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September 28, 2021

Professional Tool Reviews for Pros


DeWalt FlexVolt Advantage Circular Saw

PTR Review
  • Pro Rating 9.2

The DeWalt Advantage circular saw is the model we wish DeWalt would have launched with the original FlexVolt line—compatible with both 20V Max and FlexVolt batteries while giving you a significant boost when you use the FlexVolt battery.

Overall Score 9.2 (out of 10)

DeWalt FlexVolt Advantage Circular Saw Reveals Top-Tier Cutting Power With FlexVolt Battery

The DeWalt FlexVolt Advantage circular saw comes to us after an incredibly impressive performance from the FlexVolt Advantage hammer drill. We have high expectations for the DCS573 circular saw and we also want to know where it fits in DeWalt’s cordless lineup in terms of overall performance. To discover that, we’ll run it on the PTR Test Track!


Pros

  • Competent cutting performance with standard 20V Max batteries and top-tier performance with FlexVolt batteries
  • Accurate notches for tracking your cutline
  • Excellent ergonomics
  • Electronic blade brake
  • Rafter hook
  • Dust-port compatible (sold separately)
  • Tool Connect Chip compatible (sold separately)

Cons

  • Guard has has some hesitation on full-depth cuts at 45º bevel and on compound cuts
  • Sightline to the blade isn’t great

Recommendation

The DeWalt Advantage circular saw is the model we wish DeWalt would have launched with the original FlexVolt line—compatible with both 20V Max and FlexVolt batteries while giving you a significant boost when you use the FlexVolt battery.

DeWalt FlexVolt Advantage Circular Saw Design

General Design

As a sidewinder-style circular saw, DeWalt sticks with the traditional blade-right design. We can kick off the blade-left vs blade-right discussion in the comments section if you like, but the bottom line is that this kicks the dust out away from right-handed users who stand to the left of the saw.

DeWalt FlexVolt Advantage Circular Saw Profile

Optional Dust Port

There’s an optional dust port you can get. We’d prefer if it came in the kit, but we also realize not everyone uses them. Connecting a vacuum really does make a difference in how much mess you have to clean up, though.

Ergonomics

DeWalt tends to have excellent handle ergonomics on their circular saws and the DCS573 is no exception. The main handle fits in our hands comfortably with an ambidextrous push-in trigger safety.

The front handle is offset to the left and fills our hands, offering a secure grip that we really like.

Without a battery (and with a blade), the saw weighs 8.4 pounds. Using a 5.0Ah battery brings it up to 9.8 pounds and a 6.0Ah FlexVolt battery bulks it up to 10.7 pounds.

Adjustments

Blade depth and bevel adjustments are agreeably easy and smooth. Bevel stops at 22.5º and 45º help you dial in common angles.

Tool Connect Chip Compatible

We haven’t had a chance to use it, but the DCS573 is Tool Connect Chip compatible. Just pop the chip in next to the battery slot (two screws secure the door) and you’re in business.

DeWalt FlexVolt Advantage Circular Saw Tool Connect Chip Port

Additional Features

  • Aluminum shoe
  • Rafter hook
  • LED light
  • Blade brake
  • Works with all DeWalt 20V Max and FlexVolt batteries

DeWalt FlexVolt Advantage Circular Saw Performance

First Impressions

As we made our initial test cuts with a 5.0Ah battery, I was reminded of the DCS570 20V Max circular saw I’ve been using for the past few years. It cuts competently with more power than what you’d expect from a prosumer model but not as much as you’d expect from one of the FlexVolt models.

Right handed

That all changed when we switched over to a FlexVolt battery. Even with no load, we could hear the RPMs running higher. Making a few cuts in 2x PT, it felt nearly unstoppable. You basically need to cut with unnecessary force to stall it.

There’s no doubt the DeWalt FlexVolt Advantage circular saw has more power (up to 77% more according to DeWalt), but we wanted to see how that translates into cutting performance. What better way to find out than by introducing it to the PTR Circular Saw Test Track?


PTR Circular Saw Test Track Time Trial

The PTR Circular Saw Test Track consists of six sections designed to test a saw’s real-world performance.

  • Cross cutting: five cross cuts (2 x 10 PT)
  • Bevel cutting: five 45º bevel cross cuts (2 x 10 PT)
  • Miter cutting: five 45º miter cuts (2 x 10 PT)
  • Compound cutting: three 45º miter/45º bevel compound cuts from each side of the lumber (6 cuts total, 2 x 10 PT)
  • Power drive: one 4-foot rip cut (double-stacked 3/4-inch OSB subfloor)

With a 20V Max 5.0Ah battery, the DeWalt FlexVolt Advantage circular saw finished in 2:52. That put it ahead of Ridgid’s Octane and Kobalt’s XTR times, but below most of the big names.

Switching over to a 6.0Ah FlexVolt battery, the saw took more than a minute off, finishing the course in 1:43. That puts it in the upper tier of saws we’ve tested and just 4 seconds off the pace of DeWalt’s gen-2 FlexVolt sidewinder!

Tracking and Sightlines

DeWalt’s sightline to the blade isn’t great from the left, particularly on bevel cuts. We had to tilt our heads more to the side than normal to see it clearly. That’s something to keep in mind if you prefer to watch the blade on your cutline.

DeWalt FlexVolt Advantage Circular Saw Sight Line

On the other hand, the notches are perfectly accurate, so following your cutline from the front of the shoe is the best way to go on this model. You may have to look to the blade side of the saw on cuts that you need to see the blade contact your material at the start.

Guard Action

For standard cross cuts and rip cuts in all the material thicknesses we tested, the guard’s action is smooth and easy. We did notice some hesitation to work around at 45º bevels on 2x material, though.

DeWalt FlexVolt Advantage Circular Saw Pricing

You can pick up the DeWalt DCS573 for $199 as a bare tool or as part of a combo kit. Here’s a quick breakdown of the options:

DCS573BDCD999T1DCS573BDCK2100P2DCS573B
Circular SawFlexVolt AdvantageFlexVolt AdvantageFlexVolt Advantage
Hammer DrillNoneFlexVolt Advantage DCD999FlexVolt Advantage DCD999
Impact DriverNoneNone20V Max XR DCF887
BatteriesNone6.0Ah FlexVolt2 x 5.0Ah 20V Max
Price$199$478$498

When you’re looking at the range of DeWalt cordless circular saws available, make sure the FlexVolt Advantage technology is something that’s a good fit for your needs. You can get the second-generation FlexVolt sidewinder for the same price or save a bit if you only need a 20V Max saw.

The Bottom Line

The DeWalt FlexVolt Advantage circular saw is the model we wish DeWalt would have launched with the original FlexVolt line—compatible with both 20V Max and FlexVolt batteries while giving you a significant boost when you use the FlexVolt battery. The question is, which model do you go with—20V Max, Power Detect, FlexVolt Advantage, or FlexVolt?

In my opinion, FlexVolt Advantage is the way to go for anyone who is using a mix of DeWalt 20V Max and FlexVolt tools. You’re not losing out on performance and you’re gaining 20V Max battery compatibility.

DeWalt FlexVolt Advantage Circular Saw Specs

  • Model: DeWalt DCS573B
  • Motor: Brushless
  • Blade Diameter: 7-1/4 in.
  • No-Load Speed: 5,500 RPM
  • Capacity at 90º: 2-9/16 in.
  • Depth of Cut at 45º: 2 in.
  • Weight: 8.2 lbs.
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • Price: $199 (bare tool)

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Denis Fredrick

A laser beam to show the cutting line is an ideal feature. I have it on my corded circular saw.

F BRAUN

The question no one has answered yet is whether the FlexVolt Advantage tools have a modest increase in power using the 21700-based batteries like the Power Detect models. Then it would be a no-brainer as the FVA would do everything.

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