10 Best Sewing Machines In US Under $200 – 2016 List

A honest and impartial list of 10 best sewing machines you can get in US for under $200. The list is strictly based on quality and performance.



Buying a sewing machine is not rocket science. However it is not that easy either. The biggest problem is that there are a lot of crap machines out there. After all these years of sewing experience, one thing I have noticed is that even the most popular brands make mistakes. All sewing machine manufacturers make crap machines (I am not joking here). Majority of their machines won’t even make it to the top 20 list (forget top 10). But among those bunch of failures, there will be one or two gem machines that will make you say ‘wow, this is the one I want’. It is those one or two machines that will drive majority of the sales for these sewing machine manufacturers. We need to pick such machines because the combination of quality, features and affordability is not something that you will see very often.

morldHere I have compiled a list of 10 best sewing machines you can buy in US for under $200. My only priority here is quality, I just used $200 as a price limiter. 2016 is very different from last year. Couple of sewing machines have lost their top 10 spot in 2016. Couple others have made their first appearance in the list as well. I hope this list can help you make a decision.

1. Brother XR9500PRW

This simply has to be the best sewing machine in the under $200 price category. As I have said earlier, the magical formula of quality, features and affordability worked perfectly with Brother XR9500PRW. Kudos to Brother for making such a wonderful machine. In its early days, XR9500PRW was overshadowed by the ever popular CS6000i (next machine in the list). With better pricing, XR9500PRW has now secured the top position. Forget the price, you will love this machine for its ease of use and stitch quality. The consistency of stitches across both lightweight and bulky fabrics is simply out of the world. This is the closest you can get to perfection, with an under $200 sewing machine. This is also the most feature packed sewing machine in this list. Quilters will love this machine as it comes with programmable needle up/down. The machine incredibly quiet as well. Its quality has made it appear on our list of ‘Machines You Can Buy With Your Eyes Shut’.

Main Features

  • Computerized Machine
  • 100 built-in stitches
  • Sewing start/stop and variable speed control
  • Top drop-in bobbin
  • Automatic needle threader
  • Programmable needle up/down
  • 1 Font for monogramming

Cons : The only issue with this machine is the automatic needle threader. It will require couple of attempts to get used to. It will work seamlessly, once you get the hang of it.

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2. Brother CS6000i

CS6000i is a King with a lost throne. It lost its throne to XR9500PRW. But it still is going strong. If you are going by the sales volume alone, there is no other machine that beat CS6000i. It has been the best seller even since its inception, which was way back in 2007. Yes, it has started to show its age, but it is still very popular among sewers. To be on top for more than 8 years is champion stuff and yes, CS6000i is a champion among sewing machines. When it was released, CS6000i was at least a generation or two ahead of other machines in stitch quality and features. No other manufacturer offered that many features for such a price at that time. The machine is very easy to use. Its stitch quality is excellent, be it multiple layers of denim or any other lightweight fabric.

Main Features

  • Computerized Machine
  • 60 built-in stitches
  • Sewing start/stop and variable speed control
  • Top drop-in bobbin
  • Automatic needle threader
  • Programmable needle up/down

Cons : Like I have said, the machine has slowly started to show its age. The entry of new machines like the XR9500PRW with better features has started to slow it down a bit.

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3. Singer 7258

7258 is Singer’s answer for Brother XR9500PRW. It is the best Singer machine under $200. Even in 2016, there isn’t another Singer machine that can challenge 7258 in quality and features. It is also the most feature rich Singer sewing machine in the price category. The stitch quality is good and consistent. The price has come down a bit off late which makes it an excellent choice. Singer fans will love this machine for its performance and ease of use.

Main Features

  • Computerized Machine
  • 100 built-in stitches
  • Sewing start/stop and variable speed control
  • Top drop-in bobbin
  • Automatic needle threader
  • Programmable needle up/down

Cons : Singer 7258 doesn’t have an option to lower feed dogs, which means you will not be able to do free-motion sewing. The foot pedal is not very responsive as well.

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4. Brother XM2701

If you are under a tight budget and at the same time want a sewing machine with good features, XM2701 is the best bet. It is the best sewing machine in the under $100 price segment. It is a young sewing machine by its age and it has quickly made it to the top, thanks to its great quality and killer pricing. The highlight of this machine is its features, that too for such a low price. You can’t find better features for this price. I mean, you are getting beginner friendly features like automatic needle threader, drop-in bobbin and 1-step buttonhole at such a reasonable price. The stitch quality is good on medium-lightweight fabrics.

Main Features

  • Mechanical Machine
  • 27 built-in stitches
  • Top drop-in bobbin
  • Automatic needle threader
  • 1-step buttonhole

Cons : The machine is not suitable for sewing too many layers of bulky fabrics like denim. It is not a machine designed for such stuffs. The single work light is also very dim.

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5. Singer 4423

If you are looking for a heavy duty sewing machine under $200, Singer 4423 is the best you can get. It is somewhere close to the old school Singer mechanical sewing machine (even though you can’t compare the build quality). The machine is designed to sew multiple layers of bulky fabrics. The best thing about Singer 4423 is its motor. Its motor simply outshines every other sewing machine in the segment. The motor is the most powerful in its class, capable of delivering 1,100 stitches/min (the second best motor has just 860 stitches/min, which is a Janome motor). The machine has excellent stitch quality. Another good thing about 4423 is that, it is not that bad on features either. It has features like automatic needle threader, top drop-in bobbin, 1-step buttonhole etc which beginners always love. It is very much a beginner friendly machine. It is priced aggressively as well.

Main Features

  • Mechanical Machine
  • 23 built-in stitches
  • Top drop-in bobbin
  • Automatic needle threader
  • 1-step buttonhole

Cons : Even though the machine has a ‘heavy duty’ tag, most of the external parts are made of plastic. The machine seems to struggle with 8 plus layers of denim.

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6. Brother XL2600I

XL2600I is the older version of the XM2701 which we already discussed. Before XM2701’s arrival, XL2600I ruled the under $100 price segment. It still is selling like hot cakes. You can even get it for a discounted price as it is an older version. In comparison with XM2701, XL2600I misses out on couple of built-in stitches that’s all. Medium-lightweight fabrics is a walk in the park for XL2600I. The stitch quality is quite good. Like its successor, XL2600I also comes with beginner friendly features like automatic needle threader, 1-step buttonhole, top drop-in bobbin etc.

Main Features

  • Mechanical Machine
  • 25 built-in stitches
  • Top drop-in bobbin
  • Automatic needle threader
  • 1-step buttonhole

Cons : The machine strains while sewing multiple layers of denim. Also watch the price. You will be better of comparing the price with that of XM2701 and then make a decision.

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7. Janome 2212

The features won’t excite you, price won’t excite you, then what will? It is the sheer stitch quality and ability to sew anything you throw at it, makes you excited about Janome 2212. This is a mechanical sewing machine from the classic era (at least it works like one). The build quality is top notch, it can handle all the rough treatment from a beginner. It doesn’t have any electronic parts to go wrong anyway. If you are an old school sewer who loves basic mechanical sewing machines, Janome 2212 is the one for you. The stitch quality you get from this machine is absolutely high class. It can even put $500 machines to shame. You don’t need to worry about the durability as well.

Main Features

  • Mechanical Machine
  • 12 built-in stitches

Cons : Janome 2212 misses out on several beginner friendly features like automatic needle threader, 1-step buttonhole, top drop-in bobbin etc. I think this machine will suit old school sewers rather than beginners. The price is also a bit on the higher side considering the features that you will miss in comparison with competition.

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8. Singer 2259

2259 is the least expensive Singer machine in this list. It is a decent machine with good features. Well, if you are thinking of a Singer under $100, there aren’t many options to choose from. In that respect, I think Singer 2259 is your best bet. The stitch quality is good over multiple layers of fabric.

Main Features

  • Mechanical Machine
  • 19 built-in stitches
  • Automatic needle threader

Cons : Even though 2259 comes with an automatic needle threader, it misses out on other beginner friendly features like 1-step buttonhole, top drop-in bobbin etc.

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9. Brother XR3774

Brother XR3774 is a new entrant in the list. It is in the same league of XR9500PRW and CS6000i but with lesser features. The stitch quality is excellent and it is very easy to use. The machine is quiet as well.

Main Features

  • Mechanical Machine
  • 37 built-in stitches
  • Top drop-in bobbin
  • Automatic needle threader
  • 1-step buttonhole

Cons : XR3774 is steeply priced. At times the price is very close to CS6000i which is far more superior in features. CS6000i is a fully computerized sewing machine whereas XR3774 is a mechanical one, so there must be a decent price gap between them.

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10. Brother LS2125i

LS2125i is the least expensive sewing machine in this list (it also has the least number of features). This a good sewing machine to just get started. It will be a good choice for learning kids. It will give a taste of the art.

Main Features

  • Mechanical Machine
  • 10 built-in stitches

Cons : Like I have said, it is just a starter machine. You can do some basic sewing tasks that’s all. Being inexpensive means it misses out on automatic needle threader, 1-step buttonhole and top drop-in bobbin.

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