Kitchen-Aid Artisan or the new Cuisinart blender?
Which is the better investment? I know that the classics keep on giving, but the perks I read on the new Cuisinart (for relatively the same amount of the Kitchenaid) are something. 1000 watts, 7 quart bowl, 12 speeds, digital timer.....all sounds fabulous, but I want to make sure I'm spending my money wisely. I love to bake and lately, I've been baking A LOT, so this is my dream purchase for the year.
I saw both at Linens & Things which has a 20% off coupon. The Artisan was solid steel, while the Cusinart 5.5 was mostly plastic. The Cuisinart was $50 more. I was leaning towards the Artisan, but then my wife tried to remove the bowl, and nearly crashed the mixer. I've since learned that it's a problem. The Cuisinart bowl is bigger and has 2 handles and it's easy to remove. I got the Cuisinart and it's great so far. It has a easy to use timer, and that's needed because most receipies say to mix for 'x' minutes, there's 12 speeds, and the head locks into place. There's good warrantees too.
I don't know about the mechanics of the Cuisinart, but I can tell you that a 7-quart bowl is positively tremendous for a home baker not consistently baking large quantities. Though the beater gets close to the surface of the bowl, it does not touch it, so if you have a large bowl and a small amount of something in the bottom of the bowl, it's a bit hard for the beater to make contact with what's sitting there, say 2 egg yolks and some vanilla for example. I see this even with my 5-quart KitchenAid and moreso with my mother's 6-quart KitchenAid. 1000 watts sounds like a lot to me, especially if you are not using this constantly and for particularly dense batters or doughs. Also, I don't see the big difference between 10 and 12 speeds, though the digital timer sounds convenient, but not enough to warrant the inconvenience of where to store a piece of equipment that is apparently outsized for the typical kitchen. My 15-year old KitchenAid is running strong. You may want to search for some old threads, as there has been some debate on some of the newer ones, though if memory serves, KitchenAid has either made some recent improvements, or at least made good on problems people recently had.
Well I recently bought the Artisan and I haven't been dissappointed. It is great. I have seen the Cuisinart and it looks cool. I've made triple batches of cookies in the Artisan and have had plenty of room and uumph. I did get the plastic splatter guard. I like the title head. Good luck.
i posted this earlier but for some reason it vanished...
you might want to change the title of the post since we're talking about mixers, not blenders.
anyway, i pondered the same question a couple of months ago, and though i often play it safe and go with the tried & true, this time around i took a chance and splurged on the new kid on the block. i love that the cuisinart has more power & additional outlets/connections for attachments...plus, the digital timer & tilting head are great.
beware, however, that it's HUGE. tall, very wide - i think it's bigger than the kitchen aid - and pretty darned heavy. it won't fit in any of my kitchen cabinets, so unfortunately it's stashed on top of my fridge. but hey, at least it's a good-looking machine :)
size issues aside, i'm glad i chose it.
I think that the Cuisinart is actually a rebranded Kenwood (from the UK) based on some reviews that I read about Delonghi and Viking mixers which seem to be the same. I've read that Delonghi uses a plastic transmission while Viking claims theirs is metal. Reviews of both of those seems to indicated that users have mixed experience with either in terms of durability and service (no-one seems to have parts). Maybe Cuisinart will be different.
With kitchenaid (professional model) we've burn't out the transmission and motor like 5 times in the past 2 years and they've replaced it. But then we use it all the time (pastry kitchen).
On a side note we also have a hobart n50 5 qt model and haven't had any problems with it in the 2 years we've had it but it only has 3 speeds and cost 1500 new. That is what I use at home, although I got mine used from amazon.