Table Saw vs Chop Saw

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There are many different kinds of saws that can be used for DIY projects such as table saw, chop saw. Not all saws were made equal, so here is a quick guide to the two most common kinds, table saws and chop saws and the differences between them as well as the various uses you could have for them.

Table Saw

Also known as a saw bench, this is a versatile tool. Most people who only have 1 piece of woodworking machinery own this since it can be used for many things. It has a circular blade which is run by electricity and is located on a bench. It is possible to change the depth of the cut by simply moving the blade higher or lower. It is also possible to control the angle of the cut by adjusting the blade. It is very useful when the work needs to be done fast.

The most common kinds of table saws are the benchtop table saws which are very lightweight and operate on a table. They are also the least expensive and offer good precision as well. Contractor table saws are larger and heavier and usually have their own base. These are more commonly used by homeowners and DIY lovers as they are easy to run on normal power and are cheap. Cabinet table saws are heavy but more accurate. They require a different electricity circuit then the 1 at home, so only serious woodworkers own them. There are also hybrid table saws that have advantages of different kinds of table saws.

Chop Saw

A chop saw is also known as a miter saw, mitre saw, or miter box. It is one of the most accurate tools for making crosscuts and miters in a piece. These are commonly used where framing needs to be done, or molding needs to be cut. They are usually small and portable, with the blade ranging from eight to 12-inches.

These saws make cuts by pulling a saw blade down onto the piece that needs to be cut in a very controlled manner. There is more control, therefore cuts are more accurate. It is possible to change the cutting angle as well.


Besides the obvious fact that they are both excellent tools for cutting pieces, the other similarities are in the precision allowed. As the depth and angle of the cut can be controlled, it is easy to work easily with these tools. The bench top table saw is portable like the chop saw as well.


The reasons why you would use these are different. Where a table saw is used mostly for a diverse range of cuts, the chop saw is best for projects where accurate cuts and crosscuts are needed. Since the chop saw is smaller, you cannot use it on extremely large projects and therefore where a lot of wood needs to be cut it might be easier to use a table saw.