Sunday, August 21, 2011

Silhouette SD Review

I've had several people ask me if I liked my Silhouette SD or not.  I've also received a lot of questions about the difference between the Silhouette and Cricut.  So, I decided to answer everyone's questions at once.  Keep in mind that I've never actually used a Cricut before.  I did a lot of research before purchasing my Silhouette, so I'm just using that information to compare it to a Cricut.

Let me start by saying that I love my Silhouette!  I suppose that it does have a few flaws, so I listed the pros and cons of the Silhouette SD for you below.

  • No cartridges - Unlike the Cricut, the Silhouette doesn't use cartridges.  You can either use any image saved on your computer (including images downloaded from the internet), or you can buy images from the Silhouette Online Store for $0.99.
  • More control of what you cut - The Silhouette comes with Silhouette Studio software that allows you to design and edit the images you want to cut.
  • It can cut any font installed on your computer - I think this is the best feature.  You NEVER have to buy fonts.  There are already a ton of fonts installed on most computers, and you can download free fonts from  
  • Longer cut length -  The Cricut can only cut lengths up to 24", but the Silhouette can cut lengths up to 39".  
  • Smaller - The Silhouette is smaller and lighter.  It takes up much less space and is very portable.
  • Narrower cut length - The Cricut's maximum cut width is 11.5", and the Silhouette's maximum cut width is 8".  This only really matters when it comes to using vinyl.  Cricut vinyl is 12" wide, so you either have to cut it to fit or order Silhouette vinyl from
  • More expensive -  My Silhouette SD cost around $250 plus shipping.  I think the Cricut costs a little less.

As you can see, the pros outweigh the cons (at least in my personal opinion).  Actually, the cons list will be even shorter since Silhouette America just released a brand new cutting machine.   The Silhouette Cameo is replacing the Silhouette SD, and it is a little bit different.  It will cut 12" instead of 8", so you can use Cricut vinyl with it.  The one major drawback to the new Silhouette Cameo is the price.  It is $299.99 plus shipping.  You can no longer buy the Silhouette SD on the Silhouette America website.  So, if you are looking for a cheaper route, I would suggest  You might find a good deal on a Silhouette SD.

    I've also included a tutorial on how to cut an image downloaded from the internet using the Silhouette SD.

    1.  Find an image you want to cut and save it to your computer.
    2.  Open the Silhouette Studio software and open the image.

    3.  Click on the trace image button.  (You have to trace the image so that it will actually cut the image itself and not the edge of the picture.)

    4.  Click select trace area, and drag grey area over part of the image you want cut. 
    5.  Unselect the High Pass Filter check box.
    6.  Click Trace.

    7.  Click Cut Style and make sure that the lines you want cut are highlighted in red.

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