The main thing to consider is whether the size of the coffee tamper will fit into the basket or portafilter. Most will, as everything is often a standard size, but just double check.
If you’re buying branded, this is particularly relevant. A company such as De’Longhi will first and foremost make tampers and accessories for their own machines, so if yours is a different brand, check everything matches up.
The base of the vast majority of the coffee tampers we have included is stainless steel. This is the easiest material to clean, is the most hygienic and also gives a good weight for pressing. The plastic models which come with most machines are often not quite heavy enough, and can suffer from wear, discolouration or damage over the years.
As for the handle, this can usually vary between metal, wood or plastic. The best for you will depend on which material you’d find most comfortable to use – we find that there isn’t a huge difference in how each feels, and you should look more at the shape.
Having said this, if you want a lesser task on your hand and a heavier press, metal or solid wood could be the answer as it often provides more weight.
You need to choose between a flat or a convex base. The vast majority are flat, as it makes for a perfectly level result. Convex models guide more grounds towards the edge of the portafilter, offering less resistance channeling – but this could be good if you prefer a weaker brew.