Cuisinart DTC-975BKN Review

One of the newest in the Cuisinart line of coffee makers, the Cuisinart DTC-975BKN Thermal 12-Cup Programmable Coffeemaker is getting mixed reviews. Ironically even the feedback that includes complaints still claims this is the best coffee maker ever. Keep this in mind as you read individual pros and cons.

While a coffee maker can even get negative reviews or scores in certain areas, the bottom line is the quality of the coffee it produces. Almost any coffee drinker will overlook a few glitches if they end up with a cup of great tasting coffee. So, while you may not see all five stars or two thumbs up, keep in mind that the Cuisinart DTC-975BKN Thermal 12-Cup Programmable Coffeemaker has still been claimed by many to be one of the best coffee makers, possibly of all time.

The Review

Remember as you review the pros and cons and even the star ratings that this may not directly affect the overall high rating this product gets.


  • Ideal design for carafe
  • Easy to use water level indicator
  • 12 cups of good quality coffee
  • Stylish look


  • The lid fitting
  • Spillage even with correct use
  • Technically not a 12 cup coffee maker


A Cool Looking Coffee Maker

Ideal design for the Cuisinart DTC-975BKN Thermal 12-Cup Programmable Coffeemaker carafe doesn’t just mean that it looks cool. Many coffee maker users prefer the thermal carafe design because it helps keep coffee very warm for a long period of time. The other reason people prefer this carafe is that the outside stays relatively cool to the touch, making it a safer model to use.

Easy to Use Water Level Indicator

A big complaint about many other coffee makers on the market is the inability to read the water level easily, especially if it falls under the four cup mark. Cuisinart must have taken this complaint to heart because the feedback for this model is that the water level indicator is easy to read for all levels.

12 Cups of Good Quality Coffee

Although there is some debate over whether or not this is truly 12 cups, the majority of users felt this delivered decent cups of coffee in both quantity and quality. The average buyer felt the price for this mid-sized coffeemaker was a fair and justifiable one. For those looking specifically for a 12-cup coffee maker, this could be your perfect fit.

Stylish Look

Let’s be honest; when it comes to coffee makers, looks shouldn’t matter. However it is one of those details where even if the coffee is good, appearance still matters. It can be hard to live with a big, bulky or outdated looking coffee maker taking up counter space in your home. The good news is that this model is also one of the coffee makers getting good feedback from users for its design and look.

The Lid Fitting

One common complaint is that the lid has issues with fitting correctly on to the carafe. While this is not a major glitch, it is a design defect. If you do purchase the Cuisinart DTC-975BKN Thermal 12-Cup Programmable Coffeemaker, just make sure each time you use it you secure the lid correctly and securely to avoid potential hazards.

Spillage Even with Correct Use

We often see complaints about leaks or spills with most coffee makers. We also usually point out that human error can be taken into account that could result in these leaks or spills. The problem is that with this Cuisinart model, users are reporting spills even after being sure to use the item correctly. After noticing other users had problems, people still purchased this model assuming that other users had simply been using it incorrectly. However, even after carefully reading and following the instructions, users still reported spills.

“Technically” Not a 12 Cup Coffee Maker

Surprisingly, although there were so many rave reviews about getting the right amount of good, quality coffee, it seems some consumers decided to test this theory. The carafe itself has the capacity to hold 12 cups, but the coffee maker is technically designed to make only seven true cups. If you were to make the 12 cups by putting 120g of coffee into the coffee maker, this would cause an overflow. In fact, some believe this is why people are having spills. We were not able to actually conduct an experiment with measurements like this, but keep in mind this may not meet the specifications of a 12 cup coffee maker as set by the Specialty Coffee Association of America.

The Ratings

So in order to have an even better understanding of what this Cuisinart model has to offer consumers, consider this breakdown of the major categories. 


The price is reasonable for what you get compared to other brands and other types of coffee makers. In most cases, you should be able to find one for $99.95. Even if you spend slightly more than this, you are still getting a high quality coffee maker capable of producing around 12 cups. You should be able to spend slightly less than if you bought the 14 cup equivalent, so just keep that in mind.

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Score: 4

Coffee Maker Quality

Yes, many feel it is the best coffee maker ever. Taking into account the possibility of spills that so many consumers complained of, though, it would be hard to consider it top of the line quality. If you are willing to watch for potential problems, you may find the quality of this product to be superior. Potential flaws must be taken into account.

Score: 3.5

Coffee Quality

It should come as no surprise that coffee from a Cuisinart coffee maker gets good feedback. This brand is known for producing top quality coffee and this model offers that same expected level of quality.

Score: 4

Easy to Use?

This score would be higher if users didn’t have to worry about possible spills. There have been suggestions such as using a dish drainer mat under the coffee maker to help make spills less messy. Whether this works or not, the point is too many users have to devise a method to use this without mess. Because of this, we cannot give it a higher Ease of Use rating.

Score: 4

Easy to Clean?

The Cuisinart DTC-975BKN Thermal 12-Cup Programmable Coffeemaker is as easy as any other coffee maker to clean. The only reason it got less than a perfect score is that there may be more mess to clean. Make sure anytime you do have spillage to give this coffee maker a thorough cleaning. Keep it clean, and you may have better results and great tasting coffee.

Score: 4.5


One key point to consider is that there were no complaints about the Cuisinart DTC-975BKN Thermal 12-Cup Programmable Coffeemaker not holding up for a long period of time. Everyone knows that with time you will still have to replace an older coffee maker. The point is to get one that gives you the same quality at the end of a long run as at the beginning. So far, this one does just that.

Score: 5


Cuisinart is known for offering consumers appliances that are sleek and stylish. So this model is no different. It is modern looking and can work with most kitchen styles. It is also compact enough not to take up too much space or become the focal point of the entire kitchen. It just adds to what you already have going.

Score: 5

Brew Speed

For anyone who craves coffee first thing in the morning, no brew speed is fast enough. However, this one comes about as close as you can get to being fast enough, especially since it is producing 12 cups of coffee. Some people have even claimed this Cuisinart makes coffee faster than many competitors produce only 10 cups. If you are looking for a fast 12 cup brewer (3 minutes), this could be the one for you.

Score: 4


Cuisinart coffee makers are always loaded with features. The DTC-975BKN is no exception. Programmable, brew pause, auto shut-off, and a thermal carafe make this a versatile coffee maker.

Score: 4

The Bottom Line

It says a lot when even users who have spill issues still call the Cuisinart DTC-975BKN Thermal 12-Cup Programmable Coffeemaker the best one out there. The important thing to be aware of is the fact that while this model may not be perfect, it does produce good quality coffee.


Share Your Comments, Reviews, or Questions

While we collate reviews from all across the web when writing our own coffee maker reviews, our opinion in the end is only one opinion. For this reason, we encourage you to share your own review as well as any comments, questions, or disagreements you may have.

One final note: if you found this coffee maker review helpful and are considering making a purchase, please share the credit by clicking the “buy on Amazon” link above. We will get a small commission if you do this, and would totally appreciate it. If not, no problem whatsoever!

Hi! I'm Benji...The Coffee Concierge. I'm here to hopefully answer any questions you have about making great coffee at home. I'm not a coffee connoisseur, nor do I work as a barista. I just really enjoy a great cup of coffee, as well as the ritual involved in making great coffee. So drop me a line - let's talk coffee (or whatever)!

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