A vinyl cutter is a machine that can go a long way when it comes to producing your own signs, banners, and advertisements. The good ones can not only cut through thick sheets of paper, but also other materials, such as magnets.
There are a number of benefits to investing in this product, including low running costs, versatility, efficiency, and user-friendly software for making custom signs. Bearing this in mind, there are a couple of features that determine what the best vinyl cutter is.
In order to help you, we have conducted market research and found several best vinyl cutter models that you can get great use out of. Let’s take a look at what we found.
Table of Contents
- Comparison Chart
- Best Vinyl Cutter Reviews
- BUYER'S GUIDE
- Question 1: How Does a Vinyl Cutter Work?
- Question 2: What Can You Do with a Vinyl Cutting Machine?
- Question 3: How to Determine the Pressure Setting for a Vinyl Cutter
- Question 4: What Materials Can a Vinyl Cutter Cut and Not Cut?
- Question 5: What is the Difference Between a Vinyl Cutter and a Plotter?
- FINAL VERDICT
Best Vinyl Cutter Reviews
Cricut Explore Air 2
This cutter is not a new model, but it still holds up to even the newest releases. It is an affordable option that brings with it versatility and speed. It is fitted with plenty of performance-enhancing features and is one of the best options out there today.
This machine is a versatile option for cutting, and it comes with some great features that elevate this attribute greatly. The Explore Air 2 comes fitted with three cutting tool options - fine point, deep point, and bonded fabric blade. This allows the unit to be able to cut more than a hundred materials with ease.
One of the best features is the Smart Set Dial. With this dial, simply set it to the chosen material and the machine will set the cutting depth and speed all on its own. There will be no more frustrating starts and stops trying to find the right setting for the materials you are trying to hone into a beautiful craft. This feature saves both time and money.
This cutter from Cricut also has another feature that expands your options of material to work with - the 2x fast mode. With the speed of this option, you can work with vinyl, paper, and cardstock without worrying about ripping the thin materials. This is yet another time and money saver.
The Explore Air 2 also uses Cricut’s proprietary design software, Design Space. This is a cloud-based program, so you can work on the designs from anywhere on any of your smart devices. The unit is also pairable with Bluetooth, so you can upload your design wirelessly.
The last major product highlight is the fact that the cutter is compatible with other accessories. You can use pens or even the scoring stylus to up your creative game to new levels. The Air 2 is also fitted with a double tool holder.
By using two tools at once, you can make new and amazing creations without having to waste time switching out tools. Use them at the same time or separately, and see what this machine can do.
When we look at this cutter, there are a few things that we love about it. The first and most important is the ease of use. This unit is great for beginners but versatile enough for the most accomplished creators, too. The versatility of material that can be cut with this small but mighty unit far exceeds what other similar models offer.
Even with all the amazing features and benefits you can get from investing in this unit, there is one major issue that could detract from the overall use of this cutter - the cutting space. Limited to a 12” x 24” workspace means that larger projects are out of the question.
Rounding out the list is a vinyl cutter that is designed with a lot of power. The Cricut Maker is compact and fitted with some features that definitely give it a leg up over some of the other vinyl cutters on the market.
The Cricut Maker is full of amazing features. A sleek design and 4 kg of cutting pressure are just two of them. That amount of cutting pressure is tenfold more than many of the other Cricut products. On top of this, the Maker is also crafted with a USB port. It uses both a rotary blade and knife blade, and it comes with a washable fabric pen.
The cutter also comes with access to Cricut’s pattern library, which will save time and perhaps expand your project capabilities. This can take quite a bit of time depending on the size of the project, but the Maker uses Design Space software to help simplify the projects. Basically, it creates a plug and play model that takes all of the tedious work out of the user’s hands.
Another highlight of this model is the expandable suite. This addition to the design makes it so that the machine can grow and expand its use of tools. There are other tools, like embossing or additional pens/blades, as well as the ability to upgrade the unit as new tools come out, as well.
Not only will that allow you access to more projects, but it also gives you more choices of materials to work with. This product, easily coupled with the adaptive tool system, gives the cutter a long life.
The design of the drive gears interlocking with the Adaptive Tool System gives the machine a gentle lift for better control of the blade and helps monitor the pressure intelligently for smoother operation.
Plus, this system is capable of being able to use new tools when they are released for a more customizable cutter that will fit anyone’s needs.
The use of a rotary blade is just the first of many things that makes this a great option for your vinyl cutting projects. This brings a level of power that will expand the projects and materials you will be able to use.
The resources that come with the Cricut Maker are also a nice addition. The plethora of templates and projects you can find in the sewing library will help everyone, from a beginner to a more seasoned pro.
When it comes to where this unit lacks, the main opportunity is the limited cutting space. This will limit the size of the project that the user is able to complete.
Vinyl Cutter USCutter MH 34in Bundle
When it comes to a vinyl cutting machine, you will want it to be easy to use. Plus, you will want all the necessary accessories. Fortunately, that is the case with this USCutter product, as it comes with all the essential tools and supplies, as well as superb sign-design software.
First and foremost, it is important to emphasize that USCutter is among the leading names when it comes to these machines. Having been around for more than a few years, this manufacturer ensures that all products are designed and made in the country. Not only that, but you are also getting a lifetime warranty on any built-in defects.
When it comes to printing out signs, banners, or other items, it can’t get much better than this cutting machine. It is perfect for people who are looking to start a small business or simply want to have the ability to print out signs for their community.
There are two main features that highlight this cutter, such as the 34-inch feed width, as well as the 30-inch cut width. These two work together to ensure great versatility when it comes to the materials and dimensions that you can work with.
This, along with the fact that you can adjust the speed and pressure using the 3 pinch-rollers, makes this USCutter product one that you can get great use out of. Keep in mind that the ball-bearing dual roller system also plays an important role when it comes to cutting vinyl.
The main issue that we have with it is that you can’t connect it with Apple or Mac devices. Additionally, it doesn’t provide the contour cut, which is a mode present in some of its competitors.
Still, its overall compatibility is superb, considering that this vinyl cutting machine works with software such as Sure Cuts A Lot, Flexi, Sign Blaser, and VinylMaster Cut (which you get with the bundle).
As we have mentioned above, there is much more than just the cutter and software that you are getting as a part of this offer. There are five 24"x5' rolls of GreenStar vinyl that come in different colors. Along with that, you are also looking at two sheets of 12"x24" magnetic blanks, as well as TransferUltra Paper Application Tape and a Transfer Tape.
Last but certainly not least, this USCutter bundle also features a single hobby knife, three vinyl cutting blades, and a squeegee.
It offers a maximum pressure of 350 g and a speed of 39 in/s. It can cut through heat transfer paper, stock paper, and card stock. The main issue we have with it is that it can’t work with reflective media.
When it comes to the software itself, we love the fact that it allows easy design and image editing. Also, unlike most of its competitors, the VinylMaster Cut software comes with a spool function that allows multiple layers of different colors. The requirements for working with this software aren’t too intense, but as we have mentioned above, you have to run the Windows operating system.
Overall, this vinyl cutter and its software may not be as popular as Silhouette Studio, but it does hold great value. You can get through most common vinyl materials with maximum efficiency. Most importantly, it comes at an affordable price, which is the reason why we consider it a great choice for those looking to start a small business!
There are a number of features that make this vinyl cutter a worthy choice. Firstly, we like the fact that it offers a feed width of 34 inches, as well as a cut width of 30 inches. These dimensions, along with the maximum pressure and speed, ensure efficient performance. Also, the software is incredibly easy to use, even for those with no design experience.
The main issue is that anyone using Apple or Mac devices will not be able to reap the benefits of the USCutter vinyl cutting machine. The fact that it is compatible only with Windows OS is something that we would like to see corrected.
Mophorn 53 Inch Vinyl Cutter Machine
Moving on with our list of the best vinyl cutters, we have a product with an innovative, humanized design that offers superior cutting performance. Flexible and with great working capacity, Mophorn did a great job designing this vinyl cutter.
While the aforementioned USCutter product is just perfect for entry-level users and small businesses, this one is ideal for those with more designing experience. This is because it has a feed width of 53.1 inches, which is quite amazing compared to what most other machines have to offer. Along with that comes a cut width of 49.6 inches, ensuring that you can successfully go through most common media.
When it comes to its overall performance, you are looking at a maximum pressure of 500 g, which is accompanied by a speed that goes as high as 800 mm/s. Among the features that we love the most is the back LCD display that contributes to the user-friendly interface that highlights this cutter. You will be able to monitor the process, as well as start and stop the machine by using the emergency button.
As with any other cutter, the pinch paper rollers play an important role in flexible performance. Here, you will be able to adjust the guide rail and rollers according to the width of the material you are working with.
When it comes to the overall compatibility, we were quite happy to see that it supports all Windows OS, including XP, Vista, 7, 8, and 10. Also, it is compatible with DM/PL and HP/GL language. However, much like with the aforementioned product, we found that it is not a machine to be used by those with a Mac OS.
The software you are getting here is SIGN MASTER, which comes with an array of innovative features, including design, editing, and spool. Apart from the cutter and software, you are also getting three accurate blades, a single blade holder, and a pen holder.
This is not all, as the Mophorn bundle also includes a serial port, a USB cable, a power cord, and a driver disk. Also, there is an innovative stand and a detailed user manual to help you get the most out of this product.
However, if you are looking for a machine that can both cut and print, this Mophorn may not be the right product for you. Keep in mind that, while it offers a splendid cutting performance, you can’t get too versatile with it.
Thus, while it may not be the optimal choice for those running a large cutting/printing business, it is great for people who are looking for a fast and accurate cutter at a budget-friendly price.
The main reason why we think this product is a worthy choice is because of the plethora of materials that it can cut through, including reflective media. Not only that, but the accuracy, speed, and maximum pressure offered by this Mophorn cutter should satisfy almost any requirements.
While the aforementioned product is user-friendly and comes with innovative cutting features, it is not compatible with Mac. Additionally, you can’t use it to print on the media.
VEVOR 28 Inch Vinyl Cutting Machine
If you are looking for a budget-friendly machine that offers great cutting performance, then you are in the right place. This VEVOR product allows wide applications and comes with superior SIGNMASTER software that will help you with custom designs.
The most important feature of any vinyl cutter is related to the cut and feed width that it offers. Looking at this product, it offers the specifications of a mid-range product at a pretty affordable price. You are looking at 28 inches of feed width, as well as 24.8 inches of cut width.
Much like the aforementioned product, this one is highlighted by an exquisite speed of up to 800 millimeters per second. Not only that, but the pressure ranges between 10 and 500 g, which means that you can play around with different media and materials.
What we love about this product is that both the speed and the pressure are adjustable. This means custom designing has never been easier. It also features a user-friendly LCD screen that will allow you to have better control over what is happening during the cutting process. Not only this, but there is an emergency stop and start button in case you want to make some further adjustments before the machine continues cutting.
There is also a ball-bearing dual roller that is accompanied by three paper pinch rollers that you can move and adjust through the guide rail according to the material you are working with. Furthermore, this machine offers a wide range of applications. You can cut various signs and indoor decor, as well as use this vinyl cutter for label making and building structures from a line drawing.
Because of the included stand, you will not have to worry about stability, which is another advantage that it has over most of its competitors. Also, it offers digital control (through the mentioned LCD display), as well as an anti-deviation design to ensure maximum accuracy when cutting different materials.
We already talked about the SIGNMASTER software. It is one of the most innovative options when it comes to working with vinyl and making sure that you get the design and the editing part right. The main issue that we have is that you can only work with Windows and not Mac computers. However, this is a trait of most vinyl cutting machines, excluding the Silhouette Studio.
This bundle includes a 28-inch cutter, SIGNMASTER software, three precise blades, and a pen holder. There are also three cables, a flash disk, a user manual, and a floor stand kit.
Keep in mind that you may deal with jagged-edged corners after the first cut, which is one of the disadvantages related to this machine. However, you can resolve it by resetting the material and putting it through another round of cuts.
Overall, this is an affordable and user-friendly vinyl cutter that most people are going to have fun with!
The best thing about this product is the affordable price that it comes at. You can’t print on the vinyl, but it does offer accurate, efficient cutting, which is why we consider it a worthy choice. Also, it features superior software for the design and editing of your vinyl models.
The main issue that we have with it is the potential uneven corners on the first cut. Also, someone with a Mac computer will not be able to run it.
When it comes to buying any kind of product, you need to be educated on what features determine its overall value. Talking about a vinyl cutter, you should be looking for a machine that offers accurate, fast, and versatile performance while coming at an affordable price.
In order to help you make the right decision, we have prepared a couple of important points that you should look into when searching for the best vinyl cutter on the market.
Key Feature 1: Size
The size of a vinyl cutting machine doesn’t only affect its performance, but it also determines whether you will be able to fit it in your office or not. Your best bet is to look for cutters that are anywhere between 15"x15" and above. While the Silhouette Studio cutting machine is set at 12"x4", that might not be big enough if you are planning to work with larger vinyl materials. For example, the USCutter that offers 53 inches of feed width is set at 49.5"x8'.
Key Feature 2: Cutting Capacity
While the size of the machine plays an important role in the overall value, the cutting capacity should determine whether you invest in a certain product or not. Unless you are planning to work with small vinyl materials, we suggest that you go for a machine that offers at least 34 inches of feed width and 30 inches of cut width. That is the case with almost all of the models that we have mentioned, which is why you should invest extra time in making sure you get adequate cutting capacity.
Key Feature 3: Features (with Accessories)
The features that a cutting machine comes with can help you make the right decision. First and foremost, you will want included software that offers great design and editing tools, as well as the spool function.
For this matter, we think that the VinylMaster Cut and Sure Cuts A Lot are the best software options. This, along with the fact that you should opt for a machine that offers digital LCD control, is something to have on your mind when choosing a vinyl cutter.
Key Feature 4: Compatibility
When it comes to vinyl cutters, the most common issue is that these aren’t compatible with Mac OS. It is a fact that most cutters and software, such as VinylMaster Cut and SIGNMASTER, are made to work with Windows.
There is the exception of Sure Cuts A Lot, which you can run on Mac OS, but otherwise, the users of Apple products don’t have the best luck with vinyl cutters. This means that it may not be that easy, but you should do your best to find a vinyl cutter that is not limited by Windows compatibility. Additionally, you should be searching for a machine that offers COMPIM and USB ports.
Key Feature 5: Price vs Value
As with any other product, you should be looking to get the best price-value ratio. From the research that we have conducted, you should be able to get a worthy vinyl cutter for a price of $200-$300 (varies depending on the included features and accessories).
The features that make a vinyl cutter worthy of your time and money don’t mean much unless you are informed on the mechanics of a certain product.
Question 1: How Does a Vinyl Cutter Work?
As the vinyl material is moved beneath the knife, the knife makes precise cuts of the outline and into the sheet. In most cases, there are a couple of different blades that work from one side to another until the image is cut from the vinyl material.
Question 2: What Can You Do with a Vinyl Cutting Machine?
There are a variety of things that you can do using a vinyl cutter. First and foremost is creating your own apparel. Additionally, you can cut out your own stickers, signs, and party boards.
Also, for someone interested in wall art, a vinyl cutting machine can go a long way when it comes to cutting original models. You can use this machine for things such as project presentations and school decorations. Last but not least, you can protect your electronics by printing out a silkscreen that doesn’t feature any harmful acid.
Question 3: How to Determine the Pressure Setting for a Vinyl Cutter
The downforce that a vinyl cutter offers plays an important role when it comes to its overall performance. You should be looking for a machine that offers a pressure of 10-500 g.
When it comes to adjusting the downforce, it all comes down to what material are you working with (check the user manual).
Question 4: What Materials Can a Vinyl Cutter Cut and Not Cut?
The most common items used are paper, stencils, and card stock. Unfortunately, you can’t expect a vinyl cutter to go through thicker materials, such as metal or wood. When it comes to reflective media, it depends on the model you are working with.
Question 5: What is the Difference Between a Vinyl Cutter and a Plotter?
While similar, the main difference is that a vinyl cutter is a computer-controlled machine that allows you to cut out electronic custom designs.
On the other hand, when it comes to a vinyl plotter, you will have to draw out a design using a pen.
We have done our best to highlight the different reasons why you may want to invest in a vinyl cutting machine. It can not only be beneficial for people running a design and apparel business, but also for those looking to have some fun in their free time.
Out of all the options we have listed, our personal favorite is the Mophorn 53 Inch Vinyl Cutter Machine. It offers great cutting capacity, intricate accuracy, and a humanized design. However, the final decision is all yours and should depend on your budget and personal preference. Good luck!