Top positive review
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A Very Good Embroidery Machine
on September 5, 2017
My review here is on the SE1800, a sewing and embroidery machine combined. It is my very first embroidery machine. I am very pleased with it as a whole and pretty much love everything about it for the most part. It embroiders beautifully and I've never had a problem with it's performance yet. However there are three things about this machine that I'm a little disappointed with.
The first is the LCD screen....it's WAY too small. It's roughly around 3" w x 2.75" L in size, so if you're going to import several patterns on your flash drive....say a pattern pack for example, when you're looking at them on the screen, it's very difficult to differentiate one pattern from the next when trying to choose the design you want to embroider. The designs are just too small to view clearly. To get around this problem, I will only put the one pattern on the flash drive that I'm going to embroider. Even the 136 embroidery designs the machine comes with is extremely hard to see and pick the one you want. When I look at most other Brother embroidery machines now, I am envious of their very large LCD panel screen that takes the whole right side of their machine up and wonder why Brother didn't make the LCD screen on this one just a bit larger.
Ok, the LCD screen problem I really don't mind living with, but what I'm personally disappointed with is the jumbo hoop size. This embroidery machine uses a small 4x4" hoop and also a large 5x7" hoop, which I love and use the most. It also uses a jumbo 5x12" multi-position hoop (which you have to buy separately), which I use almost as much as the 5x7 hoop. What I don't understand is why in the world Brother made the jumbo hoop only 5" wide! It's a JUMBO hoop after all, so why did Brother make it the same width as the 5x7 hoop? I really wish they had made it at least 6" wide.....a 6"x12" hoop instead. That extra inch in width makes ALL the difference. Since purchasing this machine, I have looked at and purchased many embroidery patterns from many different embroidery web sites these past few months. I'm finding a large percentage of the patterns out there fit the 6"x --" and 8"x --" hoops. It's a real disappointment when I look for and find a pattern I would absolutely love to embroider, only to find my jumbo hoop is once again an inch too narrow. For example; I recently searched for and found a kitchen set I really wanted to embroider, which included an oven glove mitt (which is what I mostly wanted). The pattern was for the 6" x 8" hoop. My 5x12 hoop was 1" too narrow....really frustrating. This problem occurs over and over for me. I can only assume and guess that Brother did this to encourage the sale of their own patterns, I just don't know.
The third thing about this machine is that I wish it could embroider AND sew without having to remove and attach the embroidery unit on and off. Many times I've been in the middle of an embroidery project and needed to sew a seam or some little thing, but you can not do so without detaching the whole embroidery unit if you want to sew. Honestly, I knew this about the machine before I bought it, but didn't think it would become an important issue for me. So this might be an important consideration if you're wanting an embroidery and sewing machine.
I spent many hours throughout the months before buying my embroidery machine, researching the different brands and models and reading countless reviews on them before I finally decided to buy this machine. Even then, being new to the embroidery world, I still lacked the in-depth knowledge that really comes through experience and being involved in the embroidery world I guess. Had I known what I do now, I think I might have chosen a different Brother model to meet my needs better. I wish I had known about these particular things before I bought it.
Over all this is a wonderful machine and a joy to use and grow with....a great machine for the price. I hope this review helps someone who's trying to decide on and choose an embroidery machine. It will really depend on what you personally want/need in an embroidery machine and what's going to be important to you.