Buy it. I might eventually upgrade to a bright shiny machine in the future, but I'll keep this for the office. All the staff keep asking when I'll be upgrading ;-)
Positive Product Points
Heats up fast. Steam, microfoam, stretches milk like crazy. Fantastic coffee Easy to clean
Negative Product Points
Plastic covers Throw out the standard porafilter
Heats up fast, once you know the trick (release steam after 5 minutes, then close the steam valve, give it another 5 minutes and you are ready for your first cup). Lots of pressure to extract to whatever strength or grind you desire. It is a steam locomotive. Contrary to other's experiences, I have no trouble at all getting microfoam and stretching the milk as far as I want. In fact, it is too good as it takes only about 20 seconds. Not much time to think at 6:00AM in the morning. Its really easy to clean.
First thing I did was replace the stock portafilter handle with a Nuova Simonelli Ergonomic Portafilter Replacement Handle ($26.95 at Espresso Parts). I also replace the stock basket with a Giant 18+ Gram Triple Ridgeless Portafilter Basket ($13 at Espresso Parts). This investment made a HUGE difference. The longer handle is a pleasure to use and the triple basket makes exactly the right size and strength of shot for me.
I really wanted shiny stainless steel. I have to say, the rest of the machine works so well, the plastic has grown on me. And its easy to clean. The Water Tank cover will break off if you are not careful removing the watertank. I have learned to fill it while leaving it in place (actually easier). Don't let the tank go dry. The low water sensor will shut the machine off and you have to fill it up and wait awhile, while the trace minerals in the water activate the sensors. Oh yeah, you cannot use Brita water because of this.
I bought it off of eBay. It was a demo from a store. Like brand new, no problems.