Sometimes the best shot is the first one for a product, and R&D should leave well enough alone. Pump machine with good bloodlines, but needs TLC to brew to its best.
Positive Product Points
First generation of this machine was great; easy to fill both grinds and water, with consistent brewing and excellent flavor. 2005 version of Lido still makes great coffee, but slowly.
Negative Product Points
Filter basket and brew head cannot handle more than one thin cup of espresso--this with the 2 cup basket size. Crema Master filter touts adjustability and excellent crema production, but does not deliver. Filter and handle hard to seat tightly with a full load, and leakage around the sides results.
2005 version of Lido had been "improved" to the point of silliness. The revised Crema Master filter basket cum new brew head scheme was incapable of making coffee in under 6 minutes and the crema layer was thin and non-existent in most cases. Only reason to replace the 2000 version of machine was the basket sealing gasket was worn out, and I rue the day I bought this one.
Have tried several different grinds in order to get back to best compromise between speed and flavor to no avail. Do not want to move to the pods, since much of the attraction to Espresso / Latte drinking is the preparation ritual (not to mention the added expense), but that may offer some solace for those with limitless budget and less patience.
Next trial is the re-boring of the filter basket holes to improve the flow, but I do not hold out much hope.
Amazon online provided excellent service, and the cost was the lowest around for a new Briel machine.