If you are new to the sewing world or a veteran seamstress, I’m sure you’ve noticed that computerized sewing machines have taken over the market. Computerized sewing machines come with on-board computers that allow for a large number of convenient, time saving features that making sewing easy.
If you are shopping for a computerized machine then this article should you assist with picking a good machine for your skill level and budget.
Things to Consider When Shopping for a Computerized Sewing Machine
This is probably one of the most well-known features of computerized sewing machines. A built-n stitch is the stitch pattern that is programmed into the machine’s computer. Different stitches require different types of movements by the sewing needle. A straight stitch is very simple – the needle will move in a simple, straight line. A zig zag stitch requires the needle to move in a different way. With a computerized machine, these stitches are built-in and you simple choose the stitch you want by pressing a button or two.
If you’ve done any sewing machine shopping, you may have seen some machines that have hundreds of built-in stitches. It seems like a lot of beginner sewers have the thought to get the machine with the most stitches. If they see one with 30 built-in stitches and one with 294 built-in stitches they automatically go for the one with the most.
Well, I’m here to tell you not to get too caught up in the number of built-in stitches. That’s because most of those stitches you will never use. Most beginning sewers (and even advanced sewers) will regularly use just a handful of stitches for various projects.
Automatic Needle Positioning
Most computerized machines have a feature where you can adjust the position of the needle from center to the left or the right. This is a handy feature because it allows for adjustments in seam allowance width or topstitching. Some machines will also allow you to set whether the needle stops in the up or down position when you finish your stitch. This saves a lot of time because you won’t have to turn the knob or press the button every time you stop stitching.
Another great feature offered on many computerized machines is an automatic tension adjustment. The computer in the machine has it already built in to adjust the tension based on the type of fabric and the thickness. Some machines will also allow you to manually override the automatic settings.
Buttonholes are difficult to sew, but computerized machines help with this. Most computerized machines will have a simple 1-step buttonhole that you literally do with a buttonhole presser foot and the touch of a button.
Adjustable Presser Foot Pressure
This is a convenient feature that allows you to adjust the pressure of the presser foot, which makes it easy to sew different fabrics. For example, the amount of pressure it takes to sew canvas is not the same as it is to sew silk.
Adjustable Feed Dog Height
This is also a convenient feature that helps when sewing a variety of fabrics.
Side-by-Side Comparison of Three Machines
|Janome 8077||Brother XR9500PRW||Singer One|
|Presser Feet Included||4||7||5|
|Slider Speed Control||Yes||Yes||No|
|Max Speed||820 spm||850 spm||750 spm|
|Weight||18.2 lbs||9.9 lbs||18.5 lbs|
|Average Rating (out of 5)||4.6||4.6||4.3|
|Current Price||Check today's deal at Amazon||Check today's deal at Amazon||Check today's deal at Amazon|
Keep in mind that there are dozens and dozens of computerized sewing machines on the market, in every price range and even for specialized uses like quilting, embroidery, or heavy-duty projects like sewing denim or leather.
So I picked three beginner (mid price) computerized machines to review here. If you’d like to explore other machines with more features or those in a different price range, then please check out these other comparisons: Sewing machines under $500 or sewing machines in the $200 price range.
In-Depth Review of Each Machine
The Another great sewing machine from the dependable Janome brand (pronounced juh-no-mee). This brand makes great mechanical sewing machines and their computerized machines are just as good.
What I really like about this computerized machine is its simplicity. With 30 built-in stitches it is not overwhelmingly complicated. It has a great variety of utility stitches, three styles of overcast stitches, and 2 blind hems for woven fabrics and knits and a handful of decorative stitches for heirloom sewing and a blanket stitch for applique. (30 stitches altogether).
Additional features to consider:
- Easy to read LED screen to select the stitch you want to use and you can easily adjust the stitch width or length by pressing the plus or minus button.
- The recommended foot is clearly marked by each foot.
- Top drop in bobbin
- Start and stop button and a slider to increase or decrease the sewing speed. (this allows you to sew without the foot pedal).
- 6 styles of one step buttonholes.
Overall this is one of my top picks for a computerized machine that will last you for years. It has just the right amount of features to satisfy a beginning or advanced seamstress.
Up next is another computerized sewing machine from the Brother brand. While some seamstresses turn their nose up at Brother Sewing Machines, I own one (I’ve had it for about 3 years) and I can’t say I have one bad thing o say about it. It sews beautifully and has tons of convenient and user-friendly features. (Although I don’t have this exact model, I did do in-depth review. Check it out.)
If your budget is under $200 and you are looking for a computerized sewing machine with a lot of great automatic features, then the Brother XR9500PRW is a sewing machine to consider.
An overview of the features of this machine:
- Awesome variety with 100 built-in stitches, 8 built-in buttonhole stitches, and monogramming stitches (there is only one font and size for monogramming but that’s perfect for a beginner)
- 7 presser feet included (buttonhole foot, overcasting foot, monogramming foot, zig zag foot, zipper foot, and blind stitch foot
- Automatic needle threader (you can thread your needle in just a few seconds).
- Automatic needle up / down (big time saver!)
- A hardcover carrying case is included.
Overall, this machine is quiet, sturdy, and has many features for all levels of sewing. It is also a very lightweight and compact machine, which makes it easily portable to and from sewing classes or great for someone who keeps their machine in a closet instead of having a dedicated workspace for it.
Best of all, it is reasonably priced and affordable for many budget-conscious sewing machine shoppers.
The Singer One is an eye-catching machine. It’s design is based off of the older Singer models. But of course looks don’t mean anything if the machine isn’t quality and the Singer One doesn’t fail there.
With one-touch stitch selection and other automatic features, the Singer One is easy to use and great for all skill levels. It has convenient features to make sewing simple and time saving features that make sewing fast.
Additional features to consider:
- 24 built-in stitches. All are conveniently shown on the front panel and choosing
- 2 fully automatic one step buttonholes.
- It has a heavy duty metal frame. Many sewers look for this because it ensures that the machine stays in place (nothing more annoying than a machine that moves around in the middle of a stitch).
- Drop-in bobbin and automatic needle threader.
- Presser foot sensor makes sure the presser foot is properly in place and ready for sewing.
Overall, this machine is a good for choice for beginners and veteran sewers. It has enough stitches to satisfy most projects and it’s priced under $200, which makes it affordable for most budgets.