I've been renting Compact Utility Loaders, Mini-Excavators, Skidsteers and Tractors. Each type really has its area of expertise and all of them can do the job of the others to some extent. For me, a small (solo) landscape design/build operation, it is the Compact Utility Loader that has become my favorite. I like its ability to get into tight spaces(fence gates) and I can trailer it on my own trailer. I have used the Toro 300 Series Wheeled and 400 Series Tracked, with the buckets and the Backhoe option. I have also used Compact Power Prodigy (the little one rented at HD that comes with a trailer full of toys), using the bucket, auger, trencher, leveler. Tractors: Need wide open spaces(farm) poor maneuverability. Slow bucket speed. Large and heavy. Great for mowing/brush hogging, box raking, transporting materials (forks) Skidsteers: Very heavy, compacts soil. Tendency to tip/rock/bounce with sudden movement. Incredible strength/speed. Mini-Excavators: Single minded(task) machine. The absolute best at ripping out Yews. Compact Utility Loaders: Limited lifting capacity/dumping height. Light weight/easy to trailer, fits through gates, loads of attachments, works in tight areas. I compiled a Top 10 feature comparison of 4 machines I find interesting. The Toro because well its a Toro, the Gehl articulated mini loader because it articulates, telescopic reach, speed, the Boxer because the tracks are variable width, hydraulic flow rate, and the Ditch Witch because of the dedicated backhoe.