Vitamix V1200 Review

Bonus Deal: While supplies last, save an extra $100 on the Certified Reconditioned V1200! (discount appears in cart after adding code 100RECONV )

I’ve been testing out a Vitamix V1200 to write this review. As expected, it delivers the high quality results that Vitamix has built its reputation on. If you’ve been shopping around for a Vitamix, you’ve probably noticed that they make many different models. The first thing to know is that all of the full-size machines offer the same blending performance. (The only non-full size models are the S30, S50, and S55.) The differences are in features, aesthetics, and the containers they come with.

Vitamix created the Venturist line specifically for Costco. It is essentially the budget cousin to the Ascent line.

Extra Accessories

Compared to other Vitamix machines, the V1200 comes packaged with extra accessories: 8-oz and 20-oz blending cups, blade scraper tool, and tamper holder. (All Vitamix blenders come with a tamper and cookbook.)

The Venturist line has much in common with the Ascent line, so I will mainly define it in terms similarities and differences with Ascent. But first I want to warn you about one thing to consider.

Reconditioned V1200

The Reconditioned V1200 comes with fewer accessories. Aside from the essentials like the tamper and cookbook, it only adds the 20-oz blending cup and mini blade. Its normal price isn’t amazing, but sometimes Vitamix runs promotions that make it a great deal.

One weakness of the V1200

Since the V1200 comes with such an extensive package, it might seem like it would satisfy all of your blending needs. It comes with three different-sized containers, but it lacks a container type that many people find extremely useful. The V1200 does not come with a narrow container that can be used with the tamper. (The main 64-oz wide container can use the tamper, but the 8-oz and 20-oz containers cannot.)

You need the tamper to make thick blends like spreads and frozen desserts. Narrower containers have smaller minimum blending requirements than the wide container. For frozen desserts, you’re looking at 3+ servings instead of 2 servings with a narrow container. Or, for nut butters, you need at least 4.5 cups of nuts vs. 3 cups in a narrow container.

You can buy an extra narrow container (48-oz) to use with the V1200, but that’s an added expense of $144.95. If you want to do a fair amount of blending small amounts of thick blends, you may be better off with a machine that comes with a single narrow container.

If you don’t need the 64-oz capacity, the E310 is the one to get (it comes with a 48-oz container).

And if you want the full 64-oz capacity on a narrow container, pick one of the classic “standard” models—of those, I recommend the 5200 or the equivalent Standard Reconditioned.

Vitamix Venturist vs Ascent

Venturist features in common with the Ascent Series include: digital timer display, container detect, the same containers, and Bluetooth connection to app. The V1200 has the same type of dial as the A2300, which lets you continuously control the speed, with markings from 1 to 10. (The fancier Ascent A3300 and A3500 have a premium control knob that resets to the lowest speed automatically.)

Differences from Ascent models

The V1200 is slightly less elegant and louder than Ascent models.

Timer Buttons

V1200 Dome switch buttons on front panelThe V1200 has a settable countdown timer on the front, which is similar to that found on the A3300 and A3500. The difference is that the A3300 and A3500 use capacitive touch buttons, whereas the V1200 uses dome switch buttons. The dome switches protrude a bit and require more force to activate than capacitive buttons. The V1200 buttons work perfectly well, but the Ascent touch buttons look and feel a bit more elegant.

Another difference with the Venturist timer that is slightly annoying is that it takes longer to set. Getting to the maximum 6.5 minutes takes 6 seconds on the A3300 and A3500, but takes 20 seconds on the V1200. That said, I rarely use the countdown feature on my A3500. I do appreciate seeing the count-up timer, which doesn’t require any extra button presses. (The count up timer is on all Venturist and Ascent models.)

However, it’s worth noting that all Ascent and Venturist models have maximum blend times that depend on the container. For the 64-oz container, the maximum is 6.5 minutes. So if you want to use the Vitamix to heat something like a soup or a sauce, you can leave any Venturist or Ascent model running, and it will automatically turn off after 6.5 minutes without requiring any countdown timer or program mode.


The base shell has some elements of Ascent, and others of legacy Vitamix models. The front panel is the same shape as the legacy G-Series. It lacks the distinctive curved bevel found on the side of Ascent models, but it has the same back vent as Ascent models.


The Venturist base has less sound muffling than the Ascent line, which I determined by making some sound measurements. However, much of the blending noise comes from ingredients slamming around the container, so in practice the differences are minor. But Ascent machines are quieter. Here are the results of my tests:

no container (dBA)
4 cups water (dBA)86–9086–9086–8984–87

(The E310 base is identical to the E320 base. The A2300 noise applies to all Ascent models, except for the metal versions of the A3500; the A3500 I measured has a metal base.)

Water is noisier than some blends and quieter than others. I made these measurements using a RadioShack sound level meter. Blender noise can depend significantly on surroundings, so I swapped each model into the same location for each measurement, and kept the sound meter fixed in the same spot in front of the blender. Even set to “slow readout,” the readings jump around, which is why I’m reporting ranges. Also note that decibels use a logarithmic scale, so the differences are greater than might be intuitive. That said, once you are blending loud ingredients, the differences between models are quite minor.

Summary comparisons to each of the Ascent models

All Ascent models have a base design that is slightly more elegant and quieter than the V1200. Here is a view that shows the Ascent curved bevel (right) and the Venturist’s (left) more plain design: (For more views of the Ascent bevel, see my Ascent review.)

V1200 vs A2300

V1200 has the settable countdown timer, while A2300 does not.

V1200 vs A2500

V1200 has the settable countdown timer, while A2500 does not. The A2500 also has 3 preset programs (smoothies, frozen dessert, hot soup), which the V1200 does not have. However, you can use preset programs on the V1200 if you send them from the app.

V1200 vs A3300

Both have the settable countdown timer, but the A3300 uses flat capacitive buttons, whereas the V1200 uses raised dome buttons. This makes the A3300 look and feel more premium. Similarly, the variable speed knob on the A3300 looks and feels more premium than the V1200’s.

V1200 vs A3500

See A3300 comparison directly above, then add 5 preset program touch buttons on the A3500. Also, the A3500 has metal base options for the most elegant look. The metal base is also a better sound insulator, which makes the metal A3500 the quietest. Here’s a view of the V1200 compared to the the A3500 premium interface:

Vitamix V1200 vs E320

The V1200 and E320 are the two models sold at Costco, so if you are considering the V1200, you are probably also considering the E320. The main difference is that the V1200 has a range of new technology, which it shares with the Ascent Series. The extra features are:

  • Digital timer
  • Can use 20-oz containers without bulky adapter
  • Compatible with smart-only accessories like the Food Processor Attachment
  • Bluetooth connectivity to app
  • Longer warranty (10 vs 7 years)
  • Secondary on-off switch on side
  • Clear lid on container

Are these extras worth paying more for? It really comes down to personal preference. If you’re excited about the extra features, I say go for it. But know that you can blend just as well with the E320.

Also note that the V1200 requires Self Detect containers, which means that old Vitamix containers will not work with it. One the other hand, the E320 can be used with Vitamix containers going back to the the mid ’90s.

V1200 vs 7500

This comparison is almost the same as the V1200 vs E320 directly above. The only difference is that the 7500 is a more premium machine than the E320. That means that it is a bit quieter, and it has the secondary on-off switch on the side.

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Vitamix V1200 Review — 23 Comments

  1. We have the Vitamix V1200 and are happy with it. As an expensive stand alone blender, it works great. However, using the v1200, with all the bells and whistles, where the ingredients are automatically measured, the timer and speed of the blender is automatically set, and pouring the liquid into containers by weight, can be a daunting task. The full complement of equipment required are: a Bluetooth capable phone and/or tablet (Software is not MS Windows compliant), with the Vitamix app installed properly, a Bluetooth scale, which must be purchased separately, and the blender itself. Once setup, sitting side-by-side on a counter, and the software recognizes the scale and blender, the process becomes very easy to load the ingredients, blend and pour. I’m hoping that Vitamix will provide a proper set of instructions that can be followed going forward as it took several calls before we became comfortable with this process.

  2. How do you compare the V1200 to the 7500? I’m interested in the best blending experience, accompanied by the smallest amount of noise. The technology (countdown timer, Bluetooth) are not important to me, but I wonder whether the clear (non rubber) 48oz container on the v1200 blends better, and I like the ability to screw on smaller containers to a base for chopping small amounts of food (carrots, onions, etc.).

    • If you exclude the technology, the blending experience is extremely similar. The 7500 is a bit quieter. (The Ascent Series is also quieter than Venturist.) Note that the V1200 comes with a 64-oz container; the 48-oz container is an optional accessory. The Venturist/Ascent 64-oz container blends essentially identically to the 7500’s 64-oz container. The lids have a different feel, but it’s not a big deal.

      The 7500 can use those small screw-on containers, but it requires the slightly bulky Personal Cup Adapter.

  3. Thinking of swapping out my recently purchased 6500 for the V1200 as this model came out only a few weeks after I bought my 6500. Aside from missing all the tech, my biggest gripe with the 6500 is how awfully loud it runs. It irritates my family and pets. Is the V1200 quieter than the 6500? Would the blending experience be the same considering their similar containers? Thanks!

    • The V1200 is not particularly quieter than the 6500. Neither of them have the quieter design of the G-Series and Ascent Series. That said, the G-Series and Ascent models are only slightly quieter. Depending on your kitchen, a foam pad under the machine can help quiet it a bit.

      The 64-oz Ascent/Venturist container blends pretty much identically to the 6500’s 64-oz container.

    • Not sure what you mean by motor specifics, but all full-size Vitamix machines have essentially the same motor. (The Space Saving models are smaller and less powerful.) The Vitamix motor is capable of everything you could possibly want it to do in the kitchen.

  4. I would like to know your thoughts on use/limitations of the 20 oz or 8 oz without tamper. For example, if I wanted to make a smaller batch of nut butter, would the 20 oz or 8 oz blend these tougher ingredients smoothly?

    • It’s not so much a question of toughness as it is a question of will the blades form an ineffective air pocket. The answer depends on the nut butter. Some nuts release their oils easily and will work in the 8-oz container. For example, most roasted peanuts and roasted pecans release enough oil. Other nuts would require added oil to blend without a tamper.

  5. does the costco v 1200 and the ascent 3500 have the same size container
    Do i need another container and do they go on sale if i get the 3500

    • Yes, Venturist and Ascent use the exact same containers.

      Do you need another container? That depends…. Many people just use the 64-oz container. Some people like having a smaller container. There are occasionally sales on containers.

  6. You mention in article that Explorian E310 and E320 bases are “identical”. However, the E310 has 2.0hp motor (adequate for 3-inch blades in included 48oz container) while the E320 has more powerful 2.2hp motor, which is necessary to drive the longer, 4-inch blades in the included low-profile 64oz jar. So, please explain your stating the 2 models’ bases are “identical”. Thanks.

    • The V1200 works with any container with Self Detect. That currently includes the 8-oz, 20-oz, 48-oz (wet, dry, and aer), and 64 oz.

      And yes, a foam pad can reduce sound.

  7. Quiero cambiar mi vaso de mi licuadora vitamin 1200 se puso muy feo como opaco cómo lo puedo cambiar tengo entendido que esa licuadora tienes diez sńos de garantía la compré en cost co es muy buena solo quiero cambiar el vaso

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