Best vinyl cutters for beginners

7 Best Vinyl Cutting Machines for Beginners(Updated 2023)

RankProductDimensions (inches)Weight (Pounds)
1Cricut Explore Air 236.83 x 10 x 0.5
2Cricut Joy Machine8.5 x 5.5 x 4.25
3Silhouette America Cutting Machine
17 x 5.5 x 4.25

4Brother ScanNCut SDX125e8.4 x 20.9 x 6.81
5VEVOR Vinyl Cutter 34 Inch44 x 15 x 1250
6Cricut Champagne Maker22.6 x 7.09 x 6.2218.02
7USCutter 15-inch Craft Vinyl Cutter28 x 17 x 1226

A vinyl cutting machine is used to cut various materials like vinyl, paper, decking, and paint. These machines have blades that are used to cut the materials.

Some considerations for beginners purchasing a vinyl cutting machine include its features, ability to work with different materials, size, enough room space, budget, and user-friendly software.

I had a hard time finding good heat press machines and vinyl cutters when I was just starting out in the printing business.

After spending 10 years and a lot of money, I have been able to find the vinyl cutters that are best suited for beginners. Here is my complete analysis:

Vinyl cutters for beginners

Cricut Explore Air 2

The Cricut Joy Machine is perfect for all ages and skill levels! I’ve had it for a few days and am really excited to see what I can make. The machine is easy to operate and produces professional-looking results.

The first project is laid out with easy-to-follow instructions, and stringing the products together only took a few minutes. Now you can see just how quickly impressive results can be created.

This machine is so easy to use! You’ll get a step-by-step tutorial on setup, software installation, and everything else.

The Cricut Explore Air 2 offers a range of benefits that make it more appealing than other options.

While it’s limited to certain dimensions, in most cases, you can still create vinyl signs and decals without any size restrictions. This simply means that instead of having a tall, long logo, you would need short segments and line them up to create your own sign.

Considering that this machine can work with tons of different materials and use so many different things, such as paper, vinyl, and leather, it really isn’t hard to see what you can do with it.

You can create art and crafts projects perfect for gifts, yard sales, or flea market items with a little time and effort.

The best thing about this machine is how small it is. It can easily be stored in a closet or on a table and then turned on when needed. The only downside is that it might scratch surfaces, so just put a towel under the surface to protect it ;)

My only advice is that if you’re considering buying the Cricut Explore Air 2, make sure to buy all the essentials to get started. That’s why I recommend paper crafting tools, basic craft tools, and a deep cut blade.

The Cricut Explore Air 2 is the best vinyl machine for beginners looking for something to do with their time, or it can be a perfect small business investment!

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Cricut Joy Machine

I knew the Cricut Joy Machine would be small, but it’s so darn cute! After adding too many toys to my studio, I needed this to be small. This Cricut Joy Machine is so freakin adorable.

I was looking for a classic-style cutter that would do vinyl, ceramics, and other materials of a softer consistency. When I saw the low-cost convenience of the Cricut Joy, I knew it was perfect.

So I tried using my Joy for the first time today, and it was even more exciting than I thought. Everything was super easy, and I am already seeing awesome results with the pre-loaded content.

They offer high-quality, professional-grade business or holiday cards that you can make quickly. They give you cardboard and smart vinyl if you want to test the design before making the final product. It’s very easy – the result is this card, which looks just as I wanted it to!

The Cricut Design Space is easy to use; however, the free version offers limited fonts and designs. You can easily use some workarounds to add new fonts and designs to Cricut.

This machine is a joy to work with. This vinyl cutter for beginners offers you all the information you need when it prompts you to set up your project. However, if you need any help, they have a wealth of videos in their guidance menu and will also answer any questions or queries.

I love that Cricut Joy can draw or write the design. It’s really cool.

The only downside with Cricut Joy is that it has a limited number of free items in the library and the full catalog costs $10 per month. I wish it was $30 per year so I can have access to all their content. But I am are really happy with this product and recommend it!

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Silhouette America Cutting Machine

I switched to Silhouette, as Cricut announced they’d have to charge us for uploading more than 20 designs. As an early adopter, I’m glad I did!

I really like this best cutter. It has a small footprint and can cut all the different sizes I will need without any issues. I anticipated it being louder, so that was a bonus surprise.

There have been numerous negative reviews of the software, but I have not personally experienced any problems. I like that you can print from the software, which is very convenient and has excellent printing quality.

You can also print at a much larger area, with a maximum width and height of 7.5inx10 inch. Not needing to log in is really convenient, and not having to upload your design decreases the time-consuming process of uploading,

I’m knocking a star off because the metallic body is pretty noisy, and the Bluetooth features don’t work. However, a long USB cable works just as well, so it’s not worth taking a whole star away.

The Silhouette comes out the clear winner in my book when it comes to software, especially after the whole Design Space fiasco.

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Brother ScanNCut SDX125e Cutting Machine

We’re blown away at what we’ve been able to accomplish so far with our new Brother ScanNCut. It cuts paper, cardstock, and even cloth and balsa wood with the right attachments and pads. Any cutter can cut paper or cardstock. Right?

What makes this so popular is that if you have a favorite design, you need to snap a photo of it, then print and copy it with this machine.

Thanks to editing software, it’s easy to cut out designs from scanned images. You can use these designs to create a wide range of items based on your original design, including t-shirts, cups, windows, blankets, and more.

I’ll be up-front with you. The design process on CanvasWorkSpace is very easy, and the cut process is straightforward. Furthermore, this unit comes with a library of pre-loaded projects that you can use for free. And if you’ve printed anything in color, this machine can automatically scan it and cut out letters all on its own.

Though the process of using a scan and the cut machine is not as self-explanatory as we would have hoped, a YouTube video helped us get the hang of it. The scan and cut make a huge difference that opens up all options, especially when we were making stencils.

Brother ScanNcut machines are not as loud or large as Cricut devices, which can decide for some people. It’s simple to use- there’s no need for additional computers and phones. In this sense, it provides convenience and portability.

You’ll need to connect this machine wirelessly for full functionality. Brother’s software is free to download and very well-designed. Paid projects are also available when you’re ready to make money from your skills on their platform.

If you’re coming from Silhouette or Cricut, it’ll take a little getting used to. The process doesn’t follow the same steps and initial concepts, so it may be difficult to navigate at first. We advise that it’s worth the effort, though.

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VEVOR Vinyl Cutter 34 Inch

I was skeptical at first, but I’m glad I went ahead with the purchase. Vevor kept their promise and made sure my Vinyl Cutter arrived quickly in well-packed packaging. The machine itself is of high quality, works reliably, and has come with a lifetime warranty kit. The instructions are easy to follow, which is a huge plus too.

One helpful hint from the app is the “Test Area” button after designing your cut-out. It allows you to watch what your machine will cut before making a cut, which is good for avoiding mistakes.

I haven’t had any problems and have been impressed with the quality. For beginners, this best vinyl cutter can cut pretty much everything you put in it and tends to be faster than other machines. It can contour cuts and costs less than what a popular name brand machine would cost.

There is only one disadvantage regarding assembling the vinyl cutter base. However, you are probably not qualified to own a vinyl cutter if you can’t assemble the base yourself. Try a different hobby, like boxing maybe!

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Cricut Champagne Maker

The Cricut Champagne Maker can cut through fabric, felt, leather, and denim-like butter. You just slap it on the sticky mat. No need to measure or press down; it’s that easy!

The Cricut Design Space is a bit tricky to understand, but that’s ok. Every editing software takes some getting used to.

I’ve been impressed with the quality of the rotary blade. It does a perfect job on both lace and synthetic leather, as it doesn’t seem to struggle with any kind of material.

The Cricut champagne maker is slightly heavier than the Explore series. I don’t mind this too much because it still only weighs a few pounds and will fit in your Cricut carrying bags nicely.

If you are familiar with the new sewing patterns that Cricut offers, you’ll want a 12×24 mat from the get-go. Many of the patterns rely on this wider canvas.

I am pretty pleased with my purchase from Cricut. They have great customer service, user-friendly machines, and a quality design studio. I wish they would offer coupons or promotions from time to time, but if they did, I would feel more compelled to make future purchases.

If you’re a novice, then yes, you’ll definitely need it. It is 100% worth it for the price, and I’m totally loving it.

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Buy from Cricut

USCutter 15-inch Craft Vinyl Cutter

This is a good little cutter, but not the highest quality. I don’t think it was constructed with speed in mind but it works. It’s cut width is somewhere between 14” and 15”, so it’s not the widest I’ve seen, but it still cuts well.

USCutter was set up and up and running within one hour. It has performed flawlessly while running over 100ft of vinyl and vast quantities of cardstock invitations. It has shown no signs of wear at all.

Using the Brother Scan n Cut 12×24 adhesive mat for my materials, I periodically sprayed it with more low-tack adhesive to cut my cardstock. I was able to use the mat again after cleaning it easily.

The disadvantages include USCutter going off track sometimes, it is pricier, and I initially had trouble navigating the software. Overall it is a solid machine that requires some investment.

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Vinyl cutter guide for beginners

Are you a novice looking to buy a vinyl cutting machine? Here is a complete guide for starters.

A vinyl cutting machine is a device used to cut vinyl according to the design you want. The vinyl is then transferred to a heat press and applied to the material.

It would be best if you considered the following factors before buying a vinyl cutter:

1) Size

The size of the vinyl lettering machine is important as it will determine the size of the artwork that can be cut. The size of your vinyl cutting machine will dictate how many rolls of vinyl you can cut simultaneously, how many colors you can cut at the same time, and how large you want the cut size. For beginners, mostly small-sized machines are enough.

2) Compatibility

A vinyl cutting machine that can cut multiple materials is a good investment because you eliminate the need to buy separate machines for each material you want to cut.

3) Room space

If you are new to crafts, you should consider the dimensions of your workspace before purchasing a vinyl maker machine. A large machine will handle larger projects, but a smaller machine will be able to get into tighter spaces. Moreover, you will be able to travel easily with a small vinyl cutter printer.

4) Price

For beginners, the most important factor might be the price. The price of a vinyl cutter ranges from $200 to more than $2000. Some factors that might affect the price are the size of the machine, the size of the mat, and the features of the vinyl cutter.

5) Software

A beginner should get a vinyl cutting machine with user-friendly software because it will make it easier for them to create a design and work with the machine.

6) Connectivity

The market is full of different htv cutting machines. All of them have different connectivity features. As a starter, you should buy a machine that can be connected through a cable, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth.


How much does a beginner vinyl cutting machine cost?

A beginner vinyl cutting machine can cost anywhere from $200-$1000. Mostly, you can buy a decent vinyl cutter for $250.

What is the best vinyl cutting machine for beginners?

Cricut Explore Air 2 is the best vinyl cutting machine for beginners because of its user-friendliness, compatibility, connectivity, and size.

What vinyl cutter should I buy?

You should buy a compact vinyl cutter that supports different materials, has multiple connectivity features, and comes with good designing software.

Here are our recommendations for beginner heat press machines.

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