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Capresso ST600 Coffee Maker
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Discussions > Articles > First Looks... > Capresso ST600...  
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bsalamon
Senior Member


Joined: 3 Sep 2004
Posts: 5
Location: Raleigh, NC
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: quickmill  vetrano
Grinder: mazzer mini e
Drip: technivorm clubline, manual...
Roaster: gene cafe
Posted Sun Oct 21, 2007, 4:57pm
Subject: Re: Capresso ST600 Coffee Maker
 

I orderd the $99 one off Amazon and will receive it this thursday. I will be sure and let you know how it goes.
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gteague
Senior Member
gteague
Joined: 3 Dec 2003
Posts: 75
Location: dfw
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: silvia (pid)
Grinder: mazzer mini
Vac Pot: aeropress
Drip: capresso st600
Roaster: freshroast 8
Posted Sun Oct 21, 2007, 7:49pm
Subject: Re: Capresso ST600 Coffee Maker
 

i received mine a couple of days ago. here's my initial impressions.

at first i began to believe that some of the bad reviews might have been on the mark as i got acquainted with the operation. i cycled through just plain water the first couple of times and one time i had about 1/2 cup leakage and testing the auto-timer function i had a failure to launch.

but i'm pretty positive these glitches were pilot error as i don't think i had the filter holder seated completely. once i took a little time to notice how the parts went together things improved to the point i haven't had any further problems of this nature.


pros:
  • very hot coffee! (i casually measured 195deg after the carafe was filled. and it was still in the 180's after a couple of hours. this impresses me highly as i've had drip makers before where i had to immediately microwave right out of the pot to get to a drinkable temperature.)
  • build quality and controls seem excellent. nice touches like the buttons themselves lighting up to indicate status. the display is especially nice with its cool blue light and number large enough to see from several feet away.
  • water filter (charcoal)
  • re-usable (permanent) filter
  • 4-cup mode. i tried this and it worked fine. this was a major selling point as the most coffee i ever need at once is 1 liter and that only if i'm filling up a thermos to take to work.


cons:
  • wide stance counter footprint. it's big
  • filter holder and supplied filter a little 'fiddly' to get seated correctly because of the 'trigger' mechanism which interacts with the carafe spout.
  • can't see water level from the front. also, it's not accurate if cups are 5oz. i put 20oz of water in and it indicated 5 cups.
  • charcoal water filter holder is frustrating to use. took me forever to figure out how to get it apart to put in the actual filter and it doesn't fit well at all into the slot at the bottom of the water tank. loose as a goose and i worry each time i fill up the water tank whether the filter holder is going to float up out of the slot or whether it's seated firmly enough to actually do its job.
  • instruction manual fairly basic and includes no specs.


the best results i've gotten so far were by using the very helpful 1st look review as a starting point which recommended 8g per 5oz cup. actually, since the water indicator is pretty well useless due to having to turn the machine sideways to see it and the lack of accuracy, i've been just dumping 1 liter of cold water and using 30g of coffee so it works out to about 1g/oz which is easy to remember, but is 2-3g/cup less than the review recommended. my 1g/oz seems strong enough for me. i wonder if the reviewers unit was actually calibrated to 5oz/cup as mine is closer to 4oz/cup going by the tank indicator.

one more thing re the height. popping the top adds another 3-4" to the height, but i have mine in an 18" high space and i can get water and coffee in and the filter in and out just fine without sliding the unit out into the open.

i'm pretty pleased to have gotten this unit as this price. i doubt i would have paid the going rate of $169 for it, but the price drop to $99 sucked me right in.

/guy

 
We were somewhere around the Withywindle on the edge of the Old Forest when the drugs began to take hold. --Hunter S. Tolkien
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bsalamon
Senior Member


Joined: 3 Sep 2004
Posts: 5
Location: Raleigh, NC
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: quickmill  vetrano
Grinder: mazzer mini e
Drip: technivorm clubline, manual...
Roaster: gene cafe
Posted Mon Oct 22, 2007, 4:39am
Subject: Re: Capresso ST600 Coffee Maker
 

Guy, I am curious if you are using unfiltered water from the tap. If so are you satisfied with the flavor in the cup? I am hoping I can get away with using unfiltered water relying on the capresso charcol filter.

very hot coffee! (i casually measured 195deg after the carafe was filled. and it was still in the 180's after a couple of hours

If you are measuring 195deg in the carafe that is impressive. That means the brew temp is around 202deg in the machine.

Also how effectively is the sprayhead saturating the grounds?  I own a Technivorm and in order to properly saturate all the grounds I have to open the filter holder and stir the grounds at least two times during the brew process to properly saturate the grounds. The coffee comes out tasty but I am loooking for a brewer that I don't have to stir and hits the right brew temp.  


Brian
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gteague
Senior Member
gteague
Joined: 3 Dec 2003
Posts: 75
Location: dfw
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: silvia (pid)
Grinder: mazzer mini
Vac Pot: aeropress
Drip: capresso st600
Roaster: freshroast 8
Posted Mon Oct 22, 2007, 5:20am
Subject: Re: Capresso ST600 Coffee Maker
 

hi brian:

yes, my water is straight from the tap although i do put it in 1 liter bottles and refrigerate it and then add it to the coffeemaker from there. i have a 'zerowater' tester that measures impurities or particles and it usually reads between 180-220 on my water which, according to their literature, is slightly above average quality for tap water.

i'm not much of a drip fan, but i'm impressed with the quality of the coffee out of this machine. so far i've made pots from an independent roasters kenya aa, some starbucks verona, sweetmarias liquid amber blend, and intelligentsia blackcat. the verona and kenya tasted a little thin and stale, but the two espresso blends were nearly as good as from a french press or my new favorite, my aeropress. the pots from these two latter beans far exceeded the quality of any drip coffee i've had in the past.

how would i determine how well the sprayhead is working? i'd be glad to run a test or make an observation if you would instruct me what to look for.

/guy

 
We were somewhere around the Withywindle on the edge of the Old Forest when the drugs began to take hold. --Hunter S. Tolkien
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bsalamon
Senior Member


Joined: 3 Sep 2004
Posts: 5
Location: Raleigh, NC
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: quickmill  vetrano
Grinder: mazzer mini e
Drip: technivorm clubline, manual...
Roaster: gene cafe
Posted Mon Oct 22, 2007, 5:46am
Subject: Re: Capresso ST600 Coffee Maker
 

I'm not much for drip either. I only revert to drip when I have guests and need more volume than my 32oz press pot delivers or when I am feeling lazy.  We certainly lower the bar when evaluating the auto drip mahcines don't we.  

To determine how well the saturation is going just inspect the grounds after brewing and look for any dry areas. Ideally all the grounds should be wet.  Also the surface of the grounds in the filter should be flat. If there is a conical indentation then the tip of that conical indentation will be oversaturated.

How much coffee does the Aeropress brew?
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gteague
Senior Member
gteague
Joined: 3 Dec 2003
Posts: 75
Location: dfw
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: silvia (pid)
Grinder: mazzer mini
Vac Pot: aeropress
Drip: capresso st600
Roaster: freshroast 8
Posted Mon Oct 22, 2007, 6:18am
Subject: Re: Capresso ST600 Coffee Maker
 

the aeropress is my most exciting coffee find in years. they take a lot of abuse for their marketing advertising that this is 'espresso' coffee and all us coffee snobs nod knowingly at that criticism. but there is no doubt that, imo, this method makes the richest, most full-bodied coffee i've ever tasted.

there are two cylinders, one fits inside the other, with a filter holder. you put the filter holder with a filter inserted on the end of the larger cylinder and put 24g of coffee into the cylinder on top of the filter. put the cylinder on top of your coffee cup, then you put 5oz of water into the grinds and stir for about 10s. then put the smaller cylinder which has a rubber 'plunger' inside the larger cylinder and plunge down for about 10 seconds forcing the coffee through the filter into your cup. this makes about 4oz of concentrated coffee which you can then drink straight or use for an americano by adding 6-10oz of water. if the coffee is fresh you get a foam which could pass for crema and a puck which can be examined like the puck in an espresso portafilter. you can double the amounts i've listed so i'd say the aeropress will make about 8-10oz of 'concentrate'.

here's a very useful instruction guide from sweet marias coffee:

http://www.sweetmarias.com/aeropress_instructions.html

note: the aeropress instructions and even sweet marias say that a lower temperature (165-185deg) is called for, but i cannot bear to drink coffee at that temp so i use the standard, just off the boil, 200-212deg temp for brewing using the aeropress.

/guy

 
We were somewhere around the Withywindle on the edge of the Old Forest when the drugs began to take hold. --Hunter S. Tolkien
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popeye162
Senior Member


Joined: 25 Aug 2005
Posts: 3
Location: pensacola, fl
Expertise: I live coffee

Posted Thu Jan 24, 2008, 4:46pm
Subject: Re: Capresso ST600 Coffee Maker
 

Anybody want to comment on how their st600 is holding up?  Amazon just dropped the price to $70, and i'm tempted to get one but their reviews are mostly negative for leaking.  I know if you get a leak, you're very likely to post a negative review, but still...  Any comments?
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pdub
Senior Member


Joined: 3 Mar 2008
Posts: 1
Location: Pacific NW
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Mon Mar 3, 2008, 1:55pm
Subject: Re: Capresso ST600 Coffee Maker
 

popeye162 Said:

Anybody want to comment on how their st600 is holding up?  Amazon just dropped the price to $70, and i'm tempted to get one but their reviews are mostly negative for leaking.  I know if you get a leak, you're very likely to post a negative review, but still...  Any comments?

Posted January 24, 2008 link

I can't comment on the "holding up" question, but I just picked up the st600 for $40 on Amazon's Friday markdown. Hard to go wrong with that deal, even if it does leak. I'd also appreciate any updates from folks who've been using this machine for a while.

Peter
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cgardnerma
Senior Member


Joined: 3 May 2008
Posts: 11
Location: Boston
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Sun May 4, 2008, 5:35pm
Subject: Re: Capresso ST600 Coffee Maker
 

I can comment on it "holding up". Mine did not. I got 15 months of 2-3 pots a day out of it before it started popping the GFCI breakers in my kitchen. Some sort of internal short. Lame--especially since I paid full price when it first came out.

Made terrific coffee though, and I measured a full 200 degrees in the basket. I think I am going to go in a different direction this time. Maybe a Technivorm, OCS 12 or a commercial model.

cgardnerma
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Ashtonford
Senior Member
Ashtonford
Joined: 27 May 2004
Posts: 8
Location: Va
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Tue Jul 14, 2009, 12:25pm
Subject: Re: Capresso ST600 Coffee Maker
 

I recently purchased a refurbished unit off Amazon for 48.00 when I filled it with water and plugged it in I noticed that it started cycling with out any buttons depressed.  After reading the instructions etc. I noticed that the on off switch lit up and went off when depressed but dident turn off the machine.  I called capresso support line and they were very nice I told the lady my problem and she said that another unit would be shipped out to me in 2 days and to just put the old unit in the box and return it by the prepaid ups label.  To me capresso has excellent customer service to send a replacement  with out sending the old one back first is almost unheard of in this day and age.  And by the way they concidered the refurb unit the same as a new one the warranty is exactly the same.  Ill let everyone know how this works out when I get my replacement unit! so far so good.
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