Good machine for home use, and can double as an alarm clock for your spouse when they sleep in.... the grinder will definately wake them up!
Positive Product Points
Versatile, and in black with brushed steel accents, nice looking. Holds steam for a long time, so can handle multiple drinks in a row relatively easily. Somewhat easy to clean internal workings.
Negative Product Points
Brushed steel finish easy to scar. Its quite noisy, and I find the expresso shots a tadd weak. Has a tendance to leak water from the refilable tank connection.
I bought my first unit four Christmases ago, and within a week burned out the steam pump. Lesson number one, don't begin steam without priming the line. I called Starbuck's 1.800 line, spoke with customer service, and within half an hour had a replacement machine reserved at a local Starbucks a few minutes drive from home. One of the best examples of customer service I've experienced, especially since the problem was my fault.
Several folks note the water leakage problem. I've mostly resolved mine by not removing he reservoir other than to wash it. I use a water pitcher to refill it, and that seems to work best.
After my initial burned out pump incident, I've not had any problems with the unit. I still put about a dozen shots a week through it, and its been going strong for over four years now. I can't complain with that.
Mostly good, with the exception that the junior sales clerk didn't understand the difference between being asked by the credit card company to validate the user's ID versus rejection of a charge. It made for a few minutes embarrassment, but once I provided them with some gentle training, we moved to the managers office and cleared the charge with VISA quite quickly. Espresso machine under arm, I left for home quite satisfied.