Table Saw Reviews:
Table saws are great at cutting plywood and lumber, but they are also efficient at cutting rabbets, grooves, cove molding, dados, and tenons. There are 4 types of table saws on the market - portable benchtop and open-based contractor saws ($150-$1000) and cabinet/stationary saws ($1200-$3000) or hybrid saws (which combine features from cabinet and contractor saws) which sell from $750-$1400. Contractor saws are the most popular and we have a separate review on those HERE
. We want to focus this article on benchtop table saws that are portable but still provide the performance and power to do jobs like deck building and framing. Mobility is the key to a quality portable table saw like the DeWalt DW745 10 inch model. The majority of the benchtop table saws are 10 inch - this refers to the blade size. You'll find table saws with belt drives and direct drive motors. The belt drive table saws will promote a motor that lasts longer but generally requires more maintenance compared to the direct drive saws. Other features to look for include extension tables, sliding miter tables, dado heads, mobile bases, and out feed extensions.
- Homeowners who want a quality portable table saw in their garage or home shop should look into the leading brands like Ridgid, DeWalt, Bosch, Ryobi, Hitachi, Makita, Craftsman, Skil, Delta, and Grizzly. When it comes to the best benchtop saw it's hard to compete against the Bosch 4000-09 Portable Benchtop Saw with Gravity Rise Stand ($600) - it's the best of the class with easy blade changes, convenient scales, dust control, onboard storage, precise fence, extendable table, and ease of splitter/guard removal. The maximum rip cut is 24 7/16 inches (compared to the 30 inch cuts the General does), but the 15-amp motor has electronic torque control to manage the output to match the workload. The gravity rise stand opens and folds flat in one quick step. The Bosch 4100-09 is the newer version and lisetd on sites like Amazon as well. The Black & Decker BDTS200 15-Amp Table Saw comes with a stand and wheels so it's very portable. The carbide-tipped blade lets you cut plastic, wood, and non-ferrous metal, but the saw is really just a starter table saw meant for very basic jobs. Jet and Makita also make quality table saws that rate high in reviews by consumers and expert woodworkers. The Delta, Craftsman, and Hitachi table saws get only mediocre reviews and are probably worth avoiding at this time. Consumer Reports
did a good article comparing 10 portable table saws for accuracy, speed, ease of use, rip precision, and edge finish. They rated the Bosch and DeWalt saws near the top in several categories. Popular Mechanics had done reviews of table saws a few years back, but many of the models are still relevant and worth considering. Asktooltalk.com has reviews posted in their online forums and Lumberjocks.com also includes discussion boards with topics like "best portable table saw" which is a great information source. You can find many of these table saws online at Amazon.com or HomeDepot.com with full reviews and specs. You can browse the top selling and most popular table saws online here
Best Table Saws:
- The best portable table saw is the Bosch 4000-09
10-Inch Benchtop Table Saw ($595) with Gravity Rise Wheeled Stand. All reviewers we've come across say it was made just right. The powerful 15 amp, 4.4 horsepower max tool output has the power to handle any material. The precision rip fence gives you accurate cuts each time, the storage area is more than ample when done, there is nice extension on the right side of the table, the miter gauge is good, and the soft start motor makes for quieter starts. A newer version of the saw is available if you want - it's the Bosch 4100-09
which sells for roughly the same price and offers some enhancements from the 4000-09 model. Woodworking experts from Taunton.com and About.com continue to recommend the Bosch table saws as the "best in the business". Professional carpenters and DIY homeowners can't say enough about the 4100-09 from Bosch - comments include "way better than Jet and Ridgid" and "first class table saw". You can see all the Bosch table saws online here
Benchtop Table Saw:
We know Bosch dominates this market with popular, well made products, but the Porter-Cable 3812S
10-Inch Benchtop Table Saw is another top seller with a folding stand. You can bevel cut from -2 to 47 degrees, it has a 24 1/2 inch rip capacity, the 5/8 inch arbor accepts up to 13/16" wide dado set, and you get a 1 year warranty on the saw. The 3812 comes with saw, blade, rip fence, blade guard, blade wrenches, manual, and miter gauge. Other top rated table saws are the DeWalt DW744S (which has been replaced by the DW774X) and still runs around $500. The newer model gives you a 24 1/2 ripping capacity with a telescoping fence and the heavy duty motor (15 amp) cuts pressure treated lumber and hardwoods with ease. Some owners complain about the blade alignment. RECOMMENDED
- We suggest going with the DEWALT DW745
which has a 15 amp motor, 16" maximum rip capacity, rack and pinion rail design, and owners say fence adjustments are easy. You get accurate bevel cuts with the 0 to 45 degree blade adjustments and the manufacturer provides a solid 3 year warranty on the DeWalt. The DW745 comes with saw, miter gauge, push stick, carbide blade, and blade guard. One owner said the DeWalt is "a small table saw that is big on features" and most expert opinions couldn't agree more.
10 Inch Table Saw:
- The new Bosch 4100DG-09
10-Inch Worksite Table Saw with Gravity-Rise Stand and Digital Rip Fence is getting rave reviews from woodworkers and those on the worksite everyday. Owners say the digital rip fence is incredibly accurate with cuts within 1/32 inch or .5mm. When it comes to safety and control, the Bosch 4100DG-09 supplies a modular smart guard system, riving knife, and kickback pawls. Bosch has a solid reputation in this industry and the 4100DG-09 won't disappoint. In reviews done by top woodworkers (guys that do it for a living and not just on the weekends) - the Bosch table saw scored higher than any other brand and experts say this tool will last you a long time and deliver quality performance day after day on job sites.
Stationary Table Saw:
Hybrid saws, which are the combination of the contractor and cabinet saws, offer a variety of features not found in other saws. The DeWalt DW746X ($1000) is the best hybrid saw and gives you great dust control, less vibrations and a 3 year warranty. The Dewalt table saw has safety first with a knee-switch for quick shut downs and a blade guard and splitter assembly. You can find the entire listing of cabinet table saws online here
. We did a comprehensive review of all the top rated cabinet saws HERE