My second (ancient inherited) Kenwood Chef has gone to heaven, and I'm looking for a new machine (in AU)
I use it mostly at the mixing/ autolyse stage, not for folding/kneading. Three batches once a week is the usual workload. The Kenwoods both broke at the planetary section, and I suspect that the root cause is my gradual move from a high hydration instant yeast ciabatta style to a lower hydration starter based sourdough.
I only need the basic functions (no power take-off accessorising), but has to be benchtop machine. My current options under consideration are:
1) Refurbed Kenwood Chef Major 1200watt ($7-800)
2) Birko 7 liter commercial mixer ($7-900)
3) Various look alike machines on Ebay ($4-500)
4) More professional looking Anvil 10lt planetary mixer ($1000+)
Others are the Varimixer Teddy (if I win the lottery) or KitchenAid. I've reports from someone who owned a Kenwood and a KitchenAid, uses them frequently, and prefers the Kenwood for bread dough, which is why it's off the list.