The Cricut is the incumbent in this battle of the ProvoCraft Cricut vs. the QuicKutz Silhouette. These two full-featured die-cut machines are versatile with drawing options and options to cut through assorted materials, making your crafting and scrapbooking a breeze.
The Cricut and the Silhouette at their core are both precision die-cut machines that cut paper, card stock, vinyl and more for crafts, scrapbooking, card making, wall art, glass etching and personalization. They also each have a drawing capability (optional in both cases) that allows for drawing of the loaded art instead of cutting it.
Both machines offer a quality die-cut tool able to cut through many materials, are capable of drawing a loaded image and have portable storage of media (the Cricut's cartridge system vs. the SD card of the Silhouette). They can make vinyl wall or car art, stencils, magnets and embellishments and pages for scrapbooks or cards. The price of both machines is comparable, though the Cricut Expression can cut a wider surface area, the Silhouette can cut a longer surface area.
The Cricut is a portable die-cutting machine that does not require a computer to use. The Silhouette, however, does require a computer for initial use and for acquiring more shapes and fonts from your computer. With the Silhouette's SD card capability, however, it is veering away from total computer reliance. The Cricut, however, is reliant on font and shape cartridges that limit the designs and fonts available to its users based on the number of cartridges that are purchased.
The Cricut Expression is 6 1/2 inches tall, 15 1/2 inches wide and 7 inches deep. It is larger than the Silhouette, which is 4 1/2 inches tall, 16 inches wide and 6 1/2 inches deep. The Cricut is significantly heavier at 20 lb. to the Silhouette's 4 lb. With size, however, comes added benefit as the Cricut Expression can cut 12-by-24. The Silhouette cuts 8 1/2 by 40. The added weight and size benefit that the Silhouette has is potentially negated by the fact that you would also need to carry a laptop around for a fully featured machine.
The Silhouette, when connected to your computer or an SD card, is able to access every font and piece of clip art on your computer with no further cartridges to buy to get more shapes. The Silhouette does have an online store selling individual images, but with the variety of free and subscription-based clip art and fonts on the Web, this is hardly necessary. The Expression, though reliant on cartridges, has a lot more in the way of licensed characters and shapes available in individual cartridges.
D.K. Bernhard is a freelance writer and professional blogger who writes tutorials on crafts, computers, Internet marketing and home improvement. He holds a graduate degree in English literature and currently works for a major window and patio door manufacturer.