What dealers are close by that would allow you to check the machines out in person? Dealer support is one of the most important matters to consider. Will you be content with a 5 x 7 hoop size (probably the most common size) or do you want to start with some of the larger hoops, in which you can expect to spend more money. Go to www.sewingpatternreview.com and check out the reviews on the machines you are considering.
Do you need both embroidery and sewing capability? That is a major factor also.
I have owned Janomes in the past and love them. However when I decided last year to upgrade to a larger hoop capability, I researched and tested for six months before deciding on the Babylock Ellisimo (sister to the Brother 6000D).
Embroidery is a real passion of mine. I hope you find a machine you are happy with and enjoy it for a long time!