatteGo Coffee Machine Cleaning

While coffee and other beverages seem less modern than elsewhere, Philips sets a very good example when it comes to cleaning and descaling.

The AquaClean filter obviously does its job, the removable brew group is easy to rinse and the water tank is conveniently removed from the front. Plus, the reservoir can be cleaned and refilled in no time at all.

A closeup of the removable brew group from the Philips 5400 LatteGo.

What needs to be rinsed is rinsed automatically. What’s more, the clear display comes to your aid in guiding you through the cleaning process or descaling program.

By the way, the manufacturer makes it extremely clear in the user manual that you should only use Philips Decalcifier in the machine. Otherwise, you’ll void your warranty.

If the Philips EP5400 were a total failure in all other areas, it could at least prove what modern fully automatic machines always have over older models: cleanliness is easier to achieve than anything else. If you let your machine get nasty, it’s your own fault if something goes wrong!

Philips 5400 LatteGo Coffee Maker Specifications

 Philips 5400 LatteGo
ManufacturerPhilips
NameEP5447 LatteGo
Housing materialPlastic / stainless steel
Colors/designs availableBlack
Removable brew groupYes
Milk foam systemAutomatic LatteGo system
User interfaceColor TFT display, buttons
AppNo
User profilesYes
Water tank capacity61.0 oz / 1.8 l
Number of boilers1
Maximum spout height5.7 in / 14.5 cm
Minimum spout height3.3 in / 8.5 cm
GrinderCeramic flat burr grinder
Number of grind adjustment settings12
Number of bean containers1
Bean container capacity9.7 oz / 275.0 g
Ground coffee bypassYes
Pot functionNo
Specialty drinks 12
Adjustable coffee strengthYes
Adjustable coffee temperatureYes
Adjustable milk foam temperatureNo
2-cup functionYes
Hot water functionYes
Hot milk functionYes
Water filter cartridgeYes
Weight17.6 lb / 8.0 kg
Dimensions (H x W x D)14.6 x 9.7 x 17.0 in x / 37.2 x 24.6 x 43.3 cm
Extras/miscellaneousInstruction manual, measuring scoop, water hardness test strip, water filter, grease tube, LatteGo storage lid
Current price on AmazonN/A

Philips 5400 LatteGo vs Other Super Automatics

I’ve already mentioned a few other machines in this Philips 5400 LatteGo review. Still, it couldn’t hurt to take a closer look at how the machine measures up to a handful of other super automatics.

Philips 5400 LatteGo vs LatteGo 3200

When I reviewed the Philips LatteGo 3200, I was actually pleasantly surprised. Sure, the machine was pretty darn noisy in  operation, and the cappuccino milk foam left a lot to be desired. However, for $799.00, I felt like this machine represented really good value for money. 

As we’ve seen, the 5400 LatteGo has quite a few necessary improvements, including a better (and quieter) milk system and a prettier user interface. Whether or not those justify spending more isn’t really for me to say.

See Also: Philips LatteGo 3200 Hands on Review 2022

Philips 5400 LatteGo vs Gaggia Cadorna Prestige

Costing $1,249.00 on Amazon, the Gaggia Cadorna Prestige is substantially more expensive than the Philips 5400 LatteGo. However, this Italian beauty represents a big jump in quality. As it turns out, you really do get what you pay for. 

I was really impressed by the Gaggia Cadorna Prestige during my review – the integrated milk carafe is amazing, and the milk foam quality is second-to-none. Plus, there are multiple adjustment settings for espresso and a ceramic flat burr grinder on board. The Italians really know their espresso – who knew?

See Also: Gaggia Cadorna Prestige Review 2022

Philips 5400 LatteGo vs DeLonghi Dinamica Plus

The DeLonghi Dinamica Plus is another Italian stallion that’s really hard to beat. In fact, this machine has become my default comparison device. Needless to say, there aren’t many super automatics that can compete with the Dinamica Plus, especially given its $1,599.95 price tag. 

The quality of espresso and milk foam from this machine are simply superb, and the touchscreen user interface just plain works. Add in the fact that the Dinamica Plus can make iced coffee, and you can see why this is Brad Pitt’s coffee maker of choice!

See Also: DeLonghi Dinamica Plus Hands on Review 2022

Philips 5400 LatteGo vs Other Super Automatics Comparison Chart

 Philips 5400 LatteGoPhilips 3200 LatteGoGaggia Cadorna PrestigeDeLonghi Dinamica Plus
ManufacturerPhilipsPhilipsGaggiaDeLonghi
NameEP5447 LatteGoEP3241/54 LatteGoCadorna PrestigeDinamica Plus
Housing materialPlastic / stainless steelPlastic / stainless steelStainless steelPlastic / stainless steel
Colors/designs availableBlackBlackAnthraciteTitanium
Removable brew groupYesYesYesYes
Milk foam systemAutomatic LatteGo systemAutomatic LatteGo systemIntegrated automatic carafeAutomatic LatteCrema system
User interfaceColor TFT display, buttonsButtons, lightsTFT color display, backlit buttonsColor TFT touchscreen
AppNoNoNoYes
User profilesYesNoYesYes
Water tank capacity61.0 oz / 1.8 l61.0 oz / 1.8 l50 oz / 1.5 l60.0 oz / 1.8 l
Number of boilers1111
Maximum spout height5.7 in / 14.5 cm5.7 in / 14.5 cm6.1 in / 15.5 cm5.3 in / 13.5 cm
Minimum spout height3.3 in / 8.5 cm3.3 in / 8.5 cm2.75 in / 7.0 cm3.3 in / 8.4 cm
GrinderCeramic flat burr grinderCeramic flat burr grinderCeramic flat burr grinderstainless steel conical burr grinder
Number of grind adjustment settings12121013
Number of bean containers1111
Bean container capacity9.7 oz / 275.0 g 8.8 oz / 250.0 g10.5 oz / 300.0 g10.5 oz / 300.0 g
Ground coffee bypassYesYesYesYes
Pot functionNoNoNoYes
Specialty drinks 1251416
Adjustable coffee strengthYesYesYesYes
Adjustable coffee temperatureYesYesYesYes
Adjustable milk foam temperatureNoNoNoNo
2-cup functionYesYesYesYes
Hot water functionYesYesYesYes
Hot milk functionYesYesYesYes
Water filter cartridgeYesYesYesYes
Weight17.6 lb / 8.0 kg17.6 lb / 8.0 kg21.16 lb / 9.6 kg21.0 lb / 9.5 kg
Dimensions (H x W x D)14.6 x 9.7 x 17.0 in x / 37.2 x 24.6 x 43.3 cm14.6 x 9.7 x 17 in / 37.1 x 24.6 x 43.3 cm14.96 x 10.23 x 17.32 in / 38.0 x 26.0 x 44.0 cm13.7 x 9.3 x 16.9 in / 34.8 x 23.6 x 42.9 cm
Extras/miscellaneousInstruction manual, measuring scoop, water hardness test strip, water filter, grease tube, LatteGo storage lidInstruction manual, measuring scoop, water hardness test strip, water filter, grease tube, LatteGo storage lidInstruction manual, grinder adjustment key, measuring spoon, grease tube, water filterInstruction manual
Current price on AmazonN/A$799.00$1,249.00$1,599.95

Verdict: Philips 5400 LatteGo Coffee Machine

Philips 5400 LatteGo (4300 LatteGo version on Amazon)

This fully automatic coffee machine listens to the customers!

Much quieter milk frothing system

Easy to operate

Fantastic ceramic burr grinder

Makes great espresso

Good price-performance ratio

Milk foam isn't up to scratch

At various points during my Philips 5400 LatteGo review, it became clear that we have to evaluate this fully automatic coffee machine on two levels: once as an independent, new machine, and once as an update to a whole series of predecessors.

As a standalone coffee machine, the 5400 is no revelation, but it is an ultra-solid affair – especially when we consider its price.

The espresso tastes very good, and the coffee becomes a little more passable after a few tweaks and tricks. As for milk foam, the cappuccino and others are absolutely fine, even if I’m not really convinced by either the consistency or the maximum fill volume.

However, if we look at the Philips 5400 from the perspective that the manufacturer has really listened to its customers and improved its automatic coffee maker by leaps and bounds, I’m seriously thrilled.

I’m even more thrilled that Philips is also giving you the option to retroactively silence older machines for free.

This is so exceptional and, in my opinion, so worthy of imitation, that I wanted to award the Philips 5400 LatteGo with all the points. The great price, ease of cleaning and super operation also contribute a lot.

Nevertheless, I feel like a few deductions are necessary. After all, the drinks weren’t quite “calculated” correctly. Plus, the milk foam texture leaves a lot to be desired. What’s more, the extended coffee is, once again, too thin. Still, these are all minor issues – aren’t they?

What do you think of the new Philips milk foam system? Will you upgrade or replace it? Do you have any questions? I look forward to your fresh input and comments!

Philips 5400 LatteGo Review FAQ

I measured the grinder on the Philips 5400 LatteGo at 74 decibels during normal operation.

The Philips 5400 LatteGo doesn’t have an app or any kind of smartphone connectivity.

Although the milk foam from the Philips 5400 LatteGo is quite bubbly, you can make a tasty cappuccino with this machine.

The Philips 5400 LatteGo is manufactured in Romania.

Thanks to its grinder’s durable ceramic burrs, the Philips 5400 LatteGo should be able to make upwards of 20,000 cups of coffee.

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