Steam, Forgiveness (always makes a decent coffee), Program-ability.
Negative Product Points
Menu Layout (very minor thing)
First of all, I make 2 double cappuccinos at around 6:30 every morning and having a machine that's hot and ready to go with the push of a button is worth a lot. I also use the Vario Grinder, so the thought process is streamlined for the early morning. This is my first double boiler, and it's great to have really hot steam without having too hot espresso.
The steam on this thing must be made using 747 engines. It is so strong, one must almost hold it down! Don't daydream, or you'll have scalded milk. The Dream also has a setting whereby the machine will tell you if your grind/amount of coffee/tamp isn't right. You must, of course, set it initially, and it measures the amount of water that gets through the coffee in a given time. If it takes too long, it maintains your grind is too fine, or vice versa. That is helpful, but this machine will forgive almost anything. I have had coffee where it took almost 50 seconds to pull a double and it's still drinkable - maybe not perfect, but highly drinkable.
I started out with the program-ability. The timer is built in, so it will greet you in the morning all hot and ready (I'm tempted to say more about that last phrase, but decorum prohibits it!). I've programmed single and double shots, so while the first shot is pulling itself, the 2nd one along with the milk, is being prepared. I can do it in my sleep - which is usually the condition I'm in!
As far as the menu layout, this is pretty minor. I do 3 cleaning flushes every morning and evening and while this is also programmed in, you have to cycle through lots of menu items to get to the cleaning cycle. Not a biggie, but I thought I should say something.
This is my 3rd machine. The 1st, an Anita (also bought from Chris) is at my vacation home. I bought the Office Control because I wanted something that was programmable, and while I liked it very much, I just couldn't make as good a coffee as I could with the Anita. I almost bought the Vivaldi instead of the Control, but the $200 extra you had to pay for a timer didn't sit well. Now, I feel like I've arrived at the perfect machine!
I don't need to elaborate on Chris' Coffee here. I don't think I've ever read a negative thing about them. I preordered my machine and the first one I got had a problem. I don't even remember what it was, but I remember them asking me to video what it did on my phone so they could send it to Italy. They quickly sent another one and I've had it now for around 9 months (not an option in the "owned for" drop down box).
At this writing, I see there are no other reviews. I don't tend to do reviews of a product unless I really dislike it. I had an email from Chris yesterday asking me to review this machine. I don't know Chris, so I'm not doing this for him, other than the fact that I really adore this machine and Chris' Coffee Service is a terrific company.