Miter Saw vs Circular Saw: What is the Difference? Discover Now

If you have a new woodworking project, owning powerful saws is the best thing. Miter saw and circular saw are now practical tools for woodworking projects.

However, what is the difference between a miter saw vs circular saw? Which tool is better for your workflow? Follow our subsequent sharing to get the most accurate answer!

What Is a Miter Saw?

A miter saw is a famous cutting tool, and it works by using a static motor.

The design of the miter saw is more special than other saws. It has attached workpieces with slots and fences. Plus, it has hinged arms.

Miter Saw vs Circular Saw  

All help miter saw to achieve very high accuracy in cuts. Controlling the miter saw is also much more straightforward than other saws.

The blades of this type of saw are usually 8 to 12 inches in diameter, which is very handy.

The miter saw has 3 main variations, each with a different fantastic ability:

  • Compound Miter: You can relate the saw blade left or right, creating miter cuts.
  • Dual Compound Miter: You can tilt the saw blade left or right. It helps users to create bevel cuts and cuts at any angle.
  • Sliding Compound Miter: This type of saw allows the saw blade to move in a compound motion. It can move forward or backward.

A miter saw can make 4 cuts:

  • Crosscuts
  • Miter cuts
  • Bevel cuts
  • Compound cuts


  • A miter saw can make exact cuts.
  • It can create seams, moldings that fit snugly in the project.
  • Users can efficiently perform miter saw in any construction quickly and simply.
  • It quickly makes cuts and saves time.
  • Ensure absolute safety for users and materials.


  • The creation of cuts is limited to the cutting line and cutting angle.
  • Expensive in purchase and maintenance.
  • Miter saw takes up a lot of workspaces.

What is Circular Saw?

A circular saw is the most accomplished wood-cutting tool you will ever know. It can appear in any furniture store.

The circular saw’s design is very light and compact like a portable hand saw. The mobile saw blade inside the circular saw can make various straight cuts.

The circular saw's design is very light and compact like a portable hand saw

The saw blades are replaceable and come in a variety of variations. Usually, they will be between 3 3/8 and 16 inches in diameter.

Depending on the depth of cut requirements, you can choose from different saw blades, such as dado blades.

The types of cuts that the circular saw can make are:

  • Cross Cuts
  • Miter, Bevel, and Compound Cuts
  • Rip Cuts
  • Dado and Rabbe
  • Plunge Cuts


  • A circular saw has high flexibility. 
  • It works great with straight cuts.
  • Circular saws may make a variety of cuts.
  • Cheaper


  • It’s not precisely perfect for making curved and angled cuts.
  • Circular saw cuts often leave jagged edges.
  • It’s not safe to do the job. You can get injured if you don’t have protective gear or are negligent.

The Differences Between Miter Saw vs Circular Saw

These two types of saws may include both works for the same purpose, but they will also have different characteristics. We can see that difference through the following criteria:

  • How it works
  • Ability to create cuts
  • Flexibility and storability
  • Price

Of course, each type of saw machine that the manufacturer creates will have its advantages, disadvantages, and working capabilities. They may or may not be a general-purpose saw.

You can see that difference between a miter saw and a circular saw 

But one thing is for sure, most of them are different. You can see that difference through the comparison between a miter saw and a circular saw right here:

  • A miter saw is a grate for cutting long planks. In contrast, circular saws are more suitable for cutting slabs of wood.
  • When operating, the user pulls the miter saw through the wood to cut, and the miter saw is stationary. But the user will hold the circular saw in his hand and push the saw blade through the wood to cut.
  • A circular saw isn’t as accurate as a miter saw due to its handheld nature when operating. The vibration of the saw machine causes the cutting lines to deviate at any time.
  • A circular saw has a more compact design and is easier to move than a miter saw. It is also much cheaper than a miter saw.
  • Miter saws are much safer to use than circular saws.
  • A circular saw can make multiple cuts with cutting angles depending on the material. But miter saw can’t do that! 
  • A miter saw does not have too many cutting lines and cutting angles.

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Compare Circular Saw vs Miter Saw

As mentioned above, both of these saws have many differences. But it is those differences that create advantages between them.

Follow the detailed analysis below to see what the difference is?

How it works

The first difference that you can see between these two types of saws is how they work.

Circular saw makes horizontal cuts

Miter saw cuts material from top to bottom while circular saw makes horizontal cuts. This happens because their structures are different.

Ability to create cuts

As we said above, a circular saw is capable of making more cuts than a miter saw. Even the cutting angles are much richer.

A circular saw includes 8 different cutting lines, while a miter saw has only 4 types of cutting cords.

However, the miter saw has a much more stable and accurate cutting ability. Since you fix it in one position, the circular saw works on the user’s arm.

Flexibility and storability

Circular saw has a small, compact and lighter design than miter saws. So users can bring circular saws to all different locations to work.

Meanwhile, you must fix the miter saw in one position or on a table. Moving the saw to the job site is a challenge.

User must fix the miter saw in one position or on a table


A circular saw is cheaper than a miter saw. However, this difference is not significant.

You will have come across a circular saw that costs more than a miter saw in some cases. You can choose to buy a saw at a price that matches its quality.

Should I Choose a Miter Saw or Circular Saw?

The choice of miter saw or circular saw depends on the intended use and capabilities you want to have of each saw.

If you are looking forward to making multiple cuts in various jobs, the circular saw is the right choice. It is also relatively cheap and flexible in moving to different job locations.

On the contrary, if you need a saw to bevel cut and miter cuts precisely, you should choose a miter saw. Although it has a high price, it is beneficial for precise cuts.


Both miter saw and circular saws are versatile and useful saws. You can make woodworking easier with both of these saws.

However, you need to understand the difference between them to make the right choice. We hope our sharing is helpful for you!

Reference Source: Miter Saw vs Circular Saw: Do you Really Need Both?

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