I cant break this thing! Consistently good espresso once you get used to it.
Negative Product Points
Plastic housing warps. slow to reheat for multiple shots. Somewhat noisy rattle from the steam relief ball valve
I received this as a wedding gift in summer of 1999. Since then have averaged 2.5 uses per day. Thats over 10,000 "pulls". When I think it is ready for the recycle I am able to repair it for only a few dollars and it goes for another 3 years. The relief valve attached to the steam unit wears out every 3 years so i buy two at a time, they are only $5 each last I checked from Seattle Espresso Repair. We have relatively soft water in Seattle so no real scale buildup which I am sure prolonged its life. Its not fancy but makes good espresso if you are in tune with the grind and style of coffee used.
It was a gift so cant comment on that. I would consider a gift a "great" buying experience.