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Whether you’re an experienced woodworker or just starting to build up your collection of power tools, a miter saw is an indispensable tool that allows you to make a variety of angles.
If you’re getting by with a miter box but find you’re using it a lot and it’s seen better days, it’s time to think about an upgrade.
Have a look at our compound and sliding miter saw reviews and buying guide so you get a better sense of what’s out there and what you should be looking for.
Note: We have a separate guide for the best rated cordless miter saws for those who want a battery-operated model.
Here's 3 products we picked out that thought you would be interested in depending on your budget...
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The Best Miter Saw with Reviews 2020
Here's a list of the best miter saws we found:
1. DEWALT DWS779 12" Sliding Compound Miter Saw
- Small footprint when you consider how powerful and versatile it is
- Tall sliding fences to handle larger pieces of wood
- Detent plate with 10 positive stops for precision, powerful motor
- Dust collection port is not a standard size
- No LED light or laser guide
- Users mentioned a slight kick when first turned on
This is a professional level compound miter saw that can handle a lot of jobs. It’s powerful with a 15 amp motor and 3800 RPMs and can handle large pieces of wood. For example, it tackles crown molding up to 7-1/2″ nested and base molding up to 6-3/4″ vertically without a problem.
One thing that really stands out about this saw is how accurate it is, even without a laser guiding system. Its 10-stop detent plate and the wide range of miter angles makes it easy to make adjustments and get good results.
This model is a powerhouse and definitely worth the price. It’s best for professionals or those who have the need to use a saw like this on a regular basis and might be a bit too much of an investment for someone who is only going to use it casually.
Another thing about this saw is that it’s really heavy. Considering its weight and how versatile it is, this saw has a reasonable footprint. That said, you’ll probably want to get a rolling stand for it in order to make it a little easier to move around, especially if you’ve got a stand and the jobs you’re going to use it for involve moving it from place to place.
2. Hitachi C10FCE2 10" Compound Miter Saw
- Extremely versatile
- Powerful motor
- Comfortable handle makes it easier to use and control
- Large table with built-in clamping system for support and accuracy
- Not as durable as some others we reviewed
- May be difficult to mount
- Poor assembly instructions
- Some found it difficult to get set up
The Hitachi C10FCE2 has a powerful motor and being able to go up to 5000 RPMs helps it cut through a wide range of materials so it can make miter cuts and crosscuts on even the densest material. It can cut wood, plywood, sashes, hardboard, or just about anything else you can throw at it.
That’s why the thing that makes this miter saw stand out as one of our top picks is how versatile it is. Miter adjustments are easy to make and can be adjusted to between 0 and 52 degrees in both directions. It can handle large pieces of material up to 2 5/16 inches high and 5-21/32-inches deep. It even comes with an extender to give proper support to larger pieces of material.
It’s not only extremely user-friendly but budget friendly, too. It’s because of this that it’s our choice for best value miter saw, making it perfect for anyone interested in woodworking. Even amateurs will get a professional grade experience thanks to how easy it is to control.
Assembly is a little difficult and is not helped by the poor quality of the instruction manual. It only tilts one direction for beveling, which may be an issue depending on what projects you’re working on. Despite these things, this is a great choice for home use and the best miter saw for the money.
3. Black+Decker M1850BD 7-1/4" Compound Miter Saw
- Die-cast aluminum construction which makes it really lightweight
- Easy to handle and portable
- Excellent value for money
- perfect for a DIYer or for small jobs about the house.
- Small blade
- Settings have some play to them and don’t lock in solidly
- Cannot handle large professional jobs
The M1850BD from Black+Decker is great for anyone looking to do small projects around the house or for crafting purposes. It’s perfect for trim and framing work or for things like cutting crown moldings or baseboards.
What stands out most about this model is how lightweight it is and the portability that gives the user. Weighing around 17 pounds, it won’t need a stand with wheels. It’s light enough to put away when you’re done with it or to take it to wherever you need to use it.
The smaller blade only cut up to 2″ x 4″ at 90° and 2″ x 3″ at 45° so this is not a tool that can be used by professionals for heavier materials. With only 9 amps, it doesn’t have to power to keep up with large jobs anyway. But it’s perfect for someone who is looking for a miter saw to use around the house for one large job or occasional small ones.
The cuts can be inaccurate and the settings don’t always lock solidly into place. But this is basic, light duty saw for DIY, light carpentry, or handyman type work and it reliably gets these kinds of jobs done.
4. WEN 70716 10" Sliding Compound Miter Saw
- 15 amps and 5500 RPMs make this a fast and powerful saw
- Lightweight and portable
- Very versatile
- Comes in 10 or 12-inch versions so you can get the one that will best suit your work
- Adjustments need constant rechecking and can be somewhat unreliable
- Clamps are inconvenient to use
- Not durable enough for large professional jobs
- Dust collection system is not very good
You can find the WEN 70716 with either a 10 or a 12-inch blade. Even with the larger blade, this is still an impressive saw for the price. It’s 15 amps put it on par with some of the more expensive saws we reviewed and, at 5500 RPMs, it’s fast enough to make most jobs a breeze. It’s top of the list when it comes to sliding compound miter saw reviews.
This is another saw that offers a lot of versatility. It bevels both directions up to 45 degrees, has a decent depth of cut (especially with the 12-inch blade), and the power and speed we already mentioned. Plus, it’s lightweight at just around 30 pounds and portable so you can easily put it away when you’re done using it or take it from job site to job site.
Despite the speed and power of its motor, this still isn’t a good choice for professionals. In order to make the saw so lightweight and to keep the cost down, the materials used to manufacture make it so it’s not as heavy and durable as a professional tool should be.
Some of the adjustments are unstable so you’ll need to check your settings with every cut. This is still a powerful saw for a great price that you could find a lot of uses for around the house. It’s the best sliding miter saw we found and the only one we reviewed.
5. DEWALT DW715 12" Compound Miter Saw
- Powerful saw with a large blade
- Detent plate has 11 positive stops to help with accuracy and versatility
- Built in handle to transport it for easy storage
- Sturdy and durable
- Included blade isn’t very good
- Blade changes are difficult
- Doesn’t come with a lot of extras
- Difficult to find compatible accessories
The DEWALT DW715 has a powerful 15 amp motor and rpm of up to 4000, which makes quick work of cutting through most materials used for framing or molding. It’s durable, versatile, and accurate and designed to deliver fast precise bevel cuts.
The adjustment system on this saw is extremely accurate. The stainless steel miter detent plate has 11 positive stops so you can adjust quicker without losing work time. Adjustments are precise and lock into place. The handle is easy to adjust and the wide miter capacity makes a vast range of accurate cuts.
This saw can make 45-degree bevel cuts through wood that measures 2 x 8 inches. While it’s not exceptionally lightweight, this 42lb saw has a built-in handle so you can easily stash it away when you’re not using it.
The blade that is included with it will need to be replaced before you’ll really be able to use it. It’s also really difficult to find accessories that are compatible with this saw – even when looking at accessories from the manufacturer. But if you can live without extras like a LED light, this is a great model for you!
6. Bosch GCM12SD 12" Dual-Bevel Glide Miter Saw
- Soft grip handle is ambidextrous so everyone will get the same experience using it
- Easy-to-read bevel and miter scales
- Easily accessed controls
- Very heavy and not easily portable,
- One of the more expensive miter saws that we reviewed.
This is a high end sliding miter saw and you should expect a lot from it. Bosch’s Axial-Glide System assures that you have total control over cuts and makes sure they’re all nice and smooth. This system does not use a traditional set up so it takes up 12 inches less workspace on your workbench or tabletop.
What’s nice about this model (other than its sheer capacity to make even, smooth, and accurate cuts) is that it’s compatible with a variety of different 12-inch blades and has a clear lower guard to help you see what you’re cutting. Although it’s large and powerful, the compact design makes it usable in small spaces and ideal if you don’t have a lot of clearance to work.
It has a 14-inch horizontal capacity, a 6-1/2-inch vertical capacity, and a 6-1/2-inch capacity against the fence at 45 degrees so it’s highly versatile. It can also support material up to 40 inches long making it great for any professional job. One downside? It is too heavy to be considered portable.
Though it is quite expensive, this model is ideal for people who need a saw for big jobs. It’s also a great one to pick for any southpaws who are serious about woodworking because it gives them the full experience of using a miter saw as it was meant to be used.
7. DEWALT DW713 10" Compound Miter Saw
- Lightweight and portable
- Built in handle for transport
- Powerful and fast enough to handle a variety of jobs
- Compatible with DEWALT’s laser system
- Have to buy laser system separately
- Doesn’t come with as many accessories as other miter saws on the market
This DEWALT DW713 has a powerful 15 amp motor and a 5000 rpm no-load speed that lets it cut through a variety of materials accurately and quickly. The adjustable cam-lock makes it easy to get accurate angles and the detent plate has 11 stops so you can hit your angles quickly without a lot of fuss.
While this miter saw can perform just great on its own, it’s compatible with DEWALT’s miter saw laser system so you do have to option to upgrade this to something super precise. Whether or not you want to do so depends on what you’re using it for. If you feel it’s worth it to invest in a laser system, this saw makes it easy to do.
Because it only weighs 35 pounds, this model is pretty portable. This is great if you want to take it to and from the worksite or if you just want to be able to easily store it when you’re done using it. This is a great saw for anyone to use for any situation, including professional jobs.
It’s a little on the expensive side but if you’re someone who is going to use it, it’s worth the investment. DEWALT is a well-known brand with a good warranty which makes this a safer bet than some of the lighter weight portable miter saws out there.
8. SKIL 3821-01 12" Compound Miter Saw
- Laser cutline guide system
- Powerful fast motor can handle a variety of materials
- Can cut through some softer materials because of adjustable speed
- Good for experienced and novice users
- Laser cannot always be seen well in bright light
- moderately expensive
- handles for portability but still on the heavy side so difficult to move
- Some users mentioned the laser is not always reliable and somewhat fragile
The combination of the 15 amp adjustable speed motor with up to 4500 RPMs with the laser cutline guide systems means you can get perfectly accurate cuts in a variety of materials. It even has table extenders on each side so that it can support larger pieces. This is a powerful and precise miter saw.
The adjustable speed motor is great because it allows for a wider variety of materials to be cut. Slower speeds can be used to cut soft materials and faster speeds are used with harder materials. While it can handle cutting some pipes and plastics but was ultimately designed to cut through wood.
The cutline guide shows you where the saw is going to cut which allows you to make fine-tuned adjustments before trying to make an important cut. This saw is great for both new users and professionals as the laser guide can help anyone get next to perfect results with every cut.
It’s sometimes difficult to see the laser when you’re working in bright light but this is a small problem to have considering how great this saw is. It’s a little on the expensive side but is something that can be used by anyone and consistently provide good results.
9. DEWALT DWS780 12" Double Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw
- Innovative clamping mechanism for stability
- 10 step detent plate for easy adjustments
- Cross-cut positioning system so you get an accurate cut line indication
- Heavy than others
- One of the most expensive miter saws we reviewed
- Might be too much saw for an amateur
- The slide isn’t as smooth as with some competitors
This is a great miter saw for professionals who need a tool that can not only handle a lot of different kind of jobs, but that is durable enough to stand up to repeated heavy use. It’s fast and accurate, ideal for heavy work but sure to please anyone and perform well on any job.
The special thing about this miter saw is by far the XPS dual alignment system. It featured ultra bright LED lighting that shines a laser beam on the material that shows you exactly where the blade is going to make contact. The best part is it doesn’t need any calibration even after changing the blade.
While this saw has a lot of power and might be a little intimidating to newbies, it really is very user-friendly. The controls for angle adjustments are all really easy to locate and read and the detent plate with 10 stops allows for quick and easy changes. It bevels from 0 to 49 degrees and miters 60 degrees on the right and 50 on the left, making it exceptionally versatile.
The functionality of this tool makes it ideal for anyone to use. The price, though, is a lot to invest unless you’re a professional who uses a miter saw regularly or unless you have a big amount of money to spare. If you want a tool that will last a long time and can take a lot of abuse, this is the one.
Miter saws are a popular tool for a lot of different trades.
Professional contractors, woodworkers, home remodelers, furniture makers, and even DIYers can all find a lot of uses for them.
If you’re only planning on making straight cuts, you might want to consider using a chop saw instead.
Let’s take a look at the things you need to know before buying a miter saw.
You’ll see a lot of specific terminologies used to describe what the miter saw does and it’s various specs when looking to buy one. Here are some of the most common to know:
- Miter cut – An angled cut across the grain
- Bevel Cut – An angled cut across the face, or surface
- Compound Cut – Combination of a miter and bevel cut
- Cross Cut – A cut across the width of the material
- Miter Handle – Rotates the saw left to right to position for miter cuts.
- Miter Scale – Where you set the angle and direction of the miter cut.
- Bevel Locking Handle – Locks the saw at the bevel angle you need for the piece you’re working on.
- Fence – Keeps the material you’re cutting from moving when you’re using the saw.
- Lower Blade Guard – Covers the blade when it’s raised to protect your hands and retracts when it’s lowered for use.
- Revolutions Per Minute (RPM) – How many times the blade spins around in a minute.
Different Types of Miter Saws
There are two basic types of miter saws in our reviews:
- Basic Miter Saw – These can be used for very basic miter cuts for simple jobs. There is no bevel option. They’re very affordable and accurate, but their use is limited. While there are some great basic miter saws out there, we did not review any.
- Compound Miter Saw – Most of our reviews are for compound miter saws. They can be used to make both miter cuts and bevel cuts. This kind of saw also comes in two varieties: single and dual bevel. Single bevel saws will only make bevel cuts in one direction and will require you to move the material if you want to go the other way. Dual bevel miter saws can make both left and right bevel cuts.
We recommend compound miter saws as they’re the most versatile and you’ll get a lot of use out of them. You’ll find a majority of our reviews are compound miter saw reviews. Whether you want a single or dual bevel option depends on the kind of work you’ll be doing and if you think it’s worth investing in a saw that can bevel both directions.
We have more detailed guide on the different types of miter saws.
Features to Look for
When looking at miter saws, there are some components that you need to look out for.
Laser Guide System
This is definitely not a necessary feature but it’s a really nice one to have and will help you make more accurate cuts. Some are more effective than others so make sure you read our reviews to see which ones have laser guides that are worth considering. If you buy your miter saw without a laser guide and later realize you want one, there are a few brands that sell them as an added accessory.
Basically, you want the motor to be strong enough to tackle the jobs you’re going to be doing. If you’re going to be using your miter saw frequently or for bigger jobs, you should opt for a more powerful motor. If you’re only going to use it occasionally for small DIY jobs, you can probably get by with a less powerful one.
Miter saws typically come with motors that have between 10 and 15 amps of power.
The number of rotations per minute will affect how fast and how smooth your miter saw will cut. If you’re planning to use your miter saw on material other than wood, make sure it can give you the right amount of RPMs. Generally, the softer the material, the lower the RPMS you need.
While there are some exceptions, most miter saws come with either 10 or 12-inch blades. A 10-inch blade is large enough for most DIY projects or small jobs around the house. For professional jobs, though, a 12-inch blade will allow you to work with larger pieces of material.
Now that you’ve read our reviews and know a little bit more about what to look for, you should be able to find the best miter saw to suit your needs.
We can’t recommend the DEWALT DWS779 enough. It’s powerful, versatile, and accurate and will be able to handle any job you throw at it. It’s the best compound miter saw we found.
The last thing to consider after you have chosen a miter saw, is whether or not you’ll need to buy a miter saw stand, so you can take your saw anywhere to make cuts.