After getting this at a fairly steep sale price at one of the big box stores, I didn't have high hopes. I use the Cuisinart SmartPower almost exclusively to make smoothies, but I've also used it to chop up batches of nuts into smaller pieces and even to turn a bunch of spices into powder. It's nothing amazingly fancy or sleek looking, but for anything I've needed to use it for, the Cuisinart SmartPower has been able to do it. To wash the blender pitcher I just give it a quick rinse and throw it in the dishwasher/ that's served me just fine. Depending on one's needs, this was a good basic kitchen blender and I'm glad I was able to steal it back from my sister!