The De’Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB is truly a wonder of convenience. While you don’t necessarily need to spend anywhere close to its price tag to make excellent coffee at home, you’re paying – quite a bit, in fact – for a level of convenience that makes having a TrueBrew machine at home worth it. As long as you live in the US, that is, or are willing to pay an ungodly amount to have it shipped to wherever you live.
De'Longhi is a global brand based in Treviso, Italy, and a leader in espresso products. The brand is present in more than 123 countries and creates products not just in the espresso categories, but also speciality cooking and home comfort.
The TrueBrew is a new offering from the brand that prides itself on its expertise and innovation of premium bean-to-cup espresso machines. Extending its range to now include speciality drip coffee makers, TrueBrew is a revolutionary machine that promises to eliminate any guess work and measuring with patented technology.
I really appreciated the De’Longhi TrueBrew’s convenience as I spent weeks using it as my main way of making coffee. It takes just a few presses to not only get a cup of coffee, but to get it to the boldness that I want (it offers three levels along with over-ice and pre-ground) and in my preferred size – there are six total. Since it has a reservoir for spent coffee, along with one for fresh water and coffee beans, prep and cleanup is required only every few days or so. The resulting coffee is super-smooth – and will certainly give the best coffee makers a run for their money.
Of course, not everything is about the De’Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB is easy, as we’ll see. De’Longhi has made cleaning and maintaining the unit as simple as possible; but it still takes some adjustment. Plus, cleanup can get a little messy. In addition, the funnel for pre-ground coffee is on the small side, so not all coffee grounds make it inside. However, those are minor issues in a drip coffee maker that will make, if you’ll excuse me, a damn fine cup of coffee.
De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB review: Price and availability
- List price: $499 /£408.11 / AU$750.17
- Available now
- Available only in the US
While you can certainly spend much, much more on a coffee machine, whether that’s for having your very own espresso machine for homemade coffee art or an even more automated caffeinated experience, you can also spend significantly less. The De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB’s price of $499 is reasonable for its one-stop bean-to-drink experience. This model is available directly from De’Longhi, Amazon, and Best Buy among others.
If you want to spend less, the De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1015B is a Target exclusive that comes in a fully matte-black finish for $399. Or, if its max brewing size of 24oz is a little underwhelming, you can head over to Williams Sonoma for its exclusive version, the stainless steel CAM51035M, which can pour up to 40oz at a time and goes for $599.
Whichever version you’re eyeing, you should keep two things in mind. The first is that all the above models are essentially the same, with only the minor differences I’ve mentioned here – so keep that in mind when reading this review. Second, at the time of writing, these models are only available in the US and Canada.
If you’re outside of the available territories, there are still plenty of great convenient drip coffee maker options, such as the Moccamaster KBGV Select, which not only costs a slightly more reasonable $359 / £229/ AU$515, but it's available in the UK and Australia (Aussies will have to order direct from the manufacturer). However, you'll have to grind the beans separately.
- Value: 3.5 / 5
De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB review: specifications
|De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB|
|Type of coffee maker:||Automatic drip coffee maker|
|Brew time:||Up to 2 minutes|
|Coffee size:||Up to 24oz|
|Material:||Plastic and stainless steel in black and silver|
|Dimensions:||15.47 x 12 x 15.98 inches|
De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB review: Design
- One unit for everything
- Multiple sizes and brewing options available at a touch of a button
- Somewhat modular design for accessible maintenance
The De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB is almost the height of simplicity. You load your coffee beans on top, fill up the water reservoir on the side, and you’re ready to go. It takes just a few presses from there to make your coffee.
There are a few options on hand. This model will let you select multiple brew size – 3, 8, 12, 16, 20 or 24oz specifically. Next, you can select the strength of the brew; there’s light, gold, and bold, as well as an over-ice option and a pre-ground option. There’s a funnel behind where you pour in the beans to insert pre-ground coffee, although it's a bit smaller than I'd like.
Diving a little deeper, the LED menu on the front of the unit is pretty self-explanatory as far as choosing any of those options goes. There’s also a clock to set up, and an Auto-On function where you can create a preset time for the De’Longhi TrueBrew to make a cup of coffee – although you'll have to activate it before every brew.
For example, I set up my unit for a brew time of 7:30AM. If I want the machine to brew at that time, I have to press and hold a specific button for three seconds sometime before then – the night before, for example – to turn on the function. There’s no way to set it to automatically brew at a time more than once.
As far as maintenance goes, the company specifically designed the De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB to be easy. After all, it isn't cheap. If you own a Keurig machine, for instance, you know that if something goes wrong, you can’t open it up. Your only option is to toss it in the trash and buy a new one.
With the TrueBrew machines, you can pull the front out, empty the grounds as well as waste water (which fills up surprisingly fast), and remove the infuser to clean. There’s also a button to descale, if you're in an area of hard water. De’Longhi even includes a hardness indicator to help measure the hardness of your water.
- Design: 4.5 / 5
De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB review: Performance
- A clean, even pour with smooth results
- Funnel for pre-ground coffee may be a small, but is a welcome addition
- Cleanup can get a little messy
The De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB can get a bit loud, peaking temporarily at 77dB, which is the equivalent of a washing machine. However, that’s to be expected with a one-stop-shop experience of the type the TrueBrew offers. With just a press of a couple buttons, it grinds and brews a fantastic cup of coffee, which is neither burnt nor bitter. As long as you use decent ingredients, the end result will be smooth and delicious. This applies to any of the brew options (and sizes) you choose. In addition, I've yet to find a single coffee ground in the end results.
I also want to take a second and commend De’Longhi for including the funnel for pre-ground coffee. While it could be a little wider (I'd regularly end up with coffee grounds on the funnel’s lip instead of inside the machine), it allowed me to make myself a cup of decaf without having to remove all the beans sitting in the grinder.
If I were to complain about anything, it would be with cleaning the De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB. If you don’t religiously empty the used coffee grounds and waste water, instead waiting for an indicator light to pop up to do so, then when you pull out the front of the unit for cleaning, you’re going to get some spillage – since some of that waste water will also be sitting in the drip tray. And, while there is a drip tray indicator, you’ll still get spillage once you’ve noticed it’s full.
Whenever I’ve cleaned out the machine, I’ve also had to clean around it, which is a bit of a pain. In De’Longhi’s defense, I have two or three people using it multiple times a day, every day, so that does add up. However, it would have been nice for the back of the drip tray to be higher when you pull it out of the drip coffee maker to empty its contents.
- Performance: 4 / 5
Should I buy the De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB?
|Value||It’s expensive and only available in North America. At least, it’s a solid coffee machine.||3.5 / 5|
|Design||The De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB is thoughtfully designed for easy cleaning and maintenance, while also making very different cups of coffee.||4.5 / 5|
|Performance||It does everything it’s supposed to, and more, although cleanup can get messy if you don’t do it regularly.||4 / 5|
Buy it if...
You want convenience and excellence in your drip coffee maker
When you only have time for a cup of coffee, the De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB makes it quick and easy, as well as smooth.
You want variety
With one set of beans loaded into the grinder, you can make coffee in different strengths and sizes, whether that’s a 3oz bold espresso shot or a lighter 12oz cup of joe.
Don't buy it if...
You’re on a budget
Although you forgo a lot of convenience, it isn't hard to make a good cup of coffee with equipment that costs under $50. So, if you’re on a budget, learn to love the French Press (and a kettle).
You forget to clean up
Since regular use also means regular cleanup, you need to be prepared for the upkeep. While it’s much more environmentally friendly than a Keurig (and better in just about every other way, in my opinion), the TrueBrew doesn't deliver the same level of convenience.
De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB review: also consider
|De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1015B||De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM51035M||De'Longhi BCO430|
|Type of coffee maker:||Automatic drip coffee maker||Automatic drip coffee maker||Automatic drip coffee maker and espresso / cappucino machine|
|Skill level:||Beginner||Beginner||Beginner to Intermediate|
|Brew time:||Up to 2 minutes||Up to 2 minutes||About 6 minutes|
|Coffee size:||Up to 24oz||Up to 40oz||80oz|
|Material:||Plastic in matte black||Stainless steel||Plastic with stainless steel|
|Dimensions:||15.47 x 12 x 15.98 inches||15.47 x 12 x 15.98 inches||11.02 x 14.52 x 12.79 inches|
Moccamaster KBGV Select
It may not grind the coffee beans for you, but the Moccamaster KBGV Select is an excellent and easy to use – it only has two controls – drip coffee maker. And it makes delicious coffee.
Read our full Moccamaster KBGV Select review
Cuisinart DGB-650BC Grind & Brew Automatic
If you want something convenient that can brew a good cup of coffee, but don’t have the cash for something like the De’Longhi, then consider the Cuisinart DGB-650BC Grind & Brew Automatic. It can grind beans and turn them into a whole pot of coffee in no time at all. And, it will keep that coffee hot for hours.
Read our full Cuisinart DGB-650BC Grind & Brew Automatic review
How we test
- Tested every day, over a few weeks
- Tested with multiple brew strengths and sizes
- Cleaned out machine multiple times
To test the De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB, I used it to make my coffee for a couple weeks, consuming up to two cups a day, to get a sense of how it performed. I would try making coffee at different strengths and sizes, whether it was an espresso shot or a regular-sized cup of coffee. I also used the pre-ground setting to make a cup of decaf coffee at night. I also used the Auto-On function to make sure there was some coffee ready for when I woke up.
I cleaned out the machine several times. While this was important for testing, it occurs naturally during regular use, so I gained a good understanding of the effort needed to keep the De'Longhi TrueBrew CAM1025MB in tip-top condition.
While this is my first review of a coffee machine, I've been a coffee drinker for a long time, having used everything from a pour-over and french press to all sorts of automatic coffee machines. I have plenty of experience reviewing tech gadgets that I applied to this machine, not to mention that I'm a bit of a coffee snob (if that’s not apparent, check out the title of this review).
Read more about how we test.
[First reviewed March 2023]