Best Circular Saw of 2018 - Complete Reviews with Comparison

Best Circular Saw of 2020 – Complete Reviews with Comparison

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Whether you’re a master of DIY projects or you’re just starting to put together your own workshop, a circular saw is a must-have piece of equipment.
It can cut accurately through so many materials and from many different angles. It can really help you express your creativity better than any other electric cutting tool.

Now, as good as these tools are, they’re not easy to shop for as there are many features that can influence your decision. The design matters just as much as the power output at times.The additional features, such as lights, guides, blowers, and power sources, can also make the difference between a good tool and the best one for the job.

Best Circular Saw Reviews

1. Rockwell RK3440K Versacut Circular Saw

Rockwell RK3440K Versacut 4.0 Amp Ultra-Compact Circular Saw with Laser Guide and 3-Blade Kit with Carry Case

The RK3440K Versacut circular saw is almost like a dream come true for anyone that has a personal workshop. The compact design, powerful motor, and assortment of blades allow you to easily cut a wide variety of materials with ease, while also maintaining a rather clean cutting board.

Review

While not many people consider laser guides to be the best choice in accessories for accuracy and visibility, the laser guide on the RK3440K Versacut works wonders in tandem with the dust extractor. The high-powered suction system removes sawdust as soon as it’s produced, leaving you with a clear cutting path.


By far the most important feature on the RK3440K Versacut circular saw is the three blades that come in their own carry bag. The 24T carbide-tipped blade can be used for woodworking, the 44T HSS blade is for PVC and aluminum, and the diamond tipped blade is perfect for tile and cement board.


The compact and lightweight design lets you operate the Versacut with just one hand. You can reach a cut depth of 1-1/16 at 90-degree angle. The 3,500 RPM is commendable considering the size of this circular saw and the 4.0A motor.
The depth is adjusted from the side by using the lock, and the trigger can also be used to prevent the blade from protruding too much.

What's to like about the Rockwell RK3440K Versacut Circular Saw

The compact and lightweight design lets you operate the Versacut with just one hand. You can reach a cut depth of 1-1/16 at 90 degrees. The handle is at the back of the blade (possible because this is a small circular saw) to allow one-hand operation. The included trio of blades is a very nice addition at this price point.

What's not to like about the Rockwell RK3440K Versacut Circular Saw

You might need to use both hands when it’s time to do plunge cuts. Kickback is to be expected and having a better grip is advised. However, because of the specific design, the RK3440K Versacut is not your most comfortable circular saw for plunge cuts. The 4.0A motor might not be powerful enough for complex projects or thicker materials.

Rockwell RK3440K Versacut 4.0 Amp Ultra-Compact Circular Saw with Laser Guide and 3-Blade Kit with Carry Case
  • Powerful, 4.0 amp, multi-functional, ultra-compact circular saw
  • Cuts wide variety of materials such as tile, wood, sheet metal, plastics, flooring, and more. No-Load Speed- 3,500 rpm
  • Ergonomic design with slim grip handle improves comfort and enhances grip and control – guide with just one hand!
  • Built-in laser guide helps you align the perfect cut;120 inches cord
  • Pivoting metal guard accommodates safe and easy plunge cuts

Last update on 2020-07-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros

Cons

  • Laser guide
  • Compact cordless design
  • Dust extraction
  • 3-blade kit included
  • Ergonomic grip design
  • Works on a variety of materials
  • Low RPM
  • Laser is battery-powered

2. Milwaukee 2630-20 Circular Saw

M18 Cordless Lithium-Ion 6-1/2' Circular Saw - 2630-20 - ( MILWAUKEE ) - BARE TOOL

If you’ve never had a Milwaukee power tool before you’ve been missing out. The 2630-20 circular saw is part of their M18 line of tools and it is a very durable lightweight design. It comes with a big blade and an ergonomic shape as well as an easy-grip handle for maximum accuracy and reduced wrist strain.

Review

The 18V battery drives the motor that’s capable of 3,500 RPM, which is enough for small carpentry, plumbing, and home projects. When paired with its 6.5-inch blade with carbide-tipped 24T blade it certainly gets the job done in record time. It can be used either as your primary cutting tool or your trusted backup.

As part of the M18 line of tools, the 2630-20 circular saw is compatible with all Milwaukee M18 lithium-ion batteries. They’re long-lasting and the fact that you get to use a cordless circular saw makes it easier to adjust your positioning in the workshop. Because of the wide compatibility range, the 2630-20 doesn’t come with a battery already included.


The electric brake system is very responsive. The bevel adjustability only goes up to 45 degrees but that’s compensated by the maximum cut depth of 2.125” at 90-degree angle.

What's to like about the Milwaukee 2630-20 Circular Saw

The lower and upper guards are heavy-duty magnesium and this is perfect for protecting the blade from accidental drops or hits. They can come in real handy for beginner DIYers that aren’t used to operating and storing power tools properly as it gives them a better chance of maintaining the blade for a long time.

What's not to like about the Milwaukee 2630-20 Circular Saw

Having to add one or two batteries will increase the price tag by a lot, which may cause problems for some amateur DIYers. Although the saw is compatible with all M18 batteries, picking the right capacity for the best trade-off of weight and battery life may not be an easy task.

Last update on 2020-07-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros

Cons

  • Cordless
  • Electric brake
  • Good range of depth adjustment
  • Compatible with Hitachi M18 lithium-ion batteries
  • 5-inch blade
  • Magnesium upper/lower guards
  • Battery not included

3. DeWalt DCS570B Circular Saw

DEWALT 20V MAX 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw with Brake, Tool Only (DCS570B)

DeWalt knows everything there is to know about designing high-quality power tools for all budgets. The DCS570B circular saw is a wireless model that offers the same efficiency and output as a corded saw. It cuts with accuracy and has plenty of adjustability to suit a wide variety of projects.

Review

The DCS570B weighs a maximum of 11 pounds when used with the highest capacity 9.0Ah battery. Given the weight, 7.25-inch blade size, high-quality rubber overmold, and the maximum 5,200 RPM, this circular saw is a breeze to control. It is also a traditional right-side blade design that should make using it even smoother for beginner and experienced woodworkers alike.


The brushless motor is what gives the saw its 5,200 RPM. However, the maximum RPM under load doesn’t always reach this threshold. It sometimes depends on the depth of the cut or thickness of the material you cut.


The DCS570B has a quality electric brake system. It stops the blade from spinning in a matter of seconds after you release the trigger. The bevel adjustment is spot-on with a max bevel angle of 58 degrees and clear markings for the commonly used 22.5 and 45 degree angles. 

This, combined with the easy-to-operate locks, makes transitioning between cuts and angles very smooth.

Sale
DEWALT 20V MAX 7-1/4-Inch Circular Saw with Brake, Tool Only (DCS570B)
  • Power - Brushless motor provides 5200Rpm and maintains speed under load
  • Runtime - 100 cross cuts in a 2x4 (Pine)
  • Capacity - 7-1/4" blade provides 2-9/16" depth of cut
  • Ease of use - bevel capacity up to 57 degrees
  • Battery not included

Last update on 2020-07-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

What's to like about the DeWalt DCS570B Circular Saw

The LED work light that enhances the brightness right on the cut line ensures you have maximum visibility even under rough working conditions. The responsiveness of the brake system is quite impressive.

What's not to like about the DeWalt DCS570B Circular Saw

The motor is quite powerful but it doesn’t manage to maintain 5,200 RPM under load. The absence of a rafter hook doesn’t help the case of this saw being the best portable choice.
The ergonomics of the DCS570B are a bit weird. The support handle is well designed and offers a comfortable grip which reduces the muscle fatigue on long projects. At the same time, the push-in trigger is not what you would expect for an ergonomic design. Most people prefer the push-down trigger as it allows for a more fluid motion.

Pros

Cons

  • ED work light
  • Reliable and high RPM brushless motor
  • Electric brake
  • Metal blade guard
  • Right-side blade
  • Cordless
  • No belt or rafter hook
  • Doesn’t reach 5,200 RPM under load

4. Ryobi One+ P505 Circular Saw

Ryobi One P505 18V Lithium Ion Cordless 5 1/2' 4,700 RPM Circular Saw (Battery Not Included, Power Tool Only), Green

Ryobi is also a brand that has become synonymous with quality power tools and accessories. The P505 is their budget-friendly circular saw that’s compatible with Ryobi One+ 18V lithium batteries. This circular saw may not offer all the quality of life features of its competitors but it sure offers very comparable performance and control considering the cost.

Review

The lightweight and ergonomic design makes the P505 a great saw for small projects or beginners. Even if it doesn’t have a laser guide or LED work light, the P505 makes up for them with its ease of use and impressive 4,700 RPM that come in a compact little package.

The fact that the Ryobi P505 comes without a charger and a battery is somewhat of a double-edged sword. The One+ compatibility makes it a great choice for people that already have other Ryobi cordless power tools with One+ batteries and chargers at their disposal, and thus saving them some cash on the initial investment. 

On the other hand, the affordable P505 isn’t as cheap as it looks on paper for those that have to shop for the power accessories.

The P505 comes equipped with a 5.5 inch-blade and bevel angle up to 50 degrees. The bevel knob can be found on the front of the tool and it has accurate markings for all the popular angle settings. You can get a cut depth of 1-9/16-inch at 90 degrees and 1-1/8-inch at 45 degrees.

What's to like about the Ryobi One+ P505 Circular Saw

The durability of the P505 is good enough considering its price tag. For an entry-level or backup circular saw, it is well worth every penny, more so for users that already have other Ryobi One+ accessories. An interesting feature is the transparent blade guard which lets you have some extra visibility.

What's not to like about the Ryobi One+ P505 Circular Saw

The absence of an LED work light might be a make or break feature for lots of consumers. The 5.5-inch blade is also a bit below the average size which is usually at least 6.5 inches.

Ryobi One P505 18V Lithium Ion Cordless 5 1/2" 4,700 RPM Circular Saw (Battery Not Included, Power Tool Only), Green
  • GRIPZONE OVERMOLD: The handles of this power tool are lined with a rubber mold. This increases friction between your hands and the tool, improving handling in most conditions
  • TRANSPARENT LOWER GUARD: The polyurethane blade guard is clear, so you can get maximum visibility on your work while you make your cuts
  • ADJUSTABLE BEVEL: You can adjust the foot of this cordless circular saw up to 50 degrees to cut at a variety of angles for different applications
  • EXTRA SIDE HANDLE gives you improved control. Its location on the left side of the tool gives you greater visibility over your cuts while you work
  • ONE+ COMPATIBLE: The circular saw works with Ryobi’s 18 Volt batteries. These battery models include the P100, P102, P103, P104, P105, P107, and P108 (Batteries not included)

Last update on 2020-07-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros

Cons

  • Extra side handle
  • One+ compatible
  • See-through lower guard
  • Overmold grip
  • Cordless
  • Battery not included
  • Charger not included
  • No work light
  • Small blade

5. Makita SP6000J1 Circular Saw

Makita SP6000J1 6-1/2 In. Plunge Circular Saw Kit, with Stackable Tool Case and 55 In. Guide Rail

The Makita SP6000J1 circular saw can be a woodworker’s best friend. Its high rotational speed and great bevel design allow it to make deep cuts from a straight or angled position. It does a good job of disposing of dust and it comes with its own guide rail.

5. Makita SP6000J1 Circular Saw

The bevel adjustability ranges from -1 degree to 48 degrees. There are stops at 22.5 degrees and 45 degrees to let you switch easily between commonly used angles. The blade follows the same cutting line when you use the saw to cut straight or angled. This allows for splinter-free finished products and also minimizes sawdust production.


The SP6000J1 comes with a 6.5-inch blade which manages to have an impressive cut depth. At 90 degrees it reaches 2-3/16-inch, and 1-9/16-inch at 45 degrees. What’s perhaps even more impressive is the speed control feature.


The 55-inch guide rail improves the accuracy and working experience. It helps a lot especially since the SP6000J1 doesn’t have what you might call an ergonomic design. It is easy to use and control and also has a plunge release lever that makes the entire design more comfortable, but it is nothing to get too excited about. 

What it lacks in ergonomics it makes up for in actual performance.

What's to like about the Makita SP6000J1 Circular Saw

You can calibrate the motor to run between 2000 RPM and 5200 RPM. Too bad it can’t really sustain 5200 RPM under load, but the excellent electronic speed control will make the motor run at as constant a speed as possible. This is the only corded circular saw on this list, and a mighty good one in the hands of an experienced woodworker.

What's not to like about the Makita SP6000J1 Circular Saw

The motor can’t sustain 5,200 RPM under load and considering that the blade is also not particularly great for working with metal sheets, the SP6000J1 is not a very versatile circular saw. It is a high-end circular saw for serious hobbyists or professionals only.

Makita SP6000J1 6-1/2 In. Plunge Circular Saw Kit, with Stackable Tool Case and 55 In. Guide Rail
  • Item may ship in more than one box and may arrive separately
  • Powerful 12.0 AMP motor for optimum performance in a wide variety of materials
  • Precision accurate cutting delivers a splinter free mirror finish
  • Electronic speed control maintains constant speed under load for smooth cutting
  • Variable speed control dial (2,000 5,200 RPM) enables user to match the speed to the application

Last update on 2020-07-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros

Cons

  • Guide rail
  • Electronic speed control
  • Electric brake
  • High variable RPM
  • 12A motor
  • Doesn’t work as well in metalworking
  • Pricey

BUYER'S GUIDE

Electric Brake

This is probably the most important safety feature in all circular saws. Looking for a high-end brake system is always a good idea as some of them can put a stop to the spinning in as little as two seconds. They do this by reversing the current to quickly stop the saw blade.

Cutting Depth and Adjustment

When it comes to the two most common blade sizes, the 6.5 inches and the 7.25 inches disks, they can both cut at 2 inches deep at 90 degrees. The differences between the two start showing on beveled cuts.


A 7.25-inch blade will cut deeper at a 45-degree angle than a 6.5-inch blade. This is where the adjustability factor comes into play. You’ll always want a tool design that allows for customization when you plan on making a lot of angled cuts, otherwise you might need a bigger blade from the start, just to be on the safe side.

LED Work Light

Even in the best lighting conditions, you can never have enough visibility over your cut line. The LED “flashlight” that comes installed on some circular saws illuminates the work board from a very low angle but also from a very short distance. Short of using a helmet light you won’t get better visibility in your workshop than with a built-in LED light on the saw.

Right or Left-Sided Blade Placement

It’s a common misconception that right-handed people use only right blade saws and left-handed people use saws with the blade placement on the left. The traditional design is with the blade on the right of the saw and this is what most people use.


The differences between designs are quite noticeable and have little to do with the user’s dominant hand. Left blade saws allow you to see the cut line better while you’re working. At the same time, this means that your body is more exposed in the event of a kickback.


Despite the increased visibility of left blade saws, using them also puts you in the direct path of the dust blower. This not only means things get messier but it increases the chance of you getting sawdust in your eyes.


At the end of the day, it will be a matter of preference whether you choose a left blade over the traditional right blade design. Just keep in mind that there won’t be any differences in your ability to control the saw based on your dominant hand.

Dust Blower

The dust blower is an essential part of any circular saw. It is almost mandatory to have especially when you’re dealing with long cuts. It clears away the dust in front of your saw so you never lose track of the cut line.

Blade Type vs. Saw RPM

Cutting through different materials requires a certain type of blade. Either the material has to be very specific or the tooth angle and shape matter. Blades can be quite interchangeable with some circular saw models but it’s important to remember that not all materials can be cut with the same rpm.


Because of this, choosing the right circular saw can save you a lot of trouble. Always plan ahead by knowing exactly what materials you’ll work with and check for detailed instructions on how to approach them. This is extremely important when you’re making your first circular saw purchase.

Circular Saw F.A.Q.

What is a circular saw?

The circular saw is an electric cutting tool. It uses a toothed disc to cut through various materials with a rotary motion.

What are circular saws used for?

Circular saws became popular in sawmills in the mid-19th century. Since then the blade manufacturing and the tool itself have evolved, allowing the circular saw to be used when cutting wood, masonry, plastic, and even metal.

How deep can a circular saw cut?

The depth of a cut is first of all determined by the blade capacity. Generally speaking, the bigger the disk, the deeper the cut.
After the size you also need to account for the angle of the cut and also the bevel stops.
Bevel stops can be adjusted on some circular saws to allow a deeper cut at certain angles.

How to set circular saw depth?

The correct way of adjusting the cutting depth is to measure how much of the blade is exposed when placed next to your cutting board. It’s best to do this while the tool is unplugged and the blade guard is pulled back.
You can loosen or tighten your circular saw’s depth knob until the blade is 1/4 to 1/2 inches under the board.

How to choose a circular saw?

Choosing a circular saw depends on many factors. You have to first take into account the actual spinning power of the saw and if the blade can handle the materials you plan on cutting.You also want to look out for safety and depth adjustability features. The weight is also important as it will determine whether or not you can handle the kickback.


You might also consider the blade placement before you buy your saw. Most people prefer a right-sided blade when it comes to circular saws but that doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of left-sided models available too.


The least important feature you should worry about is the power source. You can always adapt later, whether you’re getting a corded or a cordless circular saw. It’s better to meet the important safety features and necessary requirements for your project first than to shop by comparing quality of life features.

FINAL VERDICT

The Rockwell RK3440K Versacut is a well-rounded circular saw for DIYers and a great backup power tool for professionals. The laser guide paired with the powerful dust extractor is very effective at keeping you on track with your cuts and providing maximum visibility.


The inclusion of three different blades in the package makes the RK3440K Versacut more versatile than its direct competitors and quite possibly the best circular saw you can get, if the small blade size of 3-3/8-inch can cut it for you.


Although the Versacut is very budget-friendly, there is an even cheaper model that’s worth mentioning. The Ryobi P505 circular saw might be the best choice for anyone that already uses Ryobi One+ tools and has matching chargers and batteries on hand. It gets the job done with accuracy and quickness.


But if you need a serious circular saw, there’s the Makita SP6000J1 6.5-inch corded circular saw with the price tag to match its professional performance.

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