questionsdoes it have to be keurig or are some of the…

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Well, I can't comment about other brands but I don't think Keurig is all that good. I mean, it's a decent cup o' joe and it's super convenient. Just don't expect it to taste like a cappuccino or fresh ground french press(drool). Anyway, the way I got my Keurig is from a friend when it broke and the company sent her a new one. The upside is they seem to have great customer service. The downside is they sell a product that's notorious for breaking down.

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If you drink more than 1 or 2 cups a day, maybe a Keurig is not the way to go. For one, it's one size fits all. One K-cup for an 8, 10 or 12 oz cup of coffee. K-cups also are expensive ( but there is a use your own coffee option available. )
I prefer strong coffee, fresh ground. I prefer a high quality brewer to the Keurig, where I can adjust the strength of the coffee by adding more coffee to give me a full flavored 16 oz. cup. (and enough for the spouse and a second cup when I finish, if I so desire.)

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I have to have decaf, husband likes regular. Both like mild. When I make a pot, he often decides he doesn't want any after all, so it's wasted. He drinks a smaller cup than I do. So although the pods would probably still cost more, maybe not as much. (Still using a percolator, prefer it to drip.)

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The Keurig is easily the most convenient coffee maker in the house, but it also makes the worst coffee in the house - it's a trade-off.

If you want a great cup of coffee, single serving machines are not the way to get it.

But if a single serving machine is what you're after, the best I've had was brewed by a CBTL machine.
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_gw?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=cbtl%20brewer

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I have a Starbucks Verismo (K-Fee system) brewer and a Bosch T65 (Tassimo system) brewer. I have had plenty of experience with Keurig as well.
Neither of mine offer quite the variety that Keurig's K-cup system offers in terms of teas and coffees, but both of them can make european beverages (espressos, lattes, cappuccinos, chai lattes, etc.) which Keurig is unable to do.
My personal feeling is that my Verismo machine makes the best drinks of all the units I've tried. I was disappointed at first as the only coffees available were from Starbucks, but then I discovered that CBTL capsules worked quite well, and as a result I am quite happy with the variety of teas and coffees and europeans that I can brew with the unit. Furthermore, the latte milk capsules in the Verismo are much better than anything else I've ever tasted oustide dedicated milk steamers in manual cappuccino machines.
Also of concern with Keurig: they are offering both K-Cup and VUE systems - non-interchangeable.
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