I bought a Janome MyStyle 100 earlier this year and I've been using it pretty often for the past couple of months. It cost around $200 I think, and is a very user-friendly machine, especially for a beginner like me. It's not very loud and it runs very smoothly.
While putting together my Kyoshi Warrior Suki costume, I've run it through a few layers of upholstery vinyl (at some point up to 4 depending on how it's folded in some places) and it generally went right through with no problems and still made clean and sturdy stitches.
From this experience, I'd recommend this machine. It doesn't have a lot of bells and whistles (which I guess is a good thing in some ways, less to break and it makes you do more for yourself instead of letting the machine do everything) and it's not very expensive.