The Brother XR3340 Sewing Machine Reviewed
This machine is a reimagination of the traditional sewing machine as a computer-controlled means of making sewing and quilting accessible to everyone, regardless of skill level. It is packed with preprogrammed options and techniques that allow it to execute the most intricate of designs on fabric as easily as one could draw them on paper.
One of the most prominent ways this product eases the way for the user is by extensively automating the bulk of the process, with both the needle’s speed and direction controlled by a keypad instead of requiring any manual adjustments at all. The feed system is built with all the considerable quality that Brother has brought to the rest of its long line of textile processing machines to ensure a smooth and steady feed that will leave the user free to focus on their creativity instead of correcting mistakes.
The same goal is accomplished by the anti-jam system, sure to be a fast friend in the hands of artists new and old alike. This system appears exclusively in Brother machines, making this the only place that one can find a machine that is truly certain never to jam while you work.
There are scores of stitches preprogrammed into the machine, instantly opening the doors to designs far more complex than a user might be able to complete on their own. These are not limited to standard stitches either; the Brother XR3340 can handle alphanumeric stitching, buttonholes, and even monogramming, letting you do far more than just bind two pieces of fabric together.
You’ll receive a selection of 10 different feet with this machine, so there’ll be no need to try and adapt your old ones or go out buying new parts. These include options for both standard sewing and more complex quilting, so you can dive right into whatever you had in mind as soon as you have the machine unpacked.
A chief complaint about most sewing or quilting machines is that there is not enough room on the machine’s table to properly set up a workpiece. The user is constantly shifting the fabric as it runs out every few minutes. By using a much larger table than most machines, Brother ensures that you will have ample room to work on whatever design strikes your fancy.
Mounted on the Brother XR3340’s side for easy access while still watching the table are the backlit LCD screen and several physical control buttons, allowing you to minutely control the sewing process with digital precision. One can see and change the stitch being used and position the needle up or down, and even use the directional controls to all but draw onto the fabric’s surface.
Who’s It For?
This machine will be a surefire winner with anyone who likes to engage in all that the ancient and essential art of sewing has to offer. There’s little sewing it can’t do, and the digital interface makes sure that there are few people who won’t be able to put it through its paces in fine style. It is particularly recommended for any enthusiasts who, for any reason, can no longer execute their full skill set but still want to enjoy sewing. The machine’s repertoire of preprogrammed stitches will make sure that they can enjoy the art of sewing every bit as much as they used to.
This machine does not run on batteries, so is not recommended for anyone who likes to do a project on the go or who uses a craft room without easy access to electrical outlets. It is also not an embroidery machine. While it is an ace at sewing and almost as good at quilting, it is not quite an all in one, and should not be taken as such.
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What We Like About The Brother XR3340
The big table is a great addition that most sewing machines tend to omit – there never seems to be enough space to get real work done. The selection of feet included is similarly helpful, as most people do not have the requisite feet for the majority of the tasks that this machine can help them complete.
Having physical buttons is a welcome change from the touchscreen or laminated buttons one might find on other machines – they were out slower and the tactile feedback is noticeably more precise. The LCD screen is bright enough to be seen even in sunlight and uses large and clear characters to make sure the user can get all the details at a glance.
Brother’s specialized systems for flawless feeding and thread loading, as well as the drop-in bobbins, make the actual action of sewing easier than ever; they are by far the parts of the machine most prone to fouling a piece of thread in more ways than most novices even think are possible, and the automated systems make sure that none of those happen. The feed dogs are both smooth and steady, but one can also drop them and move the fabric manually for unlimited creativity.
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What We Don’t Like About the Brother XR3340
This may be a sterling machine, but like everything, it has its shortcomings. Primary among them is the omission of a battery-powered option that would make this machine far more mobile and eliminate the need for a troublesome power cord.
Although it is computerized, the Brother XR3340 cannot accept any uploaded designs, nor does it come with a media port of any kind; the user cannot use a studio program to create an idea and transfer it to the machine. This makes the user stay with the machine the entire time it is running, a step behind the latest generation of automated sewing machines.
There is no walking foot included with this model, despite there being no less than ten others in the box. While this may have been in the hopes that you already have one, it is more likely to simply be a poor choice from the manufacturers.
- Trusted manufacturer
- Multiple systems to improve both thread and fabric feed
- Large selection of attachments and accessories
- Easily legible and intuitive screen and interface
- Freehand mode for unlimited creativity
- Cannot handle embroidery
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Overview Of Features
The Brother XR3340 is first and foremost a sewing machine, and many of its mechanisms are oriented towards making it the best one possible. The feed dogs and bobbins are both automated to speed up sewing and minimize interruptions, and the needles are built with the Brother anti-jam system that keeps every last stitch smooth and even. The needle auto-threading system gets you through the trickiest part of sewing perfectly time after time, so you’ll be able to skip that particular headache.
This machine includes a larger table than most others, measuring close to a square foot, which is detachable for storage and comes with its own storage portfolio to protect it from damage until you need it again. The free arm function is as popular as ever among sewing enthusiasts, making it sure to be popular with the community.
There will be few projects that this machine cannot handle. It has a repertoire of 55 alphanumeric stitches and 140 basic ones, including eight separate options for executing buttonholes. The internal library is so complex that it can handle not only sewing and quilting but the beginnings of monogramming as well.
A power cord is supplied with this machine, but there is no backup battery pack or option to insert batteries. You will need to set it up in close proximity to an outlet. If ordering online, make sure that your seller has a model with the right plug for your country, or invest in a simple power adapter to get it to work.
The LCD screen clearly displays the stitch being used and how many per square inch are being executed and is visible even in bright light. New users will likely need some time to get used to the readout and should keep their instruction manual close at hand to avoid any misconceptions.
There is no way to boost the internal memory or load designs from a studio program, so the user will need to remain with the machine at all times. This puts the Brother XR3340a step behind most other sewing machines, which allow users to load patterns, stitches, and even pictures to be converted into textile; there is also no internet connection, which in many similar models can be used to ‘print’ right onto the fabric, monitor a project’s progress, change or save a design, or even control the machine over the web.
One thing that this model does have is the freehand mode, which allows users to push the limits of their creativity to the maximum extent by dropping the feed dogs and allowing the user full control over how the fabric moves and how fast. A skilled user, with the right stitches selected, can effectively draw their designs straight onto their project to create endless freehand stitching.
While there are numerous spare parts and attachments with this model, it is worth noting that there are some common parts missing that you will likely want to add to your craft room if you will be using this machine for any amount of time. The most obvious is the walking foot, but extra needles off all kinds and replacement bobbins wouldn’t be a bad idea either.
An in-depth deep-dive exploration of the Brother XR3340 Sewing Machine, highlighting its features, what we like and don’t like, the pros and cons, and more.