THE CURE: Once weekly reach up inside with a hot, wet towel, and clean the round disk behind the flap that hangs down. If it jams, unplug and let it cool before turning it on - sometimes you may have to do this several times. It just happened this a.m., and I had to wait 1/2 hour between my 3rd and 4th cup :) The first time it happened, tech support walked me through the cleaning on the phone. The last time was more of a problem, and they shipped me a mailing label for a $245 complete rebuild, but I didn't have to use it.
Edit - 01/15/2015: Eight and a half years later, this gem is still cranking out great coffee. I had it serviced by the wonderful folks at CoffeeBoss in Cornelius, NC last year, and it's still going strong with a cup count of 9,922. The brew group is not user serviceable, so occasional maintenance should be expected. I use distilled water (at the cost of flavor, I know) now that I'm back in the city on municipal water, so I don't need or use the Clearyl filter (I recommend it for tap/well water, though), and I do use a cleaning tablet within 5-10 cups of when it starts asking for it on the LED display.
You don’t even have to deal with the coffee grounds right away: they just drop into a little box that needs periodic emptying. Like the the 1.4l water tank, this box slides out of the front of the machine, which means you don’t need to fumble around at the back or move it away from the wall every few cups of coffee you make. It’s a nice touch, especially as the water tank in particular requires regular topping up: every time you switch the machine on, it flushes water through its pipes to keep them clean. It’s a bit of a faff, but it has its benefits: the NC-ZA1 makes a surprisingly delicious cup of coffee.
Embodying the tradition and soul of over seven and a half decades of experienced in one super automatic espresso machine, the new Gaggia Anima is one of the top fully automatic espresso machines you can currently get. The incredible beauty of this model combines tradition and modernity in a distinctive and elegant design that can easily outlive trends and fads. When it comes to how easy it is to use it, the Anima features a digital display and designated drink buttons, meaning that no matter if you want to enjoy a cappuccino or espresso shot, you can easily program the machine to do it in seconds. Better yet, to suit your preferences, you can easily customize each drink option in order to get the perfect taste.
From the outside, the Giga 5 looks attractive. It has a color TFT (thin film transistor) LCD screen display on the top front and center, with a stylish aluminum chassis with black plastic sides. This unit will definitely enhance the look of any kitchen. There’s a dedicated hot water spout at the front of the machine plus a couple of adjustable spouts for making coffee. Located on top of the unit you will find on/off buttons, a program button, and a rotary switch that is key to navigating the Giga’s menu.
Most modern coffee machines will feature a foam frother and this is also a vital part of a coffee machine like the Jura C65. The majority of users actually require this feature in order to make tasty lattes and cappuccinos. The good news is that the Jura C65 does indeed feature a revolutionary fine foam technology that ensures the milk has lots of foam. On top of that, the coffee spout’s height is adjustable, so you can easily fit a wide range of cups ranging from sixty five millimeters and up to one hundred and eleven millimeters.
On the downside, the bean storage is temperamental, after filling sometimes the beans won't feed into the grinder requiring a prod to continue and despite using a drier roast, not all beans get fed into the grinder when it is "empty." The final minor irritation is that the control button requires multiple rotational clicks before it functions.” James U., Amazon Customer
And that’s it. There’s very little in the way of cleaning or maintenance to be done, bar an occasional emptying of the drip tray, an occasional rinsing of the removable pod holder and, of course, the refilling of the water tank. The tank isn’t huge (0.8l), so you’ll need to do the latter fairly frequently. The drip tray, for its part, is adjustable – you can place it at one of three heights to suit the size of drinking vessel and reduce the chance of spillage.
Keep the machine clean. The F7 does a self-cleaning of the milk and coffee system every time you brew. But remember to stay on top of regular maintenance for the best quality. The machine makes that easy by telling you how and when to do the maintenance. It’s not hard, just drop a tablet of cleaner (from Amazon) in the water tank and you’re ready to go in 15 minutes.
Although it may seem somewhat inconvenient, we like it because it makes it easier to clean the milk container. Other features that come with the ENA 9 include a sturdy conical burr grinder, an energy saver mode to keep your electricity bills under control, and customizable coffee strengths. Also, you can adjust the amount of water that comes out, both in your coffee or if you want to use the machine as a hot water dispenser.
Of course, this is not all and you get a wide range of other impressive functions, such as ceramic valve technology, pre-ground option for decaf, 1-touch cappuccino system, large bean hopper with sensor and adjustable height brew spouts. Therefore, if you’re looking for the ultimate in espresso machines, then you certainly need to consider the Jura XS90 and experience how the perfect espresso shot actually tastes like.
...I just bought this machine for my girlfriend's new kitchen. The water sensor in the water tank does not stay in place. Therefore, the machine cannot make coffee because it cannot determine whether or not there is any water in the tank. There is a tiny plastic cap that should hold the sensor in place. The cap doesn't clip in, and floats away as soon as the tank is filled. Therefore the entire machine doesn't work.
Thinking that I must have received a defective unit, I requested an exchange from Amazon. I had a replacement unit the next day!! Amazon is amazing in this regard. The second unit worked well for the first week and then the same issue with the espresso not coming out and having to press the button to refill the pump started occurring again. More wasted espresso!!
Jura ENA Micro 90 One Touch Automatic Coffee Center: It might be the world’s smallest automatic machine but it offers big features. The compact machine can prepare a cappuccino and a latte macchiato at the touch of a button and, thanks to fine foam technology, the fine milk foam is always creamy and sweet. The Micro 90 also features a professional grade conical burr grinder, a powerful pump that produces 15 bars of pressure and a one-touch display.
Also, we went through a brief episode in which it would refuse to brew anything (as if it didn't have the power to punch the water through the puck of coffee). I remedied this with a descaling cycle as well as wiping out the parts above the removable tray thoroughly. (I use filtered water in the machine, but the descaling seems to be a more serious cleaning than the normal automatic cleaning.)
While it might seem odd to mention, some people do like to use pre ground coffee with a bean to cup machine, at least occasionally. A common reason is to get a cup of decaffeinated coffee from time to time, without needing to empty out the beans from the hopper, make a drink then switch it all back again. Similarly, if you have a brand of pre-ground coffee that you like as a change from your normal freshly ground beans every so often, the Impressa F8 has you covered.
If you are going to try to make other coffees with this machine, plan on doing some trial runs to get it right. Since you can adjust the amount of water and beans, you can make standard coffee if you want, but it’s not going to be as good as the espresso. Overall, we only recommend this to espresso drinkers, but it’s nice to know that you can make other beverages if and when you want a change.
The interface is also very clean and easy to use and given the fact that it also has a function for automatic cleaning, you don’t have to worry about cleaning the machine yourself. However, probably the most notable feature (among others) of the XS90 is the fact that it features a low noise design. What I mean by that is that the burr grinder is perfectly insulated and has the lowest noise grinding of any espresso machine on the market today.
The Capresso EC100 offers you the chance to get creative and add variety to your coffee drinks, not only with espresso shots but also with lattes and cappuccinos using this espresso machine's two-part frother. This espresso maker comes with a frothing sleeve that lets you swirl hot steam and air into your milk to make a rich and foamy topping for your cappuccinos. You can remove the frothing sleeve and use the underlying steam tube that puts hot steam into milk, making it possible to make lattes.
Everything about the Gira 5 is perfectly designed and engineered to produce incredible coffee drinks at twice the pace of other units. If we had a need for this much coffee this is the model we would buy, but our current consumption simply doesn’t warrant it. The Giga 5 is very popular in office settings but we also know families who entertain that have it in their home.