Our Valued Sponsor
OpinionsConsumer ReviewsGuides and How TosCoffeeGeek ReviewsResourcesForums
consumer product reviews
consumer espresso machine reviews
Francis Francis X1 - Name Blank's Review
Posted: March 10, 2004, 9:28am
review rating: 7.0
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
Francis Francis X1
Where to Buy
Arrow 1st in Coffee
Arrow Amazon
 List your business site here.
About "Where to Buy"

More About This Product
Arrow The Francis Francis X1 has 43 Reviews
Arrow The Francis Francis X1 has been rated 7.20 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since November 30, 2001.
Arrow Francis Francis X1 reviews have been viewed 255,007 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Scott Smith 8.75
Patrick Moss 8.00
Josh Alwitt 8.00
Steve Strawman 8.00
Phil M 7.60

Previous Review Next Review
Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 8.8
Manufacturer: Francis! Francis! Quality: 9
Average Price: $799.00 Usability: 8
Price Paid: $415.00 Cost vs. Value 8
Where Bought: Ebay Aesthetics 10
Owned for: 1 year Overall 9
Writer's Expertise: I love coffee Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned:
Bottom Line: An eye-catching, effective espresso machine for people who want a quick, tasty shot of love.
Positive Product Points

Very quick warming time.  Wonderful espresso with rich, usually 3-mm crema.   Easy to clean.  Gorgeous on counter and interesting point of conversation for guests.  Excellent with pods and ground coffee alike.  Very informative manual included.

Negative Product Points

Ridiculous tamp/spoon included with machine.  Steaming wand is awkwardly placed but it's OK if you have a short pitcher.  Cup warmer is lame.

Detailed Commentary

This machine has been a pleasure to use for the last year or so.  It requires very little maintenance (as long as you remember to wipe the head and dump & wipe the tray with a warm cloth after every use) and produces a wonderful shot almost every time.  The weight of the machine (I have the stainless steel model) helps, because you usually need to apply some gentle force to screw on the shot to the head.  For a while, I was without a grinder and I found that Illy pods are perfectly suited to this machine.  I will always use the traditional, ground shots, however, as long as I have a workable grinder.  The steaming wand is awkwardly placed but fine if you have a short pitcher- you can really get your "surf" on, if you will.  I've discovered that the steaming process is different with the Francis! X1 because you should always steam the milk first, then make your espresso, instead of the other way around.  I flip the switch to activate my steam build, then froth the milk into perfect microbubbles, then I flip the switch off and drop a blank shot (water) to cool the temperature down.  It usually goes down to 80 after filling my cup with water, so I wait several seconds until it's back to 100 and then start my real shot.   Altogether, the process works fine.  I would suggest using a blank shot to warm your cup and just forget about the so-called "cup-warmer" up on top of the machine, which doesn't work worth a squat.  The noise level on this machine is fine and the results are excellent most of the time.  Be sure to buy a proper tamp, though.  The one included fails to function as either a spoon or a tamp, and should immediately be thrown in the garbage.  Overall, this machine is well worth the money, primarily because it produces a wonderful cup of espresso quickly and efficiently, with very little clean-up.  For those of us in a hurry in the mornings, go ahead and drop a pod and you'll have a great cup in less than four minutes from start to finish.  Bought mine on Ebay- a floor model- and I saved a ton of money.  You really lose out if you buy this one at retail at WIlliams-Sonoma or the like.  Definitely a worthwhile investment for beginners and intermediates.

Buying Experience

Buying a machine on Ebay usually means you will be receiving a used machine or a floor model, but not always.  I would suggest getting a floor model, because it has never, or rarely, been used to make coffee.  Oh yeah, it's also several hundred dollars cheaper.  I would suggest throwing the extra cash towards getting a stainless model, just because it's more classy and easier to spot blemishes and oils.  Don't worry about getting ripped off- most of the dealers on Ebay want to retain their good score so they will usually see to it that the machine is tip-top before sending.  Look for dealers with many ratings, because those are usually the ones who depend on positive feedback to maintain their profitablity online.  I never had to deal with customer service but the dealer looked legit, with mucho good feedback.   Remember, buying this machine at retail is not a good deal.  You can still get a warranty from an authorized dealer on Ebay and pay hundreds less.  Just be careful and look at the details.

Three Month Followup

Still works great!

One Year Followup

Still performs well.  I use it every day, and I've only cleaned it three times in the last year, which was really easy.  I would, however, recommend tinkering with your grind until you find one that work best with this machine.  Callibration is a must with the Francis because you really want to milk a decent shot from this puppy and sometimes a new bean and grind will give you less-than perfect shots with Francis' temperamental pressure consistency.  I have come to the realization that this is not the best machine in the world, but as far as domestic machines go it usually pulls a decent shot.

Previous Review Next Review
Write a Review for this Product
review rating: 7.0
Posted: March 10, 2004, 9:28am
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
Login Password
forgot pw | signup
Home Espresso Machines
Watch videos with Gail & Kat, Rocket, Jura Capresso, Saeco, Rancilio, Quick Mill, Nespresso
Demitasse Spoons
Elegant demitasse spoons for special occasions and everyday use.
Home | Opinions | Consumer Reviews | Guides & How Tos | CoffeeGeek Reviews | Resources | Forums | Contact Us
CoffeeGeek.com, CoffeeGeek, and Coffee Geek, along with all associated content & images are copyright ©2000-2015 by Mark Prince, all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated. Content, code, and images may not be reused without permission. Usage of this website signifies agreement with our Terms and Conditions. (0.204808950424)
Privacy Policy | Copyright Info | Terms and Conditions | CoffeeGeek Advertisers | RSS | Find us on Google+