Cuisinart 12-Cup Brew Central is a keeper -- updated 06/16/07
Makes a hot cup of great tasting coffee. Stylish. Dependable.
Beep tone can be annoying. Wiring problems after 2 years, had to replace.
The Bottom Line:
I very much recommend this coffeemaker. It produces a good cup of coffee with all the great features you're looking for. (Update: replaced after 2 years)
*Please see update on bottom*
Cuisinart 12-Cup Brew Central Programmable Coffeemaker DCC-1200
I have owned the Cuisinart 12-Cup Brew Central Programmable Coffeemaker DCC-1200 for about a month now. I am very happy with the purchase.
The Cuisinart 12-Cup Brew Central Programmable Coffeemaker is a very sleek design of both stainless steel and black plastic. The following controls are located on the front of the coffeemaker:
~ LCD Digital Clock which shows the time of day & sets the time for automatic functions.
~ Hour & Minute Buttons which are used to change the time and/or program the start/stop automatic features.
~ Function Knob which is used to program the automatic function such as:
~~~ Auto On - The auto on time can be set for any time, day or night.
~~~ Auto Off - The auto off feature is used to program the coffeemaker to shut off at anywhere from 0 to 4 hours.
~ Heater Plate Control Knob which is for controlling the temperature of the coffee after it has been brewed. There are three temperature settings for this.
~ 1-4 Cup Setting Feature . This is absolutely necessary for my household. When brewing a smaller amount of coffee (ie. 1-4 cups) the Cuisinart 12-Cup Brew Central Programmable Coffeemaker will double heat the water so that a nice hot cup of coffee is brewed. You don't have to wait for warmer plate to heat up smaller amounts.
~ Self-Clean Setting. This is a light that will turn red when it is time to run a self cleaning cycle. It will detect when it is time to clean to remove built-up calcification from the water reservoir to help extend the life of the coffeemaker.
~ Brew switch if you simply want to turn on the brew cycle for the present time without programming it.
Other Features of the Cuisinart 12-Cup Brew Central Programmable Coffeemaker
~ Brew Pause stops the flow of coffee from the basket when the carafe is removed (only 30 seconds or it will overflow) if you just can't wait another minute for your coffee.
~ Ready Tone will beep at the end of the brew cycle & has 5 beeps.
~ Carafe is an "easy pour" and no drip carafe. It has marking for between 2 to 12 cups of coffee.
~ The Heating Plate is scratch resistant with black, non-stick coating.
~ Water Filter is a charcoal water filter that eliminates chlorine, calcium and bad tastes & odors from the tap water. Replacement filters can be purchased online or at the store where you purchased the coffeemaker. The average price of a replacement filter is $19.99 for a package of 12 or $34.99 for a package of 24.
~ Filter basket holds a permanent filter (included) or #4 paper filters (4 are included with purchase).
~ Showerhead which distributes water evenly over coffee, reducing temperature loss as water passes through grounds.
~ Includes a black plastic measuring spoon.
My Experience with the Cuisinart 12-Cup Brew Central Programmable Coffeemaker
I replaced an older coffeemaker (Braun) for this new Cuisinart DCC-1200 Series because my old coffeemaker had 2 problems which were solved by the Cuisinart 12-Cup Brew Central Programmable Coffeemaker. First problem was that I was not able to program my old coffeemaker & dreaded waking up at 4:30am to start a pot of coffee for my husband. Second problem was that my old coffeemaker did not produce piping hot coffee. I take my coffee with a lot of cream which drastically reduced the already cooler coffees temperature.
The Cuisinart 12-Cup Brew Central Programmable Coffeemaker DCC-1200 Series is an excellent coffeemaker. The amount of water registered in the carafe is also the exact number in the water reservoir which is a FIRST for this household. The easy-pour feature truly is "easier" to use, but not fool-proof. It will balance the carafe while pouring into the reservoir so I have yet to spill water, which is very good. The coffee truly is much hotter than my older coffeemakers of the past. This is a big plus. The charcoal filter is easy enough to use. There is a separate compartment with a long "stick". Once pulled out, the bottom of the stick has a small plastic piece to open & insert the filter. I use filtered water (not tap) so I cannot give an accurate statement concerning this filter & how will it is.
I believe the taste of the coffee is excellent. I find I need to use much less grounds then the older coffeemakers. Using one tablespoon per cup is actually a bit too strong for us. This coming from my husband who is also an avid espresso drinker.
The Cuisinart 12-Cup Brew Central Programmable Coffeemaker's Manual is clear and easy to understand. It will take you one step at a time through all the programmable features of this coffeemaker. There is a 3 year warranty.
What I would like to change on the Cuisinart 12-Cup Brew Central Programmable Coffeemaker
Sure, nothing is 100% perfect. We all have changes we'd like to see in products. What I would like changed may not be what other customers prefer either. Here is a small list of the down sides of this Cuisinart 12-Cup Brew Central Programmable Coffeemaker in my opinion.
~~ Although the coffee is much hotter
it can still be improved!
~~ The filter basket holder is not removable. The filter itself comes out but the holder is built in. I would like to see this changed in the future to make for easier cleaning.
~~ The water reservoir is tall & slender. I'd like to see this changed to a wider one so people who don't have a very steady hand don't spill water.
~~ I'd like to have an option to turn off the beeping "ready tone".
Other than these changes I feel this Cuisinart 12-Cup Brew Central Programmable Coffeemaker is well worth the money paid. I paid $99.99 but also received 20% off. I am very happy with my purchase & hope it lasts many years. It seems to be sturdy & very stylish. I am a happy customer.
150 Milford Road
East Windsor, NJ 08520
*** Update 1/15/05 ~~
While cleaning the coffee maker this morning I noticed a small ring located under the filter basket. I tugged a little to see what it was. Under the filter basket is another piece that fits into the basket holder (the part I felt should be removable for cleaning). The piece comes out easily to clean & snaps back into place if a jiffy.
Either I am totally blind, or this is not mentioned in the manual. Either way, I'm very happy to see this feature!
Because of this update I will re-rate the cleaning aspect of this particular coffee maker to a 5 star rating for cleaning, instead of the previous 4 star. It deserves it.
*** UPDATED 06/16/07
Sorry to say, I had to replace this machine yesterday. While the coffee still brews and makes an excellent cup of coffee, it began shutting itself down without warning. After filling it with water & coffee and pre-programming it for the morning, I found it routinely shut down the auto-on feature. It also has been acting up after a brewing cycle by shutting down just after brewing was complete instead of staying on the programmed 4 hours after brewing.
I could not risk a fire in the house while I wasn't home or in the middle of the night. Something is obviously wrong with the wiring.
While I loved this coffee maker during the time I used it, I feel it should have lasted more than 2 years. I was tempted to buy the same exact model (still in stores for about $20 cheaper now) I opted for another model which I will review once I have tested it longer.
I feel I have no choice but to downgrade the durability.