I am picky about my coffee makers. I read reviews, debate, make a purchase and then sure enough... return it because it i didn't like it or something about it.
This last time around, about 8 months ago, I went through 5 different units/makes/models until i came to this one.
It was a toss up between this one and the next 2 model numbers above it. The first was a very slight upgrade with regard to water tank numbering being on the outside vs. inside of the tank and the other unit had an additional hot water dispenser. I thought that a neat feature until i realized that it would so rarely be used.
Since the DCC-1200 was on sale, it won.
Here are my impressions. This is a long read, but hopefully worth it.
I find that this unit is a bit slow when making a pot of coffee. The owners manual said, and i paraphrase) that it takes 1 - 2 minutes per cup brewed. My experience is that it takes about 20 minutes for a pot. The good thing, it has a clock/timer so you can preset the night before.
It also has an option to do brew 1-4 cups vs. a full pot.
The warming burner has 3 levels: low, medium and hot. The hot is pretty hot and i'm pleased.
Some don't like where you pour the water into the unit, top back and they don't like that the number of cups labeling, is inside the unit vs. showing from the outside.
I find that there is plenty of room to pour the water into the unit without making a mess and since i filled the pot to transfer the water into the tank, i already know how much water is in the unit. So the fact that the number of cups numbering is inside the unit is fine for me.
This unit comes with a gold cone filter. I found that I use it on a daily basis vs. paper filters.
The clock on the unit is NOT backlit so you cannot see it in the dark. I wish that having a backlit on/off option were included but it's not. It's dark and you grow used to it.
Using the "cleaning" function when the light comes on is a very slow process. Plan an hour if you use that function.
This comes to the 1 thing i do not like about the unit. The cleaning feature lite, when it comes on, the unit probably needs cleaning. After that though, the machine has a hard time knowing that it's clean. Keep reading for details.
The light came on about 2 weeks ago. Since then, i've cleaned the unit at least 10 times using vinegar, dip-ip, and 2 other cleaners i got off of Amazon, both made to clean commercial coffee makers.
They work slick! Let me tell ya. But... my machine is clean! No more gunk has come out after the last 3 cleans, even when i use the machines cleaning cycle feature. I guarantee it's as clean now as it was when purchased.
But the light still comes on, every other pot. It's a borderline annoyance but considering all the other PRO's of this unit, i can live with it.
This unit looks nice, it works great and it makes a stellar cup of coffee. I would expect a machine of this calibre to be in the $150 range, not the $80 range.
I'm a happy user of over 8 months and counting. There is currently no signs of failure other than maybe the machine thinks it needs cleaning even though it's clean.
If/when this unit goes, without question... i would buy another.
One more thing which varies from maker/machine to maker/machine... the coffee pot itself... it pours just fine. SOOO many now days are messy. They spill, drip and make a mess when simply pouring a cup of coffee. This one pours fine. In addtion, if you have a LARGE cup like i do and you pour too fast, it will truly come out fast, so be ready. It goes from the normal pour to turbo mode. LOL. SO be ready, for it can be very messy and it can burn you. What i mean by turbo is simply this... you're pouring a cup. You turn the pot too far, in order to make it pour faster and all of a sudden, is pours at 2x the rate. Because it comes out so much faster, it also changes the pouring arc and will likely miss your cup. Hence... the mess.
One other negative... the "pause and server" or whatever it's called, works very poorly. You're supposed to be able to pull the pot out of the machine while it's brewing in order to pour a quick cup.
Don't do it. Wait for it to finish because if you do, not only do you have less than 10 seconds or you'll have a true mess, but it's going to be somewhat messy regardless. This feature simply does not work well.
But... on the positive, the bottom seems sealed and is easily cleaned. Just wait for it to cool.
Ok... there's a lot here. I easily give this machine 5 stars but subtract 1 due to the cleaning light coming on and the pause and serve not working well.
Oh yeah... i've read some reviews about people not liking the beep when the machine auto turns off. For me, it's a non issue. it's not overly loud and it's not invasive. One quick beep and done. Auto turn-off is 2 hrs, i do believe. So far, it's not an issue. I thought it might be when i first bought it but i found that it's not a problem for i wind up drinking it prior to it turning off.
Hopefully this review will help some out there who are on the fence.
Just remember... my disclaimer... what works for me may not necessarily work for others. Therefore, keep your receipt until you know for sure that it's a keeper. For me... i'd buy another just to put on the shelf for if/when the day comes that this machine breaks down.