Reviewers say the Senseo SL7810 is a good pod coffee maker, but that the coffee is relatively weak. It's possible to make a stronger brew, but you'll have to use two pods, doubling the cost per cup. Many owner-written reviews say that with only 12 Senseo-branded flavors to choose from, variety is limited. However, Kenneth Davids at CoffeeReview.com says a few third-party roasters market Senseo-compatible pods. Overall, most owners are happy with the coffee maker's convenience and simple, speedy operation. Reviewers say the best pod coffee maker overall is the Keurig Special Edition B60 (*Est. $150) , which can be set to brew at different temperatures and offers a vast selection of proprietary pods (called K-Cups).
Note that a previous version of the Senseo, the Philips-made Senseo HD7810, was part of a large recall in April 2009, so fewer professional reviews exist of the new Sara Lee-made Senseo SL7810. We did, however, find helpful ratings for the Senseo SL7810 at Popular Mechanics and at ConsumerReports.org, which puts 15 pod coffee makers through rigorous testing. We also consulted user reviews at Amazon.com and Viewpoints.com to get their opinions about the SL7810.
ConsumerReports.org compares two Senseo coffee makers along with 13 other pod coffee makers. Models are evaluated on six criteria: convenience, brewing range, first-cup speed, repeat speed, temperature consistency and size consistency. It appears that ConsumerReports.org tests the new Sara Lee-made versions based on model numbers; however, editors do include a note about the HD-model recall.
Review: Pod Coffeemaker Ratings, Editors of ConsumerReports.org
Among eight single-cup coffee makers, the Senseo SL7810 gets positive marks for being quick, clean and less expensive to operate. However, it's downgraded for its small water reservoir and tepid brew strength.
Review: Single-Serve Coffeemaker Showdown: 8 Brewers Put to the Test, Jeremy Repanich, April 2010
Out of about 200 user reviews, the Senseo SL7810 earns an overall average score of 4 out of 5 stars. Some complain about the Senseo pods' tepid brew strength, noting that a robust cup requires two pods. Some users opt for third-party pods to achieve a richer brew, but say the lid doesn't always close properly when the alternative pods are in use.
Review: Senseo SL7810/65 Single-Serve Gourmet Coffee Machine, Black, Contributors to Amazon.com
The Senseo SL7810 earns an average of 4.1 stars out of 5 in nearly 190 owner-written reviews. Some owners wish there were more serving-size options and several mention the limited number of pod varieties available.
Review: Senseo Single-Serve Gourmet Coffee Machine SL7810-65, Contributors to Viewpoints.com