Professional Tool Reviews for Pros

Makita 18V LXT Brushless Multi Tool with Starlock | XMT04

Makita 18V Brushless Multi-Tool Feature

Makita Adds Starlock Max Clamp System to Brushless Multi Tool

Makita has released the XMT04 Brushless Sub Compact Multi Tool, but this time with what we consider to be a substantial improvement to their previous oscillating multi tool (OMT) designs: the Starlock Max System. Not only does the tool combine speed and performance with low vibration, but now you also get the added bonus of fast and easy accessory changes.

What’s the Big Deal?

The Starlock System has been a revolution for various OMTs on the market, and the fact that Makita has added this feature to this Multi Tool is kind of a big deal. Other multi tools rely on either a proprietary tool-free system, or worse, a system that uses screw-in bolts or manual systems to keep your blades, sanding pads, and accessories locked in place. Starlock saves time when swapping out accessories. It can also save your hands from touching a hot blade.

The Makita Starlock Multi Tool does away with the hassle by snapping into the accessory, “gripping it up” and locking it into place. The system features a lever on the top of the tool that releases the blade. It keeps your hands completely out of the way. The whole process takes less than 3 seconds. Makita made the XMT04 compatible with Starlock Max, Starlock Plus, and Starlock accessories.

Meanwhile, the Makita Sub Compact Multi Tool features a brushless motor and variable speed control that provides between 10,000 and 20,000 OPM at a 3.6º angle of oscillation. This provides more aggressive cutting and sanding, but with a soft start motor and Makita’s Anti-Vibration Technology, you can get precise cuts.

Other Features

  • Small diameter barrel grip
  • On/Off slide witch with lock-on button
  • Extreme Protection Technology improves dust and water resistance
  • Weighs 3.7 lbs. with battery attached
  • LED work light
  • 12 in. long

Side By Side

For a point of comparison, we can put the Makita Starlock Multi Tool up next to the company’s previous 18V edition.

ModelMakita XMT04Makita XMT03
Oscillations per Minute10,000-20,000 OPM6,000-20,000 OPM
Angle of Oscillation3.6º3.2º
Attachment TypeStarlock MaxOIS
Variable Speed DialYesYes
Length12 in.12 in.
Weight with Battery4.4 lbs4.9 lbs

There is a marked difference in the retail price between the two models, but we’re also seeing some substantial improvements on the updated model to justify the price hike. Even though both models feature tool-less blade changes, we strongly prefer the Starlock Max system. Plus, you get a brushless motor, a more aggressive oscillating angle for quicker cutting, and reduced vibration and weight. For professional tile installers, electricians, and others who make a living with their tools, we think that the price increase could very well be worth it.


The Makita 18V Sub Compact Multi Tool with Starlock is available now from anywhere Makita tools are sold. It comes as a bare tool, retailing for $229. Makita backs this tool with a 3-year warranty.

Makita 18V Sub Compact Multi Tool with Starlock Specs

  • Model: Makita XMT04ZB
  • Oscillations Per Minute: 10,000-20,000 OPM
  • Oscillation Angle: 3.6º
  • Variable Speed Dial: Yes
  • Length: 12 in.
  • Weight: 4.4 lbs.
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • Price: $229 (bare tool)

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Should be mentioned that the Makita has an additional pin that is needed to secure the blade. The Bosch and Fein Starlock Max models don’t need the additional pin.

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