The Silhouette Cameo 4 is one of several Silhouette vinyl cutters released in 2019. It’s also the most highly anticipated machine in years due to the success of the Cameo 3. And perhaps even more so, due to the heated competition between Silhouette and Cricut.
Without further ado, let’s find out how the two flagship vinyl cutters from these industry-leading manufacturers compare against each other in our Silhouette Cameo 4 vs. Cricut Maker comparison guide.
Cricut Maker vs Silhouette Cameo Comparison Table of Main Features
|Cameo 4 Main Features||Cricut Maker Main Features|
|12”x10’ Cut size||12”x24″ Cut size|
|5kg force||4kg force|
Kraft Blade, Rotary Blade, and Single Tap Auto Blade
Fine Point Blade, Knife Blade, Rotary Blade, Deep Point Blade, & Scoring Wheel
|Touch panel||Intuitive control panel|
Cameo 4 Ease of Use
Silhouette has always had a slight edge in user-friendliness, except when it came to its design software. The Silhouette Cameo 4 seems to have resolved most of the kinks in the software while also introducing an automatic tool detection function and single-tap operations.
A first glance of Silhouette Cameo vinyl cutters reveals that these are definitely features which improve the user-friendliness and ease of use. For the first time, Silhouette might just have wrestled the edge from Cricut (and not just in the performance department as you will notice later on in this article.)
Cricut Maker Ease of Use
As Cricut’s flagship vinyl cutter, the Maker is one highly versatile machine. It can tackle lots of materials, cutting patterns, and designs, all with consummate power and speed. But all this means that it has a learning curve.
Not only that but it requires you to make various adjustments based on the tools and materials in use. Regardless, we are major fans of the beautiful Cricut Maker Cutting Machine.
Sick of trailing far behind Cricut in this arena, the Silhouette Cameo 4 now comes with 5kg of downward force. It’s a significant improvement for the Cameo line.
The Cricut Maker is known as a reliable workhorse that can tackle a wide range of materials thanks to its 4kg of force. With that in mind, this is the first time that Silhouette has come up with something more powerful in the Cameo 4.
Although the Cameo 4 is three times faster than its predecessor, it’s worth pointing out that for years the Cricut Maker has outclassed the Cameo 3 in terms of cutting speed.
Depending on the materials and the complexity of the project, the speed would obviously vary. However, most tests would indicate that the Cricut Maker would work on average about three times faster than the Cameo 3.
This puts the Cameo 4 and the Cricut Maker on the same level when it comes to speed. Of course, the new and improved algorithms on the Cameo 4 might just give it a slight edge. Again, it would depend on the actual project and materials involved.
There’s really nothing new here. While the Cricut Maker previously outshined all Silhouette Cameo vinyl cutting machines in terms of raw power, it’s always trailed in maximum cutting size.
The Cameo 4 has the same 12”x10ft cutting capacity as its predecessor, the Cameo 3, which is still a lot bigger than the Cricut Maker’s 12”x24”. This already puts the Cameo 4 in front in two important categories.
Do you always need a large cutting size? No. But it is nice to have as an option. You will soon find out why the maximum cutting size might not be a deal-breaker after all.
When it comes to tools, the Cricut Maker still has the advantage. It has five cutting tools as opposed to three with the Cameo 4. Both machines have rotary blades but the Cricut Maker has a fine-point blade and deep-point blade that can make all the difference in more intricate projects.
One thing worth mentioning is the weeding tool that comes with the Cameo 4. This marks and lets you see exactly where to start removing unwanted vinyl from your cuts. It’s something that the Cricut Maker can’t do and neither did the previous Cameo vinyl cutters.
It’s not just very useful but almost essential in the hands of a beginner. It takes ease of use to another level and smooths over the learning process — not just on how to use a vinyl cutter but also on how crafts should be done in general.
Pricing of the Cameo 4 vs Maker
The Cricut Maker may be found at occasional discounts. However, the MSRP ( manufacturer’s suggested retail price) is considerably higher than that of the Cameo 4, assuming that it stays the same as the Cameo 3. But don’t count on it. The new MSRP will likely be the same or slightly higher than the Cricut Maker.
In any event, Cricut will probably have to come up with a new machine soon. The Cameo 4 has closed the performance gap to almost nothing.
Silhouette Cameo 4 vs. Cricut Maker: Which is Better?
It depends on your definition of “better.” The Cameo 4 is clearly cheaper, equally or slightly more capable in cutting power and speed, and equipped with a very intuitive touch panel. It has a good selection of tools, a low learning curve, and lots more.
At the same time, even though the Cricut Maker has a significantly smaller maximum cutting size and a higher price, it does come with more tools. More tools will always equal more versatility.
It’s also a machine that has been proven to work with fabrics and thicker materials. The Cameo 4 still has a long way to go to prove that everything in real life is as good as it looks on paper.
Which One Should You Get?
It all comes down to what you need and at what stage you are in your crafting business. If you already own a Cricut Maker and you’ve been using it successfully for years, then it is unlikely that an extra kilogram of force will have any appreciable effect on your output.
Besides, you’ve already invested a lot in the Cricut Maker. However, if you’re buying your first machine or if you’re ready to scale up production and work with larger cutting sizes, then the Silhouette Cameo 4 is almost a no-brainer.
Except for the few extra tools, the Cameo 4 matches or exceeds the Cricut Maker in nearly all categories.
Therefore, the Cameo 4 is perhaps the best DIY vinyl cutting machine you can get for your money, one that can handle just about any projects, big or small. And, just because it may not make financial sense to make a switch in some cases, it doesn’t take anything away from its performance and quality.