Whether you are a DIY lover or a professional woodworker, you know the importance of having a high-quality, full size circular saw in the workshop. But let’s face it. These machines are huge and not very easy to use. With mini circular saws, however, that is not a problem.
The best thing about a compact circular saw is that it is extremely comfortable to handle. You still need to be careful while operating it, but compared to its big brothers, the chances of messing up or causing an accident is minimal.
And these days, the cutting power is also quite comparable between the bigger circular saws and the compact model. If you are looking to find the best compact circular saw, then you came to the right place.
In this article, we will be looking at some of the top-rated small circular saws on the market that you can buy to make your time in the workshop worthwhile.
In this post we'll cover:
- Top 7 Best Compact Circular Saws
- WORX WORXSAW 4-1/2″ Compact Circular Saw – WX429L
- Makita SH02R1 12V Max CXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Circular Saw Kit
- Rockwell RK3441K 4-1/2” Compact Circular Saw
- Mini Circular Saw, HYCHIKA Compact Circular Saw
- Genesis GCS445SE 4.0 Amp 4-1/2″ Compact Circular Saw
- Circular Saw, Galax Pro 4-1/2” 3500 RPM 4 Amp Compact Circular Saw
- WEN 3625 5-Amp 4-1/2-Inch Beveling Compact Circular Saw
- Things To Consider When Buying Mini Circular Saws
- Final Thoughts
Top 7 Best Compact Circular Saws
Here is our recommendation for the top eight best compact mini circular saws on the market.
WORX WORXSAW 4-1/2″ Compact Circular Saw – WX429L
|Dimensions||15.08 x 4.17 x 5.79|
We are going to start off our list with a handy little circular saw by the brand Worx that promises maneuverability and cutting performance at an affordable price. Despite its small stature, this corded circular saw delivers amazing cutting prowess that is capable of cutting through two by four’s in a single pass. This is quite common with most small circular saws.
This is the best mini circular saw in this list that boasts a 4.5-inch blade that can deliver 3500 strokes per minute under no load. It comes with an easy to set depth gauge lever and a bevel setting of up to 45 degrees for accurate cuts. You can adjust your cutting depth and angle on the fly without having to fiddle around with your tool.
The blade on the Worx Worxsaw compact circular is placed at the left of the grip. As a result, you will have an unblocked vision of the material that you are cutting. Thanks to the ergonomic design of the machine and padded grips, you can have extended work sessions without feeling any discomfort.
With your purchase, you get a few additional items in addition to the saw itself. It includes a 24T carbide-tipped blade, a parallel guide, Allen key for blade replacement, and a vacuum adapter. As soon as you get your hands on your product, you can get to your project.
- Ergonomic design
- Affordable price tag
- Bevel adjustment lever
- Easily adjustable cutting depth
- The blade location makes it slightly uncomfortable for left-handed users.
Makita SH02R1 12V Max CXT Lithium-Ion Cordless Circular Saw Kit
|Dimensions||14.5 x 8 x 10.2 inches|
|Battery Cell Type||Lithium Ion|
Up next, we have a cordless compact circular saw from the popular brand, Makita. The Makita SH02R1 is one of the best small circular saws on the market that weighs just 3.5 pounds. This ultra compact circular mini saw is also very affordable.
With its ultra-compact size this mini saw provides power and speed to handle multiple cutting tasks. In addition to plywood, MDF, pegboard, particleboard, melamine, and drywall, it can drive the 3 3/8-inch blade at up to 1,500 rpm at a maximum depth of 1 inch. There is plenty of motor power inside.
As well as two batteries, a charger, and a carrying case for each item, the cordless saw kit also comes with a blade. Due to its lightweight tool, case, and additional battery, this bundle is ideal for bringing from and to worksite due to its portability and ability to act as a backup when there is no outlet access.
A rubberized ergonomic grip makes this compact saw more comfortable and easier to control. This ideal for making straight and accurate cuts. Cutting angles can also be adjusted with a tilting base, and a charge indicator indicates when the battery is low.
- A good little saw for small jobs
- Amazing value for money mini saw
- Easy to make accurate cuts
- It comes with plenty safety features
- Only for small jobs
Rockwell RK3441K 4-1/2” Compact Circular Saw
|Dimensions||18.2 x 4.2 x 6.9 inches|
|Cord Length||10 Feet|
Next up, we have the impressive compact circular saw by the brand Rockwell. Whether you are a DIY enthusiast or a professional carpenter, this unit deserves a place in your workshop. It is extremely lightweight yet has enough power to match bigger circular saws.
The device can go up to 3500 RPM thanks to its powerful 5 amp electric motor. It weighs a measly 5 pounds making it easy to handle even by a beginner. There are hardly many compact circular saws out there that are lightweight. At 90 degrees, it has a maximum cutting depth of 1-11/16 inches, while at 45 degrees, the cutting depth is 1-1/8 inches.
The arbor size of the unit is 3/8 inches and holds a 4.5-inch blade effortlessly. Thanks to the left-sided blade design, you have an unobstructed vision to your target. Additionally, the grip of the unit is slim and padded, making it comfortable to use for just about anyone.
With your purchase, you get the saw and a 1 x 24 toothed carbide-tipped blade. You need to change the blade of a circular saw more often than the other saws depending on the condition of the blade or the type of project. You also get a parallel guide, a vacuum adapter, and a hex key to replace the blade when you need it. If you are looking for an efficient circular saw at an affordable price, it is one of the finest choices in the market.
- Extremely lightweight
- Easy to handle
- Great cutting depth
- High rotation per minute
- Does not allow for tool-free blade replacement.
Mini Circular Saw, HYCHIKA Compact Circular Saw
|Dimensions||16.9 x 15.4 x 11.6 inches|
|Blade Length||8 Inches|
With compact circular saws, people often have to sacrifice the rotation speed. However, that is not the case with the Mini circular saw by HYCHIKA. With this unit, you have the option to cut through a wide range of materials like wood, plastics, and even PVC effortlessly.
The small 4 amp copper motor in the unit is not to be underestimated. It can deliver a speed of 4500 RPM, making it one of the fastest compact units on the market. You also get a laser guide built into the machine to keep your cuts straight and precise.
Furthermore, the device has a heavy-gauge iron base and for the upper uses an aluminum cover that enhances both its durability and safety. With the parallel guide attachment, you can make quick cuts easily. It has an adjustable cutting depth of 0-25 mm, which is great for any of your projects.
The package also includes three different saw blades for different applications. You get a 30T saw blade for wood cutting; for metal, you get a 36T blade, and a diamond blade really comes in handy for cutting through tiles and ceramics. Additionally, you get a hex wrench, a scale ruler, a dust exhaust pipe, a handy carry case, and two cells to use with the laser guide.
- These compact circular saws offer amazing value for the cost
- Versatile selection of blades
- Laser cutting guide
- Durable and safe to use.
- No apparent cons
Genesis GCS445SE 4.0 Amp 4-1/2″ Compact Circular Saw
|Dimensions||16 x 4.25 x 8 inches|
|Blade Length||8 Inches|
We often see people ending up with a cheap product because their budget will not allow them to go for better units. However, low budget and cheap are two different things, and this compact circular saw by Genesis is the perfect example of how an affordable unit can compete with high-end models in the market.
It features a small 4 amp motor that can go up to 3500 RPM without any issue. As you know, the power is enough for most of the tasks that you will do with mini circular saws. In a truly compact and portable fashion, the machine features a barrel grip, which allows you to operate it with only one hand.
The unit has all the basic depth, and bevel controls you expect from a circular saw. Because of its user-friendly nature, anyone can pick up the device and start cutting like a pro. You also get a spindle lock to help you change the blade easily without any risk.
In addition, this mini circular saw has a dust port and comes with a vacuum adapter to keep your work area clear of wood specks. You also get a premium 24 toothed carbide-tipped blade, and a rip guide to help make precise cuts included with your purchase.
- Extremely affordable
- Easy blade changing system
- Easy to use
- Portable and lightweight
- Not the best build quality
Circular Saw, Galax Pro 4-1/2” 3500 RPM 4 Amp Compact Circular Saw
|Dimensions||18.19 x 5.75 x 5.12 inches|
The next product on our list is the compact circular saw by a brand called TECCPO. In the word of power tools, the brand is not that well-known. However, this product is definitely a gem that is worth checking out if you are on a tight budget.
This mini circular saw features a 4 amp motor made of premium fine copper that can go up to 3500 RPM. You get enough cutting power for most applications that you might want to do with a compact saw. Because of its copper construction, you can be sure that the motor will remain functional for a long while.
The unit is extremely lightweight, weighs in at about five pounds. It also features an iron base that improves stability and reduces vibration. For people who sweat a lot, it features a comfortable rubber handle and insulation. This machine is optimized for use with one hand.
The cutting depth of this small circular saw is 1-11/16 at 90 degrees and can go up to 45-degree angles to make bevel cuts. It also features a laser cutting guide to help keep the cut straight and precise. When you buy this product, you get a 24T blade, a scale ruler, a hex key, and a 15.75-inch dust pipe, in addition to the saw.
- Affordable price tag
- Includes a dust exhaust pipe
- Laser cutting guide
- Premium copper motor
- Bad quality control
WEN 3625 5-Amp 4-1/2-Inch Beveling Compact Circular Saw
|Blade Length||2 Inches|
The last product on our list of reviews is from a leading brand in the industry, WEN. This model features all of the great features of their circular saws in a compact and lightweight format. It can cut through wood, tile, ceramic, drywall, or even sheet metal with little to no effort.
The machine comes with a 5 amp motor with a rotation speed of up to 3500. Its 4.5-inch blade can achieve a maximum cutting depth of 1-11/16 inches at 90-degree angles effortlessly. You can even set the bevel anywhere between 0 to 45 degrees to get creative with your cutting angles.
In addition, the unit features a laser guide to help you make precise cuts when using the power saw. The handle comes with padded grips that enhance your comfort and prevent slipping even if your hand sweats a lot. It is also extremely lightweight, allowing you to have extended work sessions without feeling the strain in your hands.
Apart from the saw itself, you get a handful of accessories with this small circular saw. It includes a 24 tooth carbide tipped blade for cutting wood, a dust extraction tube, and even a carrying case for easily transporting the machine. All in all, it is one of the finest compact circular saws that you could find on the market.
- Compact and lightweight design
- Ergonomic rubber handle
- Safe to use
- Powerful motor
- Not very easy to use.
Things To Consider When Buying Mini Circular Saws
Now that you have gone through our list of the best compact circular saws, you should have a decent idea of where to focus your investment.
However, without knowing about the different aspects of what makes a good compact saw, you might still make the wrong choice.
So to ensure you end up with the best small circular saw, here are a few things you should consider before making your decision.
No matter how big or small the tool is, a circular saw needs to be powerful. Just because you are going with a compact model does not mean you should compromise on its cutting power. Nowadays, even smaller, portable versions of the circular saw have enough power in the bank for moderate applications.
The power of the motor in a mini circular saw is what contributes to its cutting power and it is measured in amps. With your compact circular saw, you should look for units that feature at least three to five amps of power. In that range, you would be able to handle most of the basic tasks with relative ease.
Speed and Amperage
In terms of motor measurements, speed and amperage can both be considered:
For sidewinder circular saws, the speed is generally higher due to the higher revolutions per minute. Compact circular saws use high speeds to drive the blade, which allows them to achieve cleaner cuts on wood, plastic, and some thin metals.
With the best compact circular saw, you can cut cleanly through a variety of materials thanks to a balance of speed and torque.
Amperage refers to the amount of electrical power produced by a motor. With this output, the blade moves at a much faster and more torqued rate, thus cutting through the target material more easily.
In standard circular saws, the motor amps range from 4 to 15 amps. Compact circular saw motors can have smaller motors as low as 4 amps.
Corded or Cordless
Conventional circular saws can come in two variants, wired or battery-powered. With wired tools, your circular saw needs to be connected to a wall socket nearby for its power needs.
Although it takes a bit away from you in terms of portability, you get unlimited uptime as long as it is connected to the source. With cordless circular saws, you do not need to worry about any wire holding you back. Cordless saws run on batteries.
Though you get an unmatched level of freedom when working, you need to make sure the batteries are charged all the time. If it runs out in the middle of your project, you need to stop and recharge.
As you can see, both variants have their own advantages and setbacks. You need to consider what you want out of your mini circular saw.
If you want the freedom of movement, cordless compact circular saws are the best choice. But if you want reliable power with unprecedented uptime, a wired circular saw is the obvious choice over cordless circular saws.
Sidewinder vs. Worm Drive
According to where the motor sits, circular saws fall into two categories.
Sidewinder Circular saws
The blades on these saws are designed for high speeds. A motor hooked up to a spur gear powers the blade up to 6,000 rpm through a side mounted motor.
Sidewinders have a short and wide shape. It can be challenging to maneuver them through tight spaces since they are square in shape. Although they are lighter, they are also less tiring for the arms and hands during long tasks.
Worm Drive Circular saws
Motors are attached to the back of these saws, creating a slim profile that makes them easier to maneuver around corners and tight spaces.
Saw blades are engaged by motors that transfer energy through two gears to the blade, maintaining a speed of 4,500 revolutions per minute.
These circular saws deliver more torque as a result of their larger gears, making them ideal for cutting concrete or heavy materials.
The main reason why someone buys a compact circular saw is its portability. Although the bigger versions are more powerful, when it comes to maneuverability, they fall short. When you are buying a compact model, you need to make sure they are easy to carry and use.
When you think of its portability, both the weight and the ergonomics of the tool come into play. If it is too heavy, you will not have a good time carrying it around all the time. Additionally, if the grips are uncomfortable, it might not be suitable for long work sessions.
The blade is the most critical element of a mini circular saw. With compact models, the blades are naturally smaller. But if they are too small, you will not get the result you want out of your power tool. Ideally, you should look for units that come with a blade of at least a 4-inch size.
You will find that all of the tools featured on our list come with blades bigger than that. Although you might need smaller blades for some special projects, a 4-inch blade should help you get through most cutting applications without too much hassle.
By cutting depth, we understand how deep the blade can reach through the material on a single pass. It is an important factor to consider whenever you are buying one of the best compact circular saws.
This aspect is what makes or breaks your experience with your compact circular saw. The cutting depth of the machine directly relates to its blade size.
With 4-inch blades, you should get a cutting depth of at least 1-inch. If you want greater depth, you should consider buying saws with larger blade diameters. Some high-end models can go as high as two inches cutting depth.
Some circular saws feature bevel capabilities, which essentially means that they can do angled cuts. Angled cuts allow you to get creative with your project and opens up many possibilities.
Otherwise, you would be stuck with having to cut materials in a straight line all the time. Bevel option allows you to make cuts at 45 or 15-degree angles easily.
All the products on our list of reviews are bevel capable. So, you can buy any of these products and be safe knowing that you ended up with a versatile product. However, if you do not go with these products, make sure your unit is bevel capable.
Blade Replacement Options
Blades in a saw wear out over time. There is nothing you can do to prevent it, and you have to be ready to change the blades if you want to keep your tool at a functional level.
The frequency of changing the blade, however, depends on how you use your tool and what materials you cut with it. Regardless of your preference, if your circular saw allows you to change the blades easily, that is always a plus.
The tool-free blade replacement option is a feature that you should look out for if you want to be able to change the blades quickly and easily.
Sometimes when you buy a compact circular saw, you get a few extra trinkets with your purchase. Although this does not affect the overall quality of the unit, you get a better value for what you spend.
A basic extra that you often get is a carrying case to keep your machine. If you get extra blades in the package, then that is even better.
However, getting an extra blade is quite unlikely with a compact saw kit, so you should be a bit lenient on this. It is not an essential thing to consider, but anything extra that you can get will help you if you are on a short budget.
You should also look for a few additional features in these compact saws that might up its value by quite a bit. For instance, most compact circular saws feature LED work light built into the machine.
This feature comes in handy when your project involves working in a low light environment.
Another helpful feature in compact saws is the laser cutting guide. It gives you a visual aid in making straight cuts by shining light on the cutting surface.
If you are a beginner and want to practice beginner’s woodworking projects with these mini saws, then this is an extremely useful model for you. Even if you are an expert, some extra help never hurts anyone.
It might not always be apparent which compact mini circular saw you want until you take a closer look at the specifications. But with our handy buying guide, that should not be an issue anymore.
We hope you found our review of the best compact circular saw informative and helpful in finding the right tool for your workshop.
I'm Joost Nusselder, the founder of Tools Doctor, content marketer, and dad. I love trying out new equipment, and together with my team I've been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with tools & crafting tips.