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What's behind our coffee maker Ratings?

Experts at our National Testing and Research Center tested 165 models in coffee makers to see which ones perform best.
We look for:
  • Overall score
    Based on brew performance, convenience, and carafe handling. The displayed score is out of a total of 100 points.
  • Brew performance
    The ability to reach 195° to 205° F for five or six minutes, the industry standard for optimal brewing.
  • Convenience
    Reflects ease of filling the reservoir, placing the filter, gauging the amount of coffee remaining, and cleaning up. It also reflects how clear we judged the controls.
  • Carafe handling
    Covers handle comfort, tendency to drip while pouring, balance of a full carafe, and how easy it was to empty the last liquid. Models with no score here brew into single-serve cups or are self-serve models. The latter hold the coffee in a tank; you fill your cup by pressing it against the dispenser lever.
  • Brew time
    Our measurements of time, rounded to the nearest minute, to brew a pot of coffee in its regular cycle, using 40 oz. of water in those models that make 8- 14 cups of coffee. The one- or two-mug drip models are based on 10 oz. of water.


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Recommended coffee makers

Recommended coffee makers are standout choices with high scores. They include CR Best Buys, which offer exceptional value. When narrowing your choices, weigh features, price, and attributes that matter to you.
  • Buying Guide
  • Price & Shop
The most basic coffee makers make at least a decent cup. In fact, our top-rated multicup drip coffee maker beat out many higher-priced models. But more money buys more features. If you're looking for information about coffee makers, Consumer Reports is your best resource. Consumer Reports' coffee maker reviews will give you honest buying advice that you can trust. Use our coffee maker buying guide to discover which features are most important to consider. We also provide unbiased ratings and coffee maker reviews to help you choose the best coffee maker for your needs.

Recently reviewed coffee makers

Signature Touch 10-cup
This Williams-Sonoma 10-cup drip coffee maker has:
  • auto-shutoff
  • a permanent filter.
  • an indicator to tell you when cleaning is needed
  • a measured capacity of 42 oz.
  • a cone-type filter.

Coffee maker buying guide

You can spend $200 or more for a coffeemaker with interactive displays and the stainless construction you'd find on a pro-style range. You'll also see coffeemakers that combine brewing technologies or even another appliance, such as a personal blender, for making smoothies as well as coffee. But our latest tests show that a consistently good cup of joe starts at as little as $40.

The most basic coffeemakers make at least a decent cup. Still, you might want more features than a simple on/off switch. A little more money buys you conveniences such as programmability, a thermal carafe to keep coffee hot longer, and settings that let you adjust brew strength.

Our top conventional drip machines reached 195 to 205 degrees F for about five minutes, the industry standard for optimal brewing. If you're into self-serve, brew-and-dispense models let you fill your cup right from the machine, which keeps the coffee hot. When you're on the go, single-serve models, also known as pod machines, brew a cup at a time from sealed beverage packets--no fuss, no muss.

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