Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Janome 3160 QDC vs the Bernina 330

*note* As of  January 2013 I have had nearly 4000 people read this entry!!  Seems there is a lot of interest in comparing Janomes to Berninas.  If it's applicable, would you be so kind as to leave a comment to further the usefulness of this page?  Thanks so much! -Lynn

Well....today I went to our very cool Parkside Sewing Center in Santa Rosa and met the owner, Jim.  He only carries Janomes and Berninas and thread and has for what looks like 50 years. He reminds me of Santa Claus with his apron full of tools at chest height and his "Swiss Made" pins on the lapel.

I went in pretty determined to walk out with the Bernie.  After all it is a Bernina.  My mother taught me on hers and it still works beautifully.  They are a dream just to look at, but Santa, given my price, steered me to the Janome- for literally half the price I got a hard case, an extension table, and a few more features than the Bernie 330.  Everything cost extra for the Bernina and quite frankly I need a new washing machine and more fabric.   I decided that I will earn a Bernina and give the Janome to my girls.  By then I will be a pro and they will need a machine.  Good choice?

*I wanted to add that now that I have used the Janome for a month I love the see through bobbin window and the thread cutter  both of which are not on the Bernina 330*

***** Update  ***** If Mrs. Oh Franson has a Janome, then it's good enough for me!  *****

33 comments:

  1. Hey Lynn...Funny that you just posted this....LD got me a sewing class for Christmas and I just used the Bernie 330 on Wednesday to make pajama pants...fun machine, but I don't know the difference from any other...I do know it is above my beginner price range...maybe I will look into this Jonome.
    Cheers lady!

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  2. I was a bernina girl for a very long time. I recently sold my 640e to buy the janome horizon and I don't regret it one bit. :)

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  3. May I ask what you paid for your Janome? I am looking at purchasing a slightly used floor model Bernina 330 for 775 or a 350pe for 1050. On my budget that is pretty steep but I have to think of how long it will last as well. Thanks for your input.

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  5. My husband got me the Janome 3160 and I love it! The automatic thread cutter is by far the best feature of the maching. My husband bought it on a deal for around $700 Canadian. I love that it came with all sorts of accessories that I didn't have to pay extra for.

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  7. I've been sewing since 1966 and I've been using Janome's exclusively for over 25 yrs. First a lower budget model, then when I could afford better, the MC9000. I also have a MyLock serger which was made by Janome. I've been extremely happy with all of the machines and wouldn't buy any other brand. They are very solid, dependable machines and you get more bang for your buck than any other comparable quality brand. FYI - they also used to make White and Kenmore machines, among others.

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  8. Just bought a Bernina 330 today - my Janome Decor gave out after only 10ish years. My old Brother lasted longer than that. Not impressed! Granted it put in a lot of hours. Last cleaning I was told it wasn't worth fixing - the metal on the bobbin casing was wearing out and the mechanism kept slipping. Spent an hour two nights ago getting it to work again and then said enough... Looked at Janome today and then at Bernina. Liked that the B's actually still use metal bobbins and that they are placed vertically not in the see-through horizontal plastic section like the J's. Overall think B will be a better machine. We'll see!

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  9. Should mention that it cost about $1000 Canadian. But if I end up loving it as much as I love my Babylock Imagine serger it will be money well spent. It was painful to pay for the serger, but worth every cent! colleen

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  10. Today I purchased the Janome 3160 to take to sewing classes. I've been sewing with it all day and I think I'm really going to like this little machine! I have the J Horizon & 6600 and they are both so heavy to take to classes. I've never used a Bernina, the price is not in my budget. I do have friends that have them and love them.

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  11. I've had a Bernina 1090 for about 22 years and just love it. I went to a retreat a while ago and the footpedal stopped working, so one of my Guild Girlfriends loaned me a Janome 760 to use. I thought it was a cut little workhourse, perfect for taking to classes and intended to purchase one. Our Janome dealer was having a sale and the 3160 was on sale for about $50 dollars more than the 760. A lot more features, quilting kit and same light weight, although a slightly larger machine. I certainly am happy with it! It will be my backup/class machine, but has so many great features, particularly the thread cutter and needle threader. And a lot of really cool stitches that I'll use. The only things I don't light are the light (bad...but I have one of those bendible bright lights that is perfect) and the positioning of the start/stop and reverse buttons. Kinda awkward placement, but everything else is fab! Really love this little machine and am very happy with it!

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  12. Thank you for this blog post! I looked at the 330 today and of course the salesperson told me I would love it more and it will easier to do some FMQ with (which I have not done but she intends to teach me :) Anyhow the only other place for sewing machines locally has Janomes and the 3160 is on sale for about $230 less than the 330.... What to do??? I have friends that have Bernina's and go to a "club" so I would like to join them but that can't be my only reason...

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  13. i came on to see about the Bernina 330 as I can see prices are all over the place . I bought it as a gift for my wife and think I got a pretty good deal at 730 us and it includes classes . Its a small Amish store withe very helpful staff .

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  14. I have had a Vicking Husqvarna for 25 years that I bought used. I love it. However, I took it in today for repair and the cost will be $320. So, it is finally time for a new machine. They repair shop also sells new machines and recommended to me the Janome 3160 QDC. It is on sale for $649.00 U.S. I love the features, so am pretty sure I will go ahead and purchase. Thanks for all the imput on this site. Really helps to read others opinions.

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    1. Oops, I apparently can't spell today, so please forgive my typo's. LOL

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    2. FYI - I called my Sister who is a Master Quilter. I asked her if I should go ahead and purchase the Janome 3160 QDC or does she recommend the Bernina. She told me she has a Janome 3160 that she bought last year to take to her quilting classes and up to her daughters, because she will not take her EXPENSIVE Janome machine out of the house. She said to go for it. It is a great machine, does everything I will need it to do, it very durable to much less expensive than the Bernina. Both are great machines, but prefers Janome. So, that did it for me. I put the Janome on layaway and pick it up next Friday. I also get free classes with the purchase, so can't beat that. Can't wait to get sewing!!

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    3. That was supposed to read..., it is very durable and much less expensive than the Bernina.

      LOL - Oh, my, goodness! I must be too used to texting where it fixes all my mistakes.

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    4. Is anyone with the 3160 having problems using the thread cutter and when you start a new seam, the threads tangle or nest on the bottom side?

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  15. We went to Bernina dealer in San Jose to check out 330 and 350. Then went to Jenome dealer to take a look. Before we went to Jenome, we almost decided to buy 350, just went to Jenome store to have a look. Eventually, We bought a new 3160qdc + a floor model 300e embroidery machine with the price of a new Bernina 350. We try different fabrics and feel that Jenome is solid enough comparing to Bernina 3xx series. But the price is much more favorable.

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  16. Margie: After the thread cuts and before you start sewing your next seam, just push your fabric under to presser foot to pull that top thread out from the bobbin area. Then just lightly hold the top thread and you start to sew and it keeps it from bunching up on the bottom side. Give that a try and hope it helps.

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  17. That should read - push your fabric under THE presser foot.... and lightly hold the top thread AS you start to sew....

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  19. We love this model at our studio. I chose to sell Janome machines over 9 years ago and never looked back. After sewing professionally for 37 years and teaching for more than 25, I wanted to offer a strong machine, easy to use, great features and great value for a reasonable cost. If you are in our area you get a free learn how to use your machine class and a free service too! Our current sale on this model the Janome 4018QDC is only $718. I can sell out of state as well. Just email your info to nora@sewfreshstudio.com

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  20. I alredy have a great Janome Memory 7 And it works so fine. But it being the first computer controlled machine (1979) I thought buying a new one. I considered Berny but it have crazy price tag. Then I considered Juki, Brother and Toyota but since Janome is No 1 Company and their products are up-to-date and well made I finally zeroed on 3160QDC. I am satisfied with the features but would have liked had they made this model little bigger (arm l & H ) and with knee lift foot.Also my (Dubai) model is not having 3Pin connection that give electrical shock. But over all I can say I love Janome product.

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  21. Most here who have the 3160 QDC seem to have had good luck. I'm glad. I have one--it's a nice little machine with lots of features, but I struggled with it for over a year. I wanted to like it, but I've had so much trouble with it I finally bought a vintage Bernina 830 Record on eBay, and I've never been happier.

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  22. Have had a Bernina Virtuosa 153 QE for 10 years and LOVE it! However, it is a tank and weighs as much! I'm looking for a 2nd machine, lighter/more portable for travel (we are winter snowbirds) and for taking to classes. I have been researching and the Janome 3160 has caught my eye. Not sure I wanted to pay the price for a 2nd machine, but the reviews seem to speak for themselves. Thoughts?

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