Walter Shillington writes about products he knows firsthand. His articles focus on healthcare, electronics, watches, and household items.
My Coffee Maker Collection
I own a Tassimo coffee maker. It forces hot water through a small pod filled with ground coffee, resulting in a cup of great-tasting coffee. This is a good system for a busy man like myself; however, operating costs are very high.
I have also acquired an Oyster espresso machine which functions similarly to the Tassimo. Hot water is forced through a portafilter packed with ground coffee and drained into a cup. This device is also capable of frothing milk. While the espresso machine concocts the best cappuccinos that I have ever tasted and operating costs are low, preparation and cleanup can be a hassle.
My third coffee maker is a French press. You add ground coffee and hot water to this urn-like device and wait as the coffee grounds slowly infuse the water. Then a filtered plunger drives the grounds to the urn's bottom, leaving only freshly brewed coffee to be poured. A French press benefits from low operating costs and can brew several cups of coffee at one time. Cleanup and preparation, however, can be a pain.
Today I am taking a close look at an electric drip coffee maker manufactured by TaoTronics. In this article, I will describe how the device functions, compare it to other types of coffee machines, and run a few tests. Since I really like my coffee, this is going to be a fun review.
The TaoTronics TT-CM001 is 13.5 inches high, 10 inches deep, and 7.8 inches across. It is composed of black plastic (ABS) and stainless steel and includes a top that flips open, revealing a plastic funnel and a reusable filter. The 12-cup water tank is filled using this opening.
Along the right side of the coffee maker, a plastic window indicates the water level.
A glass carafe, which sits atop the coffee maker's warming plate, can be accessed from the front. This device's control panel hovers above the carafe.
The machine requires 120VAC and draws 1000 watts.
- Manufacturer: TaoTronics
- Name: Coffee Maker
- Model: TT-CM001
- Type: Drip
- Dimensions: 34 x 25.4 x 20 centimeters (13.5 x 10 x 7.8 inches)
- Capacity: 1.8 liter (60 ounces)
- Material: Stainless steel plus ABS
- Brewing time: About 15 minutes to brew 12 cups of coffee
- Warmer Temperature: Low ≥ 167°F/75°C, Medium ≥ 172°F/78°C, High ≥ 178°F/81°C
- Net Weight: 2.38kg / 5.2lbs
- Included: Coffee Maker, Coffee Pot, Scoop, Basket, User Guide
TaoTronics is trademarked by Sunvalleytek International. This company focuses on the incorporation of the latest technology into easy-to-use devices.
Ground Coffee vs. Whole Beans
Whole beans exhibit less surface area than ground coffee, allowing them to be stored for lengthier periods before becoming stale. Most people, however, do not have the time to grind coffee beans every day. For them, I recommend purchasing small resealable bags of ground coffee.
Ground coffee varies in size from fine to coarse. Drip-type coffee makers, happily, can handle any type of ground coffee except for espresso or bags labeled explicitly for use with a French press. Finely ground coffee generally results in a more potent brew.
Many bags of coffee consist of a mixture of different types of ground beans. I recommend you experiment with various brands and types.
Although not as attractive as my fancy Tassimo machine, the TaoTronics TT-CM001 is quite appealing and includes a bright, easy-to-read clock display. It is quite narrow, consuming less of my valuable counter space than my other coffee makers.
Ease of Use
I simply lift the top of the TaoTronics TT-CM001 and pour in the required amount of water. Then I add a few scoops of coffee grounds into the machine's conically shaped filter.
Once this is complete, I lower the coffee maker's lid and push the brew button. Within 15 minutes, this machine can brew 12 cups of coffee.
The first step is to raise the machine's lid, grab the filter's handle, and pull it free. Then I dump its contents by tapping it against the side of my garbage can.
The filter, filter holder, and carafe can be quickly washed with soap and warm water.
- 24-Hour Programmable Brewing: This coffee maker can be set to brew at a specific time.
- Customizable Brewing Strength: When the 1-4 cup function is selected, the drip rate is reduced, increasing the strength of the brewing coffee.
- Anti-Drip System: The flow of coffee is temporarily halted when the carafe is removed during the brewing process.
- Keep Warm Function: A hot plate with three temperature settings keeps freshly brewed coffee at around 167°F, 172°F, or 178°F for up to 4 hours.
Test Procedure and Results
For my first experiment, I added six cups of water to the machine and six scoops of premium ground coffee to the conical filter. It took 5½ minutes to brew and produced enough coffee to fill my large mug twice with a little left to spare. The resulting coffee was good but a little weak for my taste.
I slowed the drip rate during my next test by pressing the 1-4 cup function button. It took longer to brew, but the coffee proved to be noticeably stronger.
I then reran the original experiment, using seven scoops of coffee instead of six. I did not press the 1-4 cup function button. The resulting coffee was full-bodied and flavorful.
For my final test, I brewed five cups of coffee, using six scoops of ground coffee. This provided enough coffee to fill my mug twice. Again, the coffee tasted great.
I like this coffee maker. It is inexpensive to operate—especially when compared to my Tassimo machine—simple to use, easy to clean, and brews excellent coffee. The TaoTronics TT-CM001 is recommended.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2021 Walter Shillington