If there is one piece of advice I can give to someone that is about to make the investment of purchasing an embroidery machine it would be "Do your homework". Don't rush into this. You wouldn't buy the first car you look at would you? And with prices of these machines being almost the cost of a new car, you shouldn't rush into that kind of purchase.
Get to know the people at your local sewing store. Some large sewing stores offer seminars by some of the the experts in the embroidery industry. A lot of these seminars are hands on. That means that the machines are supplied for the seminar and they sold at a discount after. These machines are practically new and you can save up to $1000 by buying one of these.