i have refrained from machine reccomendations here on vectric as with this being a software specific forum and that vectric is basically in the business of selling software to all end users no matter the size, type of machine, quality, hobby or commercial. have i done this, yes, yet i am not sure i want to again unless vectric opens the doors to it and i pray they don't. i certainly have no desire to be biased by machine type on the help i get and give here on the forum!!!
my recomendation is always go see the machines, meet other owners, make the cnc company produce a part with it that you wish to make, make them show and how they intend to help you with it. it is no secret we love our cnc machines around here, hang we are actually kinda addicted!!! cnc owners love to show off thier machines
bring involved with the beta team has been a great experience, one i cherish, as not only have i been able to learn software but it has raised my general knowledge of computers and all types of machines, the largest problem i see is what would happen if one got a recommendation and the machine experience went sour (and it does for some) there are plenty of discussion forums for machine owners about machines, i watch camheads.org , letstalkshopbot.com , and cnczone regularly, the is a cnc zone type forum for england and europe as well (can't remember the name but it is posted here somewhere) one other problem is how much dissussion space would be taken up on the regular aspire and vcarve forums. there is a hardware section and a gallery of machines thread on the forum for some of this stuff yet i would hate to see some of the dirty tricks and language that can come with cnc purchasing on vectric and with a melting pot of end users who is to say what machine works for whom on this forum, the results are in the work produced and the machines that the end users own, cnc machine companys are very passionate about the machines they build, some providers will even resort to creating ficticous members to reccomend the machines. this is one forum i feel safe from that!!
although ya'll are always welcome to come to my shop and see the machines i use!!