Cricut Machine Review & Comparison
Published: Thursday, July 21, 2011
Are you looking to purchase a Cricut Machine so that you can use one of the Cricut Cartridge by Close To My Heart? We now have the Art Philosophy Collection, the Artiste Collection, the Artbooking Collection and the Artfully Sent Collection. I've had a few fabulous customers email me about this so I thought I'd put this review together to help you all choose which is the best Cricut for you to purchase since there are several of them on the market. All the machines typically come with a cartridge, cutting mat, cutting blade, and the necessary cords and manuals that you need but it's a matter of which size and model is best for your needs. They also all can easily cut through several types of materials like paper, cardstock, vinyl, vellum, chipboard and even thin plastics.
Cricut Explore (24" Personal Electric Cutter):
This machine allows you to also use the big 12" x 12" and 12" x 24" cutting mats and it cuts from 0.25" up to 23.5". This machine is absolutely AMAZING and is the current machine I'm using. Here are some things I love about itů you no longer need to figure out what your pressure and speed dials need to be set at since this machine does the work for you. Instead you just set the dial to the type of material you're using (Paper, Vinyl, Cardstock, Fabric, Poster Board, Acetate and more). You do need to have an internet connection to use this machine as it all works with Design Space online. However, there is a Bluetooth Adapter that makes it nice so you're machine and computer do not have to be next to each other. The Design Space program is super user friendly. It allows you to upload your own designs to cut for FREE or you can purchase images to cut and even access free ones. And OF COURSE you can still use all your cartridges on this machine! Wahoo! I couldn't survive without my Close To My Heart Cricut Collections so that was a must that I could still do that on this machine. It's super easy too.. you insert your cartridge in the slot and they sync up with your Design Space. Once they are loaded you don't need to put the cartridge each time.
A few of my favorite features is you can use markers and a scoring stylus with this machine. You simply insert the Cricut Marker into the slot or the Cricut Scoring Stylus and it will Cut, Score and Write directly on to your project. Talk about easy! Did I mention this machine cuts like butter?! OMG it's amazing! Perfect every time. I can't say enough good things about this new machine. Way to go Provo Craft for nailing it on this one.
Cricut Expression 2 (24" Personal Electric Cutter):
This machine allows you to also use the big 12" x 12" and 12" x 24" cutting mats and it cuts from 0.25" up to 23.5". The really cool features this machine offers is the full color touch screen, a LED light that shines on the paper as it's cutting, you no longer need the keyboard overlays, you can save settings for when you're cutting different types of materials and the new Expression 2 uses wi-fi for transmitting data. Now if you need all that fancy stuff and don't mind the color then this one sounds pretty awesome!
Cricut Imagine (Electronic Print and Cut System):
This machine allows you to cut, design and print together. If you're looking to add full color and patterns to your project this is the cricut for you. This machine uses the 12" x 12" cutting mat and comes with ink to get you started. Personally it does more than what I would need it to do. I love Close To My Heart paper and colors so I don't need the printing or design feature but if you do then this one is awesome.
Cricut Expression (24" Personal Electric Cutter):