I'll be honest, over the past few years I've developed a 'purist' mentality when it comes to brewing at home - upholding manual brewing as the ultimate in control and quality. The reality is, most folks don't have time for that in the morning. Honestly, I don't even have time for that every morning! Life happens, and sometimes you just need a solid option for 'setting and forgetting' your morning cup.
Seth Mills over at Mistobox Coffee recently wrote up a great rundown of the best automatic brewers available today irrespective of budget. That said, an automatic brewer is something you're going to want to make an investment in. As he said:
As with any product, you always get what you pay for. Mr. Coffee makers or similar products are going to beat our recommended coffee makers on price, simply because the internal components aren’t high quality and there’s a lot of plastic parts inside. With all of the brewers we like to use and recommend, you’re going to be investing a little bit of money on a coffee maker, but we guarantee that it’s totally justified and will be well worth it – especially compared to the lifetime cost of Pod Coffee maker or daily trips to the coffee shop.
Take a read over at Mistobox's Blog if you're looking to add a quality automatic brewer to your morning routine.