Dual thermoblock means I can make coffee while steaming milk, easy to use, strong and durable, looks like I'm really serious about coffee, consistent results , machine can be programmed to alter steam and temp settings, professional group head and 2 types of filter baskets, large water reservoir, steel milk texturing wand, large drip tray, definitely no toy.
Negative Product Points
Hot water has its own outlet, and pulses water rather than flow smoothly. (Not really important to me. I make espresso coffee- not tea!) Slightly noisier than expected- but once used to it- not an issue.
UPDATE: I have found over the long term that this is seriously not a problem, as most home machines make a fair amount of noise anyway.
I did a lot of research on home espresso machines before purchasing this unit-Sunbeam EM6910 and it was well worth it. Paid AU$600 new in Sydney. I previously had a krups XP4050 - and although not bad overall- it was nowhere near as good as this unit. I also bought the new Sunbeam Cafe series Grinder AU$180, and it is also very good. I love the experience of preparing coffee from the grinding up, so this combo has totally satisfied me. If you enjoy the experience of perfecting your espresso- this machine is ideal. I buy fresh roasted beans (only Crave coffee) , or foil packed beans (Lavazza Oro ) and results are always very good. Espresso machine comes with both dual floor filter baskets and mesh floor (1 & 2 cup), although I've only used the mesh floor so far . The Cafe series grinder is as professional a burr grinder as Ive seen for the home, and has 20+ grind settings. Static in the coffee is an issue at times when grinding, but I think is more atmospheric than grinder! I can only say that I am very happy with both of these machines. Highly recommended.
Update: Found that static in grinds dissappeared after the first few weeks, and has not reappeared. Have now tried commercially ground coffee with dual floor basket quite a few times, and it is also very good. You can't beat home ground though, as the crema is incredible.
Bing Lee- very good for price- haven't needed service.
Three Month Followup
All comments as per 1 year follow up. Excellent machine all round.
One Year Followup
1 year later, this machine still makes excellent espresso, and does it consistantly. I could'nt be happier with it. The Cafe series grinder is also great, and has also never failed. Note: If purchasing pre-ground coffee, you need to use the dual floor filter basket (supplied), as the grind is much coarser. Definitely recommend grinding your own freshly roasted coffee beans, as it gives a superior result.