For experienced crafters and those who work with tough materials, the Cricut Maker is the best die cutting machine for you. It's also the most expensive you can buy, though, so if you're budget-conscious (and let's face it, who isn't?) it's definitely an investment you'll need to weigh up against other machines. What makes the Cricut Maker stand out is its sheer range and versatility, but if your main interest is in working with cards, vinyl, paper, or foam, you may not need all the power you'll have with the Cricut Maker.
In this Cricut Maker review you'll find out how it justifies its high price point, and whether it's the right machine for you. It comes with a huge assortment of attachments that make it suitable for just about any craft, and it's also capable of working with over 300 materials.
Cricut Maker: What you need to know
With a die cutting machine you can be confident in cutting cardstock, foam, and vinyl. However, the Cricut Maker cuts far more than this. The machine can handle over 300 material types, and it comes with a rotary blade for fabrics to make quilting easier.
The Cricut Maker has a maximum cutting width of 12 inches, which is the same as the Cricut Explore Air 2. It's also a similar size, with dimensions of 21.12 inches wide, 7 inches deep, and 6 inches high. The Maker is significantly heavier though, weighing 23.7 pounds. This isn't a portable die cutting machine (for that check out the Cricut Joy) but it's a perfectly acceptable size for most craft work spaces.
With an RRP of $399, there's no denying that the Cricut Maker is a big investment. It's the most expensive die cutting machine we reviewed, and if you're on a budget it may be the case that you'll get everything you need in a more budget option. For professionals or serious crafters who want serious quality though, we do think the Cricut Maker is worth its high retail price.
Cricut Maker: Main features
With the Cricut Maker, there's a lot of features to talk through. Firstly, it's got an ever-expanding range of attachments, making it immensely capable. These include:
- Knife blade
- Rotary blade
- Pens & markers
- Fine-point blade
- Scoring wheels
- Foil transfer
Not all of these attachments come with the machine, but when you buy the Cricut Maker right now you'll get a rotary blade, knife blade, and fine pen, as well as easy-switch housing to make transitioning between them smooth. The knife can cut through thicker materials such as balsa and matboard, whereas the rolling rotary blade is perfect for quilting and working with materials - no backing material needed.
The Cricut Maker has an in-built docking slot that holds tablets and phones as you work, which makes connecting via Bluetooth easy and intuitive. With the in-built USB slot you can even charge your devices as you use them, which is ideal for large or time-consuming projects.
This machine also has plenty of smart modes built-in. This includes Offline Mode, Print Then Cut, and SnapMat, which allows you to interact with materials and plan ahead virtually.
As with other Cricut machines (and indeed most die cutting machines you can buy) you'll need to pair it with design software to make the most of these designs. Cricut's Design Space requires a paid subscription for full access, but with your Cricut Maker purchase you'll have access to 50 ready-to-make projects off the bat. You can also work with other software online and simply upload the finished fonts or products to the Design Space software, so this subscription isn't needed if you'd rather save your money.
Cricut Maker: User reviews
Out of nearly 10,000 Amazon reviews, the Cricut Maker receives an average score of 4.8 stars out of five. That's seriously impressive. Many reviewers are professionals, selling their products on Etsy or eBay, so they value the consistency and reliability of the Cricut Maker above all else. They also remark that this machine is fast and quiet, with an impressive range of fonts.
For those who work with fabric, the Cricut Maker is a real favorite. "The Cricut Maker cuts fabric, felt, leather and denim like butter", according to one reviewer.
If you've read many of our die cutting machine reviews, you'll know that the number one complaint people have is related to software. With the Cricut Maker, it's the same story. Of course, you don't have to use Cricut's bespoke software when you work with it, but it's a shame that some people feel it's disappointing.
Should you buy the Cricut Maker?
The Cricut Maker is the top choice for those who want to work with more than just cardstock and vinyl. It can handle just about any fabric, including leather and denim, with ease thanks to its rotary blade. This machine is powerful, but it's also expensive. For such a premium product, it's a shame that some users feel the accompanying software isn't up to scratch. You can use other software with the Cricut Maker though, and for those who want to set up shop with a fabric or design business, it's an investment you won't regret.