Makes good espresso, fast startup, simple controls, easy to clean up. Ample grounds reservoir, attractive appearance.
Negative Product Points
Poor reliability, insufficient height for larger cups, tricky operation of steamer/foamer, water reservoir is a bit small.
I have owned this machine for 1 1/2 years. My prior machine was a Gaggia Coffee (have two of these). I have been making espresso at home for over 15 years.
I wanted to go with a superautomatic after being exposed to a friend's Miele built-in. The C1500 fit my budget and counter space, and had good reviews for making quality espresso. For the first year and two months, it performed excellently, with a mix of quality beans that I purchase locally. I maintained the machine religiously, using RO water, plus the Claris filter. I also did all of the tablet cleaning cycles, and did my own cleaning of the internal screen and other components regularly.
The coffee and hot water flow began to diminish, and within a couple of days, I had a "water cycle required" message on the display. Nothing would clear it. I contacted Capresso, they said repairs would cost $125. I balked, as the machine was only 2 months out of warranty, so they had me cover the shipping to the unit and repaired the machine under warranty. The total time for repair took over three weeks, luckily, I still have my Gaggia, which has never failed in over 10+ years of use.
The C1500 worked fine for a few months, then the problem returned. When I called Capresso again, they said it was my fault - for using too fine a grind. Nowhere does it say that this will cause the machine to clog, and the fine grind was working well, with good coffee flow and quality espresso. Note that this was in spite of following all of the required cleaning cycles. So, $125 paid to them and off the machine goes for repair again. I aslo found the Capresso service representatives I spoke with very rude. When I tried to explain the problem and what I had done, they abruptly interrupted me several times, and they seemed to be trying every way they could to come up with a reason that this clogging was my fault.
When you pay $1299 for a machine, work hard to maintain it, and it requires repairs twice within a few months for the same problem, you have to wonder how long it will last. This will be my last Capresso product, and possibly, my last superautomatic. We make about 4 to 6 coffees daily, I don't think that's a tremendous duty cycle for a system like this.
Very good. Williams-Sonoma is an excellent store.
Three Month Followup
I did not have any 3 month follow-up comments.
One Year Followup
A year later, and the machine has been back again for another repair. Basically, every year to year and a half, something will go wrong and off it goes to Capresso. This time it was for the grinder, which stopped grinding finely (very coarse, even on the finest setting). We use it for two coffees every morning, very rarely more than that - it certainly should handle that kind of duty cycle. Anyway, if you just view it as $125 of maintenance every year or so, you can rationalize it. We love the machine when it works - too bad it's not more reliable. We keep our old Gaggia in a closet, ready to fill in for the 3 weeks that we're without the C1500 while its repaired.