The ECAM26455M features dual stainless steel-lined thermoblock heating in order to provide steaming and brewing power for your espresso and other drinks you wish to prepare with it with a very low cycling time. Compared to regular boiler systems, the thermoblock system is capable of much lower warm-up times paired with on-demand and efficient water usage.
Of course, this is not all and you get a wide range of other impressive functions, such as ceramic valve technology, pre-ground option for decaf, 1-touch cappuccino system, large bean hopper with sensor and adjustable height brew spouts. Therefore, if you’re looking for the ultimate in espresso machines, then you certainly need to consider the Jura XS90 and experience how the perfect espresso shot actually tastes like.
I bought this for my wife and I admit that I thought it is crazy to spend this amount of cash on a glorified coffee pot. She already had a nice Breville expresso maker but didn't use it. Basically it was too hard to operate and clean. This machine is almost totally hands free. Push a button and get a coffee. Push a button and get a latte. At the end of the day turn it off and it rinses tiself. You only have to dump the grounds and clean the trays. I can't comment on reliability or durability but it makes awesome coffee. It is an extravagance but it you love expresso or latte and don't like hassle it is well worth the price.
There’s no steam wand for heating and foaming milk, but the Dolce Gusto system has its own way of doing that: drinks such as cappuccinos and lattes are made with two pods: one coffee pod and one special milk pod, used in the amounts specified on the pod lid. Drinking milk expelled from a pod isn’t as appetising as fresh cow juice, we think you’ll agree – but it’s less effort and less mess.
If you want to steam and froth milk for 1 or 2 cups, you can take advantage of the dual Frother+ system that’s very simple to use. Featuring settings for cappuccino and latte, you can easily prepare your favorite drink in seconds. You’ll then be alerted when the machine is ready to steam and if you want, you can also dial in your desired steaming time by using the Rotary Switch.
Edit - 01/15/2015: Eight and a half years later, this gem is still cranking out great coffee. I had it serviced by the wonderful folks at CoffeeBoss in Cornelius, NC last year, and it's still going strong with a cup count of 9,922. The brew group is not user serviceable, so occasional maintenance should be expected. I use distilled water (at the cost of flavor, I know) now that I'm back in the city on municipal water, so I don't need or use the Clearyl filter (I recommend it for tap/well water, though), and I do use a cleaning tablet within 5-10 cups of when it starts asking for it on the LED display.
If you are going to try to make other coffees with this machine, plan on doing some trial runs to get it right. Since you can adjust the amount of water and beans, you can make standard coffee if you want, but it’s not going to be as good as the espresso. Overall, we only recommend this to espresso drinkers, but it’s nice to know that you can make other beverages if and when you want a change.
THE CURE: Once weekly reach up inside with a hot, wet towel, and clean the round disk behind the flap that hangs down. If it jams, unplug and let it cool before turning it on - sometimes you may have to do this several times. It just happened this a.m., and I had to wait 1/2 hour between my 3rd and 4th cup :) The first time it happened, tech support walked me through the cleaning on the phone. The last time was more of a problem, and they shipped me a mailing label for a $245 complete rebuild, but I didn't have to use it.
3) This machine is crazy smart. It knows exactly when to clean itself, or tells you when to start the cleaning cycle. To clean it, all you do is insert a tablet in the coffee powder drawer and it does its thing. It knows when it needs water, when the filter needs to be changed, etc. In fact, since we have a water filter built into our refrigerator, we just use that filtered water in the coffee machine and therefore we don't need to use the expensive water filters. Bottom line, if you just pay attention and clean the machine on a regular basis when it tells you to, this is a no-brainer machine.