If you are into arts and crafts, then you know why it’s important to use a cutting machine. Nowadays, instead of using scissors, blades, and knives, expert DIY prefer to use a more sophisticated cutting machine like a vinyl cutting machine.
Cricut Maker – One Of The Best Vinyl Cutting Machines – Image from Amazon
A vinyl cutting machine is a portable machine that will be able to trace, score and cut different figures on to any kind of material. Be it cardboard, vinyl, T shirt, cloth, foam or balsa, this machine will make accurate cuts for you no matter what the occasion may be. There are many updated vinyl cutting machine models in the market and to start you off, we have ten top brands for you.
- Buying Guide
- 1. Cricut Maker, Champagn
- 2. Silhouette Cameo – 3- 4T Cameo 3 Wireless Cutting Machine
- 3. Cricut Explore Air 2 Mint
- 4. USCutter Vinyl Cutter MH 34 in Bundle
- 5. Roland GS – 24 Vinyl Cutter
- 6. Brother CM350 Electronic Cutting Machine
- 7. GRAPHTEC CE6000-120 Vinyl Cutter
- 8. Graphtec FC8600-160 64-Inch Plotter
- 9. Silhouette Portrait 2
- 10. Sizzix Eclips2 Starter Kit
When buying your first vinyl cutting machine, it’s best to start with the features that you are looking for in a cutting machine. Do you want a machine that can cut vinyl, cloth, cardboard or balsa? Do you want a machine that can mark, score or cut wood? Are you looking for a vinyl cutter that can connect to wireless?
Are you in the market with a portable vinyl cutting machine or are you aiming for a commercial or industrial cutting machine instead? There are a number of lightweight and portable models in the market while there are tough, large-scale cutting machines to help you mark and cut larger and more delicate materials.
The equipment’s connectivity is another factor to keep in mind. The vinyl cutting machine should support the device you are using. For instance, if you use an iPhone to create different designs, the machine you are using should work with your mobile device. The machine should give you an option to connect wirelessly or using a wire instead.
1. Cricut Maker, Champagn
You will have the freedom to create just about anything on paper, iron on, decals and cardboard with Cricut Maker, Champagne model. It’s also considered one of the best fabric cutting machines. This vinyl cutter has an expandable suite of tools that can help you work on a variety of projects. You can use blades, pens and a scoring tool to make different cuts and marks on different materials.
The Champagne model has a new rotary blade that glides easily and will cut through any fabric accurately and quickly even without backing. If you want to cut through deeper and thicker materials like balsa, cardboard or mat board, you can use a knife blade that can be purchased separately.
You can connect this to a mobile device, your PC or your laptop to cut different designs that you made or use the images and fonts that come free from Cricut’s library of images.
Conclusion: The Cricut Maker, Champagne model is a versatile, efficient and expandable vinyl cutter machine that you can use to cut, score and mark all kinds of materials. It can cut on deeper materials with the rotary blade that comes with the machine or you can purchase a complimentary knife blade. Too bad that you need to pay for more to get the knife blade. But despite a few flaws, this is a good machine to try for your next DIY.
• Can work on a variety of materials
• With an expandable suite of tools
• With the compatible rotary blade
• With an optional knife blade for thicker materials
• With available patterns, images, and fonts
• You can upload your own images
• With a docking slot for your device
• With convenient USB port
• Problems with cutting thick materials
• Complaints about lagging
2. Silhouette Cameo – 3- 4T Cameo 3 Wireless Cutting Machine
From paper to cardstock to fabric materials, you can work on a variety of projects with the Silhouette Cameo 3. This is a machine that can take wider and longer materials (up to 12 inches wide and 10 feet long). You can use the design software to create your projects with ease.
The Cameo has a dual-carriage so you can use two tools at a time. It also has a higher 2mm clearance to cut thicker materials as well. The Silhouette Cameo is compatible with the Print & Cut and the PixScan technology; two of the most popular software used for vinyl cutting devices. This comes with the Silhouette Studio software, a 12-inch cutting mat, the AutoBlade cutting blade, and a USB cable.
Conclusion: The Silhouette Cameo is a cutting machine that will cut through different materials and can work with the latest cutting software available. However, you need to pay for more to get more tools. But despite this flaw, this machine still qualifies as a good vinyl cutter to check out this year.
• Can cut a variety of materials
• Can cut larger and longer materials
• Can connect wirelessly through Bluetooth
• With dual-carriage for multi-tool use
• Compatible with updated cutting software
• With complete materials and accessories
• You need to pay for more to get more tools
• Problems with instructions
Product Comparison: Silhouette Cameo 3 Cricut vs. Explore Air 2 – Which Cutting Machine Is The Best?
3. Cricut Explore Air 2 Mint
You can create custom vinyl stickers, home décor, greeting cards and more when you use Cricut Explore Air 2 Mint. This vinyl machine will mark and cut images, designs or fonts that you personally created or from Cricut’s vast library of pre-made images.
This machine has a double tool holder so you can cut, write or score at the same time. You can use this at home or take it anywhere you wish to design things using Cricut’s Design App perfect for Android or iOS. This is the machine that can cut up to more than a hundred materials but it works great on cardstock, adhesive foils, poster boards, faux leather, vinyl colors, special paper and so many more. And you can use this wirelessly too by connecting your device via Bluetooth.
Conclusion: The Cricut Explore Air is one of the most updated vinyl cutting machines from the manufacturer. It can cut through more materials and it will let you upload your own images too. The only problem is that the Cricut software is not for free. Depending on your purchase, you may only get it for free for a few months or a year. We also have a list of the best sticker maker machines that you might like to check.
• You can upload your own images
• Access to Cricut’s library of premade designs
• With double tool holder
• With Smart Set Dial for correct cuts
• Can cut 100+ materials
• Connects via Bluetooth
• You need to pay for Cricut’s software
4. USCutter Vinyl Cutter MH 34 in Bundle
Now, this is not your average vinyl cutting machine because this is a large sign making a machine that can cut up to 34” of material. It comes with three fully adjustable pinch rollers that will let you cut through a variety of materials. It is equipped with superior ball-bearing dual roller system to let you cut, score or mark with ease.
The USCutter Vinyl Cutter is built with a Roland-compatible blade holder that lets you use one of the most popular and very economical blades. And this is a bundle that comes with multi-color vinyl rolls, transfer tapes, magnetic blanks, a knife, and a squeegee.
Conclusion: The USCutter Vinyl Cutter is a large-scale cutting machine that will cut different materials and comes with a variety of tools and supplies. This is not for portable vinyl cutting because it’s too heavy to take anywhere and will not connect to a portable device.
• Comes with complete materials
• Can cut larger materials
• With adjustable pinch rollers
• With Roland-compatible blade holder
• Connects to a PC or laptop
• Too large to take anywhere
• Will not connect to a mobile device
5. Roland GS – 24 Vinyl Cutter
The Roland Vinyl Cutter will accept materials that are wider and larger. You can cut through different materials too with a blade force of up to 350 grams. This is easy to use; you can set it up to connect to your laptop or PC to cut different designs. It can cut faster than other vinyl cutters with a maximum cutting speed of 20” per second.
You will be able to take this cutting machine home, at the office or where you need to cut because despite its capabilities, it is lighter and easy to carry.
Conclusion: The Roland GS – 24 Vinyl Cutter will be able to work on different materials and even on larger and longer materials for different projects. This cuts with stronger blade force and is quite portable too. However, it does not have wireless printing and it has a plastic body. Also, you can check out our guide for the best laminating machine.
• Accepts larger and longer materials
• With a larger cutting width
• Faster cutting speeds
• With stronger blade force
• Portable despite its cutting capabilities
• No Bluetooth
• Made of plastic
6. Brother CM350 Electronic Cutting Machine
One of the trusted names in cutting machines is Brother. You may have used Brother printers before and this electronic cutting machine is something to check out. It has an auto speed and pressure selector for any material that needs to be cut. It can cut vellum, cardstock, paper, and chipboard in custom sizes. It can cut in different depths, scores easy without perforations and can cut more precisely no matter what shape you want to cut.
The Brother CM350 lets you create your own designs and check your designs before cutting using the Laser Cut Preview. It is easy to use, even someone who has never used a vinyl cutting machine can use it. It can connect via wireless connections and has a touchscreen for easy use.
Conclusion: The Brother CM350 vinyl cutter is a powerful cutting machine that can connect wirelessly to any compatible device. It features a larger cutting area and can cut more materials. However, if you are an iOS user then better look for another brand.
• Turns scanned images into designs
• With large touchscreen
• Wireless printing capable
• With large scanning and cutting area
• With on-screen editing
• Compatible with all OS
• Not for iOS users
• Too heavy to take anywhere
7. GRAPHTEC CE6000-120 Vinyl Cutter
If you are looking for an industrial or commercial vinyl cutter then the Graphtec CE6000 is your choice. It has a large cutting area of 47.8” x 164” long. This works fast and will have your project ready quickly because of its accurate digital servo motor. It comes with controls for enhanced precision. It uses the Graphtec Studio Software where you can edit your work before you cut.
You can easily check your work using its graphic LCD with backlight. It can cut through different media like self-adhesive vinyl films, light reflective film, an etching resist, milestone pattern media, heat transfer vinyl, vinyl print media, image transfer media, and cardstock.
Conclusion: The Graphtec CM350 is a vinyl cutter that’s built for commercial use. It is fast, accurate, with a very large cutting area. It can work with popular software, however; it is too bulky to take anywhere and will not connect to devices wirelessly.
• Very large cutting area
• With an easy mark sensor
• Fast servo motor
• With Graphtec Studio Software
• Will work with Adobe Illustrator and CorelDraw
• Compatible with a variety of materials
• With graphic LCD with backlight
• Comes with one year warranty
• Too bulky to take anywhere
• Does not connect wirelessly
8. Graphtec FC8600-160 64-Inch Plotter
Looking for a high-performance vinyl cutter and plotter then you need the Graphtec FC8600-160. This is a huge 64-inch plotter with a maximum cutting speed of 58.8 inches per second. It is made for diamond-grade high-intensity reflective films as well as a number of materials. You can program this according to your specifications so you can print unique projects at one go. It is compatible with Adobe Illustrator and Corel Draw. It can work with standard floor stands and has dual catch baskets.
Conclusion: The Graphtec FC8600 -160 comes with a new drive technology and with larger cutting and plotting areas. It is programmable and can work with popular software. However, it does not operate wirelessly and may not be compatible with other operating systems.
• With new drive technology
• Faster cutting speeds
• Programmable user settings
• With advanced 4-point ARMS
• Ideal for contour cutting
• Compatible with popular software
• Does not have wireless printing
9. Silhouette Portrait 2
The Silhouette Portrait 2 will let you connect and cut all kinds of material. It will connect to your devices like your mobile phone or tablet with Bluetooth. It will let you cut, mark or score materials like cardstock, fabric, transparencies, heat transfer materials, vinyl and even thick magnet paper. You can select from Silhouette’s 50 exclusive digital designs or upload your own.
Conclusion: The Silhouette Portrait 2 is an easy to use DIY tool that you can use to work on different materials but will not cut fabric. It connects wirelessly via Bluetooth but despite a few flaws, it is still a good portable cutting machine to try.
• Connects using Bluetooth
• Can work with a variety of material
• Compatible with PC and Mac
• You can use 50 digital designs
• Complaints about connectivity
• Will not cut fabric
10. Sizzix Eclips2 Starter Kit
You can cut all kinds of material with the Sizzix Eclips2. Now, this is the brand’s starter kit which includes all the things you need to mark, score or cut all kinds of materials. It has adjustable blade depth, precision cutting features, and speed selector. You can also preview your work with the Laser Cut Preview feature.
Conclusion: The Sizzix Eclips2 is completely adjustable and programmable. It can work on different materials and has good features for precision cutting and blade adjustments. However, you need to pay for the software and it may not cut thicker materials.
• With auto speed selector
• Can work with different materials
• With adjustable blade depth
• With precision cutting
• Software is not free
• Will not cut thicker materials
When you are looking for the ideal vinyl cutting machine that will work for your needs, check product features and spend time learning about its many good benefits and any disadvantages. Only through these will you be able to find the ideal cutter/plotter for your home or commercial needs.