The butane burner is a legitimate upgrade over the denatured alchohol spirit lamp, whether the one with the TCA or the NCA. I hate the lingering smell of alcohol in the air-let alone the headaches in refeuling the lamp.
The paper filter set can save you time in cleaning the siphon, which is, in my opinion, the only legitimate drawback to any siphon. The filter set used for the Nouveau (NCA) is totally 100 percent compatible with the technica.
I also suggest buying extra cloth filters and a couple filter sets, including the paper filter set.
I recommend this product wholeheartedly. I purchased my first one off ebay 3 months ago, and since then, have bought 2 more.
None have broke, I just want to keep them around for emergency presents or emergency backup or for serving alot of guests.
I use my 3 cupper every day, often 3 times a day. Over the past 3 months, I'm sure I've made over 200 pots.. Just with my tca-3, my everyday favorite.
The super technica and the nouveau will make the EXACT same tasting coffee, in the same amt of time. Its neck and filter diameter are identical.
Hario translates to "king of glass" in japanese (so i'm told). I think their glass is the strongest because they use premium ingredients and manual glass blowing.
I have used old Silex and Cory vacpots, and a new Bodum Santos (RIP) and can claim with great certainty that their glassware is inferior to any of my Hario vacpots (TCA-3, TCA-5, STA-5, NCA-5).
My roomates bodum (which I bought on ebay) santos overheated and cracked within a week of normal hario-type use.
The neck and filter system of the Hario is superior to all except possibly Cona.
Consistently produces the best tasting non espresso coffee period.
Bought over the phone from the ppl at hariousa.com. Friendly and courteous, a pleasure to do business with.