We have had one of these for quite a while now, and love it. As with any thermal carafe, you need to warm up the thing in order to make sure it keeps your coffee hot. Of course, you don't want to make coffee with hot water, so I fill the thermos half way with hot water, then the rest of the way with cold. This primes the thermos properly, and my coffee stays piping hot for hours.
This coffee maker has a control for "strong" brew, which is great, because I can make a proper cup this way. Also, it comes with a "water filter" that sits on top of the coffee basket. This has the added effect of keeping the grounds in the filter better, so I can almost fill the basket with grounds, without having them end up in my cup. The result of these 2 features is that I can make an amazingly strong pot of coffee, just the way I like it.
The timer dial is a bit trippy, but has worked just fine for us.
Overall, I would have to say this is one of the best coffee makers I have ever used, and the price point makes it an excellent value.
I strongly recommend this product.