Top critical review
Everything wrong with Cricut Maker
December 20, 2017
Review update: wish I could say that things got better, but they actually got worse. The machine developed a bug where it turns itself off, claiming that the connection to the machine has been interrupted (while all other devices working on the same connection have no problems at all). The machine does it in the middle of a cut, usually on the most expensive materials, ruining them. If left to its own, once turned back on, the possessed machine will then grab the mat back, and go over each cut twice, ruining the rest of the material, damaging the mat, and filling inside of the machine with tiny paper shreds. We will be returning this possessed heap of junk and requesting a compensation from the company for the cost of damaged materials.
I bought this machine for my wife. She wrote the following review:
"Here are my thoughts on Cricut Maker or, to be precise, everything wrong with it. Cricut Maker is not a finished product, it is a raw prototype. The Cricut team probably were pressed to release the machine before the holidays, and the result is clearly visible. Few more months in the development - and it might have been a wonderful tool. It is not, at any measure, worth $400. Maybe $100 or $200, that would be it.
The machine is buggier than an anthill. First, it does not work with original vector files, such as .cdr and .au. Say what?.. A cutting machine that does not accept vector files?.. That, by itself, already sounds like a bad joke.
Second, it has severe sizing and calibration issues. I uploaded a 0.75" x 0.5" shape into it and cut it out. Only I could not find the shape. After using my magnifying glass, I finally noticed 3 mm x 5 mm shape that the machine cut out. Calibration is off by approximately 0.25" (about 0.5 cm). In other words, if you position your shape to start at 1:1, machine will cut it at 1.25":1.25". The only other cutting machine with such severe placement issue I have ever seen were the buggy old laser cutters, close to the end of their useful life.
Third, direct consequence of calibration issue is that the machine wastes material like there is no tomorrow. Definitely not a good tool if you are trying to do a commercial production with it.
Forth, the machine does not only waste your materials, it wastes your time as well. Once you upload your design, its placement will get completely messed up and spread all over the mat. So you go and painstakingly set up the location for each part. You think you are done and ready to make?.. You wish! On the cutting set up screen you will need to repeat same process all over again, because all of your parts will be laid out in a row.
Fifth, there is no meaningful manual. You will get a cute colored book which is not very useful, and will be left to figure out things all by yourself. For example, the mat area is 12" x 12". Go try to do "Write then cut" option for 12" x 12" You cannot. It has a different size. Not a word about it in the manual.
Sixth, the broken promises which make Cricut team look very foolish. The ads read "You can cut wood with the new Knife Blade!" Oops, no knife blade, only a Facebook update which basically says that Cricut does not know when they will have the Knife Blade ready. Then there is an instructional video on YouTube which says "Remove the protective cap from the Fine Point Blade and insert the blade into the cartridge". Underneath that video, there are many comments, all saying basically the same thing "Which cap?.. Mine did not come with any cap!" Oops. Mine did not come with it either. Cricut Maker is advertised as a superb tool to make cards. But it does not come with a scoring tool, so you can't really fold the cards you make very easily. Oops. In my opinion, too many oopses for $400.
Seventh, the mats. They are basically trash. Just yesterday tried to cut some adhesive foil. Which is on the Cricut's list of the materials that the Maker is supposed to be able to cut. Removed the foil, which removed the paint and some of the gripping media from the mat, which, in turn, got embedded under the foil and showed really well on the surface that the foil was applied to. Again, the waste of time and waste of materials.
To conclude, I am not impressed to say the least. The only advantages I found the machine to have are that it cuts relatively fast and that it is relatively quiet when it is working. Of course, I might be judging too harsh. I am an advanced crafter used to working with precision machines, such as laser cutters. However, based on my experience, I do not believe that Cricut Maker is suitable for professional makers and as such, should not be called Maker. If you are a hobbyist and like to make cards or little stuffed animals, this machine will work fine for you (after you buy the separate scoring stylus that is). If you are a serious maker, most likely it will not. I will be looking for a different option for myself."