Many DIY enthusiasts and crafters all over the world use Silhouette machines for cutting, stamping, and even 3D printing. It’s because they bring efficiency and quality results to them. If it’s your first time hearing about Silhouette machines, it is an electronic cutting machine that you can connect to your computer. It looks similar to a small printer, and it also comes with software that allows you to create anything and cut it out one paper, fabric, vinyl, or heat transfer materials. It means that when you own a Silhouette machine, the possibilities are endless.
If you are into making different crafts or you want to make your hobby a business to earn extra money, then having a Silhouette machine can help you. If you are looking into buying one right now, do not hesitate. It’s because there are many different Silhouette machines you can choose from in the market. If you need more information about these machines before buying one, we’re here to help you. Today, we are giving you the ultimate guide to Silhouette machines.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Silhouette Machine
When buying a Silhouette machine, you need to think about your needs. This way, you’ll be able to choose one that offers the best features that will be most useful to you. If you are not familiar with Silhouette machines yet, there’s a lot you need to know before buying one. To help you, here are some of the important things you need to consider:
- Job Type
Silhouette machines come in different types, and they differ in terms of their output, but they are most commonly used for cutting designs onto different materials. There are also some that produce 3D prints, and they are different in design, too. Aside from that, there are also Silhouette machines that can be used for stamp making. It is the smallest among the different types of Silhouette machines because it only creates stamp size cuttings and design. Therefore, before buying a Silhouette machine, you need to be sure about the purpose of getting one.
- Weight and Dimensions
It is also important to check the weight and dimensions of the Silhouette machine you will be buying. It’s because these factors affect where you will place it, and as well as the size of the materials it can handle.
- Computer Requirements
One of the great things about Silhouette machines is that you do not need to have high-end computers for them. However, there are a few requirements that most Silhouette machines need. Some of them include at least 1GB of RAM, from Windows 7 to the latest one for the PC, and OS X10.7 or higher for the MAC. It is also necessary to have a USB 1.1 port or faster in addition to at least 2GB of space on your hard drive. And lastly, the processor speed of your computer should be at least 2GHz. Most of the modern computers today fit these requirements. Therefore, you don’t need to worry about needing to buy a new computer for it.
Since it will be linked to the computer, it will also require installing software for optimum usability. There are many different software depending on the type of Silhouette machine that you will buy. Therefore, you need to have this information before buying a Silhouette machine to know if the software will be compatible with your computer.
It is also important to check the materials that the Silhouette machine you want uses. For example, if you have a project in mind and it requires the use of a specific material, you can check if the Silhouette machine you are aiming to get can accommodate that type of material.
You can also check all the things included in the package when you buy a Silhouette machine. Some models include filament rolls that can help in making the building blocks for the first few designs you will be making. Some machines, on the other hand, come with software and a few free designs to get you started.
Aside from all of these important factors, it is also essential for you to check the warranty of the Silhouette machine. You can also check other features, such as Bluetooth support, the clearance for thicker materials, and other things that may add value to the machine.
The Best Silhouette Machines You Can Buy Today
To further help you choose, here are some of the best Silhouette machines that we can recommend:
1. Silhouette Cameo 4 with Bluetooth
This is the evolution of desktop cutting. In its compact drawer, you will find a new built-in roll feeder that can quickly cut vinyl and heat transfer material directly from a roll. On its back, there’s a built-in cross cutter that will enable you to cut a clean straight edge on your vinyl roll for your next project.
This Silhouette machine has a unique dual carriage that allows for tool-type detection. It has an ultra-smart system that uses tool sensor technology, which can detect what tool you are using. This will then trigger the Silhouette Studio software to adjust the cut settings automatically. It also has a dual-motor system, which enables you to cut in two distinct ways.
One of the carriages provides the Cameo 4 with unparalleled speed. It is operated from a solenoid motor, giving you smooth and intricate cuts. It can also cut or sketch up to three times faster compared to previous models without sacrificing accuracy. The other carriage, on the other hand, is operated by a different style of motor that allows for unprecedented power.
2. Silhouette Cameo 4 Plus
This one is a larger version of the Cameo 4 desktop cutting machine. It can accommodate materials with widths of up to 15 inches. This Silhouette machine will also allow you to make precision cuts in cardstock, fabric, vinyl, and more. In its drawer is the new built-in roll feeder, and on its back is a built-in cross cutter. It also has a dual carriage and dual motor system.
The unique feature of this Silhouette machine is that it has an additional cutting force. It can be added with a rotary and Kraft blade (sold separately) that is designed specifically to operate with the Cameo smart tangential technology. It can cut thicker materials without sacrificing the quality in each cut. It also uses the second generation AutoBlade, which has a single-tap reset, reducing the time needed for the machine to adjust the blade setting automatically for your project.
This Silhouette machine has an easy-to-use software, a responsive touch interface, Bluetooth connectivity, print, and cut capability, and true mat-less cutting ability. When cutting paper, cardstock, and other materials, it does not need a cutting mat.
3. Silhouette Cameo 3 Wireless Cutting Machine
This Silhouette machine can cut more than 100 materials, including paper, vinyl, and fabric. It features Bluetooth and Silhouette Studio design software, which can both allow wireless cutting and ease of design creation. It is also compatible with Print & Cut and PixScan technology.
This machine has a 2mm clearance, making it possible to cut thicker materials. It is also compatible with the self-adjusting AutoBlade, making it more attractive. With this, the machine will automatically adjust the rachet setting for you. It features an LCD screen that enables you to choose a language and color scheme flawlessly. It also comes with a lot of accessories, including a USB cable, a power cable, and a 12-inch cutting mat.
4. Silhouette Portrait 2
This is also a small Silhouette machine that only weighs 3.5 pounds. It is perfect for small projects, and it is a great choice for beginners, as well. It features Bluetooth technology to enable wireless cutting. It also has the PixScan technology that allows users to create designs from pictures. You can also install the Silhouette Studio Designer software to easily make designs. This Silhouette machine also comes with 50 exclusive digital designs. It is able to cut materials like paper, vinyl, fabric, cardstock, rhinestone, craft foam, and leather.
5. Silhouette Curio Crafting Machine
This Silhouette machine has a boxy shape, unlike the other machines in the Silhouette collection. But it is as efficient as the other machines they offer. Aside from scoring, cutting, and drawing, you can use this machine to etch, emboss, stipple, and deboss. It is more specialized for embossing than cutting. In fact, it comes with two embossing tools, one has a wide tip, and the other has a fine tip. They are used for gentle and strong indents. It means that whatever design you make using the Silhouette Studio, you can emboss using this machine.
This Silhouette machine also has dual carriage functionality, allowing you to do a combination of functions at once. It means that you can score and emboss at the same time. Aside from that, it also has a clearance of 5mm, which is the largest among all the Silhouette machines. With this, you’ll be able to cut thicker materials like metal, chipboard, and wood. It also has a weak cutting force of 210 grams for cutting different materials, such as fabric, craft foam, vinyl, and paper.
6. Silhouette Mint Custom Stam Making Machine
This Silhouette machine comes with the Mint Studio software that will enable you to make your own designs and as well as import an image that you can use to make a custom stamp. With this stamp making machine, you will be able to make stamps in just a few minutes.
You can use this to design the stamp, mint it, and ink it before you can use it. With the way in which ink is applied to the stamps, you can stamp up to 50 times before reapplying the ink. It is really good at making stamps, and it also comes with 4 ink bottles and 2 stamp blanks.
7. Silhouette Alta 3D Printer
This one is a 3D printing machine that will enable you to print designs from bottom to top. It comes with access to Silhouette 3D design software, which will help you make designs that you can print. One of the cool things about this Silhouette 3D printer is that it can print in both high and low speeds. It can also print at low and high temperatures.
This Silhouette machine can also print objects of up to 116 mm wide and 120 mm tall. It also takes about 20 to 40 minutes to print. It also comes with 25 bonus 3D designs to get you started, and as well as 2 Hex keys, an Allen wrench, and a 10 pack Build Plate Tape. You will also receive this machine pre-calibrated and preassembled.
These are some of the best Silhouette machines that you can have today. These machines are surely helpful when it comes to DIY projects. We hope this guide will help you in finding the best Silhouette machine that will cater to your needs.