2 years later, still as strong as day, no questions about buying again!
Positive Product Points
The Mininova has served me for well over 2 years now...and is still going strong! Don't compromise on quality, spend the dollars and you shall be duly rewarded.
Negative Product Points
I'm being petty now, but; steam wand is a tad restrictive, water tank is positioned close to boiler and so inlet water does get on the warm side.
As mentioned, the Wega has served me for over 2 years now and only 1 part has needed replacing - the teflon seal around the boiler's heating element (approx. 1 year into owning the machine). This was replaced at the Mininova's first service. Other minor problems with the Wega's operation have been attributed to the water hardness level in my area (Adelaide, South Australia), including: 1/ a sticky 'hot water' solenoid (no water available when hot water switched activated - solenoid stuck in closed position), and 2/ calcium buildup in the boiler. Issue 1 was rectified by removing the hot-water solenoid from the machine, soaking in CLR (calcium, lime and rust remover) and physically turning the solenoid gate valve with a pair of vise-grips to loosen its operation. Issue 2 was addressed by inserting a high pressure flexible hose into the boiler (with infusion of CLR) courtesy of a modified Karcher Pressure cleaner! The Wega was and has always been a noisy machine, but what I came to discover was that this noise was solely due to the water reservoir's intake hose touching the bottom of the plastic reservoir container. By cable tying the inlet hose so that the hose's opening rests an inch from the plastic bottom & when the pump is activated the difference in volume level whilst in operation is simply astonishing. Sounds about as loud as the Mazzer Mini next door!! I now insist on using a Brita water filter jug to supply fresh water to the Mininova. The Brita employs an ion-exchange mechanism to 'soften' the water as well as removing any microscopic matter with its active carbon filter. A special thanks to the boys at RIO coffee (Paul - Managing Director, Lino and Andrea - service and installations technicians, & Tony - Master Coffee Roaster) for all their help, expertise and advice over the years.
Superfluous operation, heavy duty construction, internal layout makes self-servicing a breeze. Pressurestat is fully adjustable, and so one has almost finite control over the coffee making process.