Getting Your Hands on a Makita Circular Saw Is A Smart Call
When you turn your attention to a Makita circular saw, you’re looking at a brand that is incredibly deep in the category and makes a darn good saw. With corded models plus three cordless lines to choose from, you’re sure to find one that’s right for your needs.
Best Makita Circular Saw Overall
We tend to be sidewinder folks here on the east coast and while we love Makita’s XSR01 rear-handle saw, it’s the 18V X2 (36V) XSH07 that tops our list.
It starts with a brushless motor spinning a 7 1/4-inch blade up to 6000 RPM. Using two 18V LXT batteries to step up to 36V power, it’s a smooth, confident saw with an electric brake. On the build side, it has magnesium construction for the shoe, blade guard, and blade cover, offering strength while keeping the weight down to 10.5 pounds with two 5.0Ah batteries.
But wait, there’s more!
We have to talk about AWS—Auto-start Wireless System. By adding a chip and using a Makita AWS vacuum or universal adapter on vacs with pass-through power, the XSH07 version of this saw can automatically turn on and off the vacuum as you work. It helps you keep your workspace cleaner, the overall noise down, and manage the battery use in cordless vacs. Learn more about how it works here.
One more thing…
There’s also the XSH08 version that starts with the same foundation as the -06 but swaps the shoe out for a wider guide-compatible one. It adds just under a pound of weight (11.3 pounds with batteries) while giving you the option of a serious increase in accuracy.
- XSH06: $209.00 bare, $249.00 kit with two 5.0Ah batteries
- XSH07 AWS-Ready: $299.00 bare
- XSH08 Guide-Rail Compatible: $339.00 bare
Best Makita 12V CXT Circular Saw
Makita only has one circular saw on its 12V CXT platform and it’s handy for a variety of tasks. The SH02 runs a 3 3/8-inch blade at 1500 RPM and has a maximum cutting depth of 1 inch at 90° or 5/8 of an inch at 45°. It’s also incredibly lightweight at just 3.5 pounds with a battery.
So what can you do with a 1-inch cutting depth? Plenty. Think case and base, plywood, MDF, pegboard, drywall, and other thin materials.
- $139.00 kit with two 2.0Ah batteries
Best Makita 18V LXT Circular Saw
Cordless tools have a notoriously short time in the spotlight before new models take over. That’s not the case for the Makita XSH03, though. We first reviewed this 6 1/2-inch circular saw back in 2017 and it’s still the one we pick up the most frequently for quick cuts.
It features a magnesium shoe, blade guard, and blade cover, rivaling the durability of its larger brethren, yet it weighs just 7.3 pounds with a 5.0Ah battery. On the performance side, its brushless motor is capable of 5000 RPM, it cuts up to 2 1/4 inches deep, and an electric brake stops the blade quickly when you release the trigger.
- $199.00 bare
- $429.00 with two 5.0Ah batteries
Best Makita 36V (18V X2) Circular Saw
The Makita XSR01 was the first cordless rear handle circular saw to make big waves and it has been field-tested and proven more than the ones from other major brands. Out of the gate, our tests showed its brushless motor and 2 x 18V LXT (36V) design has better performance than our Skilsaw 15-amp worm drive.
This one is capable of speeds up to 5100 RPM with a greater focus on torque to keep the blade moving on stacks of sheets goods and there’s an electric brake to stop the blade quickly. Thanks to its 2 9/16-inch cutting depth, it’s able to cut 3x material in a single pass.
Like the other saws we’ve mentioned, Makita uses a magnesium shoe, blade guard, and blade cover, keeping the total weight down to just 12.4 pounds—and that includes two 5.0Ah batteries! Most other cordless rear handle models are significantly heavier.
As a bonus, it’s a solid value.
- $209.00 bare
- $249.00 kit with two 5.0Ah batteries
Best Makita 40V max XGT Circular Saw
Makita GSH04 10 1/4-Inch Circular Saw
Makita is very quickly bracketing the needs of contractors with its 40V max XGT system. There are several outstanding saws to choose from on the platform and it’s the GSH04 that really got our attention.
It’s a brushless 10 1/4-inch saw that’s capable of cutting 4x material in a single pass with its 3 13/16-inch cutting capacity. A single 40V max XGT battery turns that high-capacity blade at 3500 RPM.
There are several important design aspects that set this saw apart from its competition. For starters, the magnesium shoe, blade guard, and blade cover we’ve been seeing from Makita keep the weight down to 13.5 pounds.
This is another model that is capable of using an AWS chip to automatically kick on dust collection. Plus, it has a track-compatible shoe to help make those tough cuts more accurate.
- $529.00 bare tool
Best Corded Makita Circular Saw
Makita 5007MGA 7 1/4-Inch Circular Saw
Corded circular saws are far from obsolete. With their reliable performance, unlimited runtime, and lower price, many Pros choose not to cut the cord. Makita’s 5007 series is incredibly popular and the 5007MGA is our favorite.
Just 10.6 pounds, it uses magnesium construction to drop the weight down compared to other circular saws. Its 15-amp motor runs at a confident 5800 RPM and there’s an electric brake to stop the motor. The cutting capacity is 2 1/2 inches and while not all corded circular saws include an LED light, this one does.
A Note About Makita Circular Saw Blades
A while back, Makita came out with a line of Max Efficiency blades specifically designed to help cordless circular saws cut more efficiently while maintaining high performance. We replace many stock blades immediately, but that’s not the case with Makita’s. Max Efficiency blades are outstanding and we highly recommend them as your primary blade.
Check Out More Options
The term “circular saw” technically applies to any saw with a circular blade, but most people think of them as the sidewinder and rear-handle styles we’ve been talking about. Like we said before, Makita is deep in the circular saw sector, so check out these other styles.
- Glass and tile saw
- Track saw/plunge cut saws
- Rail-compatible circular saws
- 9 1/4-inch circular saw
- 5 3/8-inch trim saw
- Metal-cutting circular saws
- Track saw/plunge cut saw
- Rail-compatible circular saw
- 9 1/4-inch circular saw
- Rear-handle circular saws
- Metal-cutting circular saws
- 8 1/4-inch circular saw
- 10 1/4-inch circular saw
- 16 5/16-inch circular saw
- Rear-handle circular saw
- Track saw/plunge cut saw
- Metal-cutting saws
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