Well worth the buy-you;d find similar features on something twice the price
Positive Product Points
Heats up rapidly-ready to go usually in under 60 seconds. Can be started up in frothing mode-saves time! No fuss or muss filter holder can be set to one or two cups of different strength at the twist of a knob. It also features an ejector to eject the spent coffee cake-this also makes a competent tamper. Easily cleaned and maintained. 6 button control panel ensures quick and foolproof operation. You can program your own one and two cup shot sizes.
Negative Product Points
The cup warming area isn‘t warm enough.
Once the filter holder is in you need to take out the drip tray to fit anything taller than a demitasse or cappucino cup underneath-as a regular latte drinker this is VERY annoying.
The water resorvoir window is too dark, making it impossible to see the water level within.
This machine is just right, especially for someone who would have difficulty with complex controls. The machine never fails to produce coffe with an excellent crema, even when being used to make about 4 cups a day. The size restrictions from the filter holder are annoying-to use a standard latte glass I have to remove the drip tray and squeeze it in underneath. Without that fault I‘d say that this is almost a perfect machine. It retails (in AUS) for loosely around AUS$600. The facia of the machine is a very attractive (and expensive looking!) brushed stainless steel panel, (unfortunately lined in shonky looking grey plastic.
Three Month Followup
Ok, after having owned the 4100 for over 13 months I stand by what I said- this machine does make good espresso and (with much trial and error) foam; however in retrospect the steam pressure is far too low and espresso quality very touchily dependent on the grind you are using. These are the reasons I've decided to swap machines for a Gaggia Espresso (retailing in AUS for $400), and would recommend all semi- to fully experienced coffee shoppers do the same. (Since the date of my original review I've completed a Lavazza Barista course). On another negative note, I noticed the brew head is tricky to unscrew and clean- on one occasion the screw snapped off in the thermobloc and neccesitated a $180AUS trip to my local Krups agent.