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Robot Coupe vs Cuisinart vs Others?

I am looking to buy a good food processor. I have a Cuisinart mini-prep, but it is too small and doesn't have all the needed blades. In the past I have used by mother's Robot Coupe from the early 70's, a fantastic machine, still works wonderfully. Unfortunatly, the base models of Robot Coupe now retail for $500+ from what I am finding. What are other high quality food processors out there that are tried and true? I want something that has the quality of a Robot Coupe or the Kitchenaid stand mixers, something that will last the test of time and many recipes . Any suggestions? Thanks all!

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  1. Why not just go with the KA food processor? I've had one for at least the last 3 years and it performs very well.

    We have Robto Coupe at work and they're really heavy duty machines, but a little too much overkill for me at home.

    2 Replies
    1. re: DiningDiva

      Magimix is the version made by Robot Coupe for home use. Find them at William Sonoma and a few other places.

      1. re: SpringRam

        I was not aware of that, thank you. I will look into that one

    2. Robot Coupe is made in France (still is as far as I know), Cuisinart and Kitchen Aid food processors were aslo made in France at one time, no longer. Made in China is what you're going to find on the bottom of the new machines. One of our girls has our old Cuisinart and we've had the kitchen aid for a long time as well. These were good machines when they were made in the EU. I'm going to assume the quality on those has come down as has the quality of the Kitchen Aid mixer now that it is only assembeled in the US. Magimix appears to start at about $350. Not bad really when you can pay $300 for a made in China unit.

      11 Replies
      1. re: mikie

        I have a new Cuisinart Elite (14 cup with 3 nesting bowls). It's an excellent product.with a 20-year motor warranty and 3 years on the whole unit. I don't care where it's made as long as it works well.

        1. re: ferret

          The old CA, DLC-X, 20 cup has performed for me in almost every application it was designed for. The only problem I have is storing all the blades even though I bought the lucite rack. The motor has a higher amp rating than the new production, and it has never faltered or slowed as a result of rapid feeding, etc.

          1. re: ospreycove

            I am a bit less concerned if it is made in China, if it is actually well made. I have the new Kitchen Aid Professional 600 mixer, which very well may be made in China, and it is all metal parts, as the warranty, etc. From what I hear the issue is when there are numerous plastic parts on the heavy use items like that.

            ferret, I will look into the Cuisinart Elite as well. The warranty is nice, and it sounds like you have had good experience with it.

            Thank you all for your feedback. I'm just recently starting to purchase all of my own equipment, if I'm going to spend $300 or so on an appliance, I want to know it will last.

            1. re: elampen

              On appliances made in China, make sure you are comparing it to "like" items. Check the motors and see if they compare in power, usually measured in Amperage/wattage. Some appliances imported from China have a lower power rating than the original U.S. or European made counterparts.

              1. re: ospreycove

                Interestingly, a motor with lower-wattage on input can in some cases offer significantly higher output power. But at a price point around $300, you won't be seeing any of those higher quality motors, which are heavy and use efficient designs.

                A Hobart N50 will run you over $1500, and it's only 325 watts, but weighs 55lbs! Compare that to the 800 declared watts of a Cuisinart, which is a highly rated machine but not in the same power class as the Hobart.

                All other things being equal, I'd keep an eye out for the heaviest motor I could afford.

              2. re: elampen

                If you had any idea about items made in China, you would be much more concerned. There's an old saying, you only have one chance to make a first impression . . . well my first impression of goods made in China isn't very good. There's another saying, perception trumps reality . . . and based on the experiences I've had and the things I've read and heard about on the news, my perception is that quality does not exist in China made goods.

                Because of the business I'm in, I have personal experiences where US companies were having items made in China and they weren't even using the plastic that was specified by the manufacturer. Some of these items involved electrical appliances that required listings with Underwriters Laboratories. Using the correct material, even plastic materials, can be critical to the performance and quality and longevity of a product. Just because a brand has a good reputation doesn't mean the items they have made in China are being made to the companies standards. Plastics in particular are quite specialized, and the use of the wrong plastic or a different supplier can in many cases cause premature failure. Not worth the risk in my opinion.

                As far as your KA mixer, it's "assembeled" in the USA, which by federal regulations means the USA is the point of final assembly and some percentage of the value of the product was manufactured outside the USA, that percentage being high enough that they can no longer claim to be made in the USA. From talking to manufacturers, most likely the motor is coming from China, they have more or less taken over the small motor market.

                1. re: mikie

                  I hear what you are saying, but how would you find an appliance with a motor that is not made in China? Impossible?

                  1. re: sueatmo

                    Not impossible, but I will grant you difficult and getting more difficult all the time. If you want products that are made in the US, you have to demand them. Tell the manufacturer that you're not buying their product because it's not US made, I do it all the time. Sometimes I get a cold shoulder and sometimes I get ". . . we've heard more of that recently . . ."

                    But it's not just motors, take the food processor for example, you have no idea if the plastic bowl is made out of the specified material or not or if it was made from the appropriate grade of that material. Plants in China have a tendency to freelance a bit when it comes to such details. Their trying to make as much money as they can, just like everyone else, so they buy the less expensive product, even though that is not specified. Again, using the food processor bowl as an example, someone mentioned Lexan (r) earlier, that's a Sabic (formerly GE) trademarked plastic, but they are not the only ones that make that plastic and there are a number of different grades, all with different performance charictoristics. Once molded, it's almost impossible to distinguish one grade or brand from another, until it cracks prematurely. I'm not saying everything made in china is that way, but the problem is it happens often enough that you really don't know for sure.

                    1. re: mikie

                      mikie, I think you know that I've expressed similar first-hand manufacturing problems with Chinese-made products at the companies I've worked for. (I won't go into any details here.)

                      I did see this recent brief article on "re-shoring" (bringing manufacturing back to the US, for a variety of reasons), & thought you (& others?) might enjoy it. I think it touches on a lot of salient points that many of us are concerned about. I also think it's "a good omen" for us as consumers.

                      http://www.designworldonline.com/arti...

                      1. re: Eiron

                        Eiron,
                        Thank you for the link, it's very informative and good news for those of us who believe that quality is worth something and that feel the importance of manufacturing jobes in the US. I know of a couple of cases where items were re-shored because of companies off-shore using the wrong materials. The cost of quality can be quite high if you have electrical devices that for example have a UL listing and you don't use the approved material in the manufacturing process.

                        1. re: mikie

                          I bought in 2004 my KitchenAid food processor. I had purchased and gone through perhaps 3-4 Cuisinart food processors for one reason or another.

                          I did quite a lot of research trying to find a fp made in France. The one I bought KFP670 shows on the bottom "Made in France." However, that's not to say that it isn't possible that the motor is not made in France. But still, it does not say "assembled in ..." as so many items do now.

                          It's still working.

        2. I've had a KA food processor for 5 or so years. It performs well for me, although I have noted some cracking in the small bowl. (I have the stacking version with a small and large work bowl.)

          1 Reply
          1. re: sueatmo

            suetamo,

            I have needed assorted parts for my 20+ year old C A and I have had great success with the following "Parts Store", in Miami, they ship very promptly and have a very detailed online catalog. Everything from replacement bowls, interlocks, blades, etc.
            http://www.goodmans.net/?sc=goog&...

          2. Our hand-me-down late 70s French-made CA got pitched a few years back for want of a bowl. It still ran but its second knife was dulling and, again, no chance of a replacement. A French-made KA took its place 7-8 years ago. Very solidly built and no issues to date. Like it over the Chinese-made CA whose bowl had a safety mechanism that was too fiddly and flimsy for almost daily use. Just don't sucker for anything that's not direct-drive.

            1. Cuisinart will do the job for you just as good as a Robot Coupe. Robot Coupe is all plastic parts just like the Cuisinart. You would be suprised how many commercail operations actually use Cuisinart because the dont want to pay $900 for a Robot Coupe for the amigos to break just as quick..Kitchen Aid food processors aren't arent as sturdy as Cuisinart.

              6 Replies
              1. re: MOSFET

                "Kitchen Aid food processors aren't arent as sturdy as Cuisinart."

                What? CA's build quality, especially the work bowls, seems a few pegs south of KA. My French-made KA is tank-like compared to the CA.

                1. re: Kagemusha

                  Both used commercially... Kitchenaids drive stem the blade sits on rounds out..Seen its personally. More than once. I am a kitchenaid fan on everthing else they make over Cuisinart.

                  1. re: MOSFET

                    Jeesh, it's not commercial gear and not built to take that kind of torture.

                    1. re: Kagemusha

                      But thats the point I was getting at. The cuisinarts can take more abuse when used commercially, so....

                      1. re: MOSFET

                        I've had slightly better luck with Robot Coupe in commercial kitchens than with Cuisinarts. Both do well, and the difference may in what we were doing with them. But I believe the original poster was asking about home use, not commerical use. Perhaps I misinterpretted the original post :-)

                        For home use the KA is just fine. I've had both KA and Cuisinart (which lasted *forevever* @ 20 yrs) at home. Right now I've got a KA and it's held up well and does exactly what I need it to do. It doens't get daily, or rigorous use, but for what I ask it to do, I've been happy with it.

                    2. re: MOSFET

                      That just happened to my KA. I'm back to using my old Cuisinart with the broken bowl until I get the Magimix.

                2. Look at Magimix - French made - very solid.

                  15 Replies
                  1. re: Mistral

                    Don't know when or if we'll have to replace the French made KA we have now, but, when and if that time comes, it's worth the extra few dollars for quality and Magimix is what I would get. We don't use it that often, I'm not really worried about wearing out a quality unit, I just question the quality of stuff made in China.

                    1. re: mikie

                      I was given a 70s Cuisinart/Robot Coupe one that was made in France and I was wondering if you can get newer blades that will work on something that old. The original blades are quite pitted. I don't know if the shaft design has changed much. If anyone knows what model blades might be compatible I'd appreciate the info.

                      1. re: keryx

                        keryx,try www. goodmans.net they have a good parts dept.

                        www.goodmans.net

                        1. re: keryx

                          keryx, contact me at e-mail address in my profile. I have lots of pieces for the '70s 7-cup Cuisinart. You can have them for the cost of shipping.

                          1. re: Jay F

                            Hi Jay, I saw your reply to keryx, and was wondering if you had a piece that I'm needing. I have a Cuisinart made by Robot Coupe, made in france. On the bottom it says Josef Schreyogg, type Allpress RC1. I believe I got this in the late 60's. I have come to love this machine and 2 years ago the plastic spline that the metal blade is on broke. I haven't been able to throw the machine out, as it has been such a good one. Do you think you would have the piece that would fit this.

                            1. re: crazy canuck

                              Hi, Canuck - I'm not sure what a spline is, but if it's either of these two, I have an extra of the second, but not of the first. Hope this helps.

                               
                               
                              1. re: Jay F

                                Hi Jay, That's exactly what I'm looking for, the one with the blade on it. Sorry for my terrible description, but not sure of the names. The one with the blade on it has a hard white plastic inside that fits over the base of the machine and the plastic on that has broken. so, you wouldn't be able to help me? Any ideas where I might be able to get this?

                                1. re: crazy canuck

                                  Sorry, CC. I broke one just last year trying to make breadcrumbs. That plastic part inside is exactly what broke.

                                  What you're looking for is the knife blade to go with one of these models: Cuisinart DLC 10, CFP 9, CFP 5, CFP 5A. I see a few things on eBay right now.

                                  1. re: Jay F

                                    Thanks for the info Jay. Had I realized that one day I would need another blade, I would have purchased an extra. I will try on ebay some of these that you gave me. I know one lady thought she had the exact blade, but it was just a tiny smidgeon too wide and cut into her bowl. If you ever see one on there, please let me know(if you can remember me!) I just can't let this machine go!!!!

                                    1. re: crazy canuck

                                      Canuck - just a thought regarding a replacement for your food processor blade - if you can get one that is just a tiny bit too wide it is possible to grind off a touch off the tip of each blade. Done carefully, the balance of the blade should be fine. You might be able to do it yourself. I seem to recall also that there is a place that sharpens these blades somewhere - I'm sure they could also adapt a blade like that...

                                      "know one lady thought she had the exact blade, but it was just a tiny smidgeon too wide and cut into her bowl. If you ever see one on there, please let me know(if you can remember me!) I just can't let this machine go!!!!"

                                      1. re: Harryr

                                        Thanks for that tip Harryr, my son is an excellent fixer and does sheet metal too, so that's an option.

                                        1. re: Jay F

                                          Thanks so much Jay. There is a very nice set on there, but unfortunately there is everything but the chopper blade. I have contacted 2 of the other sellers to make sure theirs will fit on my machine. I have a 'D' on mine that has to fit over the machine shaft(like it's a round circle, but has one side that's flat) so want to make sure it fits. But you did say it was one of the ones that would work and it sounds like you know your machines. The reason I was making sure is because the DLC 10 set that is for sale on ebay had a lot of other attachments that mine don't have. I have never seen that attachment that apparently you have to have to put the slicers and stuff on. I have a shredder but it has it's on spindle attached to it without having that other piece to attach it to. In other words mine is all one piece. I have hope now that I'll be able to get my machine back. Thanks so much.

                                          1. re: Jay F

                                            Hi Jay,
                                            I got a Cuisinart off of ebay. It's very close to my old Robot Coupe, and it does have the metal chopping blade that you mentioned it's a DLC 10 and it fits perfectly. So, the machine and all the attachments were practically brand new, only 27.00 and on top of all that I got my blade. I never would have known where to go or what to get without your tips. Thank you so much!

                        2. I just replaced my KA food processor with the new Cuisinart Elite ( I've owned previous Cuisinart models) and it really is top of the line IMO.

                          12 Replies
                          1. re: rasputina

                            I recently bought the magimix and absolutely love it! Bowls just drop in place with no locking, easy to clean, powerful, intuitive. The clincher for me was when a salesperson at the store told me that they hate the new cuisinart because food particles collect under the seal and are impossible to get out. This is one powerful machine, and beautiful to boot!

                            1. re: islestyle

                              "food particles collect under the seal and are impossible to get out"

                              That's simply not the case. Sure, if you use the Cuisinart and then wait a day or two to clean it then you'll have to scrub a little. For the rest of us, a quick rinse after use is very effective at cleaning the seal. "Impossible" is a great exaggeration in even the worst of cases.

                              1. re: ferret

                                If you go to Williams Sonoma and read their reviews on the Cuisinart, you will note the frustration of people unable to get it clean, and those that returned them for just that reason.

                                1. re: islestyle

                                  And I'm telling you that as an owner, it's not the case. I've been extremely satisfied with this model and truly don't understand why anyone would complain about the seal being difficult to clean. It's an accordion-pleat but it's very flexible and a quick rinse is really all it takes. As far as reviews go, there are people who love -- and people who hate -- nearly any item you can point to.

                                  1. re: ferret

                                    ferret ~ I am truly happy that you are happy with your Cuisinart, just as I am thrilled with my Magimix. I simply stated that after much research, I came across several complaints about the seal on the Cuisinart - even from one owner who said she couldn't even get it clean with a toothbrush. I have no reason to think these people would lie, and their comments are documented. Perhaps they have fixed the problem.
                                    I have owned a Kitchen Aid and several Cuisinarts in the past, and the bottom line is, for me, I find the Magimix 5200XL the best processor of all. You seem to be so defensive of a machine you purchased, and my intent was just to contribute to an open forum discussion to share my experience with the intent of being helpful to others. As an aside, in my opinion, China owns far too much of America as is, and I was delighted to toss out my made in China Cuisinart for a food processor that was not.

                                    1. re: islestyle

                                      Not defensive, just perplexed. When you post that someone at W-S told you it's "impossible to clean" that's a misstatement that I wouldn't want potential buyers to rely on. I'm also not the only person that I know with one of these and it's genuinely not an issue.

                                      1. re: ferret

                                        ferret - the statement came from a salesperson who demonstrates both machines. The exact statement was, "Actually, we hate the cuisinart, because it is impossible to clean." You can find similar comments on Amazon, Chefs and WS. You might want to read the reviews. Perhaps you can tell the people with that complaint, how to clean theirs as you clean yours. I would suggest however, that you don't infer that they leave food on their processors for days, before cleaning.)
                                        Since I was the client, I sincerely appreciated this person's candor. I am pleased that you do not have an issue with yours! As I said in my earlier post, perhaps Cuisinart has fixed the problem. Look at it this way ~ we are both delighted with our choices!

                                        1. re: islestyle

                                          I "might want to read the reviews"? Because my real-life experience doesn't count? Okey-dokey. And I didn't infer they left food on for days, I implied it.

                                          1. re: ferret

                                            ferret, just to say, the CuisineArt FP16DCU (Elite) is very very very difficult to clean, check out the thread I just started here it explains fully: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/796825

                                            It's been find for preparing veg and everything like that but try a seed and nut mix, you'll have poppy seeds and little food particles stuck in the seal and upper part of the lid and if it's stuck anything like mine were, you won't be able to clean it fully I'm afraid :(

                                            1. re: cormie

                                              Thanks, but I don't really need to read your thread. I'm fairly meticulous with my machine and I've yet to experience a situation where it's been "very very difficult" to clean.

                                              1. re: ferret

                                                No problem :) I've explained in the thread I linked to how it's been a problem for me, but perhaps you don't use it with such ingredients as I do etc so each to their own, besides the cleaning, the lack of a variable speed option (which only really expensive machines seem to have) and the fact the motor went kaput on me, it was a powerful machine when I used it. I'm just hoping the Dualit XL1500 lives up to it and doesn't have the same flaws it has. Of course, after spending so much on it myself, £274 or something like that, I didn't want to find faults in it. I've no attachment to the company and didn't want to be put in the position I was, but when it was out of my hands and I had a choice, brand new machine CA Elite to replace the broken one, or credit to use for something else, I chose the credit to buy the Dualit XL1500 which is about £20 cheaper, but I'm just hoping that's because they aren't as well known a processor manufacturer as CA but the unit surpasses the CA. Although I think I'd have to get on the manufacturers design team to be truly satisfied ;)

                              2. re: islestyle

                                Is there a chamber in the handle of the bowl of the Magimix that allows dirty water to collect? I hated that about my KA!

                            2. I realize this gets slightly off topic, but: around 10 years ago, I won a small KitchenAid processor (5-cups I think) as a prize. It's been awesome--powerful, purring motor. Weighs a ton for it's size.

                              Anyway, this thread prompted me to look under it, and it's a Made in France model. Does anyone know if I can find a replacement bowl and some other accessories like that?

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: Bada Bing

                                I would try the KitchenAid site for replacements & accessories....perhaps Ebay also. It would be well worth trying to find, as KitchenAid is now made in China, so hold on to that KA! Might try Craig's list, too. Good Luck!

                                1. re: Bada Bing

                                  That's probably the same one we have had for a very long time as ours too is smallish and made in France. If you find a place to get parts please post as we could use a few new pieces as well. New blade and shaft for the slicing operation.

                                  1. re: Bada Bing

                                    I have had good luck on parts with
                                    www.goodmans.net

                                    they have a good parts dept and usually ship same day, good luck.

                                  2. Hey Islestyle! Which model did you get. I'm comparison shopping and am seriously considering a magimix.. Did you get it at WS? Thanks

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: ctscra

                                      ctscra ~ I got the Magimix 5200XL at WS, and it's a gem! I don't think you will regret getting one, and WS has a super return policy. Best of luck on your final decision:)

                                      1. re: ctscra

                                        The 5200xl is only available to US consumers from WS and is worth every penny! I concurrent that it is phenominal! Plus super easy to clean and use. WS even is giving out the expansion blades away with this model currently. For me, miles above my moms china made cuisinart. Which is annoying to use, and clean in comparison.
                                        The super large insertion tube is an extreme time saver for shredding lettuce, grating whole blocks of cheese, slicing perfect potatoes....

                                      2. Anyone care to put their input and experience in a reply on this thread please? :)

                                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/796825

                                        1. I bought the Magimix made by Robot Coupe, at Williams Sonoma. Theirs is made in France, rather than China. I love this machine! Unlike the Cuisinart that traps food, this is ultra easy to clean and to work with. A powerful, beautiful machine ~ I tossed my Cuisinart into the trash with glee.

                                          1 Reply
                                          1. re: islestyle

                                            Unfortunately the Magimix isn't available from the UKjuicers website as I explain in my query thread here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/796825

                                            I had a quick look and it doesn't seem to address the problems I've had with the CuisinArt other than it may be easier to clean. I think I'll take a gamble with the Dualit XL1500 having not read any reviews on it yet (I don't believe it's out very long) and hope for the best. I think it will have to do until there's a capable machine with simple additions of a scraper arm and variable speeds.

                                          2. My mom gave me her dlc-x from 1982. Better than anything else. It was the pro model back then now it is the dlc-xpn. It retails for 799 but worth it. The attachment setup for a robo is stupid. one part breaks you need to get a new plastic housing if you have the r-2. The newer ones are different but you are never gonna need the strength of it. Plus if you are gonna resell it later, when peeps see robo coup, they arent gonna pay the money generally cause they dont know what it is.
                                            Go with the Champ, Cuisinarts made in Japan!!!!

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: flip2k

                                              I agree with the DLC-X. I am not real fond of the somewhat awkward safety feature regarding the feed tube and pusher but one gets used to it. It is 20 cup and powerful.

                                            2. Used Robot Coupe and the better Cuisinart machines (i.e., the ones not made in China) are for sale at excellent prices, and often in like-new condition, on eBay and Etsy. I expect to buy one that way soon. These machines can last semi-forever. I'll probably go with Cuisinart ... only because accessories for Robot Coupe machines seem less abundant.

                                              1. Actually have THREE Cuisinart fp's in my house today!

                                                First was a gift to self several years ago... a basic model... under $100, I'm sure.

                                                Then I found another at a THRIFT SHOP for $8! First thought was extra bowl. It ended up to be a step UP from first one.

                                                Within last 2 weeks found ANOTHER at SAME thrift shop!! AGAIN, only $8, but this one came with NINE additional blades for slicing, shredding, julienne, and french fries... in a snazzy holder. Again, first thought was extra bowl... and again it was a step up from what I have... a DLC-7 SuperPro... think 14 cup capacity.

                                                I don't use the FP everyday but definitely worth the space it takes on kitchen rack!

                                                1. My Cuisinart Elite 16 Cup broke completely six months after I paid $250 for it. Which is why I'm in the market for another one.

                                                  My Cuisinart was still under warranty but the company refused to replace it. They want to fix it, and I pay shipping in both directions an no telling how long it will take. I realized that machine will just cause me too much frustration…I was able to have the original vendor give me a refund (simply because they are awesome, not because they have to after so much time!) and I'm in the market for a better machine.

                                                  1. Magimix is made by Robot Coupe, and available at a more reasonable price. You can buy it through Williams Sonoma, or you can get a factory reconditioned model from The Gourmet Depot Co for a more reasonable price.

                                                    I have a Magimix 5200XL, and I am extremely happy with it. I make a lot of bread, and it handles even dense, large loaves with ease. I made up a large bowl of hummus the other day, and I use it all the time for pureeing things and making emulsions.

                                                    3 Replies
                                                    1. re: Symmetry

                                                      And how many cups does your Magimix5200XL hold?

                                                      1. re: crazy canuck

                                                        16, 10, and 6, I think? It came with three containers. I'm certain the biggest is 16, but otherwise that's just from memory.

                                                    2. I've had to replace the top part (pusher sleeve assembly) of the bowl assembly twice on my Cuisinart DLC-7. Poor design! Otherwise it works fine.