Computerized Vs Mechanical Sewing Machines

singer one sewing machines

Summary: What’s the difference between computerised vs mechanical sewing machines? The simple difference between computerised vs mechanical sewing machines are:-

  1. Mechanical/Electronic sewing machines have dials &knobs that allow you to choose stitches and change other settings of the machine. There are less complicated to use with simple instructions, easier to maintain, lesser number of stitches and cheaper than computerized sewing machines
  2.  Computerized sewing machines on the other hand are more advanced in that they allow you to do a variety of utility & decorative stitches and also allow you to create creating embroidery designs. They come packed with many automatic features to make the sewing experience smoother.

Detailed Explanation

Buying a sewing machine, whether mechanical or computerized can be a frustrating experience, as well as an exciting one, just like buying a new car.

Remember you are committing to spending a few 100 bucks on a machine that you will hopefully will want to use for a long time that will be easy to use and not break down often.

So how do you make the decision on the sewing machine that is right for you? Do you go for a mechanical or a computerized one ? Will you use the machine on one type of material or many different fabrics?

Some of the things to consider when thinking of buying either a mechanical or computerized sewing machine will include:-

a) Your budget –

b) How technologically savvy are you

c) The types of sewing that you will be doing

In this guide we will look at the 2 main type of sewing machines ie Mechanical and computerized sewing machines.

1. Mechanical Sewing Machines

A mechanical sewing machine

As explained in the intro, mechanical sewing machines tend to be cheaper than computerized sewing machines because computerized machines are more comprehensive and advanced. With a mechanical sewing machine, you choose your stitches by turning a knob or dial. There are no buttons to press.

You will find a lesser number of stitches on the mechanical one compared to a computerized one simply because of its mechanics.

Another key feature of the mechanical sewing machines is that it has simple instructions on how to use it and the majority of the machines will have a one stop button hole, it wont measure the size of your button hole and it will be a one style button hole.

You will also note that when you stop sewing, the needle will stop at the point you release your foot off the pedal whether its down, up or midway. (This may require you to wind the handle in order to lift up the needle if the machine stopped with the needle at the bottom position).

With a computerized machine you have the option of choosing whether to stop the needle up or down position. This is beneficial to quilt or patch workers or if you are sewing around corners and you need the needle to stop down so that you can continue stitching from the same place you started.

A mechanical sewing machine has fewer stitch compared to a computerized one. Mechanical machines are easier to maintain and cost less compared to computerized ones.

The disadvantages of mechanical sewing machines is that have a limited number of stitches, have less buttonhole options and can be more cumbersome to use.

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2. Computerized Sewing Machines

computerized sewing machine

A computerized sewing machine

Computerized sewing machines have lots of features to help you save time and make your sewing experience easier and enjoyable.

Some of the features include:-

  1. Built-in-stitches
  2. Buttonholes
  3. Lcd screens
  4. Automatic needle threader
  5. Automatic tension
  6. Automatic needle up & down
  7. Automatic thread cutter etc.

Computerized sewing machines are comparatively more smoother than mechanical machines. Many of them have also been designed to work without a foot pedal. Instead of having a foot pedal there is a start/stop button in front of the machine with the option of controlling the speed.

The most noticeable feature with computerized sewing machine is that you have a huge selection of stitches to choose from.

Some machines offer you as little as 60 stitches while others can go as high as 900 stitches! The more expensive the machine the more the stitches you are able to choose from.

Which is Better?

So, between a mechanical and a computerized sewing machine, which is better? Well, it all depends on what you want from your machine, what kinds of projects you will be undertaking, the budget that you have among other.

If you only need to do basic sewing such as simple home projects and repairs then a mechanical sewing machine will do just fine BUT my recommendation to you is that if you are able, even as a beginner, buy a computerized sewing machine because you have many more stitching options plus a computerized sewing machine makes sewing much more smoother.

At the end of the day, buy the best one you can afford.

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Best Mechanical Sewing Machines

If you’ve decided to buy a mechanical sewing machine, I’ve researched on the best machines based on user review and sales online (on and here they are. Clicking on any image redirects you to Amazon where you can see more details.

A. Janome 660

B. Janome 2212

janome 2212 sewing machine

C. Janome Magnolia 7318

Best Computerized Sewing Machines

Below are the best computerized sewing machines on sale based on user reviews and sales:-

A. Janome 8077 Sewing Machine

janome 8070 sewing machine

B. Brother XR9500PRW Sewing Machine

C. Singer One

singer one sewing machines

I will be doing a comprehensive post on each of the above machines at a later date. Get the best prices by visiting