Overall a good machine for hot brewed coffee and a good buy.
Positive Product Points
Hot coffee Inexpensive Timer and auto shut-off
Negative Product Points
Timer/clock difficult to read Water level indicator difficult to see
Presto Scandinavian Design: Received and unpacked the machine easily. See "Buying Experience" for info on how simply it was packed. The instructions are minimal, but if you've ever had a machine of this type they'd be sufficient. After all it's not too complicated.
I rated the "Quality of Product" at only 7 because the body is made of a light-weight plastic. The swing-out filter basket holder could be sturdier. I think it may be the first part to fail.
Set up per the instructions was simple and I ran a pot of water only through to rinse it out. Then I went to set the clock and the start timer. The digital clock is tiny with black numbers against a gray background. I had to tilt the machine back about 45 degress to see it squarely. The AM/PM indicator is especially difficult to differentiate. But I got it set, and I hope I won't have to do it very often.
I set it up for coffee-brewing the next morning. I brew only 6 cups (as indicated on the coffee-maker being used) instead of full pots, so I poured water in and watched the water-level indicator. Next thing I knew I had 8 cups worth of water in it. (So I made more that first day.) The water level indicator is a narrow vertical window on the side of the water tank. The inside of the tank is black, so you can't really see the top of the water in there. So they've put a little red ball-float in a tube that you can see in the window. The problem is there is a delay from when I start pouring water into the tank and when it starts floating the liitle red ball. I've learned to pour in a couple cups of water, wait for the little ball to float up, and then pour in more to the desired level. A couple days ago I followed that routine and the little ball didn't float right away. I knocked on the window and then stuck my fist into the tank and knocked on the back of the tube and then it floated OK. That hasn't happened again, though. If it becomes a problem I'll have to measure the water in the carafe first, I guess.
Some people here have quibbles about how the carafe lid opens suddenly while pouring coffee. I think that's a function of the carafe being sort of cone shaped. You have to tilt it more to pour. I have found that if you pour slowly, it's not a problem. Also, it's easy to use your thumb on the lid lever to open the lid as you pour so you don't have to let the coffee push it open.
I have tried several drip coffee makers over the years and never found one that gave me hot coffee. The most recent was a Mr. Coffee with a stainless thermal carafe. It probably would have been OK if the coffee going into the carafe was hot enough to begin with. I also considered buying the Melita Clarity but bought this one because it was priced about 1/3 less than the Melita at the time. Also the Presto has a auto-on/off feature that I like.
One feature I'd have liked is a switch for brewing less than a full pot. I've never had a coffee-maker that had that, so I don't know how much difference it would really make. I had looked at the Bosch Porsche Thermal and considered it because of the style and that's a feature it has. It's high cost and lack of data or recommendations about how hot it got kept me from going that route, though.
I also looked at the Technivorm. But all I want is sufficiently hot coffee in the morning, and a $40 machine that could do that is nicer than a $200 one.
Overall a good machine and a good buy.
It was shipped to me in its product box as it would be found on the shelf in the store - no double boxing. But it was in good condition, due to the molded styrofoam surrounding the machine.