If you are thinking of buying your first Keurig brewer or if you are considering upgrading an older model to a more recent version, you may have seen the K400 range.
Here we look at the Keurig K400 vs K450 to help you decide if either of these brewers is suitable for your needs.
About Keurig number codes
Before we start talking about these two brewers, it’s worth remembering something about Keurig number codes.
Keurig is known for releasing brewers with different number codes that are, in fact, very similar. In many cases, the only difference between models is one or two additional accessories that are bundled with the machine.
That’s the case here with the K400 and the K450 – so for this comparison, first we will look at the two machines together and talk about what they have in common. Following this, we will talk about how the two machines differ and how to choose the best one for you.
Introducing the K400 series
The K400 machines are part of the Keurig 2.0 range. The major upgrade 2.0 machines have over the first-generation brewers is that they are able to brew mugs and carafes as well as single-serve cups.
The K400s have more features than the more basic K200 and K300 series but are smaller than the K500 brewers that are considered the top machines of the 2.0 series.
Check out this video review to see the K400 series in action.
Things to consider
Here are a few questions to think about before you decide whether a K400 series machine is right for you.
Are you sure you want a pod-based machine, or would a traditional brewer be more suitable? The advantage of using a Keurig-style machine is the speed and convenience of brewing from K-Cups. However, brewing with regular coffee is cheaper as well as being better for the environment.
Another question to ask yourself is if you are sure you want a 2.0 model. While the 2.0 range is compatible with K-Mug and K-Carafe pods, giving more flexibility over beverage size, they can only accept Keurig 2.0 pods due to a DRM device – unless you hack your machine.
Check out this video to see how to hack a Keurig 2.0 machine.
Finally, if you decide a Keurig 2.0 is the right choice for you, you should also consider the different options. For example, the K200 range models are smaller, simpler machines than the K400 series, while the K500 brewers are bigger and are perhaps more suitable for larger families.
Features and benefits of the K400 series
Here are some of the main features and benefits of Keurig brewers in general and the K400 range in particular.
1. Ultimate in convenience
In common with all Keurig machines, the K400 series offers the ultimate in speed and convenience. All you need to do is pop the pod of your choice into the brewer and hit “go” – the machine does the rest for you.
With Keurig machines, there is no grinding, dosing, judging the water temperature, timing the extraction or any of the other steps involved in brewing coffee in the traditional way. When it’s finished, there’s also no cleaning up after.
2. Wide selection of coffee and other beverages
Although the DRM device prevents you from using unofficial K-Cups, Keurig is the market leader when it comes to pod-based brewers, meaning you still have the widest choice of pods available (1).
It is now also possible to buy a reusable K-Cup, which allows you to use any other regular coffee of your choice.
3. Compatible with K-Cup, K-Mug, and K-Carafe pods
One of the biggest advantages the 2.0 brewers have over the original range is that they are capable of brewing mugs and carafes of coffee with the special K-Mug and K-Carafe pods. This allows you to make drinks in 10 different sizes, from a 4oz cup to a 30oz carafe.
The carafe necessary to brew with this machine is included with both the K400 and the K450.
4. 4” color touchscreen display
The original Keurig machines were controlled with buttons whereas the 2.0 machines all feature touchscreen interfaces.
The entry-level 2.0 machines such as the K200 range have black and white displays but the K400 brewers have a 2.4” color touchscreen display with customizable wallpaper, making these machines more attractive and pleasant to use.
5. Large 70oz water reservoir
The K400 machines are larger than the entry-level K200 brewers and feature larger 70oz water reservoirs. This means you won’t have to fill it so often, making it suitable for those with larger families or people who tend to drink lots of coffee.
6. Strength control
All machines in the 2.0 series include a strength control – and the K400 brewers are no exception. These machines offer you the option to make your beverages stronger or weaker, according to your own preference. This was not possible with most of the first-generation Keurig machines (2).
7. Temperature control
The K400 brewers include a temperature control. The top end K500 machines also offer this possibility but the K200 and K300 series brewers don’t – this is a feature only found in the more advanced 2.0 models.
While the recommended temperature for brewing coffee is 195-205°F, some people may prefer their coffee piping hot or a little cooler – with the temperature control feature, you have the option to choose for yourself.
8. Programmable Timer
One of the other big advantages with some of the more advanced 2.0 machines is the addition of a programmable timer. This feature allows you to set the brewer to start at a predesignated time.
This means, for example, you can tell the machine to have your coffee ready for when your alarm sounds in the morning, saving you a few extra seconds and giving you an extra reason to leave your bed!
9. Medium size
The K400 range machines are bigger than K200 and K300 models, measuring 10.4” x 13.4” x 13.6” and weighing 8.5lbs. While not the smallest brewers on the market, they are still relatively compact, making them suitable for all but the smallest of homes.
- 4” color touchscreen display
- Large 70oz reservoir
- Compatible with K-Cup, K-Mug, and K-Carafe pods
- Can brew 10 different sizes of beverage
- Adjustable strength
- Adjustable temperature
- Carafe included
- DRM device prevents the use of unofficial pods (without hacking)
So What's the difference between keurig K400 and K450?
So far, we have been talking about all of the features common to both the K400 and the K450. So what’s the difference? Why do they have different number codes?
As we mentioned at the beginning, Keurig often releases very similar machines with similar number codes – and that’s the case here.
In fact, the only difference between the K400 and the K450 is that the K450 comes with a water filter starter kit. This is the only difference between the two. Apart from this, these two machines are absolutely identical in every way!
Keurig K400 vs K450 - Our verdict
When assessing these machines, since they are so similar, we will try to answer two questions. First, should you buy a K400 series brewer? Second, why would you choose a K450 rather than a K400?
In answer to the first question, the K400 machines offer some very clear advantages over both the original first-generation Keurig brewers and the entry level Keurig 2.0 models.
We like the color touchscreen display. For us, it is much more user-friendly than the button-based controls of the original machines and it is also more attractive than the boring black and white displays of the K200 and K300 machines.
The introduction of the K-Mug and K-Carafe pods gives you much more flexibility over your brewing. Now, for example, you can brew a large mug to take in the car for your commute to work or you can make a carafe of coffee for your family or when you are entertaining guests.
The larger reservoir also makes these machines more practical for families, and we particularly like the inclusion of the programmable timer. The idea of having a hot brew waiting when the alarm sounds is a luxury we think we could easily get used to.
Overall, we would recommend the K400 series to anyone looking for a high-end pod-based brewer but for whom the K500 series models are just a little over the top.
Should you buy the K450 over the K400? The difference is very small. We should always remember that coffee is only ever as good as the two ingredients used: coffee and water. Even if the coffee is one of the best available, your brew will be less tasty if you use bad water.
This means if you live in an area with bad-tasting water, you might prefer to go for the K450 – although you can always buy the water filter later if you need to. For us, the difference is so small that we feel it is just down to personal preference.
If you think the water filter kit is worth the extra money, then by all means, go for it!
Two very similar, very solid coffee makers
These machines are practically identical – as we have just mentioned, the only difference being the inclusion of a water filter kit with the K450.
However, we think the K400 series are all high-quality and reliable machines, and we have no problem recommending either version.
Do you have a Keurig machine? Do you prefer the original models or the newer Keurig 2.0 versions? Or do you use something else to brew coffee?
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My name is Kathy Gallo, Editor of Ag Ferrari, a Coffee buff. The guide you find here is designed exactly for you, and it is our hope that you find it not only interesting but also actionable.