Best Sewing Machine under $200
Determining the best sewing machine under $200 is tough. The $100 to $200 segment is blessed with excellent sewing machines offering outstanding value for money. This is really the price segment where a serious beginner should start looking, as sewing machines under $100 may be too basic once you advance beyond the beginner stages.
Singer 7258 vs Singer 7256 vs Brother CS6000i
In the end, we narrowed the contenders in the sub-$200 bracket down to three: the Brother CS6000i, the SINGER 7256 and the SINGER 7258. All three are computerized free-arm sewing machines, and they are all fantastic machines for this price bracket.
While we will try to guide you through making the choice, ultimately it may come down to brand preference or budget as there is so little to choose between these machines.
Best Sewing Machine Under $200: Comparison Chart
Rather than discuss the machines one by one, a chart overview will quickly give you a much clearer picture. Below is a quick reference chart comparing the main features and pricing of the three machines.
We’ll continue our discussion below.
All prices are current as of this writing, but fluctuate slightly all the time. At the moment, the Brother CS6000i is the most affordable of the three machines.
Both Brother and Singer are well established and trusted brands, although we’ll give the Singers with their sturdy metal frame construction the edge in the quality stakes. They just feel that little bit more solid than the Brother. Both brands offer a 25 year limited warranty on their machines.
Built-in Stitch Functions
The Singer 7258 features a whopping 100 built-in stitch functions, with the Brother coming last on this feature with 60. However, to us, this is not a decisive feature. Many people never use more than 10-20 of the built-in stitch functions on these machines, so how important this is to you will come down to your own sewing style or your own requirements.
Snap-on Presser Feet
Presser feet expand the versatility of a sewing machine considerably, and here the Singer 7258 leads the pack with a generous 10. The Brother features a respectable 7 (as well as 2 additional quilting feet), while the Singer 7256 comes up a bit short with only 5. You can always purchase additional feet, but having more in the package adds to the overall value for money. The Singer 7258 is on top here, but the quilting feet offered by the Brother means it is still the most versatile out of the box.
Quilting Table Accessory
The CS6000i offers something none of the Singer machines do: a fitted wide table add-on accessory to make working on larger projects easier. Also, it features two extra quilting feet. This means you get everything you need to start quilting right out of the box with this machine. This is a great value for money factor.
Heavy Duty Sewing
None of these machines are recommended for heavy duty sewing or for sewing with heavy fabrics. You probably wouldn’t expect that at this price point anyway. Sewing on fabrics like denim is quite possible with the right thread/needle combination though.
All 3 machines get excellent ratings from consumers on all the major shopping sites online, averaging 4.4 to 4.5 out of 5 stars. There really is nothing to choose between them in this regard.
Our Recommendation for the Best Sewing Machine Under $200
This is such a tough recommendation to make, and the sort of decision that you can put off and drive yourself crazy over indefinitely without getting any clarity.
All three machines have minor issues to contend with. The Brother with tension and thread sensitivity, the 7258 has been reported to bundle up thread, while the Singer 7256 has annoyed some users with over-sensitive reverse sewing control.
However, the praise that have been heaped on all three machines far outweigh any negatives. They are all easy to use and set up and come from a reliable manufacturers. Here is our final advice on these machines.
Take Your Pick
All things considered, the Brother CS6000i is hard to beat, with a great balance of features and a fantastic price. It is the only machine here that offers both a quilting table and quilting feet out of the box. Dollar for dollar, this is probably the best value sewing machine on the market right now.
Then there’s the SINGER 7258 Stylist, with its 100 built-in stitches and 10 presser feet. This means it offers fantastic value and versatility if these considerations are important to you, at a comparable price point to the Brother.
Finally, the SINGER 7256 Fashion Mate is the newer of the three models, and also seems the most solid in terms of just getting the job done without too many minor issues and problems. It is, however, $40 more expensive than the Brother.
For their price, all of these machines offer great value. Compare the features and decide which machine caters best to what’s most important to you. Stop agonizing! These are 3 excellent, user-friendly and reliable sewing machines for under $200.