| "so far so good"|| |
|- Reviewed By An Amazon User from Toronto, ON|
|Made my first americano today with my new XP4050 (which seems to be the same as the 4030 but with buttons instead of a dial).
The amount of noise it makes is not worth mentioning.
The espresso was brighter, cleaner, and brought out more flavours than my stovetop espresso maker.
It made a little crema around the edges of the cup. I was hoping for more but for this price what can you expect?
Since people have been talking about the plastic taste I made sure to add fresh water and then run it through once without coffee as the directions suggest.
Now, its time to experiment with grinds and so on.
| "so far so..."|| |
|- Reviewed By An Amazon User from Toronto, ON|
|I bought the XP4050 (which seems to be the same as the 4030 but with buttons instead of a dial) before reading any of these reviews.
The machine exceeded all my expectations, but sadly it does leave a slight plastic taste (even if you add fresh water each time).
Without the slight plastic taste I would give it 5 stars, but with it 2 stars. Krups, fix this simple problem!
The amount of noise it makes is not worth mentioning and is presumably just the pump doing its thing.
It heats up very quickly which is nice.
The espresso is brighter, cleaner, and brings out more flavours than my stovetop espresso maker.
In order to get a good crema you just have to follow the instruction of running it through once with water first. I've also found it helps to use the two cup filter and make a long shot (and tamp it hard).
Frothing milk for an americano is a piece of cake and mixes with the crema deliciously.
| "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly"|| |
|- Reviewed By An Amazon User from Mountains of Carolina|
|It's a Love/Hate relationship with the Krups XP-4030; built like a tank, heavy as lead, you expect this unit to last a lifetime...but it doesn't.
It does do it's job VERY well...for awhile. I've owned two of these, and liked the first so well that when I found a used one, I bit again...and eventually got bit again.
This unit seems to last about two years, then fails; I've noticed there's a secondary market in refurbished XP4030s on Ebay.
I should also mention the main reason I originally bought the XP; it is one of the very few expresso/coffee machines with stainless steel interior. Almost all the others use aluminum, which some researchers have linked to Alzheimer's. Imagine drinking hot aluminum water every day for years...uuh...what was I saying?
Anyway, the stainless steel is a big plus to me.
One other issue worth mentioning is the plastic water resevoir that you fill; someone earlier said that they smelled or tasted plastic. here's a thought that may illuminate that remark. My first unit was fresh from the store, and there was NO smell or taste of plastic, ever. The second used unit reeked of chlorine (I have well water, so I can smell that
swimming pool chemical like it was dog $#!+); after repeated cleanings with various cleaners, I couldn't get the chlorine smell off the used resevoir, so I swapped the stinker out for my original...no smell, no taste.
Perhaps the plastic used for the resevoirs is retaining the chemicals used to treat city water, and that's what the other reviewer was smelling; hard plastic doesn't usually stink,
unless it's burning.
I have learned alot about these machines, so I thought I;d share what I've found.
The weak spots:
A) The gasket seal where the handle/coffee container locks into the machine. This will eventually blow out if you 1) grind your coffee too fine (I can do store grinder settings Expresso 1 & 2, but grind "Turkish" and it goms up and blows out around the edges or sits there building up pressure like a bomb with a loud ominous thumping hum...scary!
When this happens, you have to turn off the machine, remove the coffee container, take a spoon and loosen the packed coffee, then replace and try again...or run outside and wait till it blows. (Not really; it just feels that way!)
2) If you pack your coffee in the handle/container too tight...same problem. As someone said before, once you blow the gasket, be prepared to wait AND pay the price plus shipping.
So, I learned to NOT grind the beans too fine AND not pack it tightly; just tamp it down abit. Problems solved.
B) This has not been mentioned by others yet, but is a design flaw; the central selector switch can and will wear out over time, causing it to slowly become nonfunctional.
The switch lever rotates first to the right to make the expresso, then back to center then two clicks left to build steam and release steam. I imagine there are four contact points
inside that the lever switches onto and past as you select the next setting; these initially have a satisfying snap as you change positions, but over time, those contact points wear down, probably from many passes across them back and forth. Finally, it loses contact and will not operate.
C) The pump mechanism will also eventually become weaker and weaker, and you will be unable to steam milk.
It IS a very loud machine; I was once on the phone as I was brewing, and the guy I was talking to said it sounded like a jet was landing.
Because it Does do a great job with expresso, I can live with the noise, but replacing a heavyduty expensive machine every two years is getting old.
To be fair, these machines operate under massive pressure (I mean PSI; pounds per square inch) every day for years, one form of pressure to pump the water through the coffee, and a second form of pressure to hold and release steam, so I'm sure theres engineering challenges to design something like this well.
BUT... how come there's ancient expresso machines all over Europe that seem to date from the 1890s that still do the job every day, all day long?
When the XP does fail, you're left with this serious heavyduty dead beast that you feel guilty about throwing away (shouldn't this be repaired? Surely they didn't mean for anything this well built to be tossed? What's the ecological impact on dumping a tank?) and if you consider having it rebuilt, will probably break you in shipping ONE way, much less round-trip to get back the beast.
My bottom line: Anything this expensive and heavyduty should be built to last...and the XP4030 doesn't.
Works great (in my experience with two units) for about two years...then doesn't.
I suppose if I added up the thousand expressos I brew over those two years at coffeehouse prices, it's still a bargain...but what do I do with these two massive dead machines?
| "nothing but problems"|| |
|- Reviewed By An Amazon User|
|I have had this machine for several years the first problems was the foul smelling plastic that was
used for the water container Krups sent me a new one but it is still the same problem Now it has up and
quit the pump no longer pumps it makes noises but nothing I called the toll free number with thoughts
of taking it to a service center in Illinois but the canned messages says sorry we have closed the Illinois
service center This machine is not worth dealing with any more Krups name is in the dumpster for me
fine german craftsmanship is now made in China
| "Looka nice, but just can't handle the "pressure""|| |
|- Reviewed By An Amazon User from SC|
|My DeLonghi EC155 Espresso machine quit last week after only a little over a year's service. I was really disappointed that I only got a year out of it....it was such a great little machine and really inexpensive too! So I went hunting for a new machine with a better warranty. I decided on a Cuisinart (3 year warranty) and went to my local Bed Bath and Beyond to order it. And there, on the shelf sat a Krups XP4030 espresso machine that was marked down to $99. They were discontinuing it and this was the last one...the floor model. They took an additional 10% off plus I had a 20% off coupon, so I bought it in spite of the 1 year warranty and not having a chance to check the reviews on it.
Since it was a floor model, there was no box and no instructions. I went on line to Krups web site and the manual they have available is not even readable. It's a terrible scanned copy. They were kind enough to Email me a good copy the next day so I set about making my first cappuccino. The first thing I noticed was the horrible odor from the water tank!! Not a normal plastic smell, but a terribly strong chemical smell. That did not impress me at all. I scrubbed the tank and ran several tanks of water through the machine to clean it and started making my espresso shots. The espresso portion of this machine is great! The shots were very fast (too fast maybe). I can't comment on the taste because I don't like espresso alone and the finished cappuccino was too horrible to drink. Next came the foaming of the milk. This is where this machine fails terribly. The design of the steaming nozzle makes it difficult or impossible to make a good micro-foam. If you put the tip just under the milk as you are supposed to, it blows big bubbles. If you sink the tip deeper, it steams the milk but makes no foam. I have made my own cappuccino at least one daily for over a year so I do know how to foam milk, but I was not able to do it with this machine. So I cleaned it up, put it back in the back and loaded it back in my truck for a return trip to the store in the morning. The next morning I got in my truck and the smell of that plastic tank hit me like a ton of bricks. I actually had to air out my truck before driving back to the store.
I have since ordered a new DeLonghi EC155 from Amazon and spent an extra $14 for an extended warranty. The DeLonghi EC155 is only $85 and even if it lasts only a year, I still feel like I got my money's worth. The Krups XP4030...don't waste your money.
| "Nice and noisy for a year"|| |
|- Reviewed By An Amazon User from USA midwest|
|The coffee this machine makes is actually pretty good. Only lasted a year and was noisy as hell when used. It vibrated so bad that even when new I had to watch the carafe to make sure it didn't fall off the machine. All and all if it lasted it would be worth 4 stars but alas less than a year of use is unacceptable.|