After two years still makes a damn fine Americano and lattes that impress the friends with it's performance and speed.
Positive Product Points
The Silvia is a nice looking machine. With the Rocky in stainless sitting next to it, on the stainless base - it will do nothing but compliment your kitchen. The machine is easy to use and will take little skill to learn and love. The grinder requires a bit more finesse & some fiddling but I am happy with the purchase. The base makes cleaning easier and unifies the look. After owning for two years, only the plastic handle on the porta-filter has required repair/replacement - not too bad after two years of daily use.
Negative Product Points
The Rocky grinder does require some fiddling and I still can not get it to dose properly. In addition, like most grinders, it does not like oily beans, meaning a stir of the beans will be required to get it back on course grinding. The three pieces (Silvia, Rocky & base) will consume lots of counter space.
Bought over two years ago - making a purchase of that size, buying it over the internet and not being able to touch the machines in person before the charge hit my visa made me understandably nervous. However, I would have never predicted that I would be as happy as I am with it over two years later.
After using them both with the base and without, I will advise you that the base is well worth the money and space that it occupies. Having worked a commercial machine, I knew what a machine was capable of - the question was, how close would the Silvia come to this standard. I was impressed. There are of course, some short falls in comparison - but for the money I am very pleased. The Rocky... hmmm, I am not sure there is not a better grinder out there for the money. With a career, husband and three children, I have yet to stop and take the time to modify the grinder as so recommended by many reviewers. The actual grinding is great. The dosing is still hard after two years and the beans we use stick and need stirred/shaken on a reg basis. I know there are ways to fix these problems, but I unfortunately have much more mundane but important things that consume my time. The only thing in two years that has been any problem is the handle on the porta-filter broke off. It is plastic, it happens. The new porta-filter was purchased from 1st-line and they came thru with flying colors. Over-all... it all sits in my kitchen and truly is my pride. It is used daily, not always free of a scattering of grounds, dried milk or splashes of espresso - but continues to impress me, make a damn fine americano every morning and lattes that impress the friends.
The box arrived well packed and sooner than anticipated after I made the purchase. The ordering went smoothly and I got the shipment so quickly it was scary.