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JUKI HZL-F300 Review

Well worth the money if you are a serious sewer and have the time to devote to learning the machine
juki hzl-f300 sewing machine review
The Juki HZL-F300 with the test fabrics and carrying case.
Credit: Laura Casner
Top Pick Award
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Price:   $1,399 List | $579.00 at Amazon
Pros:  Automatic thread cutter, foot pedal has a cord wrap, top notch lighting, automatic needle threading
Cons:  Very expensive, heavy, bigger learning curve
Manufacturer:   JUKI
By Austin Palmer and Ruth Bruckbauer  ⋅  Jun 9, 2022
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83
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#1 of 13
  • Sewing - 45% 8.3
  • Ease of use - 35% 9.3
  • Buttonholes - 20% 6.4

Our Verdict

With far more pros than cons, the Juki HZL-F300 wins an award as our favorite premium pick because, though the most expensive sewing machine, it stood out from all the others in many categories. With solid, powerful sewing on every fabric we threw at it, this machine out-performed every other model we tested. It scored highest in both sewing (tested via a battery of stitch assessments) and ease of use, which is crucial because, if your sewing machine is frustrating to figure out, you'll never use it. Bottom line: if you are serious about your sewing and want a top-quality product, this is your machine.

Compare to Similar Products

 
juki hzl-f300 sewing machine review
This Product
JUKI HZL-F300
Awards Top Pick Award Top Pick Award Editors' Choice Award Editors' Choice Award Best Buy Award 
Price $1,399 List
$579.00 at Amazon
$600 List
$449.99 at Amazon
$230 List
$229.99 at Amazon
$230 List
$229.99 at Amazon
$160 List
$159.99 at Amazon
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Pros Automatic thread cutter, foot pedal has a cord wrap, top notch lighting, automatic needle threadingAutomatic thread cutter, tons of stitch optionsGood sewing performance, easy to use, high valueEasy to use, notably good zigzag stitching, free-foot sewing optionExcellent straight stitching on cotton jersey, very easy to get stitches set up
Cons Very expensive, heavy, bigger learning curveBig learning curveA bit harder to set upButtonholes on light to medium fabrics aren't ideal, subpar bobbin windingLacks a needle up/down button, no presser foot lock, trouble with bottom strap of average zipper
Bottom Line Well worth the money if you are a serious sewer and have the time to devote to learning the machineAn all-around great machine with more than enough stitches for even the pickiest sewerA great machine for the price and a good bet for both beginning and seasoned usersA great machine that leaves something to be desired in creating buttonholes on lighter fabrics but overall provides excellent features for the priceGreat machine for a beginning sewer, but lacking a few helpful computerized features
Rating Categories JUKI HZL-F300 Singer 9960 Quantum... Singer 7258 Stylist Brother XR9550 Brother CS5055
Sewing (45%)
8.3
7.8
7.5
7.4
6.8
Ease of use (35%)
9.3
8.2
7.8
8.9
8.0
Buttonholes (20%)
6.4
7.4
7.4
5.6
6.6
Specs JUKI HZL-F300 Singer 9960 Quantum... Singer 7258 Stylist Brother XR9550 Brother CS5055
# of Built-in Stitches 106 600 100 165 60
# of Buttonhole Styles 16 13 6 8 7
Measured Weight 21 lbs 19.7 lbs 14.6 lbs 12. 1 Ibs 10.8 lbs
Maximum Sewing Speed (stitches per minute) 900 850 750 850 750
Buttonhole Sewing (number of steps) 1-Step 1-Step 1-Step 1-Step 1-Step
Maximum Stitch Width 7mm 7mm 6mm 7mm 7mm
Maximum Stitch Length 5mm 5mm 4.8mm 5mm 5mm
Thread Cutter Automatic Automatic Built-in Built-in Built-in
Automatic Bobbin Winder? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Cover? Hard Hard Soft Hard No
Free Arm? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes

Our Analysis and Test Results

Earning a top spot in our lineup, the Juki HZL-F300 is a heavy-duty workhorse of a sewing machine. Juki Corporation is a Japanese manufacturer of industrial and domestic sewing machines and is ranked as the number one sewing machine manufacturer in the world. What does that mean for you? Well, for one thing, our test team consistently gave the Juki top marks for ease of use and sewing ability. For another thing, it means that this machine came with a whopping price tag, significantly higher than the other models we tested. So if you think that the Juki is the machine for you, be prepared to spend some serious coinage.

Price aside, with top or near the top scores in almost every category, we were blown away by this machine's sewing speed and strength. We tested each machine on eight different fabrics, and except for a couple of stitches on one or two of the fabrics, the sewing on this Juki was a breeze.

Performance Comparison


juki hzl-f300 sewing machine review - the stitch selector may take some time to figure out, but it does...
The stitch selector may take some time to figure out, but it does make sense.
Credit: Laura Casner

Sewing


What really struck our reviewers about the Juki HZL-F300 was how well it went through multiple layers of denim in our denim tests (12 ounces of fabric folded to be eight layers thick). In fact, we were so impressed with the machine's power and ease of use with denim that we awarded a perfect score for that particular test. You might not be patching denim, but you may need a strap fixed on a backpack or duffel bag, or a leather bag needs a repair, and this machine will be perfect for that.


But not everyone will be sewing through thick, heavy fabrics, though. More typical is sewing using a basic straight stitch, basting stitch, and zigzags. Most people will only be using those stitches for the vast majority of their sewing, and — we're pleased to say — the Juki HZL-F300 rated very highly with those stitches too.


The only stitch where the Juki scored just so-so was scallop stitches; getting the tension right on some fabrics was notably difficult. Granted, not many people will use a scallop stitch, but we included it in testing all the machines to push them in a lot of different directions and offer you a full picture of their performance.

juki hzl-f300 sewing machine review - we had some trouble with tension while using the scallop stitch, but...
We had some trouble with tension while using the scallop stitch, but other stitches were just fine.
Credit: Laura Casner

Zippers can be a major make-or-break feature of a sewing machine. Almost everyone who sews knows at least one person who goes to great lengths to avoid using a zipper — either because it intimidates them or because their machine makes it more of a pain than is warranted. You'll be glad to know that the Juki HZL-F300 scored very high in our zipper tests.


Not everything the Juki HZL-F300 does is perfect. Our testers had trouble with some stitches, finding that the tension was off on some finer materials. This is something you will need to spend some time and play with if you sew quite a bit with silks and chiffons, but for most people, it's not going to be a problem.

juki hzl-f300 sewing machine review - the tension was difficult to get right on some of the finer fabrics.
The tension was difficult to get right on some of the finer fabrics.
Credit: Laura Casner

Ease of Use


No matter how expensive, powerful, or fancy a sewing machine is, you've only wasted your time and money if you can't figure out how to use it. Not only is the Juki among the easiest to use of the machines we tested, but the stitch quality also makes it worth the invested time to learn. This was the easiest machine to thread out of our entire lineup, and the thread cutter and lighting were also top-notch.


A small legend on the Juki shows a solid line (for machine threading) or a dotted line (for bobbin threading) and has numbers and arrows to help you too. And if you still get lost, there is a panel on top that flips up and provides lots of additional information, such as stitch selection and which presser foot to use with each selected stitch. At first this can seem overwhelming, but it's all well-organized. The three main stitch selection buttons give you various options using pictures, numbers, and letters within each stitch category.

This is one of the easiest machines to thread.
This is one of the easiest machines to thread.
The flip-up panel on top of the machine shows the multiple stitches...
The flip-up panel on top of the machine shows the multiple stitches you can choose from on this machine.

The bobbin loads from the top on the HZL-F300, and it also has a small diagram you can follow. Rewinding the bobbin is super easy and very quiet, yet the bobbin rewinding tests we conducted came out unevenly loaded each time. So while the bobbin is easy to rewind and load into the sewing machine, it still scored just average in our testing.

juki hzl-f300 sewing machine review - the bobbin is very easy to wind and install.
The bobbin is very easy to wind and install.
Credit: Laura Casner

This machine also has semi-automatic needle threading, which is huge for the older generation. You just hook the thread into the grip and then press a lever — and the machine does the rest. No more bending over trying to line up the end of the thread with the eye of the needle. This alone may be worth the price if it's something with which you struggle. The thread cutter is also fully automatic and perfectly placed.


For one of our testers, the lighting is one of the most important features of a sewing machine. The light on the HZL-F300 is clear, bright, and placed in the best possible location. There is a slight shadow on the needle penetration area, but not enough to make a difference.

Clear, bright light covers a large sewing area.
Clear, bright light covers a large sewing area.
We found that this machine has very user-friendly controls.
We found that this machine has very user-friendly controls.

One final thought. The instruction manual must be clear and understandable, or you will be disinclined to use your sewing machine. Juki seems to understand this and has written a user manual with lots of information, is cleanly laid out, and has wonderful stitch selection instructions.

Buttonholes


Buttonholes are another one of those things that most sewists can do just fine but that others try to avoid at all costs. Too many beautiful projects have been tossed aside because of ruined buttonholes.


The HZL-F300 scored slightly better than average in our buttonhole tests. The machine comes with a plate that clamps onto filmy, slippery fabrics to help keep them in place while working on your buttonhole. And this machine also has 16 different styles and sizes of buttonholes, far more than any other sewing machine we tested.

This sewing machine has a plate and clamp to use with filmy...
This sewing machine has a plate and clamp to use with filmy, slippery fabrics while sewing buttonholes.
The Juki sewed through however many layers of material we gave it.
The Juki sewed through however many layers of material we gave it.

Value


While the Juki HZL-F300 carries a hefty price tag, the pros far outweigh the cons if you are a serious seamstress or tailor. Our testers also really appreciate that the foot pedal has a place at the bottom around which you can wrap the cord — a small detail, but one we appreciate. The Juki also comes with a hard case with a carrying handle, a rarity for sewing machines these days. Ultimately, though, this machine just sews well, and if you can afford it, we don't think you'll be disappointed.

You can wrap the cord around the bottom of the pedal.
You can wrap the cord around the bottom of the pedal.
A hard case with a carrying handle comes with this sewing machine.
A hard case with a carrying handle comes with this sewing machine.

Conclusion


So is this the sewing machine for you? Only you can answer that, but we've found the Juki HZL-F300 to be a great machine for the money. And yes, it's a lot of money. Still, we think this machine is worth it for the right user.

Austin Palmer and Ruth Bruckbauer
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