I have been making espresso at home for 30 years and have gone through 3 machines prior to purchasing the DeLonghi. The first was purchased in Rome in 1978 when home-brewed espresso in the US was a rarity. That machine lasted 10 years before the pump blew out and looking back it just made ‘acceptable’ coffee. I next purchased a Krups (from Amazon) and ran that one to death in 10 more years. It was a fine machine but not surprisingly, it did wear out.
A good value for the price and I got a lot of service from it. Then I got a Braun which was totally serviceable for yet another 10 years….do these things all last 10 years? I guess so. When it was time to purchase another espresso maker, I chose the DeLonghi EC702. What a nice surprise! It heats up really quickly, and despite the owner’s manual that says let it warm up for 15 minutes before you brew the first cup, I find you can get a perfect cup after only about 3 minutes of warm-up. Then, hit the ‘milk steamer’ button and in just one more minute it’s hot enough to do the milk for a great cappuccino. The steamer nozzle is the first I’ve seen that can be EASILY dismantled (two small pieces to pull off) and rinsed. Former models had to be scrubbed with a scouring pad occasionally to scape off the residue left on the nozzle. This DeLonghi setup is far better and the steamer nozzle is always clean and ready for your next cappuccino. The drip tray (plastic with a metal grid) pulls off for easy cleaning too. Being a coffee-hound, I use the double-filter basket to make a single cup, although the photo shows two demitasse cups being filled side-by-side.
Really, I’d recommend this machine without reservation. It’s good-looking, easily cleanable, warms up super fast, quickly steams the milk to a lovely froth, and filling the water reservoir is a snap because it pulls out like a small drawer so you can squirt more water in from the sink’s dish sprayer without needing to remove the entire reservoir from the machine (at least that’s how I do it). A full reservoir makes about 4 good-sized cappuccinos with frothed milk before needing refilling. All in all, a GREAT machine at a GREAT price. Buy it!
Other great machine – Breville