This machine comes with an exclusive rotary blade that won't damage soft materials. On top of that, you will get a Fine Point Pen that will help you in planning your final design or decorating it, depending on the complexity of the project.
The additional parts are somewhat expensive.
Cricut Maker will make contouring an easy ask. Since the decorating is performed automatically, all you have to do is just upload the design to the device and turn it on to start the process. Thanks to the wireless capabilities of the device, you can upload them from your mobile gadget or computer without too much of a hassle.
Rotary Blade, Premium Fine Point Blade
Windows, Mac, iOS and Android
Fine Point Pen
2 x 12” x 12” cutting mats
50 x free ready-to-make projects (including 25 sewing patterns)
Materials for your first project
The model comes with a spooling feature that can effortlessly create multicolor designs. The cutter will conveniently detect the colors you have selected and omit the others so you won't have to change the sheets too often.
The cutter is quite bulky.
USCutter is a multifunctional stationary scrapbooking cutter that has a dual ball-bearing media roller system that can cut various single-layer materials. Moreover, the machine is equipped with three adjustable cutting blades and a full set of vinyl to start crafting right away.
3 Vinyl Cutting Blades
Windows, (Mac is not officially supported)
Serial (COM), USB
5 x rolls Greenstar vinyl
2 x sheets 12" x 24" magnetic blanks
TransferRite Ultra Clear 1310G (Grid)Application Transfer Tape - 6" x 10yd
TransferRite Ultra 592U Paper Application Tape, High Tack - 6" x 10yd
1 year, Free lifetime technical phone support
The product features a smart dial that will help you choose the correct material type. What is more, a custom mode makes it easy to set the height and width of the cut.
The setup instructions could be more thorough.
A compact cutting plotter from Cricut is one of the fastest cutting machines on the market today. Furthermore, an evergrowing library of designs and cutting patterns will help you in creating actual masterpieces out of over a hundred materials.
German Carbide Premium Blade
Windows, Mac, iOS and Android
Cricut Design Space™ software & app
100+ free images
50+ free project ideas
Pen & cardstock sample
Cricut® 12" x 12"
StandardGrip cutting mat
The PixScan compatibility makes this device highly versatile and appealing to professional artists since you can draw your own designs by hand.
The cutting width is small compared to similar models.
The Silhouette Portrait 2 will be a great addition to the toolbox of any artist. Alternatively, the great packaging makes it suitable for amateurs as well, since it has all you need for making signs, business cards, and basic decorations for your house and business.
AutoBlade, Ratchet Blade
2 x 8" x 12" cutting mats
50 x digital cuttable designs
24 sketch pens
Silhouette Studio Software
1-month Silhouette Design Store subscription
This model allows for scanning any material pattern with saving the cutter's memory for future use. On top of that, an ergonomic screen makes the editing of your design almost effortless.
The supplied cutting mat deteriorates too fast.
Brother CM350 is a multifunctional device, which allows you to combine your custom patterns with more than 600 included designs for making even more sophisticated ones. Perhaps one of the best vinyl cutters to unleash your creativity.
German Premium Carbide Blade
USB, Wireless Network Ready
12” x 12” Cutting Mat
631 x built-in designs including 100 quilt patterns and 7 lettering fonts
25-year limited warranty, Free technical phone support
The Cricut Maker 2003925 is an entry-level cutter that has all you could possibly need as a beginner scrapbooker or craftsman. It is ideal for cutting decals, shapes, circuits, and outlines from literally every material that the rotary blades of this little beast can cut. Just to name a few, the sharp blades of the machine can easily cut through fabric, thermal paper, cardboard, balsa, chipboard, and, of course, vinyl.
The machine comes equipped with a 12” x 12” mat that will help you materialize all of your great ideas. Additionally, you can order an optional 24” x 12” version of the mat that is suitable for the most sophisticated DIY projects. As for the blades, the standard edition of the machine comes supplied with both rotary and knife blades. The first will help you deal with fabrics without tearing them, while the latter is capable of cutting soft types of wood. The blades will help you in cutting small decals, stickers, and even contours so you can decorate your projects with even more details.
This electronic vinyl cutting machine from Cricut may not look like something special at first glance, however, it has all the features of a professional model, if not more. Perfect for home use and easy to maintain, this cutter is the perfect scrapbooking tool that you’d be glad to have by your side.
USCutter MH 34in
A Versatile Professional Cutter
The model in question has two outputs to connect it to your computer via USB or to the monitor via serial (COM) port. Additionally, you can use all the features of the cutter right from your desktop with some help from the proprietary software. Despite the fact that the Mac version of the software is not officially supported, it can still be used quite effectively (though some functions of the application may not work as intended).
In terms of performance, the model comes with a spooling feature that can effortlessly create multicolor designs. It will conveniently detect the colors you have selected and omit the others so you won't have to change the sheets too often. Plus, it has a dual ball-bearing media roller system that can cut various single-layer materials. Unfortunately, the quality of the vinyl that comes with this machine leaves quite a bit to be desired. So, when you're done experimenting with your first projects using the cutter, we strongly recommend purchasing materials from premium brands as it is the only way to achieve a top-notch quality in your craft.
While assembling the cutter doesn’t take a lot of effort or engineering skills, once you get the device up and running, you need to be careful since it may go off-rail while cutting if you haven't assembled it properly. Since the product is stationary, it is important to install it on a flat surface for stabilization and to avoid possible deviations from the initial design of your project.
All things considered, the MH Sign Making Kit from USCutter is perhaps one of the few stationary vinyl cutting machines that you could find in the low to medium price range and that will be suitable for both amateur and experienced craftsmen.
Cricut Explore Air 2
Not Just a Regular Plotter
The Cricut Explore Air 2 is one of the best vinyl cutters for beginners available today, thanks to its ease of use and an array of built-in presets that will bring to life the bravest of your ideas. The only downside of the pre-designed patterns is the fact that you only get a trial access to the online library. Having said that, if you start cutting from the get-go, the one-month trial should be more than enough to learn all the ropes so you probably won’t actually need the Cricut Access application anymore.
The machine comes together with a premium-quality German carbide blade that will last you for a long time and, even if it gets dull, you can always order a replacement one. The blade itself can easily cut almost every material from the list that the manufacturer added to the specifications such as colored vinyl, cardstock, leather, foils, papers, and many more.
As for the ease of use, all you have to do in order to start the cutter is turn it on and put the material inside the machine. Everything else can be initiated with just a few pushes of the button or right from your mobile device thanks to the built-in Bluetooth support and the Cricut mobile app. All in all, the Cricut Explore Air 2 requires little involvement on your behalf and can do all of the basic vinyl cutting jobs with ease.
Silhouette Portrait 2
When You Don't Know Where to Start
The starter bundle from Silhouette is perhaps one of the best options for entry-level scrapbookers since it has everything you need to get started. The machine itself may prove to be a bit small for experienced DIYers but it will suffice the needs of beginners that have just gotten into this hobby. To be more specific, the vinyl cutter has a maximum cutting width of 8 inches, which some may find a bit limiting, especially if you plan on doing large-scale projects.
As mentioned above, the bundle has a lot of convenient features as well as additional tools that will help you get into the hobby much faster than the other models. The machine is supplied with regular USB and power cables as well as a Bluetooth adapter that will come in handy for pairing the device with your phone. Additionally, the package includes 24 pens of different colors, two 12” x 8” cutting mats, as well as a 1-month subscription to the Silhouette Design Store that has a variety of different designs that can be used on various materials. The basic subscription plan will give you an instant access to the 50 digital designs so you will be able to get some practice with them from the get-go.
So, despite some minor flaws, the Portrait 2 from Silhouette is a great pick to start scrapbooking right away, mostly thanks to the AutoBlade features and the overall ease of use.
Brother CM350 ScanNCut 2
Scan Any Materials You Wish
The Brother company introduced the multifunctional Brother ScanNCut device intended to help creative people in the implementation of their projects. With this scrapbooking cutting machine for vinyl, you can easily cut even complex geometry parts made of paper or fabric instead of doing a painstaking manual cutting. This device will be highly appreciated by anyone who is engaged in making products from scrap materials or a patchwork.
The most prominent advantage of this model is its ability to scan any images, pictures, drawings and even photos for saving them to the memory and future reuse. The built-in 300 dpi scanner with RGB color recognition will enable you to create your own complex design. Moreover, you can even combine your own patterns with the 100 quilting designs already stored in the cutting machine memory, with 531 available card and package cut designs, etc. and 7 different fonts. The large display of the device makes managing and editing various projects a no issue. We recommend you to take a closer look at the starter kit, which makes it possible to apply your creative skills right away.
What Is a Vinyl Cutter?
It is a machine that visually resembles a regular desktop printer and that is not limited to only cutting vinyl. Some of the vinyl cutter models are even capable of cutting sturdy materials such as thin types of wood or faux leather. Depending on the material, you will have to choose between a cutting blade or a rotary blade since cutting blade can damage fabrics, decals, and various types of vinyl.
Some cutter models come equipped with various pens, additional blades, and special accessories so it is important to figure out what kind of additional hardware you will need for a particular task.
So, how do the cutters actually work? In order to use a vinyl cutter properly, you will need a vector image that is usually made using such software as Corel Draw or Adobe Illustrator. After the image was uploaded to the machine and the desired material was chosen, the cutter will start removing the unwanted parts.
Don’t be discouraged though, with a variety of pre-set designs that come together with the software of a vinyl cutter, you don’t actually need to be a designer or engineer to make a composition for your project.