8 Best Compound Miter Saws to Simplify Complex Cuts

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Updated on April 8, 2021

Those who already own a compound miter saw will tell you it’s a necessity when you’re talking about power tools. The best compound miter saw for the money will provide a wide assortment of stops for bevel and miter cuts, giving you the capability of making complex cuts with a minimum amount of setup.

For simplicity, look for a saw that has easy to use adjusting knobs for both bevel and miter cuts, and a sturdy table that can stand up to heavy duty usage and tough handling.

Those just starting their tool collection will want to make a good compound miter saw one of the first types of power saws in their arsenal. Even over a table saw or circular saw.

All of the contenders below come from well-known manufacturers and have many years of jobsite applications behind their design. Whether you’re a professional who’s looking to upgrade or a DIYer looking to add to their tool collection, you can’t go wrong with any one of these.

Our 8 Favorite Compound Miter Saws

 ProductSizeBevelSliding?RPMWeight
best-compound-miter-saw-2DeWalt DWS71512"SingleNo4,00037 lbs
dual-bevel-compound-miter-sawBosch GCM12SD12"DualYes3,80065 lbs
10-inch-compound-miter-sawDelta 26-224110"DualYes4,00055 lbs
compound-miter-saw-reviews-2Makita LS104010"SingleNo4,60027 lbs
best-cordless-compound-miter-sawMilwaukee 273-21HD10"DualYes4,00045 lbs
budget-compound-miter-sawMetabo HPT C10FCGS10"SingleNo5,00025 lbs
sliding-compound-miter-sawRyobi TSS10310"SingleYes4,60036 lbs
single-bevel-miter-sawHitachi C10FCG10"SingleNo5,00025 lbs

Compound Miter Saw Reviews

#1 – DeWalt DWS715 12″ Compound Miter Saw

best-compound-miter-saw-2Probably the best selling compound miter saw of all time, the DeWalt DWS715 uses a powerful 15 amp motor spinning at 4,000 RPM and innovative cam lock design to deliver precision cuts. Common miter angles can be set up quickly using the 14 preset detents, or use the handy override miter to lock in custom cuts that won’t slip out of position.

It supports a full 50 degree angle to both left and right, which can save you a lot time and confusion over reversing lumber and recalculating the cuts on a more limited miter range. The DeWalt saw can accommodate bevel cuts of up 48 degrees to the left and 3 degrees to right, so that complex cuts are quick.

Thanks to the 12-inch blade and patented sliding fence design, you can make vertical cuts of up to 6-1/2 inches, and compound cuts of 5-1/4 inches with ease. It’s so easy to use, your table saw may start collecting dust except for those tasks only it can do.

For use on jobsites, the trigger handles doubles as an ergonomic carry handle, and the compact size makes for easy storage when the workday is done. Pair it with a good miter saw stand or saw horses and you can’t go wrong.

Craftsmen who have been frustrated by the knob-lock design of traditional compound miter saws will appreciate the simple push and slide plate design used on the DWS715, and the fact that the locked plate does not wobble out of true during repetitive cutting.

Functionally, there is not much to complain about with this DeWalt saw. The tubular table extension is not as stable as it could be, but it does make a nice addition, and gives you more leverage for holding long pieces in place when making critical compound cuts.

Similarly, the dust bag will remove almost two-thirds of the sawdust, but it fills up quickly and time spent emptying the bag is production lost. There is still room for some improvements, but the DeWalt DWS715 is arguably the best compound miter saw available today as far as value for the money.

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#2 – Bosch GCM12SD 12″ Dual-Bevel Sliding Miter Saw

dual-bevel-compound-miter-sawWhile more expensive than the DeWalt, the Bosch GCM12SD is professional grade dual-bevel sliding compound miter saw and includes a variety of extra features. The 15-Amp 3,800 RPM motor won’t bog down and the saw is capable of cutting material up to 6-1/2 inches thick.

The first things you’ll notice about the Bosch are the dual cast sliding table extensions which allow you to balance the material and provides more leverage when cutting left or right miters. The electric brake brings more safety to the job by stopping the blade spin quickly, and the unique saw body design allows for smoother cuts.

You’ll appreciate that the table has detents for most common miter cuts, providing bevel cuts up to 52 degrees to the left or 60 degrees right, the largest range of any of our contenders.

The biggest flaw is that this model has a high number of moving or sliding parts, and requires careful maintenance to ensure accuracy. Great for an experienced user but maybe not for a beginner.

It’s also worth noting that while the build quality and features are excellent, it comes a cost. At 65 pounds, it’s the heaviest saw on our list so portability isn’t its strong suite.

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#3 – Delta 26-2241 10″ Sliding Compound Miter Saw

10-inch-compound-miter-sawIf you are in search of a do-it-all style miter saw that is extremely versatile, then it would be hard to go wrong with the Delta 26-2241. This 10-inch sliding compound miter saw features a convenient LED-powered “Shadow Guide” which substantially increases cutting accuracy, and makes it easy to replicate most any cut.

With its 15-amp motor that runs at 4,000 RPM, impressive 16-inch cross cut capability, and ability to cut 6-1/4″ crown and 5-1/2″ standing base moldings, this Delta saw is more than robust enough to tackle almost any task.

While Delta advertises fence segments of their saw as being easily removable, some have stated that this is not necessarily the case. In fact, these screws are anchored in place with the use of threadlocker.

However, this also means that there is little worry of the unit’s fences inadvertently coming loose, while in use.

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#4 – Makita LS1040 10″ Compound Miter Saw

compound-miter-saw-reviews-2Those in search of a heavy-duty miter saw that is also extremely portable, should find substantial favor in the Makita LS1040. This 10″ saw features a powerful 15 amp motor, 9 individual miter stops, and a precision machined-aluminum base.

However, the Makita 10” miter saw weighs in at only 27-pounds, making it quite easy to pack around at any job site.

It is worth noting that some consumers have expressed dissatisfaction toward the Makita’s fit and finish. Most of these complaints have centered around misshapen plastic coverings and paint splatter.

In short, if you are looking for a saw that looks fantastic, this might not be the best available choice. However, if you’re looking for a working man’s saw that gets the jobs done at a reasonable price, you’re looking in the right place.

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#5 – Milwaukee 2734-21HD M18 FUEL 18V Brushless 10″ Duel Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw

best-cordless-compound-miter-sawFor many of us, we thought we’d never see the day where a cordless compound miter saw could compete with corded models. Part of Milwaukee’s M18 FUEL line, the 2734-21HD is that good.

If you’re a tradesman that is constantly on the go, or you are simply tired of tripping over extension cords, then the Milwaukee M18 dual bevel sliding compound saw is just what you’ve been looking for.

This saw runs on Milwaukee’s standard 18V lithium-ion battery packs and is capable of making up to 400 cuts on a single charge. Also included, is an integrated shadow cut guide, which makes it easier than ever to make precise cuts with each attempt.

This kit includes the saw, (1) 9.0Ah battery, M18/M12 charger, dust bag, clamp, blade wrench, and 10-inch carbide tipped blade. Any other Milwaukee M18 battery will work but 9.0Ah or more is recommended.

A certain number of consumers have expressed concerns over the play that exists in the Milwaukee saw’s head. These complaints state that noticeable wobble can lead to the occasional off-center cut, though such claims tend to be isolated in nature.

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#6 – Metabo HPT C10FCGS 10″ Compound Miter Saw

budget-compound-miter-sawA newer division of Metabo Tools, Metabo HPT (Hitachi Power Tools) took one of the best compound miter saws for the money (the Hitachi below), essentially updated the logo and gave it a lower price.

If you’re currently searching for a quality miter saw, yet have a rather restrictive budget to keep in mind, then this Metabo HPT saw should be worthy of your consideration.

This saw includes all of the essential features that are needed to knock out almost any project, including a 0-45 degree bevel range, a hearty 15 amp motor, and thumb actuated positive stops. However, one can purchase this saw at a fraction of the cost associated with many comparable units.

Some users have stated that the saw’s fence segments are not square with the unit’s blade. This is reported to cause off-angle cuts on occasion. While this might be a serious issue for professionals, this saw is still likely one of the best options for budget-minded hobbyists.

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#7 – Ryobi TSS103 10″ Sliding Compound Miter Saw

sliding-compound-miter-sawThe Ryobi 15-Amp 10” sliding compound miter saw is an excellent choice for any consumer wishing to simplify the chore of making accurate cuts in repetition. This saw features a LED Cutline Indicator, which makes quick work out of making highly detailed cuts and a 12-inch cross cut capacity.

Additionally, the RYOBI Sliding Compound Miter Saw is equipped with an electric blade stop, for enhanced safety, no matter the situation at hand. It’s hard to find other brands with this feature at this price point.

In a few isolated cases, consumers have reported issues with keeping the saw’s fence segments tight when used for extended periods of time. While this is worth considering, it is unlikely to cause headaches of any time for those who make occasional cuts, while in the process of working on a weekend project.

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#8 – Hitachi C10FCG 10″ Compound Miter Saw

single-bevel-miter-saw

Note: As of October of 2018, Hitachi power tools are part of Metabo’s umbrella and will be known as “Metabo HPT”. This Hitachi we previously reviewed has been rebranded as the Metabo HPT C10FCGS (see above). Same great entry-level miter saw but an an even better price.

Sometimes you don’t have to spend a lot of money to get a good power tool. While this saw only has a 10-inch blade and lacks a few features the above models have, the Hitachi C10FCG could very well be the best compound miter saw for home use or when you don’t expect to use it on a regular basis.

It may not be able to make vertical or compound cuts as big as the other two models on the list, but has a smaller footprint, and a blade that is comparable to larger saws. An optional laser is also offered for a few dollars extra.

The Hitachi will bevel to 45 degrees to both left and right, and has simple positive stops for miters cuts up to 52 degrees using the simple thumb actuated plate adjustment. The left-only sliding table extension helps with material leverage, but is not strong enough to offer much support.

As the lightest, smallest saw on the list, this model is designed for the handyman or home enthusiast.

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Types of Miter Saws

compound miter saw FAQ

In reality, those looking to purchase a miter saw have many options to choose from. There are a number of types of miter saws currently available, all of which carry their own distinct advantages and disadvantages.

Understanding the difference between each individual type of miter saw will assist you in making a well-informed buying decision. The following are the most common types of miter saws.

Miter Saw

A standard miter saw features a pivoting table, which can be turned to both the right and left. As a result, one can dictate the angle at which a particular cut is made.

When in use, a miter saw’s blade hinges downward, contacting the surface below that is to be cut. The depth of a standard miter saw’s cut is limited by the diameter of the blade that is in use, making this style of saw somewhat impractical when attempting to cut deeper material.

Sliding Miter Saw

A sliding miter saw operates under the same general premise as a standard miter saw. However, a miter saw of this variant features a sliding rail system, which allows much deeper cuts to be made with ease, as the saw itself can be moved to both the front and rear.

It is worth keeping in mind, that sliding miter saws tend to be less compact than traditional chop saws.

Compound Miter Saw

Compound Miter saws are multi-faceted in their cutting ability. These saws are capable of making both mitering and beveling cuts, for maximum versatility.

This is due to the fact that a compound miter saw articulates on its axis, allowing it to conquer a number of otherwise difficult to obtain angles. Saws of this type are ideal for cutting wooden trim or molding.

Sliding Compound Miter Saw

Sliding compound miter saws combine the cutting depth of traditional sliding saws, with the angle of articulation that is associated with a compound miter saw use.

Miter saws of this type slide both forward and rearward, using a rail system, while also pivoting on an axis to make beveling cuts at various angles.

Dual Compound Sliding Miter Saw

Dual compound miter saws serve as an all-in-one solution to all of your cutting needs. Saws of this type provide the same beveling abilities as a traditional compound saw while sliding both forward and rearward, as well as left to right.

This allows one to make cuts of varying depths, while also beveling a surface as desired, without flipping the material that is to be cut.

Which Size Should You Get?

what size miter saw

Miter saw blades come in various sizes, all of which serve an intended purpose. Prior to buying a miter saw of any type, one should familiarize themselves with the uses of each particular blade size, in order to make the most of their purchase.

12-Inch

Miter saws that feature a 12” blade are more than capable of cutting even the thickest wood blanks, though they suffer substantially in regards to portability. Saws of this size are ideal for when deeper cuts of up to 12” must be made on a regular basis.

10-Inch

Miter saws that feature a 10” blade are well adapted to a number of uses, while also remaining quite portable. Saws of this size can be used in almost any application, where extremely deep cuts are not necessary.

Under 10-Inch

Miter saws featuring a blade of less than 10” in diameter lend themselves well to mobility. However, these saws are also somewhat limited in their uses. A saw of this size is ideal when primarily cutting trim or other wood of a similar thickness.

Features to Look For

laser guide miter saw

When purchasing a miter saw of any type, there are a number of factors worthy of ample consideration. By giving consideration to each of the factors mentioned below, you will be better equipped to locate a saw that meets your every need.

Needs vs Design

As mentioned above, miter saws come in several different configurations. Each of these individual configurations comes with its own distinct set of advantages and disadvantages.

Before purchasing a miter saw, you must first determine the kind of work that you intend to complete and consider only those saws which meet your specific needs.

Blade Sizing

Prior to purchasing a miter saw, you must also consider the length and depth of any material which you intend to cut. A saw of inadequate size can leave you fighting an uphill battle, filled with its share of frustration.

On the other hand, purchasing too large of a saw can quickly eliminate any notion of portability. For this reason, one should attempt to locate a saw that serves as a happy medium between these two scenarios.

Power Source

Gone are the days when corded saws were the only show in town. In recent years, some worthy, battery-powered miter saws have come to market.

Saws of this type are excellent for moderate-level use and tend to be much lighter and compact than their corded companions. However, for pure power and cutting capacity, it is still difficult to beat a miter saw of the standard corded variety.

Additional Features

It also pays to consider a miter saw’s list of additional features and attributes. Many high-end miter saws feature laser cut guides, while many budget saws do not.

Likewise, a number of top-tier miter saws feature sizable fences, which hold material snugly in place with minimal effort, while some wallet-friendly saws come equipped with less sturdy fences, which require frequent readjustment.

Compound vs Sliding Compound Miter Saw

sliding compound miter saw
Sliding Compound Miter Saw

When choosing between a compound miter saw, and a sliding compound miter saw, it is important to consider the length and depth of any cuts that you intend to make.

Sliding compound miter saws allow their user to make lengthy cuts without readjusting the material that is to be parted, thanks to its built-in rail system.

However, if you do not intend to make many cuts of this nature, then a standard compound saw tends to prevail in terms of portability.

Compound Miter Saw vs Table Saw

Before choosing between a compound miter saw and table saw, one should determine whether or not they intend to make beveling cuts of any degree. Making such cuts with a table saw can be difficult, to say the least.

However, these cuts can be made without difficulty, when using a compound miter saw. If you do not intend to make bevel cuts of any type, then a table saw is hard to beat, in terms of simplicity.

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