There are several different types of machine cutters on the market and each one has unique and amazing features. Most crafters either purchase a Silhouette or a Cricut machine. Choosing the right one depends on what type of crafts you want to do and the features you will want in a machine.
About Silhouette machines
Silhouette has a Design Studio software what you can use to change and edit your patters. You can easily design projects according to y our needs by erasing something, adding text or drawing new lines. The Silhouette design store offers turnkey images and projects for a low price. You can also cut any font that is installed on your computer to make large sayings and monograms.
You can use the Design Studio free version software or you can purchase the software to unlock new features like the ability to cut both Studio and SVG (vector files). You can use Design Studio even if you are not connected to the web.
The Silhouette Cameo the newest machine. It can work with a variety of mediums like vinyl, cardstock, vellum, acetate, paper, thin cardboard and so much more. The cutting area for the Cameo is 12×12, but it will cut longer items by feeding it to the machine when you remove the mat.
This has an SD slot for cutting images without your computer. Silhouette made a few upgrades to the control panel and the overall appearance of the Cameo, but both machines can cut the same.
The Silhouette Portrait same features as the Cameo, but this has an 8-inch wide capability. This machine is compact, easy to take anywhere and can be used in all kinds of crafts. But if you want to create larger 3D projects, the Cameo is the best one for you.
The Silhouette Curio is a lite machine with an advanced software. It complements either the Portrait or the Cameo. This cutting machine has 8.5 inches wide, but you can feed thicker materials into this machine. It can also draw and emboss. New tools are still being released for the Curio.
Cricut’s machines are the Cricut Explore lineup and the Cricut Maker which are a far cry from legendary Cricut Expression machines. Cricut is the best when it comes to creating turnkey projects easily and for easy and quiet cutting.
Cricut has a very simple, easy to use the software. You can also purchase files directly from them for a minimal cost. You can also make your own designs and upload it as SVG files. Cricut machines can cut up to 11.5 x 23.5 and it is very easy to do so. You can also replicate projects from the files that you purchase.
If you love to design, you might find the software inadequate because of its limited design features. Also, take note that you have to have an internet connection to use the Explore. Your connection should be stable and fast because this may be an issue when you use the Explore. Aside from these, there are some compatibility issues with computer programs and versions. Therefore if you have decided to purchase a Cricut, be sure to check the system requirements of the machine and see if this matches the specs of your PC or laptop.
When it comes to the types of materials you can use on different Cricut machines, you can cut all kinds of medium like vinyl, cardstock, paper, chipboard, leather, thin wood and a lot more. The Cricut Expand the Cricut Maker come with very strong motors and thus will be able to take larger and thicker materials. The ability to cut thicker materials is one of the main unique features of Cricut machines and this sets them apart from Cameo and other machines.
Another feature of the newest Cricut machines is that these can draw and cut at the same time. They have slots for a blade and pen. This is an amazing add-on that will save you time if you are making cards and decorative items that require both of these features. The Silhouette can also draw and cut, but you have to stop and change the blade to pen and vice versa. The Cricut does the job without changing blades to pens and vice versa. The price range varies depending on where you are located. Cricut is more expensive and offers a variety of accessories.