With the exception of the LOUD grinder, this machine does everything one could ask to produce a very acceptable cup of joe.
Positive Product Points
Very good controls to manage coffee volume, strength of coffee, when the brew starts, the audible notification when brewing is done, the temperature of the coffee, and the time you wish the pot to stay hot after brewing is complete. It's easy to set up out of the box and instructions were good for brewing the initial pot of joe. Internal parts are large (easy to assemble) and there are several electrical interlocks to make sure every piece is in its' place before the machine will start the brewing process.
Negative Product Points
The most negative point is the grinder. It is LOUD, maybe because it is more of a chopper - there is no burr grinder. And you have no control over the size of the grind; it says it will come out as "medium".
The other major negative is the cleaning process required to keep the machine in top operating condition.
A minor negative is the unit is very tall which might be a problem depending on where you store it on your kitchen counter, especially with the top open.
I received this machine for Christmas from my wife. I had been using a grinder for my beans and a simple French press for my joe. While my wife is not a regular java junkie, she did engage me in conversation about what it takes to make a good cup of joe. She knew you have to start with the beans, no store-ground for us. Also, she knew the best joe is made immediately after grinding the beans. Smart woman that she is, it made sense to her that not only does this grind and brew seem like the perfect machine to manage beans and joe, it has the added advantage of being electronic so that you can set everything up before you go beddy-by and it will be waiting for you when you awake! So picture this; I get everything set up to grind and brew and we head off to sleepville. One other thing I should mention - my wife is the Mayor of Sleepville. I usually get up several hours earlier than she does so I have been trained to avoid activites that might be considered sound violations. OK, back to that fateful first morning with the grind and brew. As you may have guessed by now, when the grinder kicks in at 5AM in the kitchen, our bed actually had slight movement as if a minor earthquake had occurred. The Mayor of Sleepville issues me a citation for noise violation (exceeding 85db) and I scramble to cover the machine with a pillow or something to minimize damage to the ear drums. So...in order to avoid additional sound violations, I am required to grind during waking hours and let the grind age overnight before the machine brews the joe the next morning. The Mayor did commend me for the machine having the feature to turn off the Grind when the program is set to make a nice, quiet pot of joe each morning. Of course, the problem is the Grind Off button has to be manually punched each evening when setting the program. Check back later to see if I am proficient at remembering to do this each day or if the Mayor is holding me in contempt.....
A very pleasant experience for me since it was a gift and my wife (Mayor of Sleepville) had the pleasure of the buying experience. Of course, the Mayor has never had a buying experience that wasn't ecstasy so you might consider applying a halo factor.
Three Month Followup
OK, it's been a little more than 3 months but hey, everybody's busy... Here's how I've learned to live with the Grind & Brew and stay married to the Mayor of Sleepville at the same time. I've turned the Gind & Brew into an alarm clock. I program the unit to start ginding the beans at the same time our alarm clock goes off so if for some reason I sleep through the alarm or hit the snooze, the sound of hundreds of beans being slamed around and shattered into smithereens is my back up. So my Grind & Brew is my weekday java machine but the Mayor likes to sleep in on weekends so I bought a neat Yama vacuum pot -- ah, the Sounds of Silence.....