If you’re planning to do any designs and artworks, then it’s time to think about having the best cutting machine to help you in doing the best crafts and layouts for your next project. When browsing online or visiting local stores, you’ll face a dilemma of choosing the appropriate cutting machine because of different brands and types of cutting machines to choose from.
We’ll help you narrow down your choices by reviewing two of the best cutting machines in the market today. The Silhouette Cameo 3 and Cricut Explore Air 2 cutting machines have gained popularity and used by a lot of students, hobbyists, and professionals.
Silhouette Cameo 3 VS. Cricut Explore Air 2
The Silhouette Cameo 3 and Cricut Explore Air 2 cutting machines have established a good reputation worldwide. Many artists and designers are using these machines to create beautiful and cool designs for their artwork projects.
• Silhouette Cameo 3
The Silhouette Cameo 3 is the perfect DIY machine which is low-cost and efficient. It is your best partner when it comes to scrapbooking, home decoration, and even in mug or T-shirt printing. It is a cutting plotter that usually employs vinyl as its primary material. Like a home printer, this machine is connected to a computer via software with the same name. It’s designed and manufactured by a United States multinational company, Silhouette Cameo USA.
• Cricut Explore Air 2
Like Silhouette Cameo, Cricut is another cutting machine that is great when creating unique designs. It is also made by a US company called Provo Craft & Novelty, Inc. or better known as Provo Craft. Though both products have the same purpose, they contain different features and type of software (for such case in Cricut is Cricut Craft Room software). Cricut also has been used for home decoration and scrapbooking. Like Silhouette Cameo 3, you can use a variety of cutting materials, from vinyl to fabrics (you can check out the best fabric cutting machines by click here).
#1. Silhouette CAMEO 3 Wireless Cutting Machine
Silhouette’s flagship machine, Cameo 3, is one of the most popular die cutting machines for designing and home decorating. It can cut different materials, from fabric, vinyl, paper, and cardstock, measuring up to 12 inches wide and 10 feet long. It has a sleek, large, and modernized touchscreen design incorporating wireless connectivity via Bluetooth, to conserve space and congestion from wires and cables. It has a powerful blade that cuts grip and for fast performance. The upgrade of Cameo has dual carriage performing two functions in one operation. You can cut and sketch at the same time, which could ease the process and save you time. If you want to buy this product, you can check it online or in local electronic stores. You can check the in-depth review of Silhouette CAMEO 3 here.
Here are the features of Silhouette CAMEO 3:
- Compatible and built-in auto-adjustable blade that lacks reliability
- Very responsive and user-friendly touchscreen
- Bluetooth works fine but incompatible with other devices
- Basic instructional manual (software setup and installation)
- Makes excellent cut and sketches
- Efficient for numerous and immediate operation because of its dual carriage
- Easy installation
- A bit bulky and large (dimension: 22 ½” x 8.5″ x 6″)
- Weighs about 12 pounds
- Works without using mats
- Recognizes Pixscan Technology and Print & Cut so you could cut or sketch just by scanning or taking pictures
- An extra storage compartment to keep your tools, blades, and sketch pens
- Power supply that could run from 110 volts to 240 volts
- Includes Free Pre-packaged Silhouette Designs
- Comes with USB and Power Cable, 12-inch cutting mat, and Silhouette Studio Software
#2. Cricut Explore Air 2 Machine
The Cricut Explore Air 2 Machine is a new and hit die cutting machine has been brag on by Cricut for its two times faster cutting than any other machines in its ‘Fast Mode’. It has a great cut that is suitable for handling more than 100 materials, including vinyl, fabrics, and leather. It also creates and cuts intricate designs that are readily available online or upload free designs on the website. The Cricut Explore Air 2 Machine is entirely wireless via Bluetooth, so you don’t need to mess with wires when using it. That’s why it is an absolute purchase for those who want to decorate their homes, print customized shirts, or make a scrapbook. If you are interested, then you can check it online for more details, or you can read the in-depth review of this Cricut machine here.
Here are the features of the Cricut Explore Air 2 Machine:
- Extremely fast and convenient especially for multiple printing and cutting
- Easy installation and utilization of the software
- A bit of traffic and weak design store
- Flexible to wide-ranging materials
- Software does not work offline
- Expensive accessories
- Excellent cutting feature with Smartset dial to ensure proper cutting depth and application of pressure
- Allows wireless connectivity (depends on compatibility)
- Unreliable Android app
- Power supply works on 110 to 220 volts
- Upload images through various formats (.jpeg, .jpg, or .png)
- Lightweight specifically weighs 6 pounds.
- Durable body
- Comes with Power, USB and starter kit (German carbide blade, pen and green 12x 12 starting mat)
- Contains basic instructional manual for first-timers
Similarities between the Cricut Explore Air 2 Machine and the Silhouette CAMEO 3 Wireless Cutting Machine
The two brands have been competing vying for best cutting machine manufacturer. They both exhibit excellent cutting quality and has received a lot of positive feedback from a wide range of users worldwide. They have similarities worth reviewing.
First of all, both machines cut over designs in a highly detailed and precise manner, that can also handle different materials, from vinyl to fabrics. Enjoying the versatility of Cameo 3 and Explore Air 2. They both employ wireless connectivity via Bluetooth to avoid wire concentration and for a more organized workspace. Also, both cutting machines have sophisticated modernized design and robust body. The Silhouette Cameo 3 and Cricut Explore Air 2 use software with incorporated design store, so you can upload and create designs the way you wanted. Both machines contain a starter kit, with pens and mats, that help beginners. Also, you can check out our guide for the Cameo 3 vs. Cameo 4.
Which Die Cutting Machine Is Ideal for Me?
If you look into its features, you will immediately go for Silhouette Cameo 3 machine because it has more detailed and additional specifications as compared to Cricut Explore Air 2. It has a dual cartridge and auto-adjust blade, unlike the Cricut model. The software of Cricut does not work well when the internet connection is slow, and it is mainly web-based, so you’ll feel restricted creating designs if you’re not connected to the internet.
However, if you’re planning to start a small business, the Cricut Explore Air 2 has an edge because this machine is highly reliable when it comes to fast and multifold operations. It’s also cheaper (discounted price) than the Cameo 3. You won’t have software issues as long as you have a reliable and stable internet connection.
Overall, both products are extremely recommended. It’s really hard to choose when comparing their features. You need to weigh on a fast cutting machine versus a highly stable and multi-featured cutting machine. But whatever you choose, you’ll surely get your money’s worth because both machines are dependable.