Multi-needle machines aren’t cheap, but when you compare multi needle vs single needle machines…the benefits are undeniable. This is especially true if you’re looking to start a home embroidery business. So, if you’re looking to upgrade your embroidery machine… but you’re still on a budget. These are the cheapest multi needle embroidery machines on the market!
Janome MB 4Se (4 Needle) – $5,499
The Janome MB 4SE is one of the best deals in multi-needle embroidery. You’d be hard pressed to find anything else in this price range, even refurbished. At $5,499 – it’s the cheapest multi-needle on the market. And while it is technically marketed as a home use multi needle embroidery machine – it’s still a great pick for a home business.
The machine has 4 needles, which means you can do a 4 color design without having to worry about changing colors. If most of your work includes pretty basic logos, this should be plenty.
You’ll also get a 9.4″ x 7.9″ embroidery area, a good size that can accommodate most projects, and the machine has adjustable speed (600-800 stitches per minute).
It also has excellent on-board computer controls, which allow you to transfer and manipulate designs via USB, or through a direct computer connection, and a time-saving automatic thread cutter, which handles jump stitches.
While this machine is very similar to the Elna 940, the MB4SE comes out slightly ahead, because you also get $550 worth of free hoops with it for hats and lettering.
In addition, the machine is very easy to learn and consumers rave about the quality and features for such a low price point on a multi needle.
Elna 940 (4 Needle) – $5,499
When compared to the MB4Se… the the Elna 940 is almost identical! Janome even owns the Elna brand now, so they are likely even made in the same factories.
However, you’ll get a few less accessories going with the Elna machine, so I’d go with the MB4Se if available. BUT, if you can’t seem to get one – the Elna is a solid and nearly identical choice!
Janome MB 7 (7 Needle) – $6,799
Need more than 4 needles? The Janome MB7 offers an upgrade to 7 needles for a bit more, and it also includes a free hat hoop. Though sadly, you will not be getting an embroidery size upgrade. It’s still 9.4″ x 7.9″ like the MB4.
Likewise, it seems that there aren’t really many additional features when compared to the MB4Se.
If you are going to be embroidering a lot of designs with more than 4 colors though, it’s certainly worth the upgrade! Especially when you start getting a lot of orders that need to be filled fast.
Tajima Sai (8 Needle) – $9,999
While the Tajima Sai looks expensive compared to the other machines on this list, there’s a reason I am including it. It’s because it’s the cheapest multi needle for real hat embroidery!
Yes, you CAN embroider hats on the the Elna and Janome machines, BUT similar to your standard home flat bed, the hats need to be smashed flat.
This means you can’t embroider on structured hats and you can’t embroider all the way around a hat! The Tajima Sai allows you to use a cap driver. This lets you do a LOT more when it comes to embroidery.
Want to see the Sai in action? The video above shows how the Tajima Sai 8 moves the cap driver so you can embroider across the entire face of a structured hat.
In addition, the Juki Sai 8 also has a much larger 12″ x 8″ sewing field, expanding your creative options.
But, if that’s not enough, Tajima is also one of the most trusted names in commercial embroidery and shops rave about the quality of their machines. With the Sai, home businesses can also enjoy this quality for a fraction of the price.
So, while it’s not the cheapest… I do think it’s the best in the price range for small multi-needles. But, if you don’t embroider a lot of structured hats or other hard to do items such as sleeves or socks, then you may not need this functionality.
If that’s the case, then you can save a lot of money going with the Janome MB7 instead!
How to get financing on a multi-needle machine
If the machine you want is out of reach for a cash purchase – have you considered financing? Some dealers actually offer financing terms, allowing you to get started with a quality machine faster.
You could, of course, do this on your own, but it can be pretty easy to do directly through the dealer!
Sewing Machines Plus lets you apply through check out for payment terms through Synchrony. Just choose the machine you want, go through the check out process as normal, and you can apply for financing there.
Don’t forget about refurbished machines!
If you’re looking to save money and you can afford to be patient – refurbished is an option. Though, stock is scarce and it could take a while for something to come back in stock.
However, it can be a solid way to make a machine that would otherwise be out of your budget – much more affordable if you can pull it off.
Though, even refurbished – you expect to pay $6,000+ for a multi-needle machine.
Tanya is a stay at home mom who blogs online to earn a bit of extra income from her hobbies. She also loves working on projects which she can involve her two kids in and teach them the valuable life-skill of sewing.