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Francis Francis X1 - X1 Owner's Review
Posted: November 28, 2007, 5:27am
review rating: 4.5
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
Francis Francis X1
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More About This Product
Arrow The Francis Francis X1 has 43 Reviews
Arrow The Francis Francis X1 has been rated 7.20 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since November 30, 2001.
Arrow Francis Francis X1 reviews have been viewed 255,891 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Scott Smith 8.75
Patrick Moss 8.00
Josh Alwitt 8.00
Steve Strawman 8.00
Phil M 7.60

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 8.6
Manufacturer: Francis! Francis! Quality: 8
Average Price: $799.00 Usability: 9
Price Paid: $670.00 Cost vs. Value 7
Where Bought: John Lewis Aesthetics 10
Owned for: 2 months Overall 9
Writer's Expertise: I love coffee Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned:
Bottom Line: Great with an entry-level burr grinder.
Positive Product Points

Beautiful too look at. Solidly built. Makes great coffee (see below).

Negative Product Points

It's expensive. You could probably get the same quality coffee for cheaper. But it's a work of art!

Detailed Commentary

I'm talking about the latest 2007 model for ground coffee only. From what I've heard it's a great improvement on earlier models especially ones that use 'pods'. For example it's got a marine grade brass boiler now.

The angle of the steam wand makes it difficult to use a tall pitcher. The drip tray cover slides about a bit when you're cleaning it - better to take it off and wash it at the sink. Plastic spout isn't very nice and kept coming off the portafilter (until I realized how to put in on securely - just push it hard).

On the other hand it makes great coffee BUT ONLY WITH A GRINDER. I found that pre-ground coffee came out weak and with a thin crema that dissipated quite quickly. The grind wasn't fine enough and I had to cram loads of coffee in to get a half-decent shot - that made it hard to get the portafilter into the grouphead. Only Illy  coffee (not very nice) was ground fine enough. But today I got the Dualit Grinder (a.k.a. Solis 166, SB Barista) and it made a WORLD of difference. It matches the X1 perfectly - the second-finest grind setting is a little too fine for the X1 and the shot takes too long. 3rd-finest works well. Amazing guinness-effect, great thick crema and great taste! Thanks to the dualit, I now don't need to put too much coffee in to get those amazing results.

Buying Experience

Ordered it from John Lewis website - couldn't order when it was out of stock but they e-mail you when it's back in. I kept checking the website and found it was back in stock but I didn't get an e-mail. I bought one anyway for 325. Then, a few weeks later, I got an e-mail and it was being sold for 375!!! No wonder they didn't e-mail: I got a bargain! Arrived with box slightly damaged but the free tin of Illy took the strain instead of the machine.

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review rating: 4.5
Posted: November 28, 2007, 5:27am
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
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