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TEST: 5 SodaStreams tested 2020

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Updated August 24, 2020

Is sparkling water your favourite thirst quencher? We tested SodaStreams and name the SodaStream Spirit as our best in test. This is an elegant soda machine that takes up very little space on the worktop and produces excellent carbonated water, with lots of small bubbles.

How we did the test

We carry out our tests ourselves and test all products as they are intended to be used in reality. In our tests of SodaStreams, we asked normal households to use the machines. We then asked the families to compare and evaluate the different models. In our test of soda machines, we focused particularly on the following:

  • Function: How is the carbonation process carried out, and how do you insert the bottle into the machine?

  • Design: How big is the soda machine, does it fit beneath the kitchen cabinets and is the design attractive enough to have it standing out on the worktop?

  • Ease of use: How easy is it to use the machine, are the bottles easy to clean and are any buttons or controls clear?

The above characteristics were then compared against the price of the different soda machines, after which a final score was allocated and a test winner selected.

1. SodaStream Spirit - BEST IN TEST

Price class Medium Power source Manual Carbon dioxide cylinder Included

SodaStream Spirit

The SodaStream Spirit is a very convenient and compact soda machine that doesn’t take up unnecessary space on the kitchen worktop. The Spirit is available in several different colours, making it easy to find a design that suits both your kitchen décor and personal preferences. The bottle feels a little more exclusive than those on other SodaStream models. And of course you can buy dishwasher safe bottles for the Spirit.

Easy to bubble water with one hand

Assembling the SodaStream Spirit is very straightforward. You open the hatch on the back of the soda machine and screw the carbon dioxide cartridge into position. After that you click the hatch back in place and you’re ready to go.

You can insert the included bottle into the machine with one hand and it attaches automatically. There’s one button on top of the SodaStream Spirit. Because this soda machine has no bubble indicator, you have to go by feel. According to the instructions, you should press three times in two seconds for a normal quantity of bubbles, or five times in two seconds for more heavily carbonated water.

Creates nice small bubbles that feel perfect in your mouth

After you've been using it for a while, you learn how many presses of the button are right for making sparkling water just how you like it. But to begin with it's tricky to stand there counting seconds and presses. If you time it right, however, you do get good results from the SodaStream Spirit. The water has lots of small bubbles that make it pleasant to drink.

The SodaStream Spirit is easy to operate with just one hand, easy to position in your kitchen and has an appealing design, which together with the nicely sparkling water it produces, means this is a very good value for money soda machine.

Good value for moneyattractive designcompact formateasy to operate with one hand
No bubble indicator

2. SodaStream Spirit One Touch

High quality, electrically powered soda machine that you can operate with one hand and makes the cartridge last longer

Price class Premium Power source Electricity Carbon dioxide cylinder Included

SodaStream Spirit One Touch

The Spirit One Touch stands out from the rest of the SodaStream range as it’s powered by electricity. Initially, it feels unnecessary to add yet one more product with a cable to the battle for the electrical outlet over the kitchen worktop. But once you've tried the Spirit One Touch, you’ll probably never want to go back to manual soda machines.

Attractive design and compact format

The SodaStream Spirit One Touch is easy and quick to assemble. When you buy the soda machine, it includes a carbon dioxide cylinder together with a bottle that can hold a litre of sparkling water. SodaStream have also made it possible to buy extra dishwasher proof bottles, which makes things much easier if you make a lot of sparkling water.

In terms of size, the Spirit One Touch is very convenient to have on your kitchen worktop. You can easily fit it in beneath a kitchen cabinet and the design is convenient and compact. It’s easy to click the bottle into the soda machine. On the top of the Spirit One Touch there are three different buttons, for different quantities of carbon dioxide. In other words, the process of making a litre of sparkling water can be carried out with one hand.

Automated carbonation gives longer cartridge life

An unexpected but positive side-effect of automated carbonation is that the carbon dioxide cartridge lasts for significantly longer. When you’re doing this manually you probably press the button more times than necessary. But the Spirit One Touch handles the entire process perfectly, producing pleasant tasting water with good bubbles.

So over time, you’ll earn back the higher price for this soda machine in the form of fewer purchases of new carbon dioxide cartridges. If you like sparkling water, you’ll probably fall head over heels for the SodaStream Spirit One Touch.

Easy to bubble the water with one handperfect quantity of bubblesmakes carbon dioxide cartridge last longer
High pricerequires an electrical outlet

3. SodaStream Genesis

Very stylish soda machine that feels compact and produces good sparkling water

Price class Medium Power source Manual Carbon dioxide cylinder Included

SodaStream Genesis

Genesis is a relatively compact soda machine made by SodaStream. It doesn’t take up too much space on the kitchen worktop. And it’s clean lines and stylish, attractive design mean you’ll want to have it sitting out all the time.

Bottle must be screwed in before you start bubbling

It’s easy to assemble the Genesis before the first use. You install the carbon dioxide cartridge provided on the back of the machine and after that you’re ready to bubble. The bottle that comes with the Genesis is a standard SodaStream bottle. You can also buy a dishwasher safe bottle.

When it’s time to make sparkling water, you simply screw the bottle into the bracket in the Genesis. This is a bit fiddly, as you don’t always get the angle right at the first attempt. Our testers also found that the Genesis sometimes overflows when you add the carbon dioxide, even with the right maximum quantity of water for the bottle.

Hard to assess the right amount of carbon dioxide

On the top of the machine is a large button that you press a number of times until you have the right amount of carbon dioxide in the water. It isn’t at all easy to assess the exact quantity, although over time you learn how many times you need to press the button.

The water the Genesis produces is good. It’s actually really difficult to fail at carbonating water at home. Instead it’s the details of how you produce the water that affect how you perceive the soda machine. Even if the SodaStream Genesis is attractive, having to use two hands to find the right position and screw the bottle into place feels a bit old-fashioned.

Stylish designproduces good sparkling waterdoesn’t take up too much space
The bottle must be screwed into placedifficult to get the quantity of bubbles right

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4. SodaStream Crystal

Exclusive soda machine with appealing glass bottles and perfect small bubbles

Price class Premium Power source Manual Carbon dioxide cylinder Included

SodaStream Crystal

Crystal is one of the high end models from SodaStream, which you could guess just from the name. The stainless steel design of the soda machine feels exclusive. But it’s the beautifully designed glass bottle that stands out most of all.

Bottles only work with Crystal

The Crystal includes a bottle with an undulating design, holding 620 ml of water. The bottle exudes quality and works perfectly for serving water at the dinner table. It’s also easier to clean than SodaStream’s normal plastic bottles. Nor does it get so scratched and discoloured over time.

The disadvantage with a glass bottle is that it’s heavier and of course there’s a risk that it will smash if you happen to drop it on the floor. Crystal is only compatible with its own bottles – other SodaStream bottles don’t work with this model.

Makes perfect bubbles but takes up too much space

Bubbling water with the Crystal is very easy and can be done with just one hand. You place the bottle in a container that seals with a rotating mechanism. The carbonated water is top quality with lots of small, lively bubbles that tickle your mouth perfectly. You can’t make better sparkling water than this at home.

What lets the SodaStream Crystal down is the size. This machine is incredibly bulky. And the entire thing is 12 cm taller when you insert the glass bottle. This means you can’t have the Crystal standing out on a worktop if there’s less than 55 cm clear between the worktop and the bottom of the cabinet above. Perfect sparkling water's one thing, but the price of the Crystal together with the fact that it takes up so much space vertically reduces the overall score.

Makes perfect sparkling watervery attractive glass bottlesexclusive and appealing design
Takes up too much space verticallyhigh pricedoesn’t work with other SodaStream bottles

5. SodaStream Jet

Good value for money soda machine that’s easy to use and produces large bubbles

Price class Budget Power source Manual Carbon dioxide cylinder Included

SodaStream Jet (Incl. Patron)

The SodaStream Jet looks how many people picture a soda machine. Particularly if you think back to when they first arrived on the market. The Jet gives a strong impression of the plasticky 1980s. The machine itself is quite large and clumsy, but at least it fits under a kitchen cabinet without problems.

Uncomplicated but slightly fiddly installation of carbon dioxide cartridge

The Jet includes both a carbon dioxide cartridge and a classic, simple SodaStream bottle made from plastic. If you want to buy extra bottles, both the normal and dishwasher safe ones work with the Jet. You can also buy bottles with different flavourings to add to the water you bubble with the Jet.

The only assembly required for the SodaStream Jet is to screw the carbon dioxide cartridge on the back of the machine. The bracket is concealed under a plastic housing that’s easy to remove. Despite the fact that the Jet is perceived as relatively large, the space where the cartridge has to go is rather cramped. If you have big hands, it may be rather difficult to get the carbon dioxide cartridge in place.

Requires two hands and the right angle to get the bottle in position

SodaStream’s newer models have single-handed solutions for most functions, but the Jet requires you to have both hands free. The flask must be screwed into place each time you want to bubble water. This is rather fiddly and means the bottle must be at exactly the right angle for the threads to engage.

After this you press a button on the top of the machine until you have the right quantity of bubbles in the water. And the results are very good, with plenty of large bubbles. Given that the Jet is one of the cheapest soda machines from SodaStream, you still get good value for money in terms of the water it produces.

Good value for moneyeasy to useproduces large bubbles
Requires two handsbottle must be screwed on at right angleclumsy shape

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Common questions about soda machines

Which SodaStream is the best? We tested SodaStreams and name the SodaStream Spirit as our best in test. This is a convenient and attractively designed soda machine that’s easy to use with just one hand. The Spirit doesn’t take up too much space on the kitchen worktop and produces good bubbles.

How do you use a SodaStream? All SodaStream machines essentially work in the same way. You charge the machine with a carbon dioxide cartridge, usually by inserting it into the back of the machine. Then you click or screw a bottle into the soda machine. You control the quantity of bubbles in the water with a button. SodaStream recommend that you cool the water first before bubbling it. That way you can drink it immediately after you’ve carbonated it. It also takes less carbon dioxide to carbonate cold water.

How do soda machines work? A SodaStream forces carbon dioxide (CO2) into freshly poured tapwater. Instead of buying sparkling water in a shop and then carrying the heavy bottles home, with a soda machine at home you can make your own sparkling water in less than a minute. To bubble your own water you only need a carbon dioxide cartridge, a SodaStream or other soda machine and a suitable bottle.

How many times should you press the button on a SodaStream? SodaStream generally divide the quantity of carbon dioxide into three different levels. Small, medium or large numbers of bubbles. The majority of SodaStreams require you to press a button to bubble the water. One press lasting a couple of seconds for a few bubbles, three presses of two seconds each for medium and five presses of two seconds each for a lot of carbon dioxide in the water.

How do you know when the carbon dioxide cartridge is empty? The most obvious sign that the carbon dioxide cartridge is empty is, of course, that no carbon dioxide comes out into the water. If you look at the bottle while you press the button, the water remains still and without bubbles. Another sign that the carbon dioxide has run out is that you no longer hear the characteristic humming noise when you press the button.

What Pepsi flavours are there for SodaStream? If you enjoy home-made sparkling water, the step to home-made fizzy drinks is a short one. Flavoured carbonated water is far from being a novelty. But it was only in 2019 that SodaStream released its range of flavourings created in collaboration with Pepsi. Other than SodaStream’s own, wide range of flavourings, you can also now bubble the following fizzy drinks at home in your own kitchen:

  • Pepsi
  • Pepsi Max
  • 7Up
  • 7Up Free
  • Mirinda

How do you flavour sparkling water? The first step in flavouring sparkling water is to bubble a bottle of water. Then you add the flavouring – one bottle is usually enough for about 8 litres of water. There are clear instructions for how much flavouring to use, but you can also vary it according to taste. When you’ve added the flavouring to the sparkling water, screw the lid on the bottle and mix the water and flavouring by gently inverting the bottle a few times. Then simply enjoy!

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