on 2015-11-07 ScanNCut2 vs. Silhouette
There is already plenty of information on this machine out there, so I thought that instead of yet another boring review It might be interesting to just include my notes on what makes it different from the Silhouette products I'm familiar with.
The CM350 is the latest generation of the Brother ScanNCut product line. It includes a full color 300dpi scanner that uses the same feeding mechanism as the cutter. The CM350R includes the rhinestone startup kit (sample materials and rhinestones as well as a code to activate the rhinestone design option on the ScanNCut Canvas online software)
The CM350 can be used as a standalone cutter, either with the built-in fonts and artwork, or with the built-in scanner. It can also cut files created by the ScanNCut Canvas web application, a free app available at http://scanncutcanvas.brother.com. This application runs inside a browser and also works well on iPad and Android tablets (no need to download or pay for an app). You can download the cut files to a USB stick and plug it into the ScanNCut, or send it directly to the ScanNCut if you purchase the $50 ScanNCut Online Activation Card
. Unfortunately, you cannot purchase the code online; you have to actually buy a card, scratch it, read the code and enter it manually. Still, I like the fact that the software supports SVG in its free version (that will set you back $50 on the Silhouette).
The CM350 has a big brother, the CM650W. It comes with more built-in designs and fonts (not very significant if you prefer using your own designs), the online activation card (a $50 value), but it also supports PES (embroidery file) import for appliqué work, and the larger 12"x24" mat. Unfortunately, these are features that can not even be purchased and activated later, which makes absolutely no sense considering this is essentially the same exact machine. So, if you want to work on 12"x24" mats or do appliqué work, skip the CM350. Note that Silhouette offers embroidery format import as a $25 upgrade to Silhouette Designer (it's called "Designer Plus"). User Fawn pointed out that 12"x24" mats are supported for cutting, just not for scanning.
As a vinyl cutter, the Cameo is a clear winner since you can directly feed 12" wide vinyl and cut designs up to 10 feet in length. The CM350 limits you to 12"x24" (you can use the 12"x24" mat or feed the vinyl directly without a mat, thanks Fawn for pointing out my original mistake)
Where the ScanNCut really shines is with its built-in scanner feature and the many ways it leverages it:
- automatic cut line detection: scan artwork, isolate a section and let ScanNCut detect the cut line, and cut directly without even changing mats (you can do this on the Silhouette using the optional PixScan mat, but it's a much more cumbersome process)
- background scan allows you to perfectly place the cut on your material, perfect for cutting patterns in just the right spot without guesswork, or reuse scraps of material
WHO IS THE SCAN N CUT2 FOR?
The ScanNCut2 will be best for anyone with an allergy to computers. It does about as much as a standalone machine can possibly do, and does it extremely well -- and the ScanNCut Canvas software is available for free whenever you need to access more advanced features (the $50 online option buys you the capability to transfer the cut files from the web software directly to the ScanNCut over WiFi, but if you don't want to pay extra you can always use a USB stick). It's also a must for scrapbookers who do a lot of die cutting, as the scan and cut feature is incredibly easy to use and quick, unrivaled by any competitor.
WHO IS THE SCAN N CUT2 *NOT* FOR?
- Advanced computer users familiar with Illustrator or Corel Draw are likely to feel constrained by the limitations of the online Canvas software
- Vinyl cutters: the 12"x24" work area makes the Silhouette Cameo a much better choice with its 12"x120" vinyl capability
- People who need 12"x24" scanning or the embroidery PES import feature should avoid the CM350 and look into the CM650W instead (or the Silhouette Cameo with Designer Plus software, a less expensive option)
This is really a 5 star machine because it's so easy to use, and while as a computer expert I feel much more comfortable with the Silhouette products, I know many craft enthusiasts who still are intimidated by computer software but desperately want to move away from the constricting cartridge-based Cricut; the ScanNCut will be a perfect transition machine for them.
I took away one star because I am really mad at Brother for creating this confusing set of models out of what is essentially the same machine, making it difficult to choose and even understand what it is you're buying, and arbitrarily locking you out of upgrading to get these new features.
As long as you know what you're getting into... It's a very powerful and well made machine.
5 Stars By Gloigraphy on 2015-10-17
ScanNCut2 is the Best Cutting machine on the market.
I purchased this machine through HSN, they are sold out so get it for the same price at 2DayDeliver, but I have to say I love this machine. The larger screen is really great you can magnify up to 400% and move your cuts around, you couldn't do this in the older models. I have been using electronic cutting machines for many years now and have owned many many brands and I have to say that this machine beats them all hands down. There is not another machine on the market that you can scan your paper and put your cut shape exactly where you want it to cut and it cuts it exactly where you want. Also if you need to scan a large item bigger than 8.5x11 use the scanncut and save to a jpeg. I am considering selling my older one but it would be handy to have both so I can cut faster. I have a Zing which is a really great cutter, but the fact that it doesn't have the scanner built in the scanncut wins hands down. If you are thinking about purchasing this machine and don't know if you will like it. Trust me you will be happy you did. The really nice thing about either model is that they do not have to be tethered to a computer to send your cuts to them so you can put it anywhere, not tied down to having your cutter right beside your computer. It now reads SVG files and you can use it with a tablet, and figuring out how to use it is pretty easy. The ScanNCut2 with the wifi works so great for sending your cut patterns from the Canvas software to the cutter. It is seamless. The only thing I find fault with, and it is not the machine but the ScanNCut Canvas is very basic and needs a lot more features. But I am able to work around those. So go get you a ScanNCut2 and start making great cards, sewing projects etc. BTW www.svgcuts.com has some really awesome pattern that sell for about $6.99 that you can download and start cutting. Enjoy your machine.
2 Stars By A Florida Reader on 2016-05-02
Not What I Expected
This is not what I expected. I own both the silhouette and the Cricut air. The Brother ScanNCut is not capable of what my other machines can do. I had already activated it to my wireless account or I would have returned it. The mat that is required ( and cannot be replaced with another kind) is very expensive and you can only get a few cuts out of each mat. The hundreds of images that the machine comes with are basic shapes, flowers or some animals. None that one would use to make a quality card or scrapbook page. I'm so disappointed with this machine. It sits in my craft room and is never used.
4 Stars By Reader on 2016-04-07
I love my scan n cut but the directions I have ...
I love my scan n cut but the directions I have don't seem to match the model I have. Quite confusing! I am seeking out a solution to make my mat sticky enough to hold the paper down but not so sticky it is hard to peel off.
With that being said I am a bit of a technophobe. I love that I don't need to use the computer fir this!!!! I have used it to make several stencils, die cut stamps, and have used a lot of the words it comes with on cards. My machine arrived on February 3rd. Today is April 7th. In just over two months I have used this to cut out over 100 images. This week I started downloading images from graphicstock and using them to make stencils from the backs of 12x12 scrapbook paper pads. Using them with acrylic paint makes them more durable.
This is my first electronic die cutter and I used it on the day it arrived. I am a stay at home mom. It came on my special needs daughter's birthday. I was thrilled with the results I got ! Some of you may understand that I opened it after she went to bed and that is NOT the time I am at my best.
3 Stars By K.A on 2016-04-10
Wish it came with all the tools
I've only had the chance to use this once. The directions at not clear, you must purchase additional equipment to use for fabric and paper. You'd think after spending this much Brother would include the tools needed to do all they say this thing will do! You'll have to purchase additional mats if you want to do more than vinyl.
4 Stars By SandraMaria on 2016-12-22
I LOVE THIS MACHINE!
I LOVE THIS MACHINE! I know of a LOT of papercrafters who have purchased the ScanNCut2 and it sits unused in a box. It's very easy to set up and use! Don't be intimidated!!! I only wanted the machine to cut out my rubber stamped images so I would not have to buy cutting dies anymore. I can cut an entire sheets worth of images in minutes, LITERALLY and I'm saving money not buying the matching dies! There are some dies you will still need to purchase as the machine will only cut solid line images. I wish this machine had the holder for your little tools like the upgrade does but I velcro'd my little plastic pocket to the side of my machine so it never gets lost in my beautiful mess. The mat may be washed with soapy water to reactivate the sticky on it after many uses that causes it to quit sticking (remember to let it air dry rather than using a paper or cloth towel). Two things I wish was possible with this machine: 1) is that I wish it would recognize and use a smaller mat. Sometimes the big 12x12+ inch mat is just too big for 1 or 2 small things to cut out. 2) The wireless feature should be built in to a machine that costs as much as this did. Most every electronic thing you buy now has a build in wireless feature. Brother REALLY flunked out here and that is why I'm leaving a four star rating. However, you do not need the wireless card -- you can use a flash drive to transfer from your PC to the machine. It's really a matter of convenience so I don't know why it was left off of this model. I have owned and used this machine for just over a year now. As for the included rhinestone kit, I have no use for it.
5 Stars By Karen D on 2016-08-10
Love it. I can't imagine a better digital cutter
I love my ScanNCut. It's really helped me unleash my creativity. I'm imagining all sorts of cool stuff and then designing it on the computer and then making it. And while the scanning feature/image tracing isn't perfect I couldn't have made my creations without it
I'm making all sorts of things and learning so much!
I've never used a digital cutter before but I think this is the best one there could be (at least at consumer prices). Being able to scan and preciously place images is awesome.
5 Stars By Alistair Andrew Bane on 2017-09-05
Awesome for sewing applique
Awesome for sewing applique! I love mine. No dies to buy, you can use any design you imagine. It took a minute to figure out, but in a few hours I was a pro! Good value for quilters n sewers.
5 Stars By Lisa A Vice on 2015-11-05
Scan n Cut 1 vs 2
I bought the first Scan n Cut and was somewhat disappointed with the scanning abilities. So I bought the newer one , Scan n Cut 2. With the new RGB scan choice it is awesome!!!! Also now that it is wireless, it is so much easier to use SVG files. I still wish the mats were stickier. Remember to get the activation card if you want to go wireless. I hope 2DayDeliver will sell more of the accessories because it has limited items available for now.
4 Stars By 2DayDeliver Customer on 2015-11-05
Great for making stencils 😀😀 T he only issue I ...
Great for making stencils 😀😀 T he only issue I have is when it ask for the activation code my code was made up of letters & numbers on the back of my card but the keypad was alphabet only. Thank God it works without the code I just can't download images. I love it