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Old 02-19-2011, 10:05 AM   #1
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Question Silhouette vs. Cricut Expression

I was floored when I saw Leigh's card for the TCP Tuesday Challenge that Julie hosted.

And even more floored that she gave us a file that we can use in our cutting machines to make that cute candy box.

I have a Cricut Expression and have heard that if I wanted to cut more detailed patterns, that the Silhouette was the way to go.

I like my Cricut for cutting big shapes, but I don't LOVE it for cutting detailed shapes. Should I get the Silhouette?
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Old 02-19-2011, 11:22 AM   #2
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I have both now... after watching Kristina Werners review on the product and Nichol Maguriks awesome layouts that she posts on youtube ... I knew I had to get the silhouette.

Cricut vs. Silhouette

You can find the SD version for $159 ... so best of luck with your decision.
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Old 02-19-2011, 11:47 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Kalonismommy View Post
I have both now... after watching Kristina Werners review on the product and Nichol Maguriks awesome layouts that she posts on youtube ... I knew I had to get the silhouette.

Cricut vs. Silhouette

You can find the SD version for $159 ... so best of luck with your decision.
I saw that video, too! I haven't seen it for $159. The cheapest I saw it was at Overstock.com for $180. Where did you see the $159 price?
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Old 02-19-2011, 01:32 PM   #4
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I have a craftrobo /Silhouette and love mine to bits.. have a browse in my gallery at what I have achieved with mine...

I also have free files on my blog
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Old 02-19-2011, 02:42 PM   #5
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I'm very interested in this topic because I have neither . .. I don't have any cutting machines other than my Cuttlebug and have been hesitant to get into this "world"!

So if you were starting from scratch, which would you get? Silhouette?
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Old 02-21-2011, 08:25 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Kalonismommy View Post
I have both now... after watching Kristina Werners review on the product and Nichol Maguriks awesome layouts that she posts on youtube ... I knew I had to get the silhouette.

Cricut vs. Silhouette

You can find the SD version for $159 ... so best of luck with your decision.
what is the SD version - are there different versions of the Silhouette?? I've seen it for around $180 like Alma but I'm clueless about what you need to know! help!
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Old 02-21-2011, 08:30 AM   #7
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The Sd VERSION has a sd card attached so youi can use on the go
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Old 02-21-2011, 08:41 AM   #8
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The Sd VERSION has a sd card attached so youi can use on the go
Ohhhhhh! Thanks for clearing that up! I'm so lame not knowing anything about these machines but it appears that you can do amazing things with them!
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Old 02-21-2011, 08:54 AM   #9
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Ohhhhhh! Thanks for clearing that up! I'm so lame not knowing anything about these machines but it appears that you can do amazing things with them!


Please take a peak in my gallery ..Mine has done some amazing things for me.. I also design now for the Graphtec Company here in the UK
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Old 02-21-2011, 09:31 AM   #10
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Old 02-21-2011, 09:34 AM   #11
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i have expression and use SCAL with it love it.
but so tempted with the Silhoutte
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Old 02-21-2011, 09:35 AM   #12
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oh i see I can use it with SCAL gonna try it
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Old 02-21-2011, 10:04 AM   #13
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Please take a peak in my gallery ..Mine has done some amazing things for me.. I also design now for the Graphtec Company here in the UK
wow you sure have some nice stuff in your gallery xx jo xx
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Old 02-21-2011, 01:28 PM   #14
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Thank you Jo.. All designed and cut on craftrobo/silhouette
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Old 02-21-2011, 03:57 PM   #15
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Silverst170 Love your blog!! I have a silhouette and love it!!1 You can use the 30% coupon at archivers to purchase a silhouette that is how I bought mine I also used the money I had made from selling my cards. You can check out some of the things I have made on my blog not quite as intricate as silverst170. You can also get a aluminum blade holder for the silhouette now that will cut thin chipboard .
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Old 02-22-2011, 03:07 PM   #16
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WOW! Tina your pieces are amazing!! I had no idea it could do all that - so intricate and detailed and just beautiful!!

And Alicia your work with it is so pretty too! I love those Christmas cards you made - very classy!!

So you buy the Silhouette then you buy patterns or software? And cutting blades etc.
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Old 02-22-2011, 08:14 PM   #17
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Thanks Julie!
You buy the silhouette and it comes with a blade . You download images/patterns off the internet from their store. You can buy individual images for .99 or you can get a subscription for monthly downloads. You can also find lots of free files on line I like the fact I don't have to buy expensive cartridges and their are tons of image to choose from.

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Old 02-22-2011, 11:18 PM   #18
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The Silhouette is a lovely machine. My favorite things about the Silhouette are Print & Cut, you can use it on several varieties of software and Operating Systems.

You can use it on Linux, Windows & Mac. Linux you can't Print & Cut unless you use the old Robo Software on Wine. I don't know if the new Silhouette Studio will run on Wine. Another thing don't start fiddling with it on Linux unless your a geek because you have to terminal. I heard Ubuntu now has a native Silhouette driver. I haven't tried it yet. Off all that geek stuff. I get PM's all the time about Linux usage. One more thing for Linux users you know Wine acts different on each of our distro's. It might work on SUSE but crash on Ubuntu.

Windows users can cut from Inkscape, Corel Draw, Adobe Illustrator, RoboSoftware, Silhouette Studio. You can Print & Cut from RoboSoftware and Silhouette Studio. You can also cut from MTC and SCAL. I know some Silhouette users have even cut from their browsers. I don't know why they did that but they did it. !

Silhouette does have a better accuracy than the Cricut. This is all due to the mechanics and math of the machine. Silhouette uses a different motor than the Cricut. I do own a Cricut Expressions, 80 cartridges, Gypsy and Design Studio. I am a power Cricut user. It will never replace my Silhouette.

Cons of the Silhouette and they are not really too big of cons. Smaller cutting size than the Cricut Expressions. Won't cut heavier materials such as polymer clay, balsa wood, etc. The Silhouette does cut fondant, vinyl and of course our cardstock. I know it handles Bazill like a dream but not sure about Gina's, PTI or SU cardstock. Maybe somebody will jump in and help me on that one.

Mats and blades are expensive. There are workarounds. You can recondition your mats. Same recipes as the Cricut mats. Blades last a long time. At least two years with proper upkeep. You can sharpen the blades by cutting lines, squares, circles with heavy duty tin foil.

The other pro of the Silhouette is a wonderful store with some of the top name scrapbook companies in the world. They also just merged with CraftRobo. This is a good thing since now it's an international machine. CraftRobo makes the Silhouette and Wishblade. All three machines are Graphtec machines. I think the Silhouette will even have nicer and bigger updates in the future.

If you need a heavier machine with intricacy look at the Black Cat Cougar, BossKut Gazelle and Pazzles. I have a Gazelle too.

I hope I enabled, lol.
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Last edited by lylacfey; 02-22-2011 at 11:19 PM.. Reason: My cat is helping me type again.
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Old 02-23-2011, 04:31 AM   #19
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Wow DeeAnn you know your stuff!! Thanks for such a great run down on everything, looks like I need to start saving my pennies and shopping around!
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Old 02-23-2011, 12:24 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lylacfey View Post
The Silhouette is a lovely machine. My favorite things about the Silhouette are Print & Cut, you can use it on several varieties of software and Operating Systems.

Mats and blades are expensive. There are workarounds. You can recondition your mats. Same recipes as the Cricut mats. Blades last a long time. At least two years with proper upkeep. You can sharpen the blades by cutting lines, squares, circles with heavy duty tin foil.

If you need a heavier machine with intricacy look at the Black Cat Cougar, BossKut Gazelle and Pazzles. I have a Gazelle too.

I hope I enabled, lol.
You sure have enabled. I have a Mac and sometimes I just can't run the same programs without a workaround. It's good to know that I can use the Mac with the Silhouette.

And the tip about sharpening the blades? Wonderful. I wonder if this can be done with the Cricut, too.?
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Old 02-24-2011, 01:25 AM   #21
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You sure have enabled. I have a Mac and sometimes I just can't run the same programs without a workaround. It's good to know that I can use the Mac with the Silhouette.

And the tip about sharpening the blades? Wonderful. I wonder if this can be done with the Cricut, too.?
Your welcome. ! Yes, you can sharpen the Cricut blades this way too. I know the Cricut blades are cheap but I am frugal and wringing the last drop out of those blades, lol. I sharpen my Cricut blades all the time.
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Old 02-24-2011, 09:41 PM   #22
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I have a craftrobo /Silhouette and love mine to bits.. have a browse in my gallery at what I have achieved with mine...

I also have free files on my blog
The files on your site are crazy fantastic. My jaw literally dropped to the floor. I just can't believe that a cutter did such intricate cuts.
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Old 03-10-2011, 11:47 PM   #23
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Windows users can cut from Inkscape, Corel Draw, Adobe Illustrator, RoboSoftware, Silhouette Studio. You can Print & Cut from RoboSoftware and Silhouette Studio. You can also cut from MTC and SCAL.

I hope I enabled, lol.
So I have a Mac and would love to be able to create designs in Illustrator to cut. Do I need SCAL to do this? Can I save the designs in Illustrator as a specific type of file that can be imported into the Silhouette, like a PDF, that the program can read?
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Old 03-11-2011, 05:56 AM   #24
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So I have a Mac and would love to be able to create designs in Illustrator to cut. Do I need SCAL to do this? Can I save the designs in Illustrator as a specific type of file that can be imported into the Silhouette, like a PDF, that the program can read?
With your Silhouette you can cut with Illustrator using a Mac. Here's the plugin for Illustrator and Mac: Silhouette Support
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Old 03-11-2011, 08:25 AM   #25
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With your Silhouette you can cut with Illustrator using a Mac. Here's the plugin for Illustrator and Mac: Silhouette Support
Does the Silhouettestudio work with regular Silhouette, not SD? don't have SD
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Old 03-12-2011, 05:49 AM   #26
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Does the Silhouettestudio work with regular Silhouette, not SD? don't have SD
Yes the original Silhouette does work with the new Silhouette Studio. Every version of CraftRobo, Wishblades and Silhouette work with the new Studio. CraftRobo and Silhouette recently merged together so all machines are included now since they are Graphtec machines. The new name is CraftRobo Silhouette.
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Old 04-10-2011, 08:02 AM   #27
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Just found this thread today. Thanks for all the wonderful info. I too, am comparing all the die cutting machines & watching their demo videos & reading everyone's comments. It's so overwhelming. One question I have is whether not the Silhouette must always be connected to a computer in order to cut out the design? My craft room & desk computer are at opposite ends of the house. Thanks for any help.
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Old 04-11-2011, 09:28 AM   #28
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I could be mistaken, however I thought the Silhouette SD did not have to be connected to a computer. Anyone else for certain?
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Old 04-11-2011, 09:59 AM   #29
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Thanks for answering. Since I posted the question I found another website where it talks about using the SD to use the Silhouette without being hooked up to the computer. Of course, that generated yet another question (don't we wish we were all billionaires so we didn't have to question all of our purchases so closely. ). Anyway, now I'm wondering just how hard/easy it is to use the machine without being hooked up.
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Old 04-11-2011, 10:50 AM   #30
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There is free files on my blog if any of you have a new machine
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Old 06-02-2012, 11:10 AM   #31
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Ok, I'm back at it .. .truly considering a Silhouette at this point. It appears the price point as gone up but it seems like it's really the way to go - thoughts (again!)??
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Old 06-04-2012, 05:06 AM   #32
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The Silhouette SD machine has been replaced with the Silhouette Cameo. I have a Silhouette SD. The new Cameo had a lot of problems when it first came out but I think they have been resolved. I bought a used Pazzles and personally for cardmaking I like the Silhouette much better.
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Old 06-04-2012, 07:57 AM   #33
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Thanks catyte1!! I think I'm convinced the Cameo is what I should get - now I need to sells some cards and teach a bit more to get some funds saved for it!
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Old 06-04-2012, 10:01 AM   #34
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I love my SIL. It can everything I ask of it plus at just 99 cents a design on their website I think it's a bargain. I sold enough cards to pay for it within 3 months.
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Old 06-04-2012, 12:16 PM   #35
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To answers Dee Ann's questions about SU cardstock, my Silhouette SD cuts it beautifully. I LOVE my Silhouette!
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Old 06-30-2012, 06:00 AM   #36
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To answers Dee Ann's questions about SU cardstock, my Silhouette SD cuts it beautifully. I LOVE my Silhouette!
I was wondering what settings you use when cutting SU cardstock. I just got my Cameo a few weeks ago, and I am sometimes unsure of how to adjust the settings when it doesn't cut through. Especially with the more intricate designs. If I slow down the speed it cuts messy, but if I increase the blade it does the same thing. So I am just curious what settings you use on SU cardstock?
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Old 06-30-2012, 06:40 AM   #37
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I've never used SU cardstock nor a Cameo so I can't answer that. But I know on some machines when we have trouble cutting we tend to increase the cutting pressure when actually you should decrease the pressure and do a double cut.
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Old 06-30-2012, 07:03 AM   #38
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I'll put my 2c in. If you are a person on the fence about getting a die cutting machine and want to know which one to buy, I cannot recommend Silhouette enough. OK, I have multiple Cricut machines (Imagine, Cake, Expression..) and tons of cartridges and a gypsy. I love my Cricut. But when my husband convinced me to buy an original Silhouette machine at a crafters garage sale, I was BLOWN AWAY by it.

Even the original machine has the ability to use the print and cut feature (which is printing something on your printer and then putting it into the machine to cut out). I did this with digi stamps that I got from some of my favorite stamp companies. It was so awesome! I do believe that if Silhouette had better software when it was first released that it would probably be more popular than the Cricut.

I love the Silhouette online store where you can get so many different cut files and you only buy the ones you like. I'm currently on a monthly plan where I pay $15 a month and get $150 in content. That goes a long way when they do weekly clearances, sales, and have free shapes every week. And rest assured that the software now is really easy to use. In my opinion, it is actually my favorite way to just print out digi stamps. It makes it super duper easy to get them the right size. I have SCAL too but I rarely need to use it as I have the "pay" version of the Silhouette software. You can find it for a deal and I think it is worth the $ over the free version.

The machine also just simply cuts better than the Cricut does. It does do more intricate cuts and shapes are more accurate. There are examples out there on the internet where people cut out the same shapes with both machines and show you that Cricut especially does some wonky stuff with circles and other curves. My favorite examples feature images from Nancy Kubo who did Create A Critter cartridge for Cricut and also has cut files on Lettering Delights. The Cricut cuts have these funny little cute smiles and I thought that is the way she designed them. Actually it isn't that way in reality, it is just the way the Cricut cuts them.

Will I still use my Cricut? Yes, I have invested far too much money in it to stop using it now. And I still love it too. Will I always have a Cricut? Probably. But I definitely think the Silhouette overall is a better machine.

So if you think you want 12x12 capability, get the Cameo. Otherwise you could just be like me and use the original. Or else get the SD to be able to go portable with it without your computer.
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Old 06-30-2012, 07:06 AM   #39
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I love my Cameo....I also have an Expression and each have their places/uses in my scrapbook room. I wrote this blog post:

Sonya's Paper Trail: Why I Wanted a Cameo...

quite awhile ago about why I wanted a Cameo. It does cut amazingly detailed files with ease. I cut something with small holes on my Cricut E this past week and had to "fix" each tiny hole...it was frustrating. I do love my Cricut for other things...so I'm glad I have both. I cut SU cardstock on my Cameo all the time. It cuts perfectly for me. Hope this helps a bit...
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Old 07-02-2012, 12:37 PM   #40
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Thanks for all the input ladies!! I am definitely saving my pennies up for a Cameo, and cannot wait to get one. I've heard from several people that it's definitely the way to go! I was also pleasantly surprised that you can download the regular software for free which I have done, now I can play around with it and get used to it before I actually get my machine. Pretty neat!

Thanks again, I love seeing the great feedback and ideas, it helps so much!
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