We've had both...
I've had a 1200 bandit and my missus had a SV 650 (her first bike) - she loved it so much she bought an SV1000 when she sold the 650 to her bro. he's still got it and still loves it, it's been in the familt 6yrs now..
SV650, on a 'T' plate;
Miles covered: 4,000 when we bought it, 11,000 now
Why I bought it: cheap and loads of fun -
The good: FUN!!! easy to insure, easy to handle, fab exhaust note, quite quick in the midrange
The bad: slightly soft forks and rear shock when 2-up, could do with a centre stand, apart from that not much!
Verdict: great bikes for the money
Tip: keep cables well greased / oiled and keep the front calipers maintained.
Bandit 1200 (2004 on a 54 plate, I owned it for 3 months)
Miles covered: 8,000 when I bought it, 8,400 when I sold it
Why I bought it: admin error by CMC in Nottingham
The good: comfy, smooth engine, relaxed cruising, did 55mpg, handled OK when loaded up
The bad: not much bottom end, not much midrange, not much top end, vibrates, poor finish, plastics feel cheap, fuel gauge very inacurate, lights rubbish
Verdict: OK for the price
Tip: there's better out there from other munufacturers
Verdict on both bikes - the SV650 is miles better for the money, easy to work on and feels better built than the bandit. Both are good bikes though if you don't mind a bit of tinkering now and then - something that's difficult on some new bikes from some other manufacturers....
Bubblin - I've had 4 triumphs and I don't hate your bike! Ilove them :)