🥇Best Sonic Ice Machines & Nugget Ice Makers in 2021

Having an ice maker is definitely something that everyone can use in their homes, especially since we are heading into the summer months. Instead of waiting to freeze the ice in your freezer, you can have perfect form ice cubes and sonic chewable ice ready in just a couple of hours and with no real effort on your part.

We have dug deep and done a lot of research to help you find the best nugget ice maker for your home.

Our Top Pick – Opal Nugget Ice Maker

The Opal Nugget Ice Maker is one of the top options when it comes to producing nugget ice. It might not rival any of the affordable sonic ice machines, but it will certainly give you a ton of quality nugget ice. It is affordable enough to be a mid-range project, with many people even claiming it to rival to top ice makers used for commercial areas.

Best Sonic Ice Maker & Nugget Ice Machines On The Market Today:

Ice machines can have many intricate features that you will need to be aware of. We have included a thorough buyer’s guide that will show you all the ins and outs of selecting one. However, we have decided to start by looking at the top options. After diligent research, here are the best sonic ice makers on the market today for personal use:

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Opal Nugget Ice Maker – Top Pick

Best nugget maker

The Opal Nugget Ice Maker is definitely one of the classier options on the market today. The entire design with an open window will allow you to see the ice being made as well as how full it might be. It does not need a secure water supply and this gives you the freedom to set it up wherever you might need it the most.

The first nugget should be available in around 20-minutes, but the ice maker can produce up to 1-pound of ice in just one hour. It is one of the only ice machine that can be operated with your mobile device and features the smart FirstBuild APP. This can be used with Bluetooth at a decent range to turn the machine on and off.

It is lightweight and not that heavy. This makes it possible for users to place it on top of the counter and even carry it along for tailgating if you have a decent power supply. It can hold up to 3-pounds of ice and while this might not be much, it is ideal for smaller parties and groups of people.

Unfortunately, the ice bin might be too small for large parties and it also does not feature a refrigeration unit that will keep the ice frozen. Eventually, the ice will melt, but it will definitely run down the slots and into the water area. This means that if you forget about the ice and it does melt, it will once again use the same water for new ice cubes. 

The Opal Nugget Ice Maker offers a ton of unique features, but unfortunately, it is priced on the high-end and might be in the same price range as many of the expensive options. It only comes with a limited 6-month warranty, but users will have the opportunity to buy an extended warranty if needed for more peace of mind.le


  • Portable and stylish design
  • Makes 1-pound of ice per hour
  • Can be controlled with Bluetooth
  • Reasonably priced


  • Included warranty is only 6 months
  • No refrigeration in the ice bin

Ice-O-Matic GEMU090 Air Condensing Unit Pearl Self-Contained Ice Machine

Ice-O-Matic GEMU090 Air Condensing Unit Pearl

If you are looking for a high-end commercial unit, the Ice-O-Matic GEMU090 will be one of the best options that you could choose. This ice machine might be one of the larger options that we have on this list, but it can still be fitted underneath your counter if need be.

It can produce a massive 85-pounds per day and the soft chewable nature of the ice is much similar to those sonic ice makers that you also find. The storage capacity is around 22-pounds and this is more than enough to satisfy the needs of people hosting massive parties or even making ice for restaurants at a commercial rate.

The ice machine is one of the easiest to use on the market today and while it might take around 7-hours to fill up the ice bin, it will immediately stop making ice once it detects the bin to be full. The bin is insulated and will keep the ice frozen for a nice amount of time. However, it does not keep it frozen like a freezer would.

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Unfortunately, the biggest issue is the price and it will cost you a couple of bucks to buy it. You might also need to have a professional assist you with the installation process and this could add even more to the price. It does come with a 2-year warranty and this will give you some needed peace of mind for the price.


  • Makes 85-pounds of ice per day
  • Fits underneath most counters
  • Automatic sensor for when the bin is full
  • Can store 22-pounds of ice
  • Includes a 2-year limited warranty


  • Really expensive
  • Might need expert installation

Della Portable Ice Maker

Della Portable

It is one of the most reliable pebble ice makers, when it comes to portability is definitely the Della Portable Ice Maker. At only 20-pounds, it is one of the easiest to move around and it is also rather small, which means you can simply pop it on top of the counter or perhaps even place it inside your RV when tailgating.

It can use either portable water, or you can have it connected to constant water supply. It creates around 9 cubes of ice every 6minutes and has the capacity to produce up to 26-pounds of ice per day. It does not require any specific installation and to use it, you need to fill up the water area with around 1.8-liters and simply press the button.

One of the downsides is that the ice bin cannot hold a lot of ice, but when you place it in bags and refreeze it, you will always have ice available. It includes the recycle feature and will recycle the water from the ice that has melted once you forget to use it. This feature is only present in a limited number of good ice makers.

The price is reasonable and this is one of the cheaper option that you can find with excellent quality feature available. It comes with a limited one-year warranty that will give you some additional peace of mind. We would definitely recommend it for the design and the value that is offered to users on the move.


  • Lightweight and portable
  • No real installation needed
  • Can make up top 26-pounds of ice per day
  • Reasonably priced
  • Includes a 1-year limited warranty


  • Small storage bin

Scotsman SCN60PA-1SS Brilliance Nugget Ice Machine

Scotsman SCN60PA-1SS

Scotsman have been known for supplying many of the Best commercial ice makers. The Scotsman SCN60PA-1SS Brilliance Nugget Ice Machine is also a commercial ice maker but has some of the best features one could ask for.

Once again, the unit can produce up to 80-pounds of soft chewable ice daily and it can store a massive 26-pounds of this ice when it is completed. It also features one of the best-insulated storage bins and can possibly keep ice cold for up to one week when you keep it out of the sunlight. It has also be voted as the unit that produces some of the best sonic ice available today.

One of the downsides might be the installation and the setup. It does require a water line and a drain for the excess water. This might limit your portability and you might need the assistance of a professional. It is also not recommended to use it outdoors and expose the parts to heat that will not be covered by the warranty.

As you might have imagined, it is definitely one of the elite ice makers and also really expensive to buy. However, this is one of those ice makers that will be the only one you ever need. It comes with a 1-year limited warranty on the parts and Scotsman definitely lives up to their expectations. We would recommend it for commercial use.


  • Stylish design
  • Makes up to 80-pounds of ice per day
  • Excellent ice quality
  • Stores up to 26-pounds
  • Protected by a warranty


  • Really expensive
  • Might need professional assistance with the setup

Avalon Bay AB-ICE26S Ice Maker 

Avalon Bay AB-ICE26S

Last but certainly not least, we have another reliable and portable ice maker that has been highly recommended. The Avalon Bay AB-ICE26S one of those product that do not need any real installation. It is small and portable and can be placed on your counter, using portable water or water supply.

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The unit makes a wide variety of ice and this includes the sonic ice and bullet ice. It can make up to 26-pounds of ice per day and the first ice will start appearing after just 15-minutes of running. Once again, it also recycles the ice that has melted and this is a feature that we don’t commonly see in many ice makers to help save water.

Much like any of the other portable ice makers, the smaller size can be a benefit or even frustrate you. Unfortunately, it does not have a massive capacity and can only hold around 1.5-pounds of ice when it is full. However, the sensor will kick in to stop producing ice one the bin has been filled to capacity.

We like to recommend it as our best budget option and it is definitely one of the cheaper models you can find on the market today. The unit is stylish and protected by a 1-year limited warranty or some peace of mind. We would most certainly recommend it for those on the travel or even smaller households.


  • Small and portable
  • Makes up to 26-pounds of ice per day
  • Can recycle water
  • Really affordable
  • Limited 1-year warranty included


  • Small storage size

Key Features To Consider When Choosing The Best Sonic Ice Machines & Nugget Ice Makers

Having seen the top products, you might have noticed that there is a multitude of great ice makers on the market today. To find the best from all the rest can be tricky, but we used these handy features to ensure the ice makers we have selected are the best. Here are a couple of features you need to consider before choosing an ice maker.


One of the first things that every person should consider is the overall size of the item. If it is too large, it might not fit where you would like to place it and this could potentially cause some issues. Depending on the amount of size you have available in your home, you should select your ice maker based on that.

Additionally, you also need to focus on the type that directly relates to the size. You will need to choose an ice maker that will either fit on top of the counter or underneath the counter. Machines that fit underneath the counter are generally much larger and are more expensive as well.

Finally, it is important to consider the portability factor as well. Larger ones make it rather impossible to move around. The smaller ones like Della can help you move around with the ice maker and even connect it to your RV. This means you can have a constant supply of ice when you are traveling as well.


The capacity goes two ways and users need to consider how much ice the ice maker can actually produce. The smaller sonic ice machines can only produce around 26-pounds of ice per day and while this seems like a lot, it might not be enough for larger parties. You might need to start preparing a little bit of ice a few days beforehand.

If you are looking to produce ice on a grand scale, you can consider looking at the storage capacity of the unit. If the unit can actually store a decent amount of ice, you won’t need to have it on constantly this helps with your water and electric bill. The large ones can have a storage bin that holds up to 26-pounds of ice.

Ice Quality:

If you are constantly partying and you don’t care about the quality of the ice, this might not mean much to you. However, the quality of the ice is important, especially when you are producing for commercial purposes. Having great quality ice will also make your drinks look and taste much better than the average.

Portable and smaller ice maker might be ideal for traveling, but they are not the best when it comes to the quality of the ice. The might produce things like sonic ice at a rapid pace, but the commercial ice makers are much better when it comes to quality.

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Versatility Will Make A Difference:

Why do you want to buy a nugget ice maker that will only produce one type of ice, when you can find one that produces ice in different sizes. It is another key factor to take into consideration, especially when you are running a business. Not every drink is made with the same type of ice and customers might have different preferences.

Once again, the larger commercial ice makers are the best when it comes to the overall versatility and different types of ice that can be produced. The smaller ones are mostly designed for personal use at home and you will need to shop around if you have funny preferences for your ice and the type you would need.


While the portable ice makers do not need any installation, the larger counterparts might need a pump and a drain to be installed correctly. Before you simply buy the icemaker, you should consider the setup of your home and if it will work with the icemaker. You also need to consider if you can actually install it on your own.

Fortunately, many brands do have their own professionals on standby and this will be great for the installation process. However, it might add to the costs of your already expensive ice maker. We recommend having professional assistance for the larger ice makers to ensure they have been installed correctly.


Lastly, you need to consider the warranty and since they are really expensive, the warranty will give you some additional peace of mind for your purchase. While the smaller and portable ice makers might not have massive warranties, they still allow you to experiment with the ice maker for some time.

The industry standard for a quality ice machine is around the 2-year mark. However, you will have the option of purchasing an extended warranty. You also need to ensure the ice maker is covered for what you are using it for. Many warranties won’t cover damage done to the parts if used outdoors or with a lo0t of sunlight exposure.

How To Use A Sonic Ice maker Efficiently?

If you have never used a sonic ice maker before, it might be daunting to actually start. However, it is not that hard and ice makers generally come with a manual that will assist you and guide you through the entire process. If you don’t have a manual, with a quick internet search, you can easily find all the needed instructions from the manufacturer.

For smaller ice makers, the process is quite simple and they generally only have one button with a small LED screen to get you started. However, the larger ice makers might have a couple of features that you need to choose from when making your ice. Since the end goal is the perfect sonic ice, here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • Use clean water: The quality of your water will have a massive impact on your ice and it is much better to filter the water first. If you don’t have a standard water filter, you might need to boil the water. However, it is recommended that you first wait for the water to cool down before using it.
  • Don’t flavor water: Even though we have all been tempted to use flavored water, it is not ideal for your ice maker and might clog up the system. It is better to follow the instructions and use water that has been efficiently cleaned and approved for making ice.
  • Keep the units indoor: Yes, most units will have some sort of insulation to protect it from the elements, but it is not made to withstand the elements. It is much safer to keep the unit indoors and ensure that you can keep it protected. This will also allow the ice to remain frozen for longer and keep you in line with the warranty 
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