7 Best 12 Inch Miter Saws (2020)

Our top Pick: DEWALT DWS780 12-Inch Compound Miter Saw



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Our pick for the best 12 inch miter saw is the DEWALT DWS780 12-Inch Compound Miter Saw. It’s got a strong reputation for having a good fence stop, easy to use miter gauge, and dual bevel capacity for doing a range of complex cuts with larger stock.

Choosing a miter saw isn’t an easy thing. You’ve got to consider the size of blade, bevel type, sliding vs fixed, and brand quality. We’ve got a full list of factors we looked into when doing our research at the end of this product review.

But we know you’re here to see what we decided on, so let’s start with that.

The best 12 Inch miter saws are:

  • DEWALT DWS780 12-Inch Compound Miter Saw
  • Delta 26-2250 12 Inch Miter Saw
  • Tacklife PMS03A 12-Inch Sliding Compound Miter Saw
  • Wen MM1214 – Best Miter Saw for Dust Collection
  • Makita LS1219L 12 Inch Dual-Bevel Compound Miter Saw
  • Metabo HPT C12RSH2S 12″ Compound Miter Saw
  • SKIL 3821-01 12-Inch Compound Miter Saw

Best 12 Inch Miter Saws

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Miter Saw

Quick Review

Our Rating

1. DEWALT DWS780 12-Inch Compound Miter SawThis is a powerful and accurate miter saw. This product can help with a variety of projects and should last for a long time. (Check the Price on Amazon)

9.5/10

2. Delta 26-2250 12 Inch Miter SawThis is a premium miter saw with innovative robotic arms rather than traditional sliding rails that can help deliver a high level of performance. (Check the Price on Amazon)

9.5/10

3. Tacklife PMS03A 12-Inch Sliding Compound Miter SawA value for money pick. We feel this miter saw comes in at a reasonable price while still holding a reputation for accuracy and comfort. (Check the Price on Amazon)

9/10

4. Wen MM1214 12 Inch Compound Miter SawThis is a good miter saw for people who want to get the most out of their money. This product provides a high level of performance despite being relatively affordable. (Check the Price on Amazon)

9/10

5. Makita LS1219L 12 Inch Dual-Bevel Compound Miter SawThis is a compact and lightweight 12 Inch miter saw that can be kept in a small space in a hobby shop. (Check the Price on Amazon)

8.5/10

6. Metabo HPT C12RSH2S 12″ Compound Miter SawWe like that this is an accurate miter saw with a solid cutting base. It should be good to cut through even the thickest hardwoods. (Check the Price on Amazon)

8/10

7. SKIL 3821-01 12-Inch Compound Miter SawThis is an affordable saw that’s easy to set up and use and has a lot of portability. (Check the Price on Amazon)

7.5/10

1. DEWALT DWS780 12-Inch Compound Miter Saw

Quick Review: This is a powerful and accurate miter saw. This product can help with a variety of projects and should last for a long time.


  • Our Rating: 9.5/10
  • Sliding, Compound, Dual Bevel
  • 15 Amp

The DeWalt DWS780 ticked just about all of our boxes. If you’re after a sliding dual bevel compound miter saw, this one’s worth a close look. It’s a very versatile saw that can help with projects that need power, versatility and accuracy.

This miter saw can help make accurate cuts with the help of LED lights on either side of the blade. This helps workers to know exactly where the blade is cutting – no more guessing. It makes it easy to hit the line on both sides of the blade.

Being a compound miter saw, this one is also capable of a versatile range of cuts, so it can be used for a variety of projects. It can do accurate angle ‘bevel’ cuts as well as power cuts with a large 12-Inch blade that will cut through larger stock. It’s also got the sliding capacity required for wider materials – allowing the widest possible range of purposes.

Chris Says: “Dewalt often comes through with the goods, and once again we’re impressed with the specs and exceptional online reviews about this model.”

One thing that could be slightly improved is the dust intake system – it may need to be upgraded somewhere along the line if it doesn’t satisfy. However, we’d note that this is a systemic problem with all miter saws and miter saw dust collection is something carpenters have never truly been satisfied with.

Pros

Cons

Accuracy: The LED lights on either side of the blade help workmen to make accurate cuts.

Durable: Dewalt is known for its product build quality, which gives us confidence this model should last for years to come.

Versatile: We feel that if you’re looking for both power and accuracy, this miter saw provides the goods.

Dust intake system: You do get a dedicated dust intake system with the product, but you may feel you need an upgrade if it does not satisfy.

2. Delta 26-2250 12 Inch Miter Saw

Quick Review: This is a premium miter saw with innovative robotic arms rather than traditional sliding rails that can help save space when keeping your saw up against a wall in your shop.


  • Our Rating: 9.5/10
  • Sliding, Compound, Dual Bevel
  • 15 Amp

The Delta 26-2250 miter saw is designed for people who appreciate a premium product built with a high level of accuracy and quality.

This miter saw brings excellent accuracy and performance to the table. It uses innovative robotic arms (rather than a traditional sliding rails system) and a solid aluminium base. In essence, the miter saw gets rid of the traditional rails and uses robotic arms instead. These arms fold up rather than pushing out when sliding the saw back and forth, meaning you can place the saw up against a wall without having to worry about the saw ‘sliding’ into the wall when making adjustments.

Chris Says: “Overall, we’re really drawn to the innovative saw design that may be the future for woodworking professionals and hobbyists. But, some traditionalist might be hesitant to give this new robotic arm design a chance just yet.”

It’s also a durable miter saw that will hopefully last for years to come. While it might command a higher fee, this is compensated by the fact that this saw should hopefully last for years or even decades to come.

One of the downsides is the price. Also, the dust intake system appears a little small for a product of this size, and could get clogged up. We would consider getting a separate and more powerful dust intake system to make the most out of this saw.

Pros

Cons

Accuracy and Power: The robotic arms can help deliver accurate and powerful cuts.

Stability: The base appears stable and could make cutting easier.

Durability: This saw has a reputation for being a durable product that could last for years.

Price Point: The price point gives us pause, as it’s much higher than several other 12 Inch miter saws on this list.

Dust Intake: We worry that the dust intake is small and may get clogged up.

No laser sight: We prefer a saw that has a laser sight that can really help even more with accuracy.

3. Tacklife PMS03A 12-Inch Sliding Compound Miter Saw

Quick Review: A value for money pick. We feel this miter saw comes in at a reasonable price while still holding a reputation for accuracy and comfort.


  • Our Rating: 9/10
  • Sliding, Compound, Dual Bevel
  • 15 Amp

The Tacklife PMS03A 12-inch miter saw is among the top miter saws we would consider at the moment.

One of the biggest selling points of this saw is the extra working space you get with it. The side extensions on the base of the saw allow the woodworker to cut wider and larger pieces of wood compared to some other miter saws.

It also allows you to make accurate cuts thanks to the laser lights showing you where the blade is going to make the cut. One feature that really enables this to happen is the pressure clamps – these will hold down your piece of wood and help you make the cuts. It makes cutting easier.

Chris Says: “Overall, we consider this model to be another impressive one on the market today – affordable, high quality, and with a great laser sight.”

The saw is also relatively strong, although the blade it comes with is gravitating more towards the average rather than the exceptional category. That being said, you can always replace the blade with a stronger one.

Lastly, we also have to mention the superb customer service Tacklife provides. They are known for answering any questions and queries in minutes or hours, and have a reputation for being extremely helpful.

Pros

Cons

Extra space: With the extensions on either side of the base, you’ll be able to cut larger boards.

Accuracy: The saw can be accurate straight out of the box thanks to the accurate laser lights.

Customer service: The customer service Tacklife provides has a great reputation.

The dust collection system: Again, the dust collection system could be improved.

The blade: The stock blade can still be better, although you can also replace it later on.

4. Wen MM1214 – Best Miter Saw for Dust Collection

Quick Review: This is a good miter saw for people who want to get the most out of their money. This product provides a high level of performance despite being relatively affordable.


  • Our Rating: 9/10
  • Sliding, Compound, Dual Bevel
  • 15 Amp

The WEN MM1214 compound miter saw is an accurate saw with a laser light illuminating the cutting path, making the cuts easier to make and more accurate. The downside here is that it takes some time to set it up.

Compared to some other saws we featured here, this one has a decent quality dust intake system. There’s a dust collection shroud in place. It allows you to collect more dust easily without spending additional hard-earned dollars.

Chris Says: “Miter saws have notoriously bad dust intake systems as standard. But this one goes a step further than many competitors with the dust collection shroud. If you can’t stand the dust that your current saw produces, this one might be worth investigating further.”

We also have to praise the exceptional customer service WEN provides. They tend to promptly answer questions and you can also call them and they will be happy to help you immediately.

Furthermore, we also have to mention the high quality blade on this saw. It’s a 60-tooth carbide-tipped blade, bringing a good level of reliability and power needed to make powerful cuts easily. It’s also a durable blade that you won’t need to replace that quickly.

One of the rare downsides of this saw is that it needs additional time to set it up properly. We’ve seen many people complaining that it is a complex manual, and partly due to the fact that the laser is not aligned properly out of the box. But that’s only a small niggle for what you’re getting for your money.

Pros

Cons

Accurate: A combination of laser and LED help to deliver accuracy.

Dust intake system: The impressive dust intake system is a massive feature that makes this saw more viable than some others.

Quality blade: The 60-tooth carbide-tipped blade is comparatively high quality.

Customer service: When you need it, WEN should be able to help you out.

Set Up Time: Some additional set up required.

The manual could be clearer: Although it’s a small issue, we’ve been told it might be hard for some to find the information in the manual.

5. Makita LS1219L 12 Inch Dual-Bevel Compound Miter Saw

Quick Review: This is a compact and lightweight 12 Inch miter saw that can be kept in a small space in a hobby shop.


  • Our Rating: 8.5/10
  • Sliding, Compound, Dual Bevel
  • 15 Amp

Makita have been known for being one of the best providers of DIY equipment and tools, and this miter saw is a great testament to that reputation.

It’s one of the most lightweight miter saws you can get that will still bring a very high level of performance. It weighs only 65lbs, making it very lightweight and highly portable so you can easily move it around your workshop.

The Makita miter saw is also easy to use. You can easily place it against a wall for more stability, as it has no sliding rail coming out of the rear. This will give you more stability and it will allow you to make more accurate cuts.

Chris Says: “If it’s a lightweight 12 Inch miter saw you’re after, it’s worth giving this one a good hard look.”

Another thing we liked about this saw is that it’s very adjustable. You can tip the blade up to 40 degrees to the right and up to 60 degrees to the left allowing you to make easy cuts, while the bevel lock also adds another layer of adjustability.

We had read some concerns with the quality of packaging this product comes in, but that appears to only happen rarely. Plus, the customer support will help you out in the eventuality it also happens to you.

Pros

Cons

Lightweight and Portable: If you need a miter saw that you can move around the shop, this might be worth checking out.

Discrete: It can be kept flush against the wall in your hobby shop.

Adjustable: It has a good tilt range that brings more adjustability.

Quality of packaging: Some buyers have warned about this.

Set Up: Some additional set up required.

6. Metabo HPT C12RSH2S 12″ Compound Miter Saw

Quick Review: We like that this is an accurate miter saw with a solid cutting base. It should be good to cut through even the thickest hardwoods.


  • Our Rating: 8/10
  • Sliding, Compound, Dual Bevel
  • 15 Amp

The Metabo HPT C12RSH2S miter saw is a product by Hitachi. They have been known for producing some of the world’s top-notch woodworking tools, and this one seems impressive also.

Firstly, we are fans of the slide cutting system which allows you to make accurate cuts with ease. There is a zero clearance plate on this one for a smoother experience, which we find also helps when cutting through thicker pieces of wood.

The laser marker system can also improves the accuracy cuts. It’s got a reputation as one of the best laser systems out there.

The blade is also adjustable, giving flexibility when the saw is in use. It can be tipped to up to 57 degrees to the right and up to 45 degrees to the left. With this feature, you’ll be able to make cuts from different angles easily and accurately.

The saw should also be comfortable to use thanks to the elastomer grip that reduces the vibrations.

As with many saws we’ve featured so far, the blade of this saw leaves some room for improvement. You’ll immediately notice a great deal of difference when you purchase a better aftermarket blade.

Pros

Cons

Accuracy: The laser system and the slide cutting system help improve the accuracy.

Flexibility: You can tip the blade and adjust it in almost any way you want.

Comfortability: Thanks to the comfy gripping handle, the user experience should be high.

The blade: This comes with a standard blade; you might want to step up to an aftermarket model before long.

7. SKIL 3821-01 12-Inch Compound Miter Saw

Quick Review: This is an affordable saw that’s easy to set up and use and has a lot of portability.


  • Our Rating: 7.5/10
  • Sliding, Compound, Single Bevel
  • 15 Amp

The SKIL 3821-01 is a massively underrated miter saw that comes in at a great price. It’s definitely worth considering.

Firstly, this miter saw is lightweight. It weighs only 46.3lbs, which allows you to take this miter saw around your workspace with ease. And the quick mount system allows for prompt installation when you relocate the saw.

But you won’t have to compromise on working space at all. With the left and right table extensions, you’ll be able to cut larger pieces of wood than many competitors.

Workers can also get a high level of performance with this miter saw – both in terms of power and accuracy. It has a 15-Amp motor with 4,500RPM, providing you with enough power to cut through thicker pieces of wood.

The laser sights also help achieve accuracy on every cut. This helps the skilled carpenter make fast and accurate cuts easily and effortlessly.

One of the downsides is that you’ll have to take a long time to set it up for the first time. The laser sight might also need some adjustments to get it how you like.

Pros

Cons

Lightweight: It weighs only 46lbs.

Good value for money: For the asking price, this miter saw is good value in our opinion.

Portability: It’s easy to relocate it and use it again.

Set Up Time: It takes some time to set it up for the first time.

Buyers Guide: What to Look for in a Miter Saw

Sliding vs Fixed Miter Saw

A fixed miter saw uses a plunging motion to cut through stock, while a sliding miter saw uses plunging and horizontal motions. The main benefit of a sliding miter saw is that it allows you to cut wider pieces. When used correctly, the sliding saw also tends to engage less teeth in the stock at one time, causing far less wear on the blade.

Overall, a sliding miter saw is much more versatile and cuts a wider range of sizes of stock, while a fixed miter saw is usually cheaper and lighter. If you want the most versatile option, a sliding miter saw is probably best, but do the research for your own personal circumstances.

Compound Miter Saws: Dual vs Single Bevel

All miter saws pivot on a vertical axis to cut wood at various angles. But only compound miter saws also ‘bevel’ on the horizontal axis in order to cut through the wood at more complex angles.

‘Bevel’ is the ability to rotate the saw on its axis so it can do angled cuts through the stock. A dial bevel miter saw allows you to change the angle of the saw in both directions, giving you the ability to leave your stock in one place and make multiple cuts from multiple angles. This means you don’t have to move your material constantly.

A single bevel saw usually only bevels to the left (around 45 degrees, usually), leading to less versatility. Nonetheless, they will still be able to cut stock at just as many angles as a dual bevel saw. The only difference is you might be moving your material around and rotating it quite a bit more than if you had a dual bevel model.

Also note that when you bevel your saw, you reduce your cut capacity a little.

Miter Scale

Your miter saw should also come with a miter scale which allows you to adjust your saw to cut at your desired angle. Something we like to look for is a nice clean, smooth pivot and the ability to stop the saw at various ‘stop’ angles that are common such as 45 and 30 degrees for extra fast adjustments.

Sturdy Fence Support

Some fence supports can be quite flimsy, which really gets in the way of a nice clean cut. So we also like to give a miter saw a test drive before buying it. You’ll need to go to a local store for this. Place a piece of wood against the fence and see whether it handles the pressure of the wood up against it without any give of any sort.

Dust Collection Ports

Most miter saws come with dust collection ports these days – and many will also come with a dust bag included. Note that dust collection is notoriously bad for miter saws, so don’t go expecting miracles here. If you’re super concerned, you might get mildly better performance if you get a dust collection shroud, but again – don’t expect miracles.

Blade Guard and Trigger Locking System

Blade guards and trigger locking systems are standard. This is because they help improve protection against injury (although miter saws are inherently dangerous). Something you might want to consider is checking whether the trigger locking system is operable on both sides, especially if you’re left-handed.

Laser Guide System

A laser guide system is really useful for getting your cuts perfectly accurate at all times. Not all saws come with one, while some come with excellent ones that even have surrounding LED lights for extra enhanced vision of what you’re cutting.

Blade Size

This one’s a no brainer. You can get a saw that holds a blade between 10 and 12 Inches. 12 Inch is usually good for 4×4, while 10 Inch isn’t so much, especially when beveling. But, 10 Inch is also smaller and lighter so some hobbyists with small shops may prefer them.

Corded vs Battery Operated

Lastly, you could opt to get one of the battery operated miter saws on the market today. You’ll likely only want to do this if you’re moving your miter saw to and from the jobsite. Otherwise, a corded model will likely save you some money.

Final Thoughts

A miter saw is a big investment, so you need to do your own independent and wide-ranging research before making a decision. The saws listed above are some examples of saws on the market today, and we’ve rated the best 12 Inch miter saws on the market today based on our own preferences from our online research. Remember, these are examples only based on our opinions for our circumstances and not professional advice, so make sure you do your due diligence for yourself.

But overall, we feel the DEWALT DWS780 12-Inch Compound Miter Saw comes out on top.

We hope this general information has helped you!

Cheers,
Seb and Chris