Professional Planetary Mixers at Great Prices
[I'm not affiliated with any of the manufacturers, websites, dealers, etc. below]
After breaking two 6qt Kitchenaid mixers, I moved on to a professional mixer about 8 months ago.
I searched for what seemed like an eternity for a quality-quantity mixer (good workmanship + good price). Hobart had the quality down pat, but their prices were beyond ridiculous (easily 4 to 5 times other manufactures).
I stumbled on the Bakemax brand and bought their 20qt planetary model: http://www.bakemax.com/equipment/food-service-equipment/planetary-mixers/20qt-encore-planetary-mixer/
I really love it.
I especially love the safety features: kill switch if protective guard opens; mixer halts when under too great a load [pauses in such a way that you'll know it's not happy with the dough you're asking it to mix], etc.)
I post this because I just noticed the same mixer is available in the United States now under the Centaur label. (I had to buy mine from Canada, as Bakemax is in Nova Scotia).
I checked the Centaur specs and they're identical to the Bakemax. It's really the same machine as far as I can tell (other than the top cap, which is red in color).
Those are really good prices for this mixer, considering I paid about $1750 + $300 shipping for the 20qt pictured above.
Yes, they're big. The 20 qt. stands to about 6" below the my waist (I'm 5'11").
They're heavy (250 lbs for the 20 qt) too; but, you want something big and heavy when you're mixing large doughs.
Hobart should be trembling in its boots, as it's 5-quart model is $2000. It's 20-quart is $5000+.
Having used Hobart's before, I can say Hobart's are equal in construction quality, not better, than the above (except for, perhaps, their service, which you also pay through the nose for). I haven't owned my Bakemax for 30 years, however, so time will tell.
The moral of my post, I guess, is that if you're about to drop $600 on a DLX, consider going a little further and buying yourself a professional mixer.
You won't regret it, especially at those prices.