If you are currently searching for a good coffee maker that is available for under a hundred dollars, Mr Coffee Optimal vs Cuisinart coffee makers are some great options. Both products are popular choices in this price range. In this article, we will help you choose the best coffee maker by showing the differences between the two models.
Continue reading below to find out further about:
– The size of each coffee maker
– How many cups of coffee that each model can make per refill
– The additional features on Mr Coffee Optimal and Cuisinart
– The performance of Mr Coffee Optimal vs Cuisinart
– Which model that is generally easier to clean and maintain
– Which model that is more recommended for the money
The models that we discuss in this article are Mr Coffee Optimal BVMC-PSTX91-RB and Cuisinart DCC-3200. Their prices are comparable to each other; you can get either of them with a budget of less than a hundred dollars. If you want a slightly cheaper option, you can take a look at our previous discussion, Cuisinart DCC-3200 vs DCC-1200.
Both models here are automatic coffee makers that offer simple and easy operation. They come with their own carafes. Both coffee makers come in box-shaped bodies with a metallic finish. However, Mr Coffee Optimal is quite larger than the Cuisinart coffee maker. This is something that you need to consider if you don’t have much free space for the coffee maker.
Mr Coffee Optimal measures 14.12 inches x 11 inches x 9 inches. It will take a lot of surface area, so it is not really recommended if space limitation is an issue. However, in terms of appearance, Mr Coffee Optimal is definitely a good-looking unit. It has a reflective metallic finish with beautiful stainless steel highlights covering the black plastic frame. The LCD screen is really useful for scheduling the operation and enhancing the user friendliness.
Cuisinart DCC-3200 measures 14 inches x 9 inches x 7.75 inches, so it is quite smaller and more space-friendly. It will be easier to fit into your kitchen. The appearance is also really great. It has a blue backlit LCD screen that not only looks cool, but is also very easy to read in any room condition. The brushed metallic finish looks nice, and the buttons are intuitive to use.
Water Tank and Capacity
One significant difference between Mr Coffee Optimal vs Cuisinart DCC-3200 is their water tanks. When choosing a coffee maker, people usually prefer a model that has a removable water tank so that they can refill it easily. In addition, people usually prefer a model with a large capacity so that they won’t need to refill it frequently.
Mr Coffee Optimal is a nice coffee maker because it has a removable water tank. You can detach the water tank and put it back easily. However, the capacity is quite small. Mr Coffee Optimal can only make 10 cups of coffee per brewing cycle. It can be good enough for personal use or for a few people, but if there are many coffee drinkers that will use the coffee machine, you should choose a model with a larger capacity.
Cuisinart DCC-3200 does not have a removable water tank. As the effect, you need to use a bottle or measuring cup in order to refill it. But Cuisinart DCC-3200 has a larger capacity. It can make 14 cups of coffee in one go, so it is great for personal use as well as usage by multiple coffee drinkers. In an office environment, it can give enough coffee for everyone without having to run another brewing cycle.
Both Mr Coffee Optimal vs Cuisinart DCC-3200 are programmable. You can make them brew coffee automatically at a certain time every day. By scheduling your coffee maker’s operation, you can ensure that you get fresh, hot coffee every morning by the time you wake up without having to dial the buttons manually or waiting for the brewing cycle to complete.
Both models also have a brew pause function. This feature is designed to allow you to pause the machine’s operation temporarily to pour a cup of coffee immediately from the carafe, instead of waiting for the brewing to complete and the carafe to fill fully. This can be useful when you need to hurry but can’t leave without taking a sip of caffeine.
Mr Coffee Optimal has one special feature called the Freshness Timer. It will keep track of your coffee’s freshness from the time that the coffee is brewed, so you can easily determine whether the coffee has become stale or not. Unfortunately, Mr Coffee Optimal does not have a warmer plate to keep the coffee hot a bit longer, and it does not have any function that will let you adjust the brew strength or temperature.
Cuisinart DCC-3200 indeed has a heating plate that can keep the coffee warm for a few hours. Unfortunately, the heating plate is only coated and not made from stainless steel, and will eventually rust and corrode. When this happens, you can buy a replacement part.
One cool thing about Cuisinart DCC-3200, however, is that it has advanced features like Hotter Coffee, Extreme Brew, and Strength Control. With Hotter Coffee, you can make the unit brew at a higher temperature so that you get very hot coffee. The Extreme Brew function will produce coffee with higher intensity. Meanwhile, the Strength Control will allow you to adjust the intensity to suit your liking.
How is the performance of Mr Coffee Optimal vs Cuisinart DCC-3200? There are some notable differences. Although Mr Coffee Optimal is a good coffee maker, Cuisinart DCC-3200 can produce better quality coffee through the Extreme Brew and Strength Control features.
Mr Coffee Optimal is just okay. We can’t really expect a cheap automated coffee maker to produce coffee comparable to that of high-end models, after all. So, if you think that this machine can give you bold, rich coffee, you need to lower your expectations.
While Mr Coffee Optimal can brew at a good temperature so that the produced coffee is quite hot, the brewing process is not perfect. Apparently, the water is not dispersed properly across the filter basket. The produced coffee is rather weak and watery.
Cuisinart DCC-3200 produces only slightly better coffee in the default setting. The produced coffee is quite hot, but it is also not really strong. It is rather bland. So, if you want to actually get a good coffee flavor, you need to use the Extreme Brew or Strength Control to increase the intensity.
With the Extreme Brew setting, the produced coffee is bold and intense. It tends to increase the bitterness and sourness of the coffee, but the overall quality is better than the default setting. However, if you think that the Extreme Brew setting is too much for you, you can use the Strength Control to reduce the intensity a little bit.
Cleaning and Maintenance
Both Mr Coffee Optimal and Cuisinart DCC-3200 are equipped with gold-tone permanent filters. Thanks to that, you won’t need to spend money for filter replacements in the future. Their permanent filters are effective for removing minerals from water, so you won’t get any funny taste in your coffee.
Mr Coffee Optimal has a built-in clean function which allows you to eliminate calcium build-up from inside the machine easily. The removable water tank makes cleaning a straightforward process. The carafe is easy to clean, too. The rest of the unit can be wiped clean to remove dust or spills.
Cuisinart DCC-3200 also has a clean function. The display will tell you when the machine needs to be cleaned. The water tank is a bit more difficult to clean due to being not removable. The heating plate needs to be kept dry so that it won’t rust quickly. However, the carafe and the rest of the machine are easy to clean.
Available Color Options
Last but not least, let’s see the color options of both coffee makers here. While they both are good-looking machines, Mr Coffee Optimal has fewer color options than Cuisinart DCC-3200.
Mr Coffee Optimal is available in two color options, Chrome and Black/Chrome. The front side of the Chrome version is fully metallic, but the other sides are black. Meanwhile, the Black/Chrome version simply has a black part at the top-center of the front side, while still having a metallic finish on the rest of the front surface and black sides.
Cuisinart DCC-3200, on the other hand, has four color options, which are Stainless Steel, Copper, White, and Black Stainless Steel. They all look modern and stylish. All of them have a blue backlit display.
Mr Coffee Optimal vs Cuisinart
All in all, between these two affordable products, the Cuisinart coffee maker is more recommended. It has a larger capacity, and it has better features. The backlit display looks nice and is easy to read. It can brew strong and intense coffee with the Extreme Brew and Strength Control.