5 Best Compact & Mini Circular Saw Reviews of 2020 – Top Picks

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Using a full-size circular saw can be strenuous and heavy some times. It’s worse—if you are a DIYer—that frequently do a lot of small constructions around the house. That’s where a saw which is compact, small and flexible comes in. It saves you more energy and gives ultimate control with easier maneuverability.

Nonetheless, there are a lot of saws on the market that promise to deliver—but they end up working under par. Therefore, finding the perfect compact circular saw can be rocket science sometimes.

The good news:

Looking for the PERFECT mini circular saws for your budget? You’ve come to the right place. We went on a mission and tried dozens of models in our tight workshop (a new one each week), and give you our honest opinion in this best circular saw on the market.

For instance, you’d have to know the type and size of blade you need. You have to consider the ease of handling. Your budget is also essential, amongst other factors.

While searching for the best small circular saws on the market, we considered all these crucial factors and more—to search for the high-quality ones on the market. As a result, we came up with the top five small circular saws for 2019. Hang in there, to find about them.

Trust us! Choose wisely!

Comparison of our Favorite Picks

Makita SH02R1 

Makita SH02R1
(Top Pick)

Check Price

Battery Powered

1500 RPM

3.5 lbs

Rockwell Rk3440k

Rockwell Rk3440k

Check Price


3500 RPM

3.4 lbs

Rockwell RK3441K

Rockwell RK3441K
(Best Value for Money)

Check Price


3500 RPM

5 lbs


Worx WX429l

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3500 RPM

5 lbs

Genesis GCS545C

Genesis GCS545C

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3500 RPM

6 lbs


5 Best Mini Circular Saw Reviews 2020:

1. Makita SH02R1 Mini Circular Saw – Top Pick

The Makita SH02R1 is a best small circular saw money can buy on our list—but what makes it different from the other cordless saw is its design—which has a unique feel that resembles a standard circular saw, even if it only uses a 3-3/8” blade.

This compact saw best-suits any home improvement construction, especially if you’re a DIYer—because of its comfortable and power design—which allows you to tackle anything without stress.

The saw can cut through drywall, MDF board, and other household materials. The depth of cut is adjustable to fit between 1” and 5/8”.

Also, with this saw, you can allow for bevel cuts and tailor the cuts between 0 and 45-degrees to your specific need.

In our opinion, the portability, lightweight, ease of use and mobility of the SH02R1 is what makes it the best option amongst the other saws mentioned on this list.

What We Like

  • The weight of the saw is light—with only 3.5 lbs and easy to handle
  • It does bevel cuts
  • It’s cordless with the use of batteries—that charge fast
  • It’s powerful for a small saw

What We Didn’t Like

  • There is no way to collect or control sawdust
  • The batteries aren’t compatible with other Makita brands

2. Rockwell Versacut Rk3440k Mini Circular Saw

If you’re looking for a compact circular saw with remarkable precision, the Rockwell Versacut Rk3440k might just fit the description.

The device boasts of a mobile ergonomic and compact design—plus you need only one hand to operate it.

Even though the saw is not so big when compared to others, it’s still able to cut wood—that is two or more inches dense—with its four inches blade.

The Rockwell Rk3440k comes with 3 blades—that enables it to cut through other types of material like ceramic tiles, aluminum, and sheet metal, amongst others—which makes it a multinational compact saw.

Here’s the icebreaker:

This circular saw produces more accurate and straighter cuts that most of the other saws on this list—because of its laser cutting guide.

What We Like

  • It has three different blades
  • It’s quite safe to use
  • It comes with a laser cutting guide—which enables precision cuts

What We Didn’t Like

  • The safety feature on the device isn’t user-friendly
  • The laser guide can only work with battery
  • People with large hands could get frustrated using the device

3. Rockwell RK3441K Mini Skill Saw – Best for the Money

In our opinion, the Rockwell RK3441K is 4.5-inch compact circular saw. By experience, we can agree to the fact that the device is worth the investment.

This compact circular saw is quite comfortable—thus, you can work for long hours with the device without getting exhausted. Grip and handling are two crucial things the manufacturer emphasized on the product. The saw gives you ultimate control while handling causing you to get more accurate results.

With its lock-off switch, the Rockwell RK3441K is less likely to put you in harm’s way.

What’s more?

It has a laser guide feature—which helps the saw to produce more angled and precise cuts. The device boasts of an outer guard and metal inner liner which protect it from external elements. That’s not all; it has an adjustable blade—which helps users to produce rip and plunge cuts.

 What We Like

  • It has an excellent safety measure in place—a lock-off switch
  • It has a high maneuverability
  • Its laser guide technology helps you get well-précised cuts

What We Didn’t Like

  • The blade binds up sometimes—when the workload is heavy
  • It’s frustrating for left-hand users to use the saw without engaging the switch.

4. Worx Worxsaw WX429L Mini Circular Saw

This is the most pocket-friendly compact circular saw on our list. With a few dollars, you can get this device. It’s best suited for beginners—working with a lean budget.

The device boasts of convenience and comfortable grip—which enable its users to be in complete control during application, especially for newbies.

The Worxsaw WX429L compact circular saw is quite easy to maneuver, and it’s portable—because of its lightweight.

People with smaller hands, like women, will enjoy using this saw because it’s one of the most compact saws on this list.

What sets it apart?

It has a left-sided blade design—that enables you to have a better view of the blade and the material you’re cutting. Nonetheless, the design can get frustrating, sometimes, for left-handed users.

What We Like

  • It has a left-sided blade design
  • The depth lever can be easily adjusted
  • The design of the saw makes it simple for the user to see the material they’re cutting and the blade.

What We Didn’t Like

  • It’s only ideal for small projects
  • The design could prove troublesome for left-handed people
  • It fens down sometimes with long cuts.

5. Genesis GCS545C Compact Circular-Saw

The Genesis GCS545C works perfectly with diverse materials like wood, tile, metal and many more materials. Out of all the saws listed here, it’s the one with the most versatile function.

This saw comprises a second wheel position—which makes flush cutting easy. It also comes with a worm drive gearing that boosts the sturdiness of the saw.

The saw has one dust extraction port—which makes your workplace tidy and neat every time.

What’s more?

The Dremel S20-03 also comes with a well-organized case—which is spacious enough to accommodate the device, power cord, few Allen wrenches and a dozen of saw blades.

What We Like

  • Bevel Control
  • Adjustable depth gauge
  • Vacuum adapter

What We Didn’t Like

  • Heavy
  • Blade quality is not good
  • only for small jobs

Buying Guide

Why Do You Need A Compact Circular Saw?

Traditional circular saws are usually heavy—hence, it’s difficult to maneuver with them, especially if you’re not an experienced technician.

As a result, it’s difficult for DIYers to handle home improvement constructions on their own. But, all that is a thing of the past—with the advent of compact circular saws.


A compact circular saw is lighter than the standard regular saw—which makes it a better option to produce quicker and accurate cuts. If you’re are not ripping through lengthwise 2×4 studs often, then getting a saw over a standard one is the best option for you.

The Ease Of Use

When you opt for a saw it means one thing: you don’t require the services of a professional. With that said, you have to consider two things before buying the tool: the ease of use and ergonomic feature.

In other words, the circular saw should be comfortable in your hands. It should also have features that are easy to adjust.

Power Efficiency Of The Motor

It’s natural for people to assume that having a powerful motor is the solution to all cutting problems. However, this isn’t true. You may have a powerful engine and a wrong precision.

What do you do then?

Ensure that your choice of the motor has the power that matches your activity. You can determine the power of a motor with three factors: torque, amps, and volts. The torque of a saw has different ratings—depending on the conditions it faces.

The volt of a motor is more like a horsepower. So, the higher the volt, the more power the motor has. The amp, on the other hand, shows you the amount of electricity the blade needs to work correctly.

The power efficiency of the motor lies in the balance of these three factors.


Sometimes, it’s easy to jump at any saw that’s attractive until the price tag stares at you. The price tag could either make you scream, walk away, or happy.

Regardless of what the price tag may do to you, there’s a solution. The solution is: have a budget. A budget helps you cut down your options, and makes your choice easier. Depending on the quality of compact circular saw you require, a budget of around $60 – $99 should do the trick.

The Safety Lock

A safety lock option is crucial when it comes to buying a garden tool.


It’s important because it helps you complete your task with ease without getting hurt. Also, you won’t need professional help.

Blade Size And Depth Of Cut

The depth of cut of a saw measures how deep it would cut into any material. Ideally, the depth of the cut of a saw should range from one to two inches.

A bevel cut is another feature you should consider. The feature makes the compact circular saw more versatile. Asides the bevel cut, the size of the circular saw blade is essential. The ideal diameter of a compact saw should be 4 inches or a bit less.

7 Useful Tips For Getting Smooth And Accurate Cuts

1. Start with Accurate Marks

Before you get an accurate cut, you have to begin with a precise mark. Get your measuring tape and stretch it out. The next step is to place your pencil at the correct measurement. Use the pencil to make two marks that form a “V.”

Why should I draw a “V” when a straight line is easier?

When it comes to accuracy, a “V” is better than a straight line. The reason is simple; a straight line can stray slightly away from your cut mark.

Use a square to mark your cutting line. The cutting line is above the tip of the “V.” Proceed to put an “X” on the scrap side of the board. The scrap side is the where you cut along.

2. Light The Cut

What’s the use of a perfect cutting line when you can’t see it? Take out time to check the lighting before you pull the trigger. Sometimes, best-lit workshops or outdoors don’t help matters.


Either you or your tool can cast shadows that affect the mark. In this case, move your work light or change the angle of your board.

3. Watch The Blade, Not The Guides

Every saw has marks on the front of its shoe. The marks show where the blade would cut. But, it could be difficult to follow.

For best results, watch the blade and line as you cut. No doubt, the sawdust covers the line at some point. However, when this happens, use a saw with in-built blowers that clear the dust. You can also use your mouth to blow the dust to keep a clear view.

4. Clamp Before Cutting Angles

Most times, blade guards tend to hang up. The hang-up happens when they come in contact with anything other than 90-degrees. The solution to this problem is clamping your workpiece down, so it doesn’t rotate.

That way, you can cut angles by keeping your left thumb on the blade guard retracting lever. You can also withdraw if you notice that the saw hesitates a bit.

5. Tape Before You Mark

Before you cut dark wood, it always best to mark your cutting line on masking tape. This method makes it easier for you to see your lines. It also helps minimize cracking if you’re cutting hard plywood.

7. Steep Bevel Cuts

It’s normal for your equipment to make bevel cuts of only 45 degrees. So, what do you when you want to exceed 45 degrees?

The trick is:

Subtract the angle you’re after from 90 degrees. When you get the result, you can then set your saw at that angle. Proceed to screw a block—with the end of the board supporting the saw base as you cut. The blade might not complete the cut.

So what’s the next step?

Finish the cut with a reciprocating or hand saw. You can use this trick for compound cuts as well.


Cordless or Corded saw; which one should I pick?

As long as money isn’t an issue, a cordless circular saw is more convenient. A corded circular saw is also a good option if your work station has a power outlet that isn’t far from your workplace.

Is it compulsory for my saw to have a laser cutting guide?

It’s not compulsory, but it’s necessary. The reason is simple: a laser cutting guide helps you produce a straight line on the material you plan to cut. As a result, you make straight and accurate cuts.

You can also opt for saws with an LED light feature. The LED light functions similarly to a laser cutting guide.

Is a Mini Circular Saw a “Replacement or Supplement” over a full-size Circular Saw?

If you have jobs that vary in technicality, the compact circular saw is a better supplement than an outright replacement.

The blades of these small saws are useful for specific jobs. However, when a job requires more power, versatility, and efficiency, the full-size circular saw comes in handy.


Even though we were rapt by all the compact and mini saws in this list, the Makita SH02R1 12V Max compact circular saw was, no doubt, our most preferred for a ton of reasons.

First off, the design and light weight of the mini saw is fantastic—which makes it easy to carry about while working—not forgetting it’s cordless—a feature that makes it even better.

The quick and accurate cuts it produces aren’t things you can forget so quickly. Ultimately, the Makita SH02R1 12V Max Cordless Saw appears to be the best compact circular saw for 2019.

The other saws mentioned in this guide are also excellent choices. But, it all balls down to what best fits your needs. So, which of them do you prefer?