Prior to purchasing this product, I had done a fair bit of research into similar machines in this class of coffee maker, and was eyeing the Technivorm Moccamaster before I learned about the Breville YouBrew. That machine matches the Moccamaster in every feature, including price point, and also allows conveniences I have come to value such as a high-quality in-machine burr grinder and an automatic timer allowing the machine to wake up and operate at a predetermined time of day. Because the YouBrew gets as much buzz and accolades as the Moccamaster (according to extensive comparative research of the two machines I studied), I decided on the YouBrew because of the inclusion of the extra features I consider vital. Additionally, I own other Breville appliances which are well-made, high-quality, and have performed in exemplary fashion.
Prior to purchasing this machine, I rarely drank machine-brewed coffee, preferring to use my French Press on occasion and primarily drinking espresso and lattes I made using my Francis!Francis! X5 (which I've owned for the last near-decade and adore), but I recently decided it was diet-time and had to give up my daily latte (no, not the overly-sweetened dessert-coffee kind, but I *was* using only high-quality whole milk from the Strauss dairy in California) in favor of black coffee with just a bit of cream (I stuck with Strauss dairy for that one; no contest). Consequently, I had a pretty lackluster automatic coffee maker (Cuisinart - ugh; avoid!!) for the rare times I needed to use it, and decided it was time for a better-grade machine I planned to use daily.
The YouBrew is amazing - I absolutely love it. Once I glanced through the manual, I found it quite easy to tailor the machine's settings to produce exactly the right strength and flavor-profile that suits my palate, and I have found the coffee is kept at an optimum warmth without any difficulty for several hours after brewing inside the high-quality stainless steel carafe. Reviews I read prior to purchase advised pre-heating the carafe with hot water immediately before use, but as that makes the automatic timer feature unusable, that wasn't going to work for my needs. I did try preheating as advised, however, and found it made only a slight difference in how long the coffee stays hot inside the carafe. I tend to drink the amount of coffee I brew each day too quickly for that to matter much to me anyhow. I am always highly pleased at the consistently fabulous grade and just-right taste of my brewed coffee each time I use this machine (admittedly, using only high-quality whole bean coffee freshly ground by the YouBrew just prior to brewing that is *not* sold by that major retailer everyone knows the name of probably makes a big difference).
My only minor complaint (which is a bit whiny, in retrospect) is the machine takes a bit of work to clean up properly. Although the process really isn't any more involved than any other coffee maker of this type of design, because the parts are *not* dishwasher-safe I find myself spending a few minutes each day washing the parts and carafe by hand so they're ready to go for my next use. Additionally, the design of the YouBrew gives you an extra surface or two to clean -- just inside the machine is a metal 'door' that automatically opens and closes during the brewing process to act as a shield for any whole beans left in the YouBrew's hopper so steam from the brewing process does not rise up into the hopper chamber; this shield as well as the drip-and-loose-grounds-tray just below it require a wipe-down each time before the machine's next use.
All told, cleaning and hand-washing the YouBrew's carafe, lid, permanent Gold-Tone filter, filter basket, the metal shield and its drip-tray takes roughly five minutes. Compared to my last coffee maker, I definitely spend more time prepping it for the next use, but I chalk this up to the sophistication and quality of the YouBrew and am more than happy to sacrifice that negligible amount of daily time in exchange for a truly superior coffee-drinking experience - it really is a small price to pay for what the YouBrew offers in return.
When considering the fantastic appearance, high-quality workmanship and design, outstanding and consistent performance, numerous easy-to-use and very effective features and customization, as well as the end-result of a very delicious cup of coffee delivered by the YouBrew, for me there really is no contest - I am a more-than-thrilled YouBrew owner and highly recommend it to anyone who is serious about the quality and flavor of their home-brew coffee ritual.