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Brother 1500d or Husqvarna Topaz 20
which is a better machine?
Shanny56
Shanny56
Member since 3/3/12
Posts: 8
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Date: 7/23/12 11:02 PM

Hi trying to decide which embroidery machine to get, the topaz is 10 by 8 and the brother is a format i'm used to. Does anyone have an opinion on which is a better machine
thanks Sharon

1975Jumby
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1975Jumby
Intermediate
California USA
Member since 8/19/08
Posts: 623
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In reply to Shanny56 <<


Date: 7/24/12 1:52 PM

My vote would be the Brother 1500d. The screen size alone is much bigger than the Topaz 20 and I think Brother is a quality product. I had the Babylock Esante, which is the sister/brother to the 1500d. I loved it and loved the stitch quality and the LCD screen is quite nice. Plus there is also a separate bobbin winding feature that allows you to wind a bobbin while the machine is sewing....I didn't think I'd ever really find that useful, but I've used it quite a bit!

I've sewn on the Viking and I thought the controls just weren't laid out too well for me. Plus, the Brother/Babylock just seemed a little more solid....all of this, of course, is just my opinion. But I think you get a better quality machine with Brother/Babylock.

------
Babylock Ellisimo Gold
Babylock Enlighten
Kenmore 1914
Kenmore 1814

Shanny56
Shanny56
Member since 3/3/12
Posts: 8
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In reply to 1975Jumby <<


Date: 7/24/12 10:33 PM

Thank you so much 1975Jumby exactly what i wanted to know. I've got a Brother on layaway but don't know the other brand at all.

kerri Y
kerri Y
Intermediate
Member since 5/6/04
Posts: 258
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In reply to Shanny56 <<


Date: 7/25/12 9:06 AM

I'm a brother/babylock fan who relooked at the Vikings and am currently deciding between the two. I am looking at the Ruby, one or two up from the Topaz 20.

when I stopped at the store and was waiting for the sales person, I walked past the two topaz machines and was blown away by a beautiful dragon embroidery (large with that hoop!) just done on one of those. The stitching was so pretty.

I think the Topaz also uses a usb stick and the 1500d still has just the usb cable connection if that matters.

It's strange that I am considering something other than a Brother Babylock, but I love the features on these vikings. For me the Exclusive sensor system is the best, and I have always liked that. It feels so solid and moves over fabric so well, and the presser foot lifts and hovers close enough so the fabric stays where it supposed to. The Similar feature does not come on the 1500 d and only starts on the 2800d.

I love them both, but you might want to test drive the Topaz to be sure

I have also read the 1500d is being retired. Not a deal breaker, but maybe because it doesn't offer the USB stick.

-- Edited on 7/25/12 9:11 AM --

Shanny56
Shanny56
Member since 3/3/12
Posts: 8
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Date: 7/25/12 5:43 PM

Thank you Kerry Y,

I put money down on the Brother but it's not irreversible. That's why i think i should have checked it out further. I bought my other machines at that dealer and here the Husqvarna is only sold at Jo-anns. I am not sure of the service that I might get after purchase with the Topaz/Ruby as compared to the dealer I usually go to. That's quite a bit issue, although they may be just as reputable but it's such a small shop maybe they ship it out, in which case I am opposed to that. I still think I will go sew on it and then try the 1500 again.

I saw those benefits to the Husqvarna also when i was researching on the internet. I have never tried to sew on one though. I think you've talked me into trying to sew on one before I make my decision. Thank you for your input!

Sharon

1975Jumby
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1975Jumby
Intermediate
California USA
Member since 8/19/08
Posts: 623
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In reply to Shanny56 <<


Date: 7/25/12 7:07 PM

For what it's worth, I have never heard good things about the dealerships in Joann's at all. That's not saying anything about the Topaz, but I think you would get better support from an actual dealer with a full time shop if you choose to go with the Topaz. All of the Joann's by me that sell sewing machines have to ship there machines out to get fixed. Nothing gets fixed in house and I've heard the service is horrible. I'm sure it's fine to get a simple Singer through these folks, but for an expensive embroidery machine, I'd stick with a dealer that has a shop.

I don't think the 1500 is being discontinued since the Esante is the same and I heard they will be updating both to include the USB port that allows you to use the flash drives. I was told they still want to keep the models as their affordable "advanced" models....so, sort of one step up from the NX-1200 and BL Ellure Plus. I asked my dealer about this since the Esante has been out for quite awhile with no updates and she said she thinks one is coming with those features.

Definitely keep us up to date on your purchase! Would love to hear what you end up with.

------
Babylock Ellisimo Gold
Babylock Enlighten
Kenmore 1914
Kenmore 1814

speattle
speattle
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In reply to Shanny56 <<


Date: 7/25/12 10:23 PM

The 1500 does not accept USB sticks. It is computer connectivity only. That would be a deal breaker for me. Can you possibly jump up to the 2800?

------
Elna Lotus TSP, Singer 503a-Rocketeer, Brother Innovis 1250D, Pfaff Passport 2.0, Kenmore 10-Stitch, Centennial Singer Featherweight from 1950

Shanny56
Shanny56
Member since 3/3/12
Posts: 8
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Date: 7/25/12 11:23 PM

Well, I went and played with the topaz today for quite a while and it was an impressive machine. I took 4or5 pieces of fabric and folded it several times and it actually sewed it. I have a Janome 7700 for sewing but was temped with the Topaz. The embroidery hoop when we measured it was 12 by 9, info online states 10 by 8 so maybe the maximum field is smaller than the hoop. Unfortunately the warranty was only ONE year and I think that's pretty bad. They ship out to the other side of the valley for repair which isn't great either, but I am most unhappy because there's no editing in the machine and you can't arch the letters either. I'm putting the machine on layaway and I don't know how much more the 2800 is but I think it must be alot more.

kerri Y
kerri Y
Intermediate
Member since 5/6/04
Posts: 258
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In reply to Shanny56 <<


Date: 7/26/12 0:27 AM

I'm in an expensive area and the sticker on the 2800d was $5200. But even in my area I think they bargain off of that. But, still yikes. That's nice to know they are updating the 1500d.

Have you ever considered Embird edit and manager program. It has great ready to go alphabets and in basic embird you can do all kinds of shaping with your words than you just save it in a file. and transfer either on usb stick or on the cable with the 1500d. It has the iconizer feature so that you can see all of your designs with a thumbnail pic, making it so nice to find your designs. The basic is all I use since I don't digitize.

It is a reasonably priced program. I combine lettering with designs and it works well. I had bought mine in 2005 and when I went to update in 2010 after not embroidering for few years, it cost $20 to update to the latest build!

You can read all about it and Carolyn Keber has a great tutorial on it at www.secretsof.com

Shawny, I just searched embird on this forum and read a few people having some difficulties with latest builds of Embird. I don't use mine a ton but haven't really had any problems, but, gosh, it is hard with, software, the viking dealer is offering 5d professional software at an awesome price to go with the ruby, and then I searched it, and there were more than a few irate posts about 5d software, it makes my head spin! and It looked so great at the dealer. I guess there will always be a certain # of people unhappy with any of these products

The brother is tried and true. But I agree, I love the way the vikings sew.

-- Edited on 7/26/12 0:39 AM --

-- Edited on 7/26/12 10:52 AM --

1975Jumby
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1975Jumby
Intermediate
California USA
Member since 8/19/08
Posts: 623
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Date: 7/26/12 12:55 PM

Holy Wow that is alot of money for the 2800d!!! I live in the Los Angeles area and the Babylock equivalent, the Ellageo Plus, sticker is $3995 and the Ellegante, one step up, is $5495. I paid $2495 for my Esante. I personally didn't think the step up to the Ellageo Plus for another $1000-$1200 (figuring some leeway there) was worth it to me to get a color screen and the USB stick capability. If your sewing machine is in your office or you already have a computer in there, just get yourself a $7 16' USB cable and you won't even have to move your computer. I found it very convenient, actually.

Shanny56 - So do you have both machines on layaway now? I can say that I didn't think editing was that big of a deal on machines at first, but I have found myself making last minute changes on my designs when I had the Esante and even now as I sew on the Ellisimo.

Have you tried looking at Babylock? They're pretty much the same as Brother without the Disney designs and you really can't go wrong with them. Their warranty is fabulous and the customer service is REALLY good, just a bit better than Brother from what I hear.

As for software, I know lots of folks here use Embird, but I'm a fan of Designer's Gallery's new program, EmbroideryWorks Everyday. Now, it is a little expensive at $449, but you can get a similar program that is actually written by the same developer called Embrilliance Essentials. Here is the link. It's a very cool program and extremely user friendly, plus it works on MAC computers. In fact, it looks and operates EXACTLY like EmbroideryWorks, with just a few differences. I just seemed to get lost in Embird, but like I said, most folks really like it. Embrilliance is only $135 and I also highly recommend the thumbnailer program they have. Basically it allows you to see the PES images in Windows or Mac, and I can't even begin to tell you how convenient that is.

By the way Shanny56, would you mind telling us what you are being quoted on these machines?

------
Babylock Ellisimo Gold
Babylock Enlighten
Kenmore 1914
Kenmore 1814

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