Cricut Explore Air 2 vs Silhouette Cameo 3 : Details Guide

Cricut Explore Air 2 vs Silhouette Cameo 3

Do you work with vinyl and paper and need a powerful machine to speed up your workflow? Then this is the right place.

As someone who works with vinyl and paper, at some point, you will need a powerful machine for cutting. Here’s where you need to pick between Cricut Explore Air 2 vs Silhouette Cameo 3.

But choosing one of these two cutting machines can be a little bit overwhelming if you are a beginner.

While these two machines may look similar at first sight, there are some significant differences between them.

So, throughout this article, we’ll be going through the main differences between them and which machine you should pick up.

What Is Cricut Explore Air 2?

Cricut Explore Air 2

The Cricut Explore Air 2 is a powerful DIY cutting machine. It can easily cut through over 100 materials with ease.

Many people love this machine since there is just so much you can do with it and still get stunning results.

Benefits of Cricut Explore Air 2

This machine is good enough for most people. It has just everything you will need when cutting vinyl. On top of that, you also have other cool features to make your life easier.

Benefits of Cricut Explore Air 2

So, here are all the perks you get from using the Cricut Explore Air 2:


With the Cricut Explore Air 2, you can bring all your desired ideas to life. Since you have so many tools to help you out, you can create a wide range of DIY projects.

So, it’s not like you are limited by the tools the machine has. As long as you have an idea, you can turn it into a real thing.

This is great for those folks who need a powerful machine that can keep up with their ideas.


We know how intimidating it might be to use editing software. It has many different tools, and you might feel discouraged just by looking at it. However, this machine has a self-explanatory design.

This is quite useful for those people who don’t want to spend days playing with this software just to get the basics down.

On top of that, there are a lot of tutorials out there that you can quickly watch in case you need help trying to figure something out.

Ease of Use

One of the best things about this machine is how easy it is to use. Most crafters don’t like spending days trying to get familiar with something. And nobody really wants that anyway.

It doesn’t even take much time before you get the hang of it. Just by looking at it, you will notice how easy it is to use.

Disadvantages of Cricut Explore Air 2

Although this machine has some excellent features and has proven itself to be an overall great cutting machine, there are some things that it does not do so well.

Editing Software

Although the software is incredibly reliable, it has some significant flaws. You might notice after a while that it lacks some tools and might slow down your workflow.

While it is true that the software is quite easy to use, it is not as efficient as other programs.

Small Cutting Size

You might not even notice this if you are working on smaller projects. However, as soon as you move on to bigger projects, you will see right away how limited you are by the cutting size.

The length of the Cricut Explore Air 2 is nearly 23.5 inches, and the width is almost 11.5 inches. You might think it is not that bad. But as soon as you work on a larger project, you will notice all the disadvantages that you get from such a small cutting size.

Loud Noise

This might not be too much of a deal for most people, but this machine is a little bit louder than the Cameo 3.

It is not enough to make you go crazy over it, but if you prefer a machine that has little to no sound, you just stick to the Cameo 3.

What Is Silhouette Cameo 3?

Silhouette Cameo 3

The Silhouette Cameo 3 is a top-notch DIY machine. It is well-known for its unmatchable versatility. The Cameo 3 allows a built-in system that automatically adjusts the blade for better results.

Everyone loves this machine since the tools it provides are good enough for anybody looking to get a tremendously useful cutting machine.

Advantages of Silhouette Cameo 3

The Cameo 3 is well-known for how versatile it is. Even when other cutting machines have a hard time trying to cut through some materials, the Cameo 3 makes it look like it’s nothing.

Advantages of Silhouette Cameo 3

And that is not all the Cameo 3 has to offer. Here are some the coolest things it delivers that make it such an excellent option:


Both machines have many tools to bring all your ideas to life. However, Cameo 3 is the winner here.

This machine comes right out of the box with all the tools needed to work on different projects. Unlike the Cricut Explore Air 2, limited by its cutting size and editing software, the Cameo 3 fixes all of that for you.


The Cameo 3 has a wide variety of tools that can be used on the editing software. Its software is good enough for people looking to achieve professional results.

Also, it by no means feels limited by the tools it provides. It is totally different from the Cricut Explore Air 2, which is heavily limited by its software.

This is the best machine you can get if you want a great editing software to achieve stunning results in just a matter of minutes.

Cutting Size

Whether you are working on small projects or larger projects, the Cameo 3 is the perfect machine to help you get the job done.

Its cutting size is more appropriate than the Cricut Explore, which is limited when working on bigger projects.

The length and width for the Cameo 3 are 10 feet and 12 inches. This is more than that of Cricut Explore. So, if you plan on using it for cutting bigger projects, this is the go-to machine.

Disadvantages of Silhouette Cameo 3

Despite being a reliable cutting machine, it has some significant issues that are worth pointing out. So, here are some of those major flaws you might face when using the Cameo 3:

Weak Cutting Force

Even though this machine has proven to be strong enough to cut through over a hundred materials and still get stunning results, it seems to struggle when cutting at a relatively high speed.

This might not seem too much of a big deal for most people. However, if you are working under a tight deadline, you might find yourself in a rather stressful situation.

On the other hand, the Cricut Explore is more reliable when you want to speed up your workflow. So, if you don’t want weak cutting force, stick to the Cricut Explore.

Poor Precision

The Cameo 3 totally beats most cutting machines out there. However, it has a major flaw that is worth addressing. Compared to the Cricut explore, the accuracy when cutting through materials is not nearly as accurate as you would like it to be.

So, if you want slightly better precision, you should go for the Cricut Explore Air 2.

Deficient with Thick Materials

The Cameo 3 has a hard time trying to cut through thick materials. While it is suitable for other materials, if you are planning on using it to cut rather thick materials, you will likely not get the results you want.

Differences Between Silhouette Cameo 3 vs Cricut Explore Air 2

Differences between Cricut Explore Air 2 and Silhouette Cameo 3

It’s easy to confuse these two machines at first glance. But in reality, they behave differently and have some features you must know.

Let’s take a look deeper:

Cutting times

One of the main things we’ve noticed between these two machines is how fast they can cut.

For example, the Cricut Explore Air 2 can cut up to two times faster. And the best thing about that is that it does not sacrifice any precision.

As for the Silhouette Cameo 3, it features a two-millimeter clearance, so that you can have an easier time cutting through thicker materials.

As for the final cutting speed, we’ve noticed that the Cricut Explore Air 2 always finishes first.


Both cutting machines are excellent choices. They have proven over and over to be the best choices if you need a cutting machine.

But, after testing them several times, we’ve come to realize that the Cricut Explore Air 2 is more accurate when cutting.

Write and Draw

Both of these machines can draw and write.

They also have a spot for pens that you can find in the dual carriage.

As for the performance, the Cricut Explore Air 2 takes it to the next level by allowing us to use handwritten fonts.

But overall, both machines do a pretty good job of writing and drawing.


Now that we know more about what the two machines can offer to us, let’s talk about the price.

The price might be the most important thing to consider. Right now, you might not be able to get both, and would rather settle for one in the meantime.

The Silhouette is slightly more expensive than the Cricut Explore Air 2.

So, if you don’t mind spending a little bit more money, the Silhouette won’t let you down.

And, if you don’t want to spend much money, the Silhouette will suit you better.

Frequently Asked Questions

Down below, you can find the most common questions regarding these machines. These questions were not addressed throughout the article above. As such, we have gathered the most common ones you may need answers to:

Which is easier to use between Cricut and Silhouette?

Both machines have proven to be great options for most people. However, the Cricut is a lot easier to use for any beginner getting into cutting.

Does Silhouette Cameo 3 have Bluetooth?

The Silhouette Cameo 3 comes right out of the box with everything you will need, such as Bluetooth.

Is the Silhouette Cameo better than Cricut?

These two machines have their ups and downs. For example, the Silhouette Cameo can cut through many materials without using a mat. On the other hand, the Cricut is more precise when cutting.

Which vinyl cutting machine is the best?

The Cricut Explore Air 2 has some of the best tools out there for vinyl cutting. However, the Cameo 3 machine is more versatile and allows you to do many more things that you can use a Cricut for.

Can you use a Cricut to make T-shirts?

One of the main reasons why so many people get Cricut machines is to make T-shirts. And there is a reason for that: It is easy to use and cuts perfectly through vinyl.

Final Words

Choosing your first cutting machine is quite troublesome, to say the least. And it gets even harder when you see all those fancy tools that they have.

But as you do more and more research, you often come across this commonly asked question: Cricut explorer air 2 vs Silhouette Cameo 3, which one is better?

Both machines are powerful enough for most people. However, the Cameo 3 is more versatile and is more reliable as your first cutting machine.

You can also try out the Cricut Explore if you are planning to use it for small projects.

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