Seems well-built, but espresso is very disappointing, with nearly zero crema, no matter what I tried. Not worth it, a $100 Krups out-performs it. Good at frothing, but not great. Thumbs down.
Positive Product Points
Great reviews on this machine are a mystery to me. I brewed close to 20 espressos and couldn't get a decent pull no matter what I tried. Steamer is pretty good, but not the best. Making a good espresso should not be this difficult . . . But, it seems very well-built, if that matters when the espresso is substandard.
Negative Product Points
Can't make a decent espresso, no matter what grind, tamp, or fill used. Not attractive on the countertop (drip tray and top are industrial looking, and drip tray arrived scratched).
After brewing 2 espressos with zero crema, I contacted 1st in Coffee to ask what I was doing wrong. They sent me a pdf copy of their "how to" guide, which was supposed to have been in the box, and told me they thought my grind was too coarse. I tried every grind possible, tamped harder and softer, carefully measured my fills, and ended up just wasting a lot of coffee without ever getting a decent pull. I'm sending it back.
My old $100 krups made much better espresso with little effort, and better froth, too, but it was dying after many years of good use. I ended up with a Starbucks Sirena, made by Saeco - great machine at less than half the cost of this proud Roncilio.
1st in Coffee shipped immediately and was responsive when I needed help. Good web site. I just bought the wrong machine.