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Un-impressed with Vitamix

So I finally bought a Vitamix 5200 and I have to say, I guess I was expecting a lot more for 500 dollars.

1. The container sits loose on the base, like it's going to fly off if I don't hold the container down from the top (I called Vitamix and they claim this is "normal"). It's just bizarre that you have this extremely powerful blender with blades going at 100mph or whatever and the container is loose and moving side to side while it's on.

2. I made a triple berry (blueberry, strawberry, blackberry) smoothie and the Vitamix did NOT pulverize the berry seeds. Are you kidding me? For 500 dollars I want you to pulverize diamonds if it put them in there!

3. It does blend better than your standard $100 blender at Macy's but I'm not sure 400 dollars more better. The controls don't even have auto-shutoff settings for "smoothie," "shake," etc.

Is the Blendtec better at pulverizing than the Vitamix? Is it also sturdier? Does it have settings for foods, drinks etc? Maybe I bought the wrong Vitamix. I dunno. I am disappointed.

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  1. There are some comparisons to Blendtec among the Amazon comments for the Vitamix 5200, the vast majority of which are rave reviews.

    1. We got a Vitamix as a hand-me-down from a family friend who wanted something that would fit under her cabinets. While I am happy with the $100 price tag, I wouldn't be willing to spend $400 on one. The blender that it replaced, a chrome and avocado osterizer, which was beginning to smell just the littlest bit like burning electricity when it ran, worked just as well. The main benefit to the vitamix is that you don't have to disassemble the pitcher portion to clean it.

      My in-laws have a blendtec, and it's so complicated, I find it a little intimidating to use (ridiculous, I know), but the vitamix is so simple (a couple big switches and a dial) that I much prefer using the vitamix to the blendtec. And I haven't noticed a difference in function between the two.

      11 Replies
      1. re: LaureltQ

        I have a Blendtec and once you own one the control buttons become easy. we've had ours since 2007 and works like brand new. it's strong and sturdy but you do have to hold the top to ensure nothing flies out. I once got lazy and the top came off. I've made so many things in our Blendtec however, there are a few things that have been fails and perhaps it's just the nature or the limitations of a blender or I was doing something wrong. First, we tried to make cashew butter. it just never emulsified and was crumbly and clumpy. i suppose I should have added some oil. The other fail was ice cream and the one ingredient banana ice cream. The "ice cream" was sort of like a milkshake. it never became "ice cream" and when I put it in the freezer it just came out cold and hard. Banana ice cream was a tough one too. supposedly you're supposed to be able to put a frozen banana in a blender and it comes out like ice cream. well, mine came out like frozen crumbly banana pieces. I emulsified it with some coconut milk and it was again like a milkshake.

        1. re: LaureltQ

          I find it interesting that you find the Blendtec complicated. I've always found it easy, but I'm so accustomed to it that the Vitamix looks too foreign and 'intimidating' to me (too minimalist I think?).

          1. re: Tovflu

            i'm with tovflu here - i consider myself more of a minimalist. i've checked out the latest vitamix and THOSE buttons seem complicated to me! why do you need a "wash" button?? just turn the thing on… why do you need a smoothie vs. cold desserts button? just turn the thing on… the blendtec is completely user friendly (the pre-programmed cycles make sense to me!), seems smaller overall, the lid is easier to deal with (just because it's lighter weight), and is a great machine. plus, mine has a counter on it: i've owned it 6 months: we've turned it on over 900 times. that means, counting wash cycle, we've used it over 450 times - making it cost effective in my mind. I never realized how much we would use our high speed blender!

            on the plus side for vitamix: i DO love the big new container (it is wider at the base than my blendtec, but i think if i got the wild side jar it would be about the same).

            1. re: rmarisco

              Interesting. I haven't seen some of the newer Vitamix models. My Vita-Prep 3 has:

              ON/OFF switch
              HI/VARIABLE switch
              Variable speed dial

              That's it and that's the way I like it.

              1. re: cacio e pepe

                Cacio, do you find that your Prep 3 sounds "rough" or kinda choppy when running on variable speed in the ~3 - 5 range?

                1. re: MacGuffin

                  Mine doesn't seem like it holds a constant speed at those settings. It'll go up and down, almost like it's pulsing, but doesn't sound as though it's coming apart.

                  1. re: LaureltQ

                    I called technical support in the commercial division (they're the last word in these matters; I only posted because it was late Friday). It's apparently quite normal, especially for an empty container or running the base without the container. Interestingly, for comparison's sake, I tested my 5000. Same thing, just not as loud.

                  2. re: MacGuffin

                    It does. Nothing drastic, but I do notice it. Seems a little like a muscle car engine idling. When you open it up more it's much smoother. Same for you?

                    1. re: cacio e pepe

                      My blade runs incredibly smooth.

                      That doesn't mean the contents don't "bounce" a bit and give a sound that could be confused for the blade speeding up & slowing down...but that's exactly what that sound is in my unit...just the contents bouncing around. Speed up or slow down the blade and it forms a perfect vortex.

                      1. re: JayL

                        "That doesn't mean the contents don't "bounce" a bit"

                        My concern was performance with an empty container or no container at all. I was testing a new machine prior to actually using it and so was running it empty. The "roughness" isn't something one would notice if the container is loaded. Sorry I didn't make that clear when I posted.

                      2. re: cacio e pepe

                        Ditto. And as I said, same thing with my old 5000, just quieter. I ran across a deal too good to pass up for the Prep 3 and rather than put $100 into my 5000 (I didn't notice the blade assembly had loosened and the bearings are stripping--totally my fault for not checking), I bought this one, although not without misgivings (i.e. the warranty). Still, the tech support guy I spoke to was very pleasant and registered my blender as well (thank goodness it wasn't hot at that price). It's a lot louder than my 5000 and frankly, I don't notice any difference in performance or results. I'll eventually trade in the 5000 on a "next generation" model, probably a refurb.

            2. to add to your list:
              imho, if i'm spending that much money, i want a GLASS blender jar.

              1) i've become less trusting about the safety of plastic
              2) glass jars go through the "heated wash" cycle of my dishwasher perfectly, whereas plastic ones don't. why do i want to spend so much in order to do more dishes by hand?
              3) visually, all the plastic jars get cloudy, and i don't like the idea of a very costly item that looks "old" and cloudy

              7 Replies
              1. re: westsidegal

                I'm pretty happy with my Vitamix, but I agree with westsidegal about the plastic blender jars. Mine are getting cloudy. They also dry with spots on them, unless you dry every nook and cranny by hand. Glass would have been so much better.

                I have not found the jars particularly easy to clean, especially after blending fresh herbs and oil together. If the blade needs to be wiped to remove residue, it's a bit awkward, not to mention dangerous, to plunge your hand down deep into the jar with a cloth.

                I too had trouble achieving anything approaching peanut butter, without having to add oil and eventually hot water to the peanuts in the jar. The salesperson insisted that the wet items jar was the appropriate jar, but considering the difficulties I had, I'm wondering if I might have fared better using the dry items jar, which I've never used, by the way. Short of grinding grain into flour, I'm not sure why I would have need for it.

                1. re: 1sweetpea

                  RE: making peanut butter. The salesperson was right--the dry jar is best for nut butters. There are two things that will make nut butters easier:
                  1) using enough nuts (ideally 3 cups for narrow VM containers, 4 for the wide one)

                  2) it's easier with roasted nuts.

                  You'll most likely have to use the tamper, but you shouldn't need to add oil or water.

                  1. re: artiek

                    I too have trouble making nut butter in my 750, but I think i is because I only make a small amount - I cannot be trusted having peanut butter in the fridge… no self control. So I make just enough for one or two sandwiches, plus a spoonful, or two, to tide me over until I can make my sandwich.

                    I have a heck of a time getting it all out and off of the blades. A VM rep told me to make a smoothie right after I make the nut butter… it doesn't take it all out, but sure makes a difference, plus I get a nut taste in my smoothie.

                    1. re: Canthespam

                      Have you considered getting a 32-oz container? A bit of added cost, but it will make your small batches of peanut butter much easier....

                      1. re: artiek

                        I have only made it in my 32 oz container, my bad for not mentioning that. - The 32 oz is the one I use daily for my smoothies and smaller things. It is really really hard to scoop out the peanut butter … very narrow on the bottom. I have never made a big batch, so I haven't used the 64 oz. In fact, I rarely use the 64 oz except for soups etc..

                  2. re: 1sweetpea

                    I just got a Pro 750 and I've had no problems with making nut butters (peanut, cashew, almond, and tahini) or with cleanup afterward. Filling the jar with warm water a couple drops of dish soap and running on high for a minute has taken care of cleaning the blades and the inside of the jar. A quick wipe around the rim and the outside with a soapy rag and a rinse and the jar is clean.

                    1. re: cstefan206

                      Try my friend Lea Ann's trick and make a smoothie in the jar before cleaning it.

                2. I think this just isn't the product for you. You can spend all the money in the world, but if it's on something that isn't meeting your needs then it's not the right purchase.

                  You have to remember that the Vitamix is a product for the food industry. Yes, they've had a presence in the home market and are expanding their line to increase consumer appeal, but they are mindful of keeping that "professional" reputation.

                  They don't have a "smoothie," "shake" or other settings because it's not useful in the professional kitchen. The 6000 line has a timer, but that comes at the expense being into dial in the speed of the blades.

                  I kind of have to laugh at the suggestion that the Vitamix isn't sturdy. I've got a 3 HP engine in mine that can run several hours a day for years. I can't think of any appliance that I own that is sturdier. The container does lock in once the coupling mechanism locks into the drive socket. The way that drive socket delivers power to the container is also why a glass jar for a Vitamix is currently a challenge to design safely. I do prefer glass, but, as with my Cuisinart, I'm fine with the plastic here.

                  Blackberry seeds floating in a smoothie are a tough get for any blender. The Vitamix will eventually break them down, but it'll turn your ice cold smoothie into soup before that happens, I think. I think this is an unrealistic expectation of any blender.

                  In the end, the Vitamix doesn't seem like the choice for you. I say return that sucker and use the $$$ to get a blender at 1/5 the price. Get something that works for you.

                  Me, I adore my Vitamix. I will be very surprised if I ever need to buy another blender again.

                  6 Replies
                  1. re: cacio e pepe

                    Seconding the idea that maybe this just isn't the product for you. I feel as though your expectations were...a bit high. Three berries with the smallest seeds, you're bound to get some seeds that haven't been totally demolished (unless you plan on standing there all day running the thing)...

                    I have a Blendtec and adore it but from your post I suspect you won't be much happier with it. I feel like mine sits stable on the base, but maybe I'm not interpreting that right (judging by artiek's post). It blends pretty much everything I throw at it, including things I don't intend to, like when I accidentally left a pit in a date I tried to blend :( ( It has also tolerated a lot of abuse without having any issues *knock on wood*). If my Blendtec ever died on me, I would happily buy another, even at the admittedly crazy (for my budget) price, but it is still just a blender and you have to look at it within that context.

                    1. re: cacio e pepe

                      "You have to remember that the Vitamix is a product for the food industry."

                      Vitamix produced home-use blenders exclusively long before it started (successfully) manufacturing blenders for commercial use. And you're right--glass is a major safety hazard for a machine this powerful. If you catch "Papa" Barnard's infomercial, he demonstrates why, very early in the game, the company went from glass to stainless steel: http://vimeo.com/23665875 (this is really cute, BTW).

                      1. re: MacGuffin

                        "oh mother, mother, mother..."

                        this man was amazing! what a preacher!!!! i wonder what happened to him?
                        also, i had no idea vitamix had been around for so long.

                        that video is great - it should be all over the internet! it needs to go viral. thanks for the link - i loved it!

                        1. re: rmarisco

                          " i wonder what happened to him?"

                          He died. :)
                          Seriously, isn't he WONDERFUL? I don't know why the link for this is broken on the company's site. He's obviously passionate about his product and it's a family business, still in the same family. I think his great-granddaughter is CEO at present. And I just found this (something of which I was unaware): http://www.dmnews.com/vita-mix-co-fou... . This lady would've been "Papa's" daughter-in-law.

                        2. re: MacGuffin

                          I just watched this video - thanks for the link! "You are what you eat." I LOVE that this guy was making smoothies in the 1950's!!

                          I look at my Vitamix and think "man, I don't have the Bakelite handle!!" LOL.

                          I wonder if any of these old machines are still around.

                          1. re: breadchick

                            He really was a visionary, wasn't he? I'll bet his kids and grandkids adored him.

                            I've seen some pretty old ones on eBay. Not unpredictably, they still run fine. My 4000 was at least 12 years old when I traded up to a 5000, and it ran as well as the first day it arrived.

                      2. Many (most?) first time users are unsettled by the way the container sits on the base, but it really is perfectly stable. Actually more stable than a Blendtec, although stability isn't really a problem with any of these blenders.

                        I have yet to see (or hear of) any blender capable of completely liquifying blackberry seeds.

                        If you want auto-shutoff settings you could consider exchanging for the 6300/Pro 500, which are currently a steal of a deal if you look at the reconditioned units.

                        1. Well I looked up the 6300 and that model at least has 3 auto shutoff settings. I think the point I was trying to make is that for 500 dollars the Vitamix is underwhelming in terms of build and features. Yes it's powerful. That's about it. I was expecting a lot more for the price. At least the 6300 has 3 settings, which to me should be standard on the base model (5200).

                          The loose container at the base IMHO is just shabby engineering.

                          35 Replies
                          1. re: helena143

                            As someone has previously mentioned, the vitamix/vitaprep was originally made for professional kitchens. It's like buying an f1 car and driving it to work, it will be more fast and more powerful, but you might be surprised to find it doesn't have a stereo or air conditioning.

                            The base is sturdy enough, its never been a problem in any restaurant I have worked in. It is built so I can throw the container on the base extremely fast and not have to worry about lining up a precise fitting base. It is purpose driven, and I can just as easily rip it off quickly to throw in the wash.

                            A glass container in a restaurant would break the first day they used the machine. The containers are dropped, they are knocked over, they are thrown across the room to the dish pit.

                            The vitamix was never built to have features, you pay $500 for a blender that is one of the strongest on the market and will never need to be replaced, ever. I have worked in restaurants that abuse the machines, use them hundreds of times a day, drop the machine, submerge the machine, drop the container, accidentally stick a wooden spoon into the blades because the tamper was missing, and much more, and have never seen a machine break, let alone even need to be serviced.

                            If you want features that it doesn't have, then maybe it isn't the blender for you, but if you buy a feature ridden machine for $100 and replace it 5 times in your life your vitamix would still be working.

                            I am sure it will eventually have all the bells and whistles a home user wants, but the more fiddly features there are, the more there is to break.

                            1. re: TeRReT

                              That is great to hear. But Your standard home cook doesn't know when to stop blending a smoothie. Yes u could set a timer but that is a pain in the ass. And if you don't stop these blenders in time, they can HEAT your ingredients. Hence the reason all the more to have settings on these machines. Even the Starbucks vitamix machines have auto shutoff settings.

                              I think the 6300 is what I need. Do I want to pay more for it? No. Do 3 settings deserve 150 dollars, hell no. But since I am picky about my blended foods I guess I will have to settle for the vitamix since there's no other option. Apparently the blendtecs come with settings but my research tells me those machines have motor/blade issues more frequently.

                              1. re: helena143

                                Meh. I think you're wasting your time and money. I'd bail from the whole Vitamix line as they just aren't for you.

                                The f1 analogy is perfect. You just don't need that power and you do need the features. I think something like a Breville might be your bag.

                                I can't think of a bigger waste of a Vitamix than to relegate it to smoothie-maker. That's not a knock against you or the product that you need, at all. But I think it's best to have a clear idea of what you want a product to do. The Vitamix is overkill in many areas and fails you in others. The 6300 will just be another disappointment.

                                I think your disappointment lies in your insistence that you know what the product should be instead of what it is. The fact that you paid $500 for it is on you. You chose to buy a machine that doesn't have the features you want and does have features you don't care about.

                                And I mean no offense with this, but if you're not sure when a smoothie is done then the Vitamix is going to require way too much skill to use. How will you know when your soup is pureed? How could you know when your salsa has just the right consistency? How can you tell that your sauce has emulsified?

                                1. re: cacio e pepe

                                  I'm confused. So Vitamix doesn't stop automatically? I also think the difference bet a Vitamix and a Blendtec is like a difference between a Honda and a Toyota if you get my drift.

                                  1. re: trolley

                                    I'm not sure I do get your drift. Are you saying it's six of this, half a dozen of the other? If so, I'd pretty much agree. If someone isn't happy with a Vitamix, then they probably aren't going to be happy with a Blendtec. But what do I know? I think the Vitamix is the pinnacle of what a blender should be.

                                    As to the Vitamix shutting off automatically: no, most models don't do that unless the motor is overheating. Most Vitamix machines need to be turned on and off. I can't fathom the use of a timer.

                                    I will say this thread reminds me of those who complain that a $200+ knife should never need sharpening. For that price, it should be able to cut through a moose femur, then make paper-thin slices from an over-ripe tomato, and never need to be sharpened ever! And it should be able to go in the dishwasher. There's just a disconnect here I don't understand.

                                    1. re: cacio e pepe

                                      "Are you saying it's six of this, half a dozen of the other?" -Yes, pretty much. A friend has a vitamix and I have a Blendtec. They both pretty much seem to have similar results. However, my Blendtec does have different speeds and will auto shut.

                                      1. re: trolley

                                        Gotcha! I haven't used a Blendtec, but that's been my impression, too. I have the VitaPrep 3 and it does have a dial for variable speed. Now that's a feature I would miss dearly.

                                        1. re: trolley

                                          I purchased a blend tec prior to going with a Vitamix because i liked its settings and containers better. The plastic bearing shredded into my for twice and i wasn't even making soup. I have had my vitamix a couple years now and love it. I have realized i need the commercial modal because of my use but until blend tec changes from the plastic bearing, hands down the vitamix will be a class above.

                                          1. re: lw4469

                                            I'm no fan of Blendtec but I'm really surprised that they use plastic bearings.

                                            1. re: lw4469

                                              Ours is still running very well with weekly use. Nothing has ever broken. Have you ever considered that you got a defective one? Lemons can happen with anything that's a machine.

                                      2. re: cacio e pepe

                                        Let me tell you, I know exactly how every blender works. Just ask me. I have spent the past year buying and returning blender after blender. Before I bought the Vitamix I went right down the line of every list of "recommended blenders" by Consumer Reports, Cook's Illustrated, every cooking magazine and kitchen appliance website known to mankind, and I can tell you that no Breville (been there tried that) no Oster (been there tried that) no Ninja (been there tried that) no other blender out there has the power of a Vitamix or blends as powerfully as a Vitamix. [NOTE: I HAVE NOT TRIED BLENDTEC due 2 poor reviews.]

                                        However. Contrary to popular opinion, the Vitamix is NOT PERFECT for all the reasons I listed above. It doesn't have settings, it doesn't blend all seeds/items, it doesn't sit securely on the base.

                                        In addition, there is a HUGE difference between needing an auto shutoff for a COLD or FROZEN food and a sauce/soup/etc. Like I said before, if you allow the Vitamix to blend your cold or frozen food too long, it begins to heat the beverage and essentially ruin it. I can't imagine that blending a soup too long would ruin it.

                                        1. re: helena143

                                          I think we just don't understand your needs. It's not going to take a cold Smoothie and make a hot soup out of it in a matter of seconds, it would take a substantial amount of time.

                                          I think we just don't understand your needs in a blender, maybe a future model with the same price point will offer these features but I suspect for many people this is not a deal breaker.

                                          Many people, myself included, babysit the blender and turn it off when my product is blended how I want it and would not have much use for a timer or autoshutoff, and am happy to not have to pay for extra features I wont use.

                                          1. re: TeRReT

                                            For 500 dollars, you shouldn't have to babysit the blender.

                                            Also, according to the Vitamix website, "Any food left in the blender longer than 3 minutes begins to heat."

                                            1. re: helena143

                                              But you don't have to babysit it. the container will never fly off. Just flip the switch and it shuts off.

                                              If you want different things that the Vitamix doesn't do, that's fine, but that doesn't mean it's a bad product. I personally love it, haven gone through several blenders over the decades, it is the easiest to use and clean. It's just not the right one for you.

                                              1. re: helena143

                                                I have a cooktop that cost more but I have to adjust the flame and turn it off when my dish Is done

                                                You would think I shouldn't have to "babysit" it too

                                                1. re: helena143

                                                  I babysit it so I can get food to my desired smoothness and blend rather than the smoothness and blend a timer wants.

                                                  3 minutes is a long time to blend something that you arent trying to heat, and beginning to heat doesn't mean blending ice starts to boil after 3 minutes.

                                                  I am sorry it doesnt have all the features you want, but there was no misrepresentation by vitamix with what you get for that money.

                                              2. re: helena143

                                                I have a Vitmix. I know the Vitamix.
                                                The Vitamix isn't perfect FOR YOU. It actually is for me. I don't want an auto shut-off. I can't imagine the value of it, despite you claiming that it's important. I would literally never use it, even if I did make smoothies.

                                                You judge that the Vitamix, for $500, shouldn't need to be watched. But then you claim that the power of the blender is unparalleled. Many of us are confused by this assertion. You're paying for the power, the strength of the container, the ease of putting the container on and off, the durability of the unit.

                                                Perhaps I'm just confused by the thread. I was assuming you we're looking for a blender that would suit your needs, but it seems as though you're offering a PSA that the Vitamix doesn't have features that it never claims to have. Color me confused, but I hope you have happier blending in your future.

                                                1. re: cacio e pepe

                                                  The Vitamix 5200 IS the most powerful blender I've ever used (not tried the Blendtec). But power is not everything. For 500 dollars or more I expect the blender to be perfect in every way (extreme power, a few basic recipe settings, etc.). So do a lot of other people who have returned these Vitamix blenders. I expected the Vitamix to finally end my search for the perfect blender. A blender that is powerful yet common sensical, a blender that would be perfect for a restaurant cook OR FOR A HOME COOK.

                                                  Despite the claims of chefs, magazines, websites, so-called experts, this blender is NOT perfect for MOST people (defined as: home cooks, your average schmuck making a smoothie). Cacio e pepe: You are not MOST people.

                                                  MOST people who buy this blender will be cooking at home where they will not be interested in having a container you can easily throw across the room. Most people will be home cooks who will be getting up at 5 AM to make a smoothie while they are still half asleep and wow wouldn't a smoothie setting be REALLY nice right then (you need auto shutoff due to the power of the blender).

                                                  I would much rather have smoothie shutoff settings than a blender I can throw, drive over, submerge, have my dog chew up, etc.

                                                  So I think the only way to resolve my issue is to buy the 6300, so I can have BOTH the power and settings I need. And of course I guess I will have to live with berry seeds in my drinks and a wobbly container.

                                                  1. re: helena143

                                                    You are also not most people.

                                                    I think what most of us who are quite happy with our Vitamix are perplexed by is that every design "flaw" you mention has a very specific reason for existing. So we're trying to point these things out in the name of being helpful.

                                                    1. The "wobbly" container. Well, it isn't. It doesn't lock into place, but it isn't wobbly by any means. The point of that design is ease of use and difficulty of misuse. By simply placing the container on the base, you've got everything where it needs to be. Now the 3HP engine can crank without damaging anything due to misalignment. Done blending? Simply lift the container off the base. No twisting. No lining up of threads. No orienting the container. It's so damn easy to use because of that very feature which you are complaining about.

                                                    2. No timer option. Well, the truth is, most cooks, even the home cooks you give zero credit to, can tell when something is blended to their liking. I know when a smoothie is done and so does everyone else out there with eyes. And frankly, why would I trust a timer over my own eyes? Now, if you do a lot of cooking where you like to walk away from the kitchen for awhile then fine. You might need a timer. I get that. If you've got kids, you tend to cook more braises and use the slow cooker more than you might finesse a filet of salmon in a saute pan. But that's a lot of added tech for a small value to a small subset of customers. In addition, the very power of the Vitamix means that you really don't need to let it run for more than a few seconds. I can easily make a smoothie in less than a minute. Because I'm likely to pulse and use the tamper, I also couldn't walk away from it even if it had a timer. I think there are people that want a timer, but your one example of smoothie making at 5 AM is a narrow one.

                                                    I think I don't understand the idea of the thread here. I was under the impression that you were seeking some help or advice finding the right blender for you. Then it seemed that you were offering a PSA to those thinking about buying a Vitamix. Now, I have no idea.

                                                    If you think you'll be happy with the 6300, go for it! I'm dubious given your complaints about your other Vitamix model, but that's not my problem or the board's.


                                                    1. re: cacio e pepe

                                                      When I returned my 5200 to Costco about an hour ago, the cashier said to me, "oh yeah, another one." At which point I asked her, "what do you mean?" To which she replied, "people always bring these things back." I did not ask her to elaborate.

                                                      But if I were to guess, I would say its likely because in fact the 5AM smoothie making market is not as "narrow" as you think.

                                                      1. re: helena143

                                                        "But Your standard home cook doesn't know when to stop blending a smoothie."

                                                        As a home cook, I just have to say, Wow. Blending a smoothie is not rocket science. I've had my Vitamix for 15 years, and I've never had a problem with knowing when to stop blending a smoothie. Never. And I've never had a smoothie get hot. I have made soup in the Vitamix. It takes a while for things to get hot. Not something likely to happen by accident.

                                                        There is no "setting" that can get a smoothie just right for you, because each person will use different ingredients, at different temperatures. If you start will all frozen stuff, it may take a little longer. If you start with room temperature fruits, it will take much less time. Given this variance, how would some "setting" make a better smoothie than I can just by paying attention? Seriously. Is two minutes of your attention too much?

                                                        1. re: helena143

                                                          Good luck with your 6300 and do report back if it's solved the "problem."

                                                          1. re: helena143

                                                            It's an expensive item often bought on impulse after a demo at a venue like Costco. Or, it was bought and then the purchaser, after seeing a Blendtec demo, decided to swap the Vitamix for the Blendtec. One of my friends is a demonstrator--it happens all the time (there's a 30-day, no-questions-asked return policy), including with Blendtecs. And you DO realize that your "wobbly base" complaint will apply to a 6300 as well?

                                                        2. re: helena143


                                                          I'm curious, are you new to smoothie making? I love love love my vitamix, but, in the beginning, I had to figure some things out about smoothies (the first time I tried a green smoothie was in my vitamix.) The first few smoothies I made came out either thick, or warm or simply not smooth. It took a couple of tries to realize that more ice was needed when I was making a smoothie with lots of carrots and beets (raw ones) and that I needed to let it go a bit longer to get the right consistency. For my son, I make a smoothie of room temperature banana, milk and a spoonful of almond butter. After the first go with that, I realized there's no need to turn it on full power to blend it, the lower settings work well. I'm not sure that what has become intuitive for me could ever work with pre-set factory settings. You would need wayyyy too many variations depending on types of ingredients and desired consistency. If I remember correctly, the settings on the 6300 aren't timer settings. They are power settings. They pre-determine the power of the machine, not how long the machine will run, but this is something you should check with their customer service (which is beyond excellent.)

                                                          1. re: sherrib

                                                            Not new to smoothie making. I have researched the 6300 and the smoothie setting will run for 45 seconds, the frozen dessert setting for 1 minute and the hot soup setting for 4 minutes. I agree there's lots of variations. But what I am interested in doing is throwing my smoothie ingredients in and walking away for a minute without worrying that the 310-mph blades are going to over-blend the drink into a frothy mess. I assume the smoothie setting is not designed to overblend, but maybe UNDERblend if anything. At which point when I come back I will blend another 15-30 secs to get the consistency right.

                                                            I don't want to have to stand there and ramp up the speed and ramp it down and all those gymnastics. A 500 dollar machine should decrease your time/work in the kitchen, not increase it. I want to be able to walk away. CLEARLY Vitamix thinks the settings are important since they made a model with these settings. And it's a model that has rave reviews from people who were complaining about the 5200.

                                                            I just wish the 5200 had these settings. To me they should be basic features on a 500 dollar blender with extremely powerful blades.

                                                            Here is one review on Amazon.com for the 6300:

                                                            "I have used some of the older models before and this is my favorite thus far. I love that there are settings now programmed into the machine. The smoothie setting is what I use the most, it very fast and convenient. I use this on a daily basis to make smoothies to help me eat my daily amount of veggies. The setting makes for the perfect consistency for smoothies."

                                                            1. re: helena143

                                                              This is one of those cases where it's definitely to each his own. My green smoothies run for at least 2 minutes so I, for one, would never ever use those settings. So they indeed have the machine with the settings you're looking for - you're just insulted by the price tag. It's not worth $650 for you. For me, buying the machine at $500 without those settings was well worth it. I was done with my second $100 blender when I ordered the vitamix. I'm happy to never have to order another blender again. For me, it's an investment and a pleasure to use. If the price were to bother me, I wouldn't have bought it. (There are refurbished ones for less.)

                                                              1. re: helena143

                                                                "I just wish the 5200 had these settings. To me they should be basic features on a 500 dollar blender with extremely powerful blades.
                                                                Here is one review on Amazon.com for the 6300:"

                                                                The 6300 is basically a 5200 "with these settings," i.e. pre-sets.

                                                                I have to agree with others here: you need to forget about power blenders, regardless of manufacturer. Your expectations seem unrealistic and you're not going to be happy with any of them. Good luck, though.

                                                                1. re: helena143

                                                                  But if your smoothie is going to be thick, you're going to need to stand there and tamp it, regardless of whether or not there's a timed setting. And it's my opinion that Vitamix thinks the settings are important because Blendtec has them, period. The commercial drink machines have them but that's a different thing altogether. Vita-Preps (the commercial equivalents of the 5000-series home-use machines), on the other hand, do not.

                                                            2. re: cacio e pepe

                                                              We had a whole thread with a bunch of us, me included, deriding the addition of auto features on the newer Vitamix models. I'm sorry but I'm not stupid, I know when when my smoothie and my ice cream is done. I don't need or want some preprogrammed function of someone else's idea of done.

                                                              1. re: rasputina

                                                                It's not a matter of people not knowing when the smoothie is done. It is a matter of not having to babysit a blender with blades going 310 mph.

                                                                If you were using a crap blender, you could walk away and not worry. With the vitamix there is a real chance of over/blending, overheating and heating food if left unattended.

                                                                At least with a shutoff setting I know that the smoothie setting will blend the smoothie for 45 seconds and shut off. Very important with a 310 mph blender at 5 am.

                                                                1. re: helena143

                                                                  Quote: "It's not a matter of people not knowing when the smoothie is done."

                                                                  Well you are the one that posted saying " But Your standard home cook doesn't know when to stop blending a smoothie". Which is what my comment was in response to regarding the fact that I in fact do.

                                                                  If you don't even want to stand there for 1 minute, then I don't know what to tell ya, That is an extremely short attention span.

                                                                  1. re: helena143

                                                                    Where are you going in the 45 seconds that it takes to blend some fruit and ice?

                                                                    1. re: helena143

                                                                      Y'know, just because something BEGINS to heat after three minutes doesn't mean that it's going to be HOT.

                                                                      I have to concur with others on the board--I don't think anything Vitamix offers has your name on it. Have you considered a Blendtec?

                                                            3. re: helena143

                                                              How stupid are the "standard home cooks" you know? Because every person I know over the age of 5 can understand the concept of fruit + liquid, blend 'til smooth then stop and drink. It doesn't require that much time or attention or skill. If you feel the need to multitask during smoothie making time, set your alarm 45 seconds earlier so you've got enough time.

                                                              1. re: helena143

                                                                You wrote: " I am picky about my blended foods". Would I be correct in assuming that you have a negative response if the texture isn't 100% uniform? If that's the case, I don't think ANY blender will live up to your expectations. Even the most elite chefs press their professional blender's processed contents through a fine sieve when they want a perfectly even puree. But if monitoring the blender takes more time than you are willing to spend, sieving is probably not for you, either.

                                                          2. I have the 5200 and even though the base is not snug as a rug i have never felt it would fly off the base if not held down.

                                                            I've used flax hemp and chia seeds in smoothies and had no problem pulverizing them smooth. On the high setting it will out pulverize the BlendTec and I own them both.

                                                            I think you are being critical due to the price without using it extensively enough to know its capabilities

                                                            I don't think I could get a commercial blender to do much more than the 5200 does

                                                            4 Replies
                                                            1. re: scubadoo97

                                                              Put some blackberries in your drinks and get back to me.

                                                              1. re: helena143

                                                                Helena, if the Vitamix won't pulverize blackberry seeds then I can't imagine a blender that will. It certainly out performs the BlendTec in that department.

                                                                1. re: helena143

                                                                  I do put blackberries in my smoothies, and while not every single seed is pulverized, most of them are. I can live with an occasional blackberry seed.

                                                                2. re: scubadoo97

                                                                  I also love my 5200. I never need to hold it down while it's on. The timer is not an issue for me. It's done when it's done.

                                                                  I also purchased mine refurbished which saved me money.

                                                                  Before the Vitamix, I went through so many blenders. This is the best blender I have purchased so far. I've only had it for about a couple of years -- I'm hoping it will last a while.

                                                                3. The Vitamix and Blentec containers are supposed to sit loose on the base to absorb the shock from the ingredients bouncing around inside. It also prevents the blender from "walking" across the counter top like the Breville and Ninja. Another advantage is there is no locking mechanism so you don't need to line anything up to lock in place like the Breville and Ninja.

                                                                  I see youtube videos where people go from low then kick it into high immediately. Their jar looks like it's about to fly off the base. The soft ingredients should always be on the bottom and hard/heavy/frozen ingredients on top. I bring the speed up to 3 until the blades have had a chance to break everything down. Then slowly bring it up to high. The high speed is really to produce a finer texture that the lower speeds can't do in a reasonable amount of time. This is where the programs come in handy for people that lack the ability to "finesse" the ingredients.

                                                                  I am a new Vitamix owner myself but I would try to pulverize the berries first with some liquid. Do a taste test to make sure the seeds have been pulverized to your liking. Before putting in the other smoothie ingredients. But you should contact Vitamix to get an official answer.

                                                                  The pre-programmed settings just slowly ramps up the speed and shuts off after a predetermined amount of time. You can do this yourself by adjusting the speed, using a kitchen timer, and your eyes on the ingredients checking the consistency. I've gotten very good at doing this. Sometimes you can easily over blend ingredients with these power blenders so I wouldn't use the programs anyways. There is no homemade salsa program on the Vitamix or Blentec. This recipe requires you to vary the speed, keep track of time, and consistency of your ingredients. What I'm getting at is you can't use the programs for everything. You really have to apply good technique to pull off some recipes.


                                                                  There is a great series of Vitamix videos made by this guy that was really helpful.


                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                  1. re: unprofessional_chef

                                                                    "The Vitamix and Blentec containers are supposed to sit loose on the base to absorb the shock from the ingredients bouncing around inside."

                                                                    THANK you. If this were a problem, certainly it would have been corrected by now from which one should infer that it's intentional.

                                                                    1. re: unprofessional_chef

                                                                      "I see youtube videos where people go from low then kick it into high immediately. Their jar looks like it's about to fly off the base."

                                                                      Your post makes some good points but seriously, it's absolutely okay to go from Variable 1 to High without "walking up" the motor with the Variable dial. (Be aware that I virtually never do it except by accident.) It's extremely alarming and there's a lot more splattering in the container but it won't hurt anything. In fact, I think it's what you're supposed to do when you "wet chop."

                                                                    2. In case anyone hasn't noticed the CHOW review of this blender: http://www.chow.com/reviews/6-vitamix...

                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                      1. re: greygarious

                                                                        . . . OR the responses from people who actually own it.

                                                                        1. re: greygarious

                                                                          That Chow review is totally amateurish. Read it when it came out.

                                                                          I don't read those things any longer...have they gotten better?

                                                                          1. re: JayL

                                                                            Not that I can tell. They just seem to be totally random, there is never any comparison of one brand to another. I'm not sure what the point is. Aside from the off-the-wall ratings.

                                                                        2. I've been considering a Vitamix vs. Blendtec vs. other expensive blenders for years, but haven't wanted to spend that much. I think this is the year I'll go ahead and get it, since I think I'll really use it a lot. In considering the Vitamix and Blendtec, I've never personally used either, and it seems from expert and user reviews that they are both high end high quality blenders. But I will be getting the Vitamix for some of the reasons one or more posters below thinks the Vitamix isn't good. First are the lack of pre-set programs on the model I'll probably get (the pro 200). I do not want preset programs. I never use them, so for me, they just add to the cost. A preset program cannot possibly work well all the time, since thickness and frozenness & other characteristics of ingredients change every time. It also doesn't take long to make a shake or whatever. I prefer standing there for a minute watching and stopping it when I think it's done, and then running it more if I think more is needed. I also don't want a large beaker. The Vitamix has a 48 oz beaker now. I also want a variable speed dial that includes a low rpm. I don't want digital, if I can avoid it. The simpler, the better, as far as I'm concerned. As far as the beaker shaking while blending, I understand from posts below that it's supposed to do that. But even if it wasn't supposed to, I'm standing there, anyway, so I have no problem putting my hand on top of the beaker to make sure it doesn's shake too much. I've been doing that with my low-end Oster for decades. But I understand that's not needed for the Vitamix.

                                                                          The cost of the Pro 200 is about $440 at a local discount store (it's red, which I don't want, but not a big deal). That's a lot of money. But I'm ready to spring for it, and am glad I waited until I was familiar with all the high end blenders and features of Vitamix...and waited for the 48 oz beaker to come out AND that it became BPA free. I'm very excited. I'll probably have it the rest of my life.

                                                                          31 Replies
                                                                          1. re: Honeycomb

                                                                            You're making a good choice but I'm hoping you reconsider the container. Granted, under-cabinet clearance is a problem but there are two very good reasons why you should stick with the large container. First, the area around the blades is smaller which means it's possible to effectively process as little as 4 oz. (this is also true of the 32 oz. container BTW) and second, you'd be surprised at how often that extra capacity comes in handy, especially if you have company. I've been an owner since 1988 and even though I'm single and live alone, I STILL wouldn't go with either of the smaller containers. Also, the CIA model with the variable speed dial (the Professional 300, I think?) includes the same book as the 200, plus an extra recipe book with 20-odd recipes. I don't know what the price difference is, though.

                                                                            1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                              Thanks, MacGuffin. Hmmm. You make a good point. I didn't realize the 48 oz was wider. I know the larger beaker that is shorter is wide, but I thought the 48 oz beaker was about the same width as the larger one. One question, if you know the answer. Is it possible to leave the base on the counter and just put up the beaker when not being used? Instead of putting the whole thing up?

                                                                              1. re: Honeycomb

                                                                                ABSOLUTELY! I know of a lot of people who do this. I was in the minority when I had kitchen cabinets with "Vita-clearance"--no longer the case. :( Some owners' containers live side-by-side on the counter with the bases, some put the container in a cabinet or some such. Trust me, I don't think you'll regret the larger container if you go for it, and being able to handle tiny amounts really enhances the machine's versatility. And BTW, if you see one of the low-profile 64 oz./2 l containers for sale on eBay or some such, don't buy it. Although the older containers can all be used on the Next Generation machines, the reverse isn't true. Using one of those containers on a 5200-series base will shorten the motor's life (you can confirm this on the phone with Vitamix). Don't be tempted! Just make sure, when you get your Vitamix, to read all the material included, watch the DVD, and stick to recipes in the cookbook, following them exactly because it's not quite like a normal blender and there are certain procedures that need to be observed. You'll get familiar enough to start improvising in very short order, just use common sense. :) And don't forget that the cost of the machine includes really excellent phone support--use it!

                                                                                1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                  Thanks so much. Yes, I already checked out the low profile 64 oz. I didn't know what you mentioned as a drawback, but I read that it's not so good because it's so wide, to get the high capacity. So it doesn't work well for smaller amounts. So I crossed it off my list. But not being able to use it on older machines is a negative. Thanks!

                                                                                  1. re: Honeycomb

                                                                                    My pleasure. It's best to know these things and maybe others will read this and also benefit. Vitamix is very upfront about informing potential customers but not everyone bothers contacting them prior to purchasing, plus online sellers might not know or (unfortunately) care. It's engineered to work with the new bases and isn't backward compatible. I'm told it would make the older motors work much harder than they should.

                                                                                    1. re: Honeycomb

                                                                                      Vitamix did a recall on this model (low profile 64oz) recently, so beware

                                                                                      1. re: Reviewgirl

                                                                                        They did a recall on the CONTAINER.

                                                                                        1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                          Exactly. It was a recall Vitamix started because of potential problems with the blade assembly. The recall was a precaution. I had to send mine back, got it returned superfast and was a painless process. I got the exact container I sent in (because I put a little scratch on it and looked for that scratch when I got it back.) For my troubles, VM send a little gift (a smoothie/drinks cookbook.) Very pleased with their customer service.

                                                                                          1. re: breadchick

                                                                                            They did the right thing--better safe than sorry. I don't know of anyone who actually had a problem with their container. From what I know of the manner in which it was handled, they came up smelling like a rose.

                                                                                1. re: Honeycomb

                                                                                  I personally have used both blenders and chose Blendtec over Vitamix. What I disliked about Vitamix 5200 - too tall, had to stand up on tippy toes, too big to fit anywhere (I don't like appliances on the counter), the stick HAS to be used but it makes the whole blending process more complicated, who needs extra tool to hold, in an already busy kitchen?, and it doesn't blend as nice because of the smaller blades and narrower base, doesn't automatically shut off and with busy family life schedules you know how it can be - one of three kids falls or starts a fight and moms concentration shifts, leading to an overheated smoothie-yak, more expensive and bulky. I packed it and had to send it back after this unplanned comparison- blending halfway mashed potatoes. I mean we all know that these blenders do great job at blending smoothies, so I had a challenge with mashing potatoes (bought a sort that has a lot more starch in them - by accident, started mashing them by hand and they didn't come out as they should- so blender to the rescue!) I put one cup in each container and here's what happend - Vitamix could not blend it, I used different speeds, I helped it blend with the stick - simply didn't do the job, bottom line is that the blades were not able to grab on, they are small and it's too narrow at the bottom. I honestly regret not recording the whole process and posting it on youtube. Blendtec on the other hand, being wider at the bottom with bigger, stronger blades did the job easily, I was impressed, so I put the second cup in and it did the job beautifully. Needless to say I cleaned up the mess from Vitamix and got it ready for return. I really hated the stick, without it the Vitamix Blender wont start blending and it made my counters messier, it seems like not a big deal, but was to me, watch closely on any youtube video where they compare two blenders side by side, it drips from the stick, it's too big to fit any plate so it's placed on the counter-MESS. So I packed the Vitamix and send it back with a big note, Thank you, but No, I don't like it.
                                                                                  Here are the things I like about Blendtec - lower and wider container, bigger and stronger blades, automatic shut off, no long stick!, I store and use it in my walk-in closet and no extra mess, easy clean up, smoothies taste better(I don't know why, maybe the whole experience is more pleasant) more affordable, preset settings.
                                                                                  TV shows advertise Vitamix more, but trust me ladies - Blendec is a lot more convenient to use, I speak from personal experience. Blendec is so so much better on many levels and I love it!

                                                                                  By the way I left this review on QVC (I bought it from them) and they stopped selling this model 5200 for some time. Also the Vitamix 750 compact container with blender has been recalled due to malfunctions, here is the link http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/ne...

                                                                                  They also copied the short container design from Blendec, Blendtec sued Vitamix and was to pay to Blendec over $11 million, here is the link http://www.cleveland.com/business/ind...

                                                                                  Just another proof that Vitamix does try to be better, but has its downs.

                                                                                  1. re: Reviewgirl

                                                                                    "Just another proof that Vitamix does try to be better, but has its downs."

                                                                                    It would seem those "downs" are why so many professional chefs wouldn't be without a Vita-Prep (I was told by a Sur la Table manager who's also a CIA grad that they're ubiquitous in the CIA).

                                                                                    "lower and wider container, bigger and stronger blades, automatic shut off, no long stick!"

                                                                                    And I guess Blendtec's new, $120 "twister" jar subs for that unneeded, included-in-purchase-price/$12 to replace "long stick" (it's called a "tamper," BTW; it did, however, resemble a stick 20-odd years ago). Incidentally, it's only needed for the same types of commodities that made it necessary to invent that "twister," e.g. nut butter (I've never been able to figure out why Blendtec proponents seem to think it's necessary for everything--it's so illogical).

                                                                                    1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                      I simply stated my opinion about which one I personally liked better and it's definitely Blendtec, I don't know what they had 20 years ago, I compared the products available today. I did not use twister jar and can not comment on it. Vitamix rarely is used without a stick and a simple smoothie JUST can not be don't without it, and I don't like it. But some people do and that's ok, we are all entitled to our opinions. I respect your opinion and opinion of everyone else on this blog. I'm happy with my Blendtec Blender and every time I pass a presentation of Vitamix at Costco, I know I made a better choice.

                                                                                      1. re: Reviewgirl

                                                                                        "Vitamix rarely is used without a stick."

                                                                                        I'm sorry but that just isn't so. And QVC never discontinued the 5200. It was (and probably still is--I'm not a QVC shopper) marketed as "Creations II" but it's the same machine. You're of course entitled to your opinion but if you were using a tamper for everything with the Vitamix you returned, it was overkill.

                                                                                        1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                          You must have read it somewhere else about 5200 being discontinued from QVC, because I never said it. Why do you keep referring to tamper? I compared two blenders side by side and stated my preferences, no need to be upset about it, good day to you :-)

                                                                                          1. re: Reviewgirl

                                                                                            "By the way I left this review on QVC (I bought it from them) and they stopped selling this model 5200 for some time."

                                                                                            That was you, no?

                                                                                            1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                              Those are my words, yes, but no where do I see "discontinued". I do see "stopped selling for some time", but "discontinued" means totally different thing, in case you missed it. No need to falsely accuse someone of saying something they didn't say.

                                                                                      2. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                        FWIW, I've never needed to use the tamper. I just load the container in the right way and haven't had a problem yet.

                                                                                        1. re: breadchick

                                                                                          I do use the tamper for smoothies and frozen desserts but I really push the suggested frozens-to-liquids ratio to the max. I'm not into nut butters but if I were, I'd be using the tamper for them, too. Other than that, as you've clearly discovered, what would be the point?

                                                                                          1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                            True, if I made ice cream I'd need it. I should give it a try, with some frozen almond milk and strawberries.

                                                                                            1. re: breadchick

                                                                                              Just make sure to use SOME liquid (at least 25%) and put it on the bottom, otherwise you'll trip the overload protector. This is one area in which I think the Champion Juicer beats out the Vitamix--you can make "ice cream" with NO liquid and it really is like soft-serve! I made it with frozen mango chunks from Trader Joe's using my friends' Champion while I was at their place for Christmas Eve dinner. Their baby LOVED it. Check out some of the videos on YouTube. You can freeze a custard base in ice cube trays and use that instead of fruit if you're of a mind.

                                                                                              BTW, rather than use ice for your smoothies, freeze milks, juices, etc., and use them instead (keep whatever non-frozen liquid the recipe calls for the same). Why dilute a good thing? Skim milk cubes instead of ice, e.g., are a nice protein boost if you're not a vegan.

                                                                                              1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                                Gotcha. Thanks for the advice. Thinking this further, I'm just waiting for fresh peaches.

                                                                                                Oh, and chilled cucumber soup - yes.

                                                                                                For my smoothies, I use almond milk, 1/2 scoop of protein powder, frozen fruit (pineapple, blueberries, mango) 2 tbsp. of ground flaxseed, 1/2 cup Greek non-fat plain yogurt. Blended for all it's worth and it's great. I don't use ice, but may try it.

                                                                                                1. re: breadchick

                                                                                                  Keep the yogurt as-is but freeze your fruit and almond milk (except for a splash). Unless you're averse to very thick smoothies, you'll love it. :))

                                                                                            2. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                              Me too. I push it to the limit and it performs like a champ with frozen fruit. There is no way any machine could process what I put in it without a tamper and the VM tamper is perfectly designed to function cleanly without a drop leaving the container and never a worry about the tamper contacting the blades

                                                                                              1. re: scubadoo97

                                                                                                Ah, "contacting the blades." I can't tell you how many times I've read of someone's using the tamper without the lid in place. In fact, I did the same thing, ONCE, with the 4000 many years ago. Ever have a smoothie with wood splinters? :O~ (At least I didn't blame Vita-Mix for my own stupidity.)

                                                                                                Using the tamper without the lid is a definite no-no.

                                                                                                A quick suggestion, BTW. I once had to replace my blade assembly and so have the wrench used for tightening the nut. To make a long story short, sometimes "pushing" loosens the nut over time and if it goes unnoticed, the blade assembly's bearings can strip (this happened recently and rather than buy a new assembly or container, I picked up a Prep 3 at a ridiculously good price). Having the wrench and checking the nut's tightness periodically is a good idea.

                                                                                                1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                                  +1 for everything Maguffin just said. I have the wrench but have never needed to use it. (Probably having the wrench is a talisman against evil or at least wards off my own stupidity.)

                                                                                                  1. re: JWVideo

                                                                                                    Just checking every so often is good maintenance if you're "pushing" things like very thick smoothies. I was terrified of cracking the container when I replaced the blade assembly on my 5000 because it has to be screwed on very tight . . . but not tight enough to crack the container. If you're able to tighten the nut at all when you test it with the wrench, it needs to be tighter.

                                                                                        2. re: Reviewgirl

                                                                                          Wow, I don't even like mashed potatoes done in a mixer, the last thing I'd do is put them in a powerful blender.

                                                                                          1. re: rasputina

                                                                                            I've read about users' tripping the overload protection with mashed potatoes but I've never really understood why anyone would blend them in the first place. Still, I've heard Jan on QVC state that potatoes can be mashed.

                                                                                            You and I are obviously polar opposites because I like 'em so lump-free that I prefer instant (made with evaporated milk, no less). The few occasions that I make fresh involve a ricer and a mixer.

                                                                                            1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                              I use a food mill when I do make them, but I'm not really a fan of mashed potatoes anyway.

                                                                                              1. re: rasputina

                                                                                                For mashed potatoes, I suspect food mill vs. ricer is six of one, half-dozen of the other. I love 'em but as mentioned, am probably happiest with instant.

                                                                                      3. I've had my VitaMix for five years now. It's the 5200. I've had no issues with it and no regrets over purchasing it. It's definitely an investment though, no argument about that.

                                                                                        Personally, I like it's more basic. The new low profile container, the presets now available? Eh, adds cost and I haven't found any of that necessary.

                                                                                        Once upon a time I worked at one of the major cookware stores. Sold a lot of Vitamix...as well as other blenders. I never felt wrong recommending the Vitamix to anyone that wanted to blend a lot, particularly with a lot of ice. I did always recommend people start out watching the DVD and using recipes from the cookbook to learn the techniques to get the most out of the blender(liquid and soft foods first, etc).

                                                                                        OP it doesn't work for you. Good luck finding somethign that does. Have to say though that not meeting your needs does not make the VitaMix a bad machine.

                                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: ziggylu

                                                                                          "I did always recommend people start out watching the DVD and using recipes from the cookbook to learn the techniques to get the most out of the blender(liquid and soft foods first, etc)."

                                                                                          Extremely sage advice. It never fails to astonish me how people can invest in such an expensive appliance and not bother to read the instructions before flipping the "on" switch. :O

                                                                                          1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                            Instructions are important and must be read and followed before using any equipment. For me it comes down to the simplicity of using the equipment and the quality of the equipment. That's why I chose one over the other.

                                                                                            1. re: Reviewgirl

                                                                                              I'm willing to go with something that's more complicated if it performs better (e.g. my current juicer). But I invariably find that once I master the instructions, they become routine with the doing. :)) Performance is my primary concern, not ease of use.

                                                                                              1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                                Performance, quality, easiness, durability they all play vital roles. I glad we are both happy with our blenders :-)

                                                                                        2. Lately people have been noticing that after doing a cleaning cycle and blending just water to test the machine, there are black specks in the water. Many calls to Vitamix with different responses from customer service from; there is no problem to, we are investigating the issue.


                                                                                          From page 30 and on, people are noting issues with containers. And in case you are wondering, people are using filter/bottled water, cleaning their container multiple times, and seeing the same results. There are people who have complained, were sent a new container, and the same thing happened....

                                                                                          Here's a video of that I'm talking about


                                                                                          Current owners, can you please test your blenders and post the results?

                                                                                          4 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: scubadoo97

                                                                                              How long have you had your blender? What date is stamped on the blades in your jar?

                                                                                            2. re: knexx

                                                                                              I've had my VitaMix for nearly 2 years. No black specs here, and I use mine 2-4 times a week.

                                                                                            3. I am also having major issues with my professional series 750. If try to make anything from a smoothy to hummus it just starts spinning without catching ANYTHING! When i called the help line the lady blamed user error (oh thanks, not i am breaking a blender that should be able to make peanut butter for gosh sake!) and said I should only be making recipes from the cook book.. so i paid $800 (form Canada) to get a blender can only make things from their recipe book? When I asked to return it using the warranty she said I couldn't, I asked for a manager to call me back and have not heard a thing..Does a $800 not warrant good customer service? I guess I not. DO NOT BUY!

                                                                                              18 Replies
                                                                                              1. re: christinann

                                                                                                From whom did you buy it?
                                                                                                And as far as the peanut butter goes, there's a procedure to follow. That's not to say that you're not following it but if the blades are spinning, it follows that they should be blending. Are you tamping your hummus?

                                                                                                1. re: christinann

                                                                                                  Please do not spread "DO NOT BUY" just because your having issues with your equipment. I have the exact same model and it flawless zero issues. Are u using frozen fruit? How much liquid?

                                                                                                  1. re: christinann

                                                                                                    You are describing cavitation. Are you using the plunger/tamper?

                                                                                                    1. re: scubadoo97

                                                                                                      That's what I'm wondering. And as a seasoned owner, I'm sure you agree that it really is a good idea for new users to stick to the recipe book for a little while because its recipes aid in the learning process. Contrary to the OP's claim ("Let me tell you, I know exactly how every blender works. Just ask me. I have spent the past year buying and returning blender after blender."), there's a learning curve with the Vitamix (and undoubtedly with the Blendtec) that, unless you're being tutored, requires familiarity with its included instructions. There's no getting around this. It's designed to work a certain way and if the operator doesn't get with the program, disappointment ensues and it's not the appliance's fault.

                                                                                                        1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                                          my recipe for pb in the book has me using the variable speed, but i swear the video used one of the presettings....frozen dessert, i think.

                                                                                                          1. re: eLizard

                                                                                                            Could be; neither of my machines have pre-sets, so I couldn't say. "Frozen dessert" would make sense, though, because it for sure utilizes the highest speed. I'm really surprised that the recipe book would call for a variable speed for anything longer that "walk-up" time. I have a bunch of different Vitamix cookbooks, both for the C and G series, and they all call for walking up to 10 then to High, or staying at 10, respectively.

                                                                                                            1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                                              where would the best place be to ask for favorite vitamix recipes? these vitamix posts are getting unwieldy. and i do feel as though i've mastered the green smoothie and am ready for the next thing!

                                                                                                              1. re: eLizard

                                                                                                                LOL I hear ya!

                                                                                                                Blenderlady.com hosts an Enthusiasts Yahoo group (with recipes in the archives) but I think most of the activity is now on her Facebook page (I'm not a Facebook member so am not sure); I think everything links from her homepage. Also, check YouTube for Chef AJ's and Henry PJ's videos. Chef AJ is an honest-to-goodness chef who went healthful so her stuff is especially interesting; more recipes here: http://chefajonline.com/. And don't forget that you can start adapting lots of your own recipes once you're comfortable. :)

                                                                                                                1. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                                                  Blenderlady is awesome. thanks for the tip!

                                                                                                          2. re: MacGuffin

                                                                                                            I'm notorious for not reading instructions but I did have to go back and look at them and the video to maximize performance. I have never found a blender that didn't suffer from cavitation depending on what your were blending. At least the Viamix has a custom made tamper so you can get everything mixed if it occurs and no risk chewing up the tamper in the process.

                                                                                                            1. re: scubadoo97

                                                                                                              True. Ya gotta tamp some stuff. :)

                                                                                                        2. re: christinann

                                                                                                          I've never had a problem making peanut butter or anything else in my 750- for peanut butter, just follow the vitamix recipe- put in 3 cups roasted and blend as described- it's one of the rare things I need to tamp. And it tastes sooo good.

                                                                                                          It makes hummus, hot soups, smoothies, frozen desserts- everything just perfectly. Make sure to familiarize yourself with the instructions and pay attention to the order for putting ingredients in- generally it's liquid first and ice/frozen stuff last.

                                                                                                          the plastic container makes it waaay lighter and sturdier than glass would be and it sits on the base just fine. We use ours 5-10 times a week.

                                                                                                          1. re: Shkra11

                                                                                                            i made PB, baba ganoush, pumpkin puree from roasted sugar pumpkins, and smoothies this weekend.

                                                                                                            do you have a good hummus recipe?

                                                                                                            i'm thinking about making some pumpkin soup tonight in the blender from the puree. I think macguffin said something about not adding raw onions..... haven't made soup yet.

                                                                                                            1. re: eLizard

                                                                                                              NO RAW ONIONS!!!! (Not sure about garlic but I don't think I'd go there either.) Sauté them a bit and you'll be fine. :)

                                                                                                                1. re: eLizard

                                                                                                                  Funny you should ask . . . YES.
                                                                                                                  I learned the hard way in 1988. :((

                                                                                                              1. re: eLizard

                                                                                                                I just use the vitamix hummus recipe online. It's easy and we like it- tastes just like most hummus Weve had from restaurants or bought. I've seen a bunch of others on here who hate vitamix-made hummus tho

                                                                                                          2. I bought a Vitamix refurbished 5200 with 48 oz container 2 1/2 years ago. I paid $330 for it. I use it everyday and love it. I am very pleased with the quality, warranty and performance.