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Although I'm an avid baker, I've never really desired a KitchenAid Stand mixer--not only do they seem way too expensive (my mother offered to buy me one for a wedding gift, as she did for each of my two sisters, but I turned her down), but also they just seem too impractical. I mean, really--I bake relatively frequently, but I'm a CASUAL baker, not a professional one, and I so I couldn't see the purpose of having a large, unwieldy stand mixer that would be difficult to store, impractical, and would like spend most of the time sitting on a shelf.

On the other hand, I certainly CAN see the advantages of having a stand mixer on hand. For example, sometimes you want to let the mixer take over while you add ingredients, and sometimes you have certain recipes requiring longer-duration mixing (e.g., meringues, whipped cream, pound cake) when a stand mixer definitely comes in handy. For this reason, I began researching lower-cost stand mixers some time ago. I also mentioned to my husband that I was looking at stand mixers, and this past Christmas, my husband surprised me with this Sunbeam Hand and Stand Mixer Combo, a new model which had only recently come on the market.

In short, I have loved having this mixer! Although I did already have a reliable hand mixer which I like very much (and it does happen to be a KitchenAid: KitchenAid KHM5APWH 5-Speed Ultra Power Hand Mixer, White), having the combination until is still nice. First, the base of this mixer (i.e., without the mixer or bowl attached) is extremely light. Some people may be concerned that the product is made of plastic, but it is sturdy and well-designed, and personally, I feel no need to drag a heavy appliance on and off the shelf! I do like that the included bowl is stainless steel. It locks easily into the main until with a simple twist, and when the mixer is turned on, the bowl turns automatically.

The mixer itself is the heaviest component, yet it is still light enough and completely comfortable to use as a hand mixer (a great feature if you are alternating between making more than one thing at once--you can switch from the stand mixer to using by hand with a simple click). The mixer has five speeds, but it is SO powerful that I often use only the three lowest settings. Despite its power, this mixer is not any noisier than my other hand mixer. When it is in the stand, the mixer does an excellent job of keeping the bowl spinning, even when adding thick ingredients like cream cheese. The only (slight) issue that I've noticed is that if the bowl is not very full, the beaters will create kind of a well in the middle and push all the ingredients out to the sides--this just means that I need to scrape down the sides of the bowl, which I would do anyway.

Overall, this mixer has been a great addition to my kitchen at a relatively low cost. I've been thrilled with it so far, and I would definitely recommend it!
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on June 30, 2011
I was put off at first by some of the reviews that said it was a light weight plastic and seemed flimsy. However, I did purchase this mixer due to the other reviews i read. I'm glad I did. This might just be the best mixer I ever bought. It not only whips up a smooth cake and cookie batter, but it is fantastic when it comes to heavier doughs like bread and cheese cake. I am definetly pleased with my purchase.
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on December 26, 2012
This mixer is great! It might not have all the bells and whistles as the kitchen aid mixer but it does what its supposed to and the price was just right. I am upgrading from a small hand held mixer with no stand and no bowl. I wanted to give this a try because I had been looking for one of these for a while so I can add ingredients without holding it. I am not a pro in the kitchen so I will not be using it every day. Reason why I gave it four stars is because the buttons are a bit hard to press, so I am hoping with time I will get used to it because I really love this mixer!
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on May 8, 2011
First what is not
Stand mixer to make bread dough like the 350 dollars units.

Once that is out of the way, I like it, replaces my hand mixer that had half the power,the convenience of having both,mixer and bowl together in the same place,and find mixing light stuff like pancakes,cakes mixes,etc just fine, it is true have to help the rotation as is not powered as relies on the beaters moving the bowl, so I just help with a plastic spoon.
Adding flour and liquids is much easier than having a hand unit and stoping to add whatever.
If you like to replace your hand mixer with a more convenient stationary bowl and beaters,this is it.
I tried with a bread dough mix and did not work,not enough power and certainly will burn the motor,but for that task need "only 300 dollars more",keep your expectations realistic to the power offered vs the amount of money and will not be disappointed.
The bread machine does a good job at dough making and finish the bread in the regular oven.
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on May 29, 2011
I read all the reviews very carefully before deciding on this one, & was really surprised by the lack of negatives from other reviewers once I received the item.

Pros: Many of the other mixers had very bad reviews for being cheaply made, & for burning out quickly. It's very heavy, so I'm assuming it will last some time. It's also very powerful, just a little too powerful, the lowest speed throws ingredients everywhere.

Cons: As a stand mixer, it's completely, & utterly useless. Even with constant scraping, it still won't mix all ingredients. It makes a trough in the middle, leaving the sides, & building a mini mountain in the center. I tried taking it off the stand to cream butter, & sugar, hoping it would perform well after such luck. Every cook knows it's super important not to over mix, & this requires so much fussing that it's impossible not to over mix, even when used as a hand mixer.

As a hand mixer, it is way, way too heavy, which made it very difficult to keep control of it. There was sugar, flour, & butter everywhere. I bought it because I do alot of baking, & wanted to save my hands, & arms for kneading. By the time I got done with a simple cookie recipe, I was exhausted. The vents are in the very front, & they're HUGE. It's impossible not to have things fly into them, & there is no way to clean it out, which will reduce the life of the mixer. It's also very hard to eject the beaters...& I mean hard.

Also, the stainless steel bowl is very nice, but there's a locking feature, which means it's the only bowl you can use with the mixer, ever. I make alot of sauces, fillings, etc. using glass bowls so that I can mix between microwaving. Even if this worked well as a stand mixer, I'd have to constantly change bowls every time I heated the ingredients. I'm returning this one, & saving up for a Kitchen Aid.
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on November 18, 2014
 It does what it's supposed to do. Especially for the price, it's tough to beat (pun intended). It has 5 speeds plus a boost button. The 3 qt mixing bowl is sufficient for cake batters. It's lightweight and doesn't take up lots of room on my already-crammed counter top. The reviews I see comparing it to a Kitchen Aid are ridiculous. The cost of this mixer is 10% of the cost of the KA. No negatives from me.
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on November 24, 2010
I had gotten rid of my humongous stand mixer, but my cheap hand held mixer just couldn't mix cream cheese. One of the beaters went flying across the kitchen as the motor broke into pieces.

I would think that if you're baking or using a mixer often that you'd want to invest in a larger (and sturdier) stand unit. For someone like me, who uses a mixer sometimes, this is a perfect compromise, plus the stand makes it convenient.
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on April 6, 2011
We bought this mixer after being unable to find another Euro Mixer at Target. We didn't want a big heavy duty unit as we just don't use ours for much more than occassional mashed potatoes and cookie dough. The Sunbeam works very well for this application. Locking the mixer to the base was a slight initial problem, but once you learn how it is done all goes well. We've owned the mixer for less than a month, but to this point it is working well, seems well made, and has encouraged the preparation of the aforementioned I need to move on to the Amazon Pants and Belts department!

Seriously, a fine purchase at a very reasonable price and the always excellent Amazon Delivery service.
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on February 17, 2012
I really like this as a hands-free mixer. I did not expect it to be comparable to a KitchenAid. It does exactly what I expected it to - mixes by itself while I add ingredients. The bowl locks into the bottom of the stand unit which spins freely. The action of the beaters with a small rubber attachment on the head is what makes the bowl spin by itself.

A few things to note:
I do occasionally have to use a spoon to scrape the ingredients off the sides further inward toward the beaters if I am mixing something more solid like butter or cookie dough, but it works fine completely hand free with ingredients that re more liquid.

There is also some limitation with the size of the mixing bowl. On several occasions I have realized that the ingredients are getting too high in the bowl for the beaters to mix properly. If you are working with a larger recipe, keep in mind that you may have to use a wide bowl and detach for hand-mixing instead of the tall mixing bowl that comes with the unit in hands-free mode.
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on February 11, 2011
Purchased as a gift for granddaughter. She has very much enjoyed using this mixer. Very pleased that is both a stand and hand held.
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