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Janome 525s vs. Singer XL-550 Comparison

In this comparison, we are going to compare one of the most popular affordable sewing machines, the Janome 525s and Singer XL-550. What made these two sewing machines stand out was that they were packed with features in an affordable range combined with excellent stitch quality.

What are the main differences between them? Allow me to simplify my answers here.

Janome 525s vs. Singer XL-550: Comparison in Features

Sewing Machine Types

The Janome 525s is a mechanical sewing machine, while the Singer XL-550 is a sewing and embroidery combo machine. Since the machine types decide they differ a lot in features, I won’t make a suggestion.

The decision has to be made on an individual level.

Janome 525s vs. Singer XL-550 : Built-in Stitches

The Janome 525s comes with an attractive amount of built-in stitches, 24 to be exact. Within those 24 stitches you can find standard stitches, decorative stitches and easy-to-use buttonhole stitches. While the Singer XL-550 features 215 stitches. Similar to the Janome 525s, these stitches include standard and decorative stitches.

Automatic Needle Threader

Many sewing machines sold today come with an automatic threader function. This is essentially a lever that will guide the thread through the eye of your sewing needle for you so that you don’t have to do it yourself. Many sewists prefer to thread their own needles, but if you have difficulty performing this task, then a machine with an automatic needle threader might be very useful for you. Fortunately, these two sewing machines both come with automatic needle threader, allowing you to thread the machine with ease.

Drop-in Bobbin

The advantage of easy drop-in, top load bobbins is that you can readily see how much thread is left on the bobbin through the window. You do not have to remove the bobbin case to insert a new bobbin, and you do not have to remove the accessory tray from the free arm to change bobbins. Both the Janome 525s sewing machine and the Singer XL-550 sewing machine come with this user-friendly feature.

Drop Feed

The most common type of feeding mechanism in a home sewing machine (and some industrial machines) is the drop feed, also known as the regular feed system. Both Janome 525s and Singer XL-550 come equipped with a drop feed system, which grabs the fabric and moves it along through the machine.

Janome 525s Singer XL-550
Product Image
Sewing Machine Type Mechanical Sewing and Embroidery Combo
Stitches 24 215
Buttonhole Styles 1 one-step 6 one-step
Start/Stop Button Yes
Built-in Memory Yes
Programmable Needle Up/Down Yes
Monogramming Font Yes, 20
Drop Feed Yes Yes
Free Arm Yes
Working Light Yes Yes, 6 LEDs
Speed Control Slider Yes
Weight 15 lbs
Extra High Presser Foot Lifter Yes
Snap-on Presser Foot Yes
Automatic Thread Cutter Yes
Automatic Needle Threader Yes Yes
Drop-in Bobbin Yes Yes
USB Connectivity Yes
Stitch Selection Dial LCD and Push Button
Adjustable Stitch Length/Width Yes
Included Feet
Dedicated Locking Stitch Button Yes
Tension Automatic Tension
Knee Lifter
Warranty 25 Year Limited
Price Check Price on Amazon Check Price on Amazon

Janome 525s Video Review

Singer XL-550 Video Review

The Verdict

The Janome 525s and Singer XL-550 differ significantly in terms of features. The stitch quality is, nevertheless, a recurring factor. These two machines can sew a wide range of textiles with reliable results. I’d choose any of these two machines if you asked me to choose an affordable, sophisticated sewing machine. I won’t offer a recommendation because they have such disparate features. You must base your selection on your stitching ability and experience.

Q. What should I know about manual vs. electric sewing machines?

A. Manual sewing machines were the mainstay of the crafting world, but in more recent years electric (also known as computerized) machines have been increasing in popularity for their easy operation and advanced functions, such as embroidery.

If you’re looking for a simple sewing experience without frills, a mechanical machine gives you straightforward functionality.

Without electronic components, some feel that these machines prove more reliable in the long term.

However, computerized machines may shorten the learning curve for some new sewers, since choosing stitches and settings only requires the push of a button.

Q. Why adjust tension on sewing machine

A. Sewing machine tension adjustment is controlled by devices that separately control the needle thread and the bobbin thread, putting varying amounts of tension (or strength) on the threads they control to form a strong, balanced stitch.

Q. Can a normal sewing machine sew canvas?

A. Yes, canvas can be sewn on a regular sewing machine.

Q. What are features to look for in a sewing machine?

A. The best features will depend on the type of sewing you plan to do. For a beginner, some features to look for include built-in stitch types, an automatic needle threader, a top drop-in bobbin, and a set of standard presser feet.

Q. Can I interchange metal and plastic bobbins if they are the same size?

A. Metal bobbins and plastic bobbins of the same size can NOT be swapped. Machines are set for a very precise tension setting. If they are set for a lighter plastic bobbin, the tension will change if a heavier metal bobbin is used.

Q. Do you need a special sewing machine for leather?

A. No, although a heavy-duty machine will make it easier. However, any good-quality home sewing machine can handle leather with a few special accessories. You will need a Teflon presser foot, a needle designed for sewing leather, and heavy-duty thread.