Second-Generation DeWalt FlexVolt Circular Saw Packs Higher Performance
The DeWalt FlexVolt 60V max circular saw (model DCS578) was one of the first tools to launch with the FlexVolt line and it was a good design with plenty of power.
DeWalt’s product team wasn’t content to let it be and we tested the updated DCS578 against the best from Makita, Milwaukee, and more!
- One of the most powerful cordless circular saws we tested
- Excellent dust and chip ejection
- Increased cutting depth to 2 9/16 inches
- Accurate cutline notches
- Excellent tracking
- Handle design is our favorite among tested saws
- Guard hangs up on 45º/45º compound cuts
- Shoe friction is higher than most competing saws
RecommendationThe DeWalt FlexVolt 60V max circular saw clearly has top-tier cutting performance that competes well against the best that other brands have to offer. Its overall design and cutting experience overcome the couple of hiccups we found, making it an easy selection for Pros that want the best DeWalt has to offer in a cordless sidewinder.
DeWalt FlexVolt 60V Max Circular Saw
DeWalt promises 47% more power than the original DCS575. That moves the DeWalt FlexVolt 60V max circular saw from 1600 watts to a monster 2456 watts of power.
The saw felt powerful making its initial cuts. It definitely has no issues cutting through 2x lumber and sheet goods with ease.
To get an idea of power compared to other brands’ advanced circular saws, we stacked two sheet of 3/4-inch OSB subfloor and cut as fast as the saw would let us.
Cut after cut, the DeWalt DCS578 proved it is in the upper tier with the most powerful cordless circular saws. Is it the most powerful?
Not in this test. But that’s kind of like the 3 teams in the College Football Playoff that don’t win the national championship. They’re still outstanding football teams.
It’s also worth noting that the maximum cutting depth is higher. Moving from 2 1/4 inches to 2 9/16 inches, it now has the depth to cut through 3x material in one pass.
Guard Action and Shoe Friction
DeWalt’s guard action is smooth, just like we expect. The design takes of most cuts extremely well. It tackled thin, thick, 45º miter, and 45º bevel cuts just fine.
The only one we ran into an issue with was a compound 45º miter/45º bevel. The guard catches before it can fully rotate out of the way. If you’re making that cut, you’ll need to manually work the guard up until its clear.
Like the original FlexVolt circular saw, there’s still quite a bit of shoe friction to overcome. It’s something we’re only seeing on this model as the worm drive style version slides more easily. We don’t consider it a deal-breaker, though.
Sightline and Chip Clearance
If you’re the kind of person that prefers to watch the blade against the cutline rather than the shoe notches, the DeWalt FlexVolt 60V max circular saw does fine in that department.
The framing doesn’t fully block your sightline, though it’s not as wide open as we found with Milwaukee’s 2732. A cutline blower and LED light help to keep the line visible while you cut.
If you’d rather follow the notches, you’re in even better shape. With a Spyder 7 1/4-inch framing blade installed, we found both the 90º and 45º notches were perfectly in line with the blade as we cut.
The saw also does a great job of clearing chips out of the way. It ejects them powerfully through the guard and down toward the floor. Even though some of the debris might end up on (and in) your shoes, that’s a trade-off we’ll gladly make for a clean site line.
While it doesn’t come in the kit, you can get an optional dust port to vacuum up the dust and leave a much cleaner work area.
Tracking isn’t usually an issue for most cordless circular saws unless you have a bent arbor. Where you can run into occasional issues is if the handle design encourages you push right or left slightly.
We didn’t have an issue with that all using the DeWalt DCS578. In fact, the large front handle design, angle, and distance away from the rear handle was our favorite of all the saws we tested.
Even though the weight is really on the material, the handle position helps balance the saw well and cut lighter than its 11.5-pound weight (with 9.0Ah battery).
- Electric brake
- Rafter hook
- 57º max bevel with stops at 22.5º and 45º
DeWalt DCS578 FlexVolt Circular Saw Pricing
As a bare tool, the DeWalt DCS578 FlexVolt 60V max circular saw runs $199. It’s $20 more than the DCS575 is currently.
Moving to the single-battery kit, it’s $299. That’s the same price as the single-battery 575 kit and it comes with a 3.0/9.0Ah battery instead of a 2.0/6.0Ah pack.
The 2-battery kit runs $449, $50 more than the DCS575, but it comes with the higher-capacity batteries.
DeWalt DCS575 vs DCS578
|90º Max Cut Depth||2 1/4 inches||2 9/16 inches|
|45º Max Cut Depth||1 5/8 inches||2 inches|
|No-Load Speed||5800 RPM||5800 RPM|
|Bare Weight||8.1 pounds||8.2 pounds|
The Bottom Line
The DeWalt FlexVolt 60V max circular saw clearly has top-tier cutting performance that competes well against the best that other brands have to offer. Its overall design and cutting experience overcome the couple of hiccups we found, making it an easy selection for Pros that want the best DeWalt has to offer in a cordless sidewinder.