Excellent coffee A vacuum pot with almost the ease of a drip machine Excellent filter - finer grinds with less sediment-more oils than cloth Very fast start to finish Great assault on the senses - its fun to watch, smells great, sounds neat and the taste is wonderful Programable for that morning cup (if you like staler coffee) Vac-Pot quality coffee without the ritual and mumbo-jumbo
Negative Product Points
I would have preferred a more traditional design but its OK Cleaning (ALL vac pots) is more time consuming and difficult than drip (but because you do it, there are less stale tastes) A tad expensive
Based on the many reviews and comments I have read on this device I conclude that the people who like a good cup of coffee love this machine but the people who love the ritual of vac pots have some reason to hate it. I fall in the former camp. How can you beat an excellent cup of coffee. This machine delivers an excellent cup of coffee. Drip can't compare. I feel it is on a par with french press with less (or no) sediment and due to its filter mechanics, a much wider latitude of grind.
Apparently there has been a problem with product quality that manifests itself as a variation of extraction time. I haven't experienced this so perhaps Bodum has it figured out.
I have no brewing experience with the Yama or the Hario or with vacuum pots that employ other filter methods so I am not an expert in this comparison but I don't see how you can beat this excellent nylon micro-filter. I must assume that cloth has to hold back some oils and therefore flavor.
Assuming that the Bodum folks read these reviews (all coffee people must read coffegeek [he rocks!]) a few comments for the next generation.
1) Disassociate the heating plate from the carafe or seal it up so it can be put in the dishwasher with the rest of the unit. 2) Engineer in the ability to pre-set "up North" time.
If you don't mind paying a bit for excellent coffee, get this product.
Purchased from QVC for $121 plus it came with a set of 6 clear Bodum coffee mugs with a mug tree.
Three Month Followup
Pot is used at least once per day and has presented us with no problems except once the filter plugged due to some espresso grinds getting in the mix (my fault). Remarkably, the plastic appears as "water clear" as the day it was first used. No evidence of hazing, crazing or discoloration, in spite of daily squeegeeing (new word?) and frequent cleaning The coffee quality remains excellent.
I remain a fan but I am a bit disappointed that Bodum's solution to the myriad complaints was just to make a smaller version of the same! The techno in me would have liked to have seen a way to control brew times