The Best Miter Saw Options And Reviews For 2021 and Beyond

With their versatility and precision, best miter saws are essential tools for any serious woodworker. From crosscutting boards and making bevels and compound cuts to perfecting trim work and other creative wood pursuits, miter saws are capable of executing a variety of carpentry tasks.

If you’re ready to add a miter saw to your power tool collection or need to replace an aging model, the reviews and buyer’s guide below will introduce you to the top brands in multiple categories and show you which features to consider when assessing your needs.  

Best 12-Inch Miter Saw

SKILSAW SPT88-01 12-Inch Worm Drive Dual-Bevel Sliding Miter Saw ($650)

best miter sawThough it’s not quite perfect yet, the evolving design and features of the SKILSAW SPT88-01 12-inch Worm Drive Dual Bevel Sliding Miter Saw make it a force to be reckoned with in its category, especially for remodeling and construction jobs that require portability and power. 

Instead of a laser marker, the SKILSAW uses an LED shadow cutline indicator, which is easier to see in broad daylight and maintains its calibration better than lasers. The worm drive gear system provides superior torque and smooth operation compared to belt-driven models, and the dual-field design of the motor reduces the risk of overheating while extending the tool’s useful life. Weighing in at just 51 pounds, it’s also easy to move around the job site and operate without fatigue. 

Features and Specifications

  • Power Source: Corded electric
  • Motor: 15A, 4,000 RPM
  • Voltage: 120V
  • Bevel Angle Range: 45° left/45° right
  • Blade Diameter: 12 inches
  • Weight: 51 pounds
  • Warranty: 1 year

Check Latest Price   See Full Review

Best 10-inch Miter Saw

Metabo HPT 36V MultiVolt C3610DRA ($552)

best miter sawThis dual-powered dynamo gives you the flexibility and freedom to operate the saw using traditional AC power or go cordless with a 36V battery pack. Its efficient brushless motor delivers ample runtime, long-term durability and sustained power while requiring virtually no maintenance.

The Metabo HPT 36V MultiVolt C3610DRA is ideal for working in tight spaces or against walls, thanks to its non-slip grip handle, zero rear clearance slide rails and lightweight design. The adjustable laser marker enhances cutting accuracy; use the precise depth-setting control knob for rabbit and dado cuts. An integrated LED light provides improved visibility in dim conditions. 

Features and Specifications

  • Power Source: Dual-power (corded electric and 36V battery)
  • Motor: 15A
  • Voltage: 120V
  • Bevel Angle Range: 48° left/48° right
  • Blade Diameter: 10 inches
  • Weight: 45.5 pounds
  • Warranty: 5 years

Check Latest Price   See Full Review

Honorable Mention

Delta Cruzer 26-2240 10-inch Dual-Bevel Sliding Miter Saw ($675)

best miter sawSimilar to Bosch’s Glide Miter saws, the Delta Cruzer miter saw incorporates patented load arms to ensure maximum smoothness and stability. Front bevel controls are easy to see and adjust, and the powerful motor and impressive range are capable of producing cross cuts of up to 16 inches.

Features and Specifications

  • Power Source: Corded electric
  • Voltage: 120V
  • Blade Diameter: 10 inches
  • Weight: 55 pounds
  • Warranty: 5 year

Check Latest Price   See Full Review

Best Sliding Compound Miter Saw

Bosch GCM12SD Axial-Glide Miter Saw ($649)

best miter sawManufactured by power tool juggernaut Bosch, the GCM12SD Axial-Glide Miter Saw delivers consistently smooth performance and precise cuts with its efficient proprietary Axial-Glide technology. A high-precision Squarelock quick-release fence aligns 90 degrees to the saw’s table with no adjustment, along with a one-touch locking system for added convenience and support.

A user-friendly uniform bevel and stainless steel miter scales with marked detents and roof pitch angles make it easy to adjust the settings. Best of all, the affordable price point makes this impressive tool a solid value.

Features and Specifications

  • Power Source: Corded electric
  • Motor: 15A, 3,800 RPM
  • Voltage: 120V
  • Bevel Angle Range: 47° left/47° right
  • Blade Diameter: 12 inches
  • Weight: 88.2 pounds
  • Warranty: 1 year

Check Latest Price   See Full Review

Best Cordless Miter Saw

Makita XSL08PT with AWS ($1,059)

best miter sawWhile many of us have low expectations for cordless power tools, the Makita XSL08PT performs just as well as its corded counterparts, with a direct-drive motor that puts out consistent power when working with a wide range of materials. It’s also incredibly consistent, delivering smooth, accurate cuts on trim, base and crown.

Smart design features include front bevel adjustments and a unique two-rail sliding whose modest footprint allows the saw to be positioned flush against a wall.

The unit also incorporates a Bluetooth-enabled auto-start wireless system (AWS) and automatic speed change technology to allow for adjustments to cutting speed and torque under load. The runtime will surprise you as well, with the pair of 5Ah batteries powering the saw for nearly a full day without needing to be recharged. 

Features and Specifications

  • Power Source: 18V battery
  • Motor: 4,400 RPM
  • Voltage: 36V
  • Bevel Angle Range: 48° left/48° right
  • Blade Diameter: 12 inches
  • Weight: 69 pounds
  • Warranty: 3 years

Check Latest Price   See Full Review

Honorable Mention

DeWalt DHS790AT2 FlexVolt Miter Saw ($799)

best miter sawThe DeWalt FlexVolt Miter Saw combines the convenience of a cordless saw with the performance of a traditional corded model, thanks to an innovative battery that automatically adjusts its voltage when you change tools.

The muscular 120V brushless motor provides extended runtime, and the integrated adjustment-free Cutline Blade Positioning System delivers consistent accuracy and visibility. 

Features and Specifications

  • Power Source: ACDC
  • Motor: 3800 RPM
  • Voltage: 120V
  • Weight: 56 pounds
  • Warranty: 3 years

Check Latest Price   See Full Review

Best Household Miter Saw Value

Ryobi TSS103 10-inch Sliding Compound Miter Saw ($219)

best miter sawYour eyes aren’t playing tricks on you—the powerful, nicely-appointed Ryobi TSS103 10-inch Sliding Compound Miter Saw really is priced at just over $200. This economical household unit is strong enough to handle most residential woodworking and home improvement jobs and features a 15-amp motor and 12-inch crosscut capacity.

The LED cutline indicator delivers an easy-to-read guideline in any light level, and the attached work light illuminates small or dim spaces for safety and accuracy. Connect a dust extractor to the 1.25-inch dust port to keep your garage or workshop free of dust and debris. 

Features and Specifications

  • Power Source: Corded electric
  • Motor: 15A, 4,600 RPM
  • Voltage: 120V
  • Bevel Angle Range: 47° left/47° right
  • Blade Diameter: 10 inches
  • Weight: 37 pounds
  • Warranty: 3 years

Check Latest Price   See Full Review

Best Professional-Grade Miter Saw Value

Metabo HPT C12RSH2 12-Inch Dual Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw ($589)

best miter sawWith the newly-upgraded Metabo HPT C12RSH2(S), the manufacturers took a good saw and made it great. It retains the features that made the original model such a hit when it first hit the market 15 years ago, including the fine-tuned adjustment knobs for changing bevel and miter settings, vertical handle design and zero-clearance rail system.

The fixed rails provide a smooth glide path for the saw head, eliminating the rear clearance requirement that restricts other sliding miter saws. Tall sliding fences allow for cuts with larger material and then slide out of the way for bevel cuts. With a price tag under $600, you simply can’t beat the value offered by this heavy-duty model from Metabo.

Features and Specifications

  • Power Source: Corded electric
  • Motor: 15A, 4,000 RPM
  • Voltage: 120V
  • Bevel Angle Range: 45° left/45° right
  • Blade Diameter: 12 inches
  • Weight: 79 pounds
  • Warranty: 5 years

Check Latest Price   See Full Review

Best Miter Saw for Woodworking

Festool Kapex KS 120 REB Miter Saw ($1,500)

best miter sawIt’s simply impossible to find a higher-quality woodworking miter saw than the Festool Kapex KS 120 REB Miter Saw. Made of a lightweight magnesium alloy base, the Kapex KS 120 REB is both durable and portable, weighing in at just 47 pounds. Its compact footprint allows for precise operation in tight work spaces or flush against walls.  

The specially-designed blades are engineered to dampen vibration and moderate noise levels. When it’s time to replace the blade, the FastFix blade change system locks the arbor and mechanically freezes the trigger, making it possible to change the blade with one hand. Dual lasers can be refined with three-axis controls to allow for consistent accuracy with every cut. Bevel gauges on both sides of the saw provide convenient, quick reference, and the micro-adjustment knob allows for customization to fractions of a degree.  

Features and Specifications

  • Power Source: Corded electric
  • Motor: 13A, 3,400 RPM
  • Voltage: 120V
  • Bevel Angle Range: 47° left/47° right
  • Blade Diameter: 10.25 inches
  • Weight: 47 pounds
  • Warranty: 3 years

Check Latest Price   See Full Review

Best Miter Saw for Metal Cutting

SKILSAW SPT62MTC-22 12-inch Dry Cut Saw ($494)

best miter sawDespite technically belonging to the chop saw category, the SKILSAW SPT62MTC 12-inch Dry Cut Saw deserves a mention on our list for crafters in search of the best saw for cutting metal.

Though most metal-cutting saws feature a 14-inch blade, in this case the 12-inch blade allows for a much lighter tool with a compact, versatile footprint that can be used in virtually any environment.

Paired with the included Diablo Cermet-tipped blade, the powerful 15-amp motor and no-load 1,500 RPM delivers faster, cleaner cuts than a standard chop saw with no deburring required. The soft-start motor also offers a longer life and smoother operation.  

Features and Specifications

  • Power Source: Corded electric
  • Motor: 15A, 1,500 RPM
  • Voltage: 120V
  • Miter angle range: 0 to 45°
  • Blade Diameter: 12 inches
  • Weight: 38.2 pounds
  • Warranty: 3 years

Check Latest Price   See Full Review

Best Miter Saw Stand

Bosch T4B Gravity Rise Miter Saw Stand ($476)

best miter sawWith adjustable length and riser supports, the Bosch T4B Gravity Rise Miter Saw Stand holds up to 18 feet of material. The universal mounting system is compatible with Bosch tools as well as most competitors’ models, and an adjustable telescoping leg provides critical stability on uneven surfaces. Integrated rubber wheels allow for ultimate mobility from jobsite to jobsite. 

Features and Specifications

  • Height: 48.42 inches
  • Length: 51.5 inches
  • Extended length: 103.15 inches
  • Weight: 76.7 pounds
  • Wheel Diameter: 8 inches

Check Latest Price   See Full Review

Miter Saw Buyer’s Guide: Factors to Consider

Though it may appear to be a relatively straightforward tool, there are a dizzying number of specifications, features and other considerations that determine which miter saw will best meet your needs. Be sure to research the following factors before you make this significant investment.

Saw Type

Miter saws can be sorted into one of three primary categories: sliding compound, sliding dual compound and stationary compound. Stationary compound miter saws are the most basic version of the tool, allowing for miter cuts to the right and left but only one-directional bevel cuts. Sliding compound miter saws add a level of sophistication by moving forward and backward along set rails, while the sliding dual compound miter saw encompasses all of these features while adding bevel cuts to both right and left. The primary advantage of sliding saws is their ability to crosscut larger pieces of material, with the sliding feature extending the diameter of the blade by several inches. 

Power Source and Size

Traditionally, miter saws have relied on electrical power to run 10- to 15-amp motors. If you expect to make wide crosscuts or work with hardwoods on a regular basis, a motor with maximum amperage is recommended. 

However, battery-powered miter saws have come a long way in recent years, with some models delivering performance virtually equal to their corded counterparts. Cordless saws add the benefit of being lightweight and portable, without the limitations of electric power availability and cord length. Their brushless motors also require less maintenance and deliver longer life than electric models. 

Blade and Crosscut Size

The size of a miter saw’s blade determines the maximum crosscut it can achieve in a single pass. Larger blades permit larger crosscuts and greater miter and bevel ranges. The most common blade sizes are 8, 10, 12 and 14 inches. If your work frequently includes dimensional lumber or wide molding, your blade (or blade plus slide capacity) will need to be greater than the width of the material you’re using. 

Some crafters favor 10-inch blades because they can be used interchangeably with table saws; the same compatibility applies to 7.25-inch blades used in both cordless miter saws and table saws. 

Also keep in mind that blades with high tooth counts create cleaner cuts and finer finishes. 

Angle Ranges and Detents

Most saws have minimum miter and bevel ranges of 45°, with variable ranges on the maximum end. Some saws add a few degrees to make it 48° in each direction, while others may have a slightly larger range in one direction compared to the other. Unless you do highly specialized work, the minimum 45° standard should be sufficient for most tasks. 

Positive stop detents are an incredibly convenient feature available on many miter saws, providing a mechanical catch to lock the machine into position until you manually release it. These settings ensure accurate angles, so look for a model with detents at common angles (22.5°, 45° and 90°) as well as additional angles you may find useful. Bevel detents are less frequently included as standard features on saws, but they’re a nice feature to have when available. 

Cut Guide

In recent years, laser-based cut guides have become the norm for miter saws. However, this cutting-edge technology is far from perfect. The laser diode isn’t directly connected to the saw blade, so it can be off the mark ever so slightly, which can result in cuts that are a full fraction of an inch short. Red lasers can also be difficult to see in bright light, but the alternative—green lasers—are more costly than the red version. 

In response to the drawbacks associated with laser cut guides, some miter saw manufacturers have opted to take a step back from highly technical solutions, instead using an LED light to cast the shadow of the blade on the material being cut. This cut line runs truer than the laser-guided type and can be seen in any light conditions. 

Fences and Material Supports

Miter saw fences are designed to secure the wood during cutting. Their height can vary according to the saw’s manufacturer and intended use, and some models even incorporate sliding fences to adjust to different tasks. If your work tends to involve tall stock, crown molding or other material, look for a miter saw with taller fences to ensure a safe, secure workspace. 

Drive Type

Miter saws use one of several types of drive technologies: belt drive, direct drive and worm drive. Though largely an area of personal preference, most users report that belt-driven miter saws feel like they cut more smoothly; however, they also offer lower blade clearance than direct drive or worm drive models, which generally produce more power for thick cuts.  

Other Features and Accessories

These features and accessories are worth considering for both safe and convenient operation of your new miter saw: 

  • Arm lock: Look for a miter saw with an arm lock that neutralizes the blade’s vertical movements and keeps it securely contained in the blade channel. 
  • Handle: A handle located on the top of the saw helps maximize portability. 
  • Material clamps: Built-in material clamps secure wood and other materials for safe, accurate cutting. Ideally, they should be included as part of your saw kit, but they can be purchased separately if necessary. 
  • Stand: You won’t regret spending the extra money to invest in a stand for your miter saw. A quality stand limits vibration by securing the saw in place; it should also come with adjustable supports for working with long stock. Some stands may also incorporate material stops, which save you time and effort by enabling you to make consistent cuts of the same length on multiple boards. 

Safety Reminders

No matter which miter saw you decide to add to your tool collection, make sure you use the appropriate safety equipment and take all necessary safety precautions every time you use it. Eye and hearing protection are essential, and when working indoors, you should also wear a mask to guard against inhaling the substantial dust generated by these powerful saws. Investing in a dust extractor for your indoor workshop is also strongly advised. 

Before diving into your project, check to make sure the saw’s brake blade is functioning correctly. If it doesn’t stop almost immediately after you release the trigger, have the saw serviced. You should also keep the articulating blade guard engaged to protect you as you expose the blade to make your cut. 

Our Final Thoughts on the Best Miter Saw Options

x

Additional Miter Saw Resources on Tool Guides Hub

  • x
  • x
  • x
  • x

External Resource Recommendations

  • x
  • x
  • x
  • x

Leave a Comment