Juki is a world leader in sewing machines for industrial use. The new Juki Exceed series makes that same industrial technology available to the home sewer with three outstanding models… the HZL 300, HZL 400 and HZL 600.

The sewing machines in this series are pretty much identical. The major difference is the number of stitch options available on each model.

The Juki HZL 300 offers 105 decorative and utility stitches; users have access to 157 stitches on the Juki HZL 400 and with the Juki HZL 600, owners have access to 225 utility and decorative stitches.

In addition, each of the sewing and quilting machines in the Juki Exceed series offers three alphanumeric fonts and 16 different professional quality buttonholes.

At A Glance

One day, I saw two seemingly identical sewing machines sitting side by side. Of course, this piqued my curiosity, and when I asked about the difference between the two, I was formally introduced to the new Exceed series from Juki.

Juki Exceed series Machine

Juki Exceed series Machine

I was first attracted to this machine by its from the clean look and sleek lines. The next thing that caught our eye was the whimsical icon above the speed control slider.

Whimsical icon above the speed control slider

Whimsical icon above the speed control slider

Rather than the typical one, two and three arrows indicating slow, medium and fast speeds, the machines in the Juki Exceed series sport a picture of a turtle at the point of the lowest speed setting, followed by a series of five dots leading to the picture of a hare at the highest speed setting.

Unlike many adjustable speed sewing machines I have reviewed in the past, the machines in the Juki Exceed series have 7 speed settings, not just three.


The standard features available on the machines in the Juki Exceed series include many features that are normally reserved for industrial sewing machines as well as lots of features that home sewers have come to expect when it comes to a superior quality home sewing machine.

  • Start/stop button
  • Large variety of patterns and stitches – decorative/utility/alphabet
  • 105 – 225 decorative and utility stitch options
  • 3 Alphanumeric fonts
  • Large LCD display (33mm x 66mm)
  • Easy stitch pattern selection
  • One finger automatic needle threading
  • Automatic thread trimming
  • Adjustable speed slide control
  • Walking foot
  • Quilting foot and quilt guide
  • Precision feeding system
  • Immediate needle stop
  • Innovative bobbin winder
  • Free arm
  • On board accessories case
  • On board LED lights

Working on the Machines in the Juki Exceed Series

When you start out with such an easy to follow on board threading guide, bobbin winder and automatic needle threader, you now sewing will be a pleasure.

There was absolutely no question about that when I sat down to test the stitch selection process. The on board quick reference guide put all available stitches at eye level.

On board quick stitch reference guide

On board quick stitch reference guide

The LED screen not only displays a view of the stitch selected, it also shows an icon telling us which presser foot.

LED screen show view of selected stitch and icon of presser foot

LED screen show view of selected stitch and icon of presser foot

The screen also displays the proper tension setting to assure that I get the desired result before I begin to sew.

It made no difference which stitch option I chose, the process was fast and the stitches neat, crisp and precise.

For this review, as with all others, I sampled several different utility and decorative stitches, as well as the monogramming feature.

Combining stitches for the monogramming process was as simple as dialing up the desired letter using the conveniently situated, soft touch keypad.

Conveniently situated, soft touch keypad

Conveniently situated, soft touch keypad

One of the biggest drawing points for this series of sewing machines is the sensor buttonhole. As if being able to choose from 16 different buttonhole styles is not enough, users also have the option of selecting the width of the buttonhole opening with the unique sensor buttonhole foot.

A sample using monogramming feature

A sample using monogramming feature

When I first looked at it, I was not certain exactly what the people at Juki were up to… that is until I investigated further.

The sensor buttonhole foot has a short cable attached to it which is plugged into the left side of the sewing machine.

The sensor buttonhole

The sensor buttonhole

Once the machine is programmed, you will be able to make countless identical perfectly formed buttonholes … a task that in the past was not possible without access to an industrial buttonhole maker, which is normally found exclusively in factories.

For at least 50 or 60 years, conventional sewing machines have made it possible for us to come close, but without being able to actually program a sewing machine to create a series of identical buttonholes, the human factor was always at play.

Therefore, truly identical buttonholes were always hit or miss. Home sewers now have the advantage of producing identical buttonholes with any one of the sewing machines in the Juki Exceed series.

All three models have a start/stop button, a knee lift, and on board thread cutters that work either by pushing a button, or by tapping the foot pedal with your heel.


  • Natural fibers/cotton-linen-wool
  • Fine fabrics/silk-satin-taffeta/velvet
  • Knits
  • Synthetic fabrics/blends-rayon-polyester
  • Upholstery
  • Leather/suede
  • Fur
  • Canvas/Twill
  • Plastic/Rubber
  • Extra thick fabrics or multiple layers


The standard accessories package included with the three sewing and quilting machines in the Juki Exceed series certainly does not disappoint.

  • 16 Presser feet
    • Walking foot
    • Patchwork foot
    • Free Motion Quilting foot
    • Industrial quality sensor buttonhole
    • Manual Buttonhole
    • Standard
    • Overcasting
    • Blind hem
    • Zipper
    • Cording and embroidery
    • Appliqué
    • Binder
    • Pearl attaching
    • Open toe
    • Patchwork
    • Edge sewing
  • Auxiliary spool pin
  • Quilt Guide
  • Twin needle
  • Screwdrivers
  • Lint brush
  • Extra needles
  • Bobbins
  • Spool caps 3
  • Seam ripper
  • Hard Cover


After each useMonthly*Once Each Year**As Needed
Clean race hook and feed dogs
Wipe head with soft dry cloth
Wipe head with soft damp cloth
Service by sewing machine repair professional

* more often if the machine is used for extended periods of time or if used frequently

**more often if the machine is used heavily or if it is not operating properly

Tying Off The Loose Ends

I highly recommend the machines in the Juki Exceed series. The only choice any user needs to make is the number of stitches they think will best suit their purposes.

The oversized extension table is optional with the Juki Exceed HZL 300 and HZL 400, but is include as a standard accessory with the Juki Exceed HZL 600. The other differences between the three are as follows:



The free arm seam guides etched onto the needle plate, clear cover on the drop in bobbin and knee lift along with the box bed and other features normally available only on industrial sewing machines and with the affordable MSRP place the machines in the Juki Exceed series among the most desirable home sewing and quilting machines on the market.

These are not machines for children or for beginners. Although they are easy to operate, I feel that the machines in the Juki Exceed series should be operated primarily by people who are familiar with basic sewing machine operation and are comfortable working on heavy duty sewing machines.

If this machine were purchased for use by someone with limited sewing experience, I encourage them to take lessons from their dealer before trying to work on it on their own.

Without a bit of hands on training, they will not be able to benefit from the advantages of having a machine as sophisticated as these.

The fact that the machines in the Juki Exceed series have a maximum speed of just 900 stitches per minute is a minor drawback.

Only those home sewers who are accustomed to working on industrial machines or heavy duty home sewing machines will even notice the lower speeds.

In short, I think the sewing and quilting machines in the Juki Exceed series are among the best in their class and well worth the cost. Anyone who purchases one of these machines can count on many, many years of sewing pleasure.

Juki HZL Exceed HZL 300, 400 and 600 Series Review
Link To Official Website
Skill Level:
Needs lots of help – able to sew a straight seam but unfamiliar with most sewing techniques; needs assistance and instruction on basic sewing techniques.
Competent – can make different clothing items without assistance or guidance, but not good enough to sew intricate projects or to sew without a pattern.
Expert – can sew anything without instruction or assistance; possesses an expansive knowledge of sewing techniques and terminology.
Stitch quality
Ease of use
  • Industrial sewing machine technology for the home sewer
  • Steel feed dog/superior presser foot construction
  • 16 Professional/industrial style quality buttonholes
  • A bit slow … maximum speed 900 stitches per minute
5.0Overall Score
Reader Rating: (38 Votes)

21 Responses

  1. Elizabeth

    I love my juki. it does everything I want it to do and does it well. My only problem is that I cannot remember what size bobbin to buy and I don’t want to pay for that simple information.

  2. Vernelle

    Elizabeth –

    Thank you for visiting Sewing Insight.

    My first instinct was to advise you to simply check your owner’s manual to find the bobbin size. I was quite surprised to learn that everything is there except that basic tidbit.

    I phoned my friends at Ace Sewing and Vacuum Center, where I reviewed the Juki Exceed machines and learned that they take class 15 plastic bobbins. They also use standard Janome bobbins as well.

    Happy Stitching.

  3. Craftyvirgo

    I have the Juki Exceed 600. This is a fabulous machine. The stitch quality is second to none. The machine is solid and purrs along. I have had Janome machines in the past which give good quality stitching, but they are not in the Juki league. I would highly recommend this sewing machine to anyone

    • Chamelion2

      Hi Craftyvirgo.. I am debating between a janome and a juki.. how are you getting on with yours now? Does it cope well with several layers of thick fabric like fleece and also with thin slippery fabric?

  4. trudy

    I really can not recommend this machine. It is louder than my old Brother sewing machine. It makes a klunk sound when sewing simple 4 patch with nesting seams. I have cleaned, changed needle. I have only used one bobbin, just put in my second.I have tried to fill 3 bobbins it filled 2 . It stopped winding the third one half way. Needless to say I am so not impressed with this machine.

    • Vernelle

      Trudy –

      Thank you for visiting Sewing Insight.

      Have you tried taking it in for a once over by a sewing machine repair professional? It might need a minor adjustment.

      How long have you had your Juki? Even when computerized sewing machines are not used, they should be taken in for tune-ups at least once a year.

      Did the retailer you purchased it from give you any training on operating and maintaining it? If you have been accustomed to working with mechanical sewing machines, an then switched to a computerized machine, even after sewing for many decades like me, you should take time with an expert to learn the subtleties of performing small, seemingly simple tasks such as winding bobbins on the more sensitive computerized machine.

      This is not to say that your problem is user error, but many of long time home sewers believe we should be able to resolve any issue with our machines. That was often the case with the older mechanical machines, but not so with the newer models.

      I sincerely hope your problem is resolved soon. Please let us know how you make out.

      Happy Stitching.

  5. wendy

    I almost bought this machine. While I think it is a very nice machine, the reason I didn’t buy it was because there is no circular sewing attachment available for this machine. All those designs and you can’t use a circular sewing attachment with it. Sigh….

    • Carol Blair

      Wendy,get the Juki….you can by a circular attachment from Nancy’s Notions on the internet. She also has a nice video showing how to use it. Happy stitching!!

    • Donna

      I have been researching this machine and have found a circular sewing attachment on Amazon. I am under the impression any low shank attachment would fit.

  6. Denise Greepski

    Thank you so much for these excellent reviews! I am looking for a new sewing machine, and I am trying to figure out the difference between this Exceed series (Juki HZL F300,400,600) and the Excite series (Juki HZL G110,210). Since you have reviewed both, I’m wondering if you could provide any insight?

    I like the look of the F series better then the G series, but I am torn between the G210 and the F300 since they are now similar in price. I live in a very rural state and there are no Juki dealers within several hundred miles….so I can’t just go look at the machines myself.

  7. Donna

    I have the Juki Exceed HZL-600 (since last September) and I am very happy with it. I kept my previous machine (a very basic Janome) which is also a fine machine, but I was having issues with thick material feeding properly on the Janome, especially at the edges, plus I was just lusting for a machine with more stitch options. My dealer showed me a few machines in my price range, and the Juki really impressed me. The Juki has no problems with feeding thick fabric layers, the stitches are super nice, and it’s quiet and has a smooth feel when sewing. I got a good deal on it because it was a “demo” machine. Buttonholes are also very nice, although I don’t do many of those. For me it was an excellent upgrade choice. Very pleased.

    • Donna

      I am wondering how the 400 or the 600 handles leather or vinyl? I would like to be able to sew leather handbags.

      • Vernelle

        Hello, Donna –

        Thank you for visiting Sewing Insight.

        If you are interested in doing a lot of work with leather, I recommend a machine heavier than the machines in the HZL Exceed series. You would probably be happier with the Juki 2010Q… a straight stitch only machine that is designed to handle thick layers over extended periods of time with ease.

        Happy stitching.

  8. Liis

    Hi, I’m planning to buy Juki f600. I was wondering that it is an old model (2009), is there any chance they are planning to upgrade it in the near future? Do You have some insight?
    I looked around and many websites sell their Juki show-models. Can it be a sign?
    The only con for me is the stitch width on Juki, it’s 7mm, i would love it to be 9mm. I’m not a machine junkie, the one I buy will stay as long as it’s working, so it’s not a problem for me to wait a little longer if there will be a newer model.

    • Judy Abernathy

      I did a lot of research before buying my F600, and this is some of what I learned: Yes, the model was first introduced about 2009, but it was initially a home version of Juki’ s long line of extremely well made industrial machines. The F600 has a lot of the best features from those machines. It also incorporates a lot of quilting features , such as an automatic setting for 1/4 inch seam, and all the feet necessary for quilting, foot pressure settings for FMQ and an automatic tension that really works (I can personally attest to that). If you’re buying just for quilting, you’ll be severely impressed. But, you will find it wonderful for heavy duty sewing too. I found binding a very thick hotpad (easily 6 layers of fabric, a layer of Insul-Bright and one layer of regular batting) easy, and the stitching is beautiful.

      As far as Juki coming out with a newer or upgraded version of this line of machines, I seriously doubt it. This model Is tried and true. Juki has come out with a newer line, but to me it’s a less expensive group. Even Vernelle found some features lacking in the newer machines. You wouldn’t be sorry if you buy the F600.

      I originally looked at a show model. Dealers take the machines to the Big quilting shows, mainly for people to get some hands on experience. However people rarely buy and take the machines with them, they have the new machine shipped to their home. So the dealers end up taking them back to the shops and sell them. They almost always come with the same warranty as a new one. The only drawback I saw, is that for the discounted price, it could be scratched, or some small accessory missing. For not much more money, I chose to have a brand new machine.

  9. Deb

    I have a JUKI Exceed 600. I love it but I’m nervous because I couldn’t find the oiling ports and now see on your chart that oiling is not recommended. Is that true? I don’t want to wreck it.

    • Judy Abernathy

      Oiling is not even discussed in the manual, therefore you don’t do it. However, the need to keep it scrupulously clean truly is necessary. If it starts to “clunk” when sewing, it definitely needs to be cleaned, especially in and around the thread trimmer. Of course, you still need to have it professionally cleaned and adjusted about once a year, depending on your use. If you need more specific information about the F600, I suggest you call Juki customer service, their number is in the manual.

  10. Geraldine Moore

    What a wonderful informative site … I have an old, old JUKI serger (it is well over 30 years old) and I think I see a trip to a JUKI Dealer to purchase a new straight machine. I really like the Exceed series. I do a bit of quilting and if I am looking at it correctly you do not need to use a walking foot? I have never used one of them as when it comes to the quilting I have always done it by hand … I have really enjoyed your questions and answers. When I go shopping there are so many things to remember and I have been writing little “notes”. The prices vary so from the TL’s to the Exceed’s. I guess how “healthy” the check book is will be a guiding force. Thank you again for all this wonderful information.

    • Judy Abernathy

      Personally, I use the walking foot only when I’m either doing very thick quilting or when the fabrics tend to slip around when sewing. It does work wonderfully when sewing straight (you can do a zig zag stitch with it, too, not all walking feet will do that). This walking foot for the Exceed F series is made very well. But, as you can surmise, the machine will handle sewing heavy fabrics. Free motion quilting is a dream on this machine too. As far as which machine to purchase, I made the decision based on the feet that came with it (more are included with the F600), the extra stitches, but more, the extension table which is not included on the lower Exceed models (300 and 400). If you plan to do any larger quilting, the extension table is a must. I hope this helps you but as you said, let your budget be your guide. Do take the time to test drive each of the models to see how they actually feel while you sew. Good Luck on your decision.

  11. Jeana

    I am looking to purchase the HZL400 and was wondering if you could tell me the measurements of the throat. From one the needle to the right. I can not find it anywhere online and need a longer arm than a normal sewing machine.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.