Singer XL-550 Review

Singer XL-550 Review

Singer Futura XL-550 is absolutely feature packed. It performs well. One drawback is the compatibility of included softwares with OS other than Windows.

Editor rating


Singer Futura XL-550 combines sewing and embroidery all in one. It is a high end embroidery machine. One great thing is that you need little manual intervention while doing embroidery on this machine. If you look at the sewing features of this machine, it is pretty impressive. It packs 215 built-in stitches including 6 fully automatic 1-step buttonholes and 1 endless buttonhole. You will get an extra large sewing space of 210mm with this machine. Bobbin system is top drop-in. There is auto tension and twin needle control. Programmable needle up/down feature is also there (You normally expect it in such an expensive sewing machine, not a huge surprise). Work lights on this machine are pretty good in fact. It comes with 6 stay bright LEDs. The LEDs are placed on the tower and to the right and left of the needle.

Embroidery Features

Now let us have a look at the embroidery features of Singer Futura XL-550. It has 125 built-in embroidery designs and 20 fonts for monogramming. A DVD containing 3 embroidery software programs is included in the box. The embroidery hoop size is 10 X 6 inch, which is pretty large to be honest. It also has multihooping capability so that you can create designs up to 4 times the largest hoop size which is 10 inch x 6 inch in this case. Another huge advantage of this machine is the USB connectivity, which pretty much makes it an unlimited design machine. You can download any number of designs from the internet. Moreover, it supports a variety of file formats.

The memory function on Singer Futura XL-550 allows you to save selected stitch combinations. All designs are editable and you can even edit the downloaded ones. Stitch selection is done using the dials. Separate dials are provided for stitch selection and stitch settings. The automatic thread cutter and needle threader saves time. Automatic thread cutter is a nice feature, it cuts the thread with the push of a button, you don't need to reach out for the scissors anymore. The electronic auto pilot feature lets the machine sew while you are away, again a nice feature that justifies its price.
Singer Futura XL-550 comes with quite a lot of features, some of the features not mentioned above are

•    Built-in tutorials : No need to look at the user manual every time you have some doubts.
•    Auto feed dog drop
•    4 design transmission methods
•    Embroidery block indication and selection
•    Design browser
•    One degree increment rotation
•    13 needle positions
•    Automatic twin needle
•    Extra-high presser foot lifter
•    25 year limited warranty

Singer Futura XL-550 comes with a wide variety of accessories as well.

Ease of Use

Honestly, we are really impressed with the features that Singer Futura XL-550 has. But we have to look at the usability of this machine before drawing a conclusion, that is where it makes or breaks the deal for us and for everyone we guess. It is a bulky machine and it can do some awesome things. It sews through heavy fabric quite easily. The large space is a huge blessing for quilters. You might need some time to get used to the options and settings available on Singer Futura XL-550. This being an advanced sewing machine, we don't expect you to be a complete beginner, so the learning curve will be easy for you.

The included AutoPunch and HyperFont software is worth every cent. Please keep in mind that, if you buy these softwares separately, you will have to shell out a lot of money. Stitches come out perfect and they look very beautiful. All stitches are regular and even, no problems like skipping. The embroidery quality is quite good as well, with best results in low speed setting. The overall build quality is pretty good.

Drawbacks

It will take some time to get used to the needle threader. Not a big deal, once you get used.

The included softwares are compatible with Windows OS only. So Mac users, please take that into account.

Pros

•    Absolutely stunning features
•    USB connectivity
•    Auto pilot feature
•    Very large embroidery area
•    Included software
•    Sewing and embroidery capability
•    Sturdy

Cons

•    Windows only compatible softwares

Editor Comments

Most people love the extra large embroidery area you get with Singer Futura XL-550. In fact, the larger embroidery area is what makes this machine different from all other competitors in the segment. We have seen some people giving bad reviews for this machine. But after using this machine, we are sure that all those reviews must be because of operator errors, not machine related. All in all, it seems to be a very good value for money product. For some, it may seem expensive, but it is worth the money.

Specifications

FeatureType
TypeSewing & Embroidery Combo
Max Embroidery Area10” x 6”
Built-in Stitches215 Sewing Stitches
Embroidery HoopTwo, 10” x 6” and 4” x 4” along with 18.5" x 11" multihoop ability
Sewing Start/Stop ButtonYes
Speed Control SliderYes
Built-in Embroidery Designs125
Automatic Needle ThreaderYes
Buttonhole Styles6 One-step and 1 Endless
Pattern RotationYes
Top Drop-in BobbinYes
USB ConnectivityYes
Stitch SelectionLCD and Push Button
Adjustable Stitch Length/WidthYes
Built-in MemoryYes
Stitch Width7mm
Programmable Needle Up/DownYes
Built-in Monogramming FontYes, 20
Drop FeedYes
On Board Accessory StorageYes, 2
Work LightYes, 6 LEDs
Warranty25 Year Limited
Extra High Presser Foot LifterYes
Twin Needle CapabilityYes
Automatic Thread CutterYes
Included SoftwareInstallation Software, AutoPunch, HyperFont and Editing
Dedicated Locking Stitch Button (Apart from reverse button)Yes
TensionAutomatic Tension