Cricut Maker vs Cricut Explore Air 2 (2020): Future-Proof Purchase

Regardless if you are a newbie when it comes to making crafts and you are considering buying your first-ever Cricut machine in 2020 or maybe you’re an existing owner of a Cricut Explore Air 2 contemplating an upgrade to the premium Cricut Maker, this post will surely be informative for you. We take a peek into the various features of each product to help you make that decision.

Cricut Maker vs Cricut Explore Air 2 Comparison Chart

ModelCricut Maker MachineCricut Explore Air 2
PriceCheck PriceCheck Price
Adaptive Tool SystemYesNo
Max Cutting Force4000 g400 g
SoftwareDesign SpaceDesign Space
BluetoothYes Yes 
ColorsBlue, Lilac, Champagne, Mint, White, RoseBlue, Cherry Blossom, Lilac, Matte Black, Twilight, Mint, Persimmon, Rose
BladeRotary Blade, Fine-Point BladeFine-Point Blade
Compatible ToolsAll the tools available for the Explore Air 2 plus the following:
Rotary Blade
Knife Blade
Single and Double Scoring Wheels Wavy Blade
Perforation Blade
Fine Debossing Tip
Engraving Tip
Fine Point Blade
Deep Point Blade
Bonded Fabric Blade
Scoring Stylus
Cricut Pens
Cutting Mat12″ x 12″ FabricGrip™ and LightGrip machine mats12″ x 12″ LightGrip Machine Mat


Tools of the Trade

The Cricut Maker’s Adaptive Tool System sets the bar high as it becomes an industry-standard

The Rotary Blade of the Cricut Maker is capable of handling even the thickest materials that the Explore 2 cannot

The Adaptive Tool System present only in the Cricut Maker provides a wider range of possibilities when creating your craft. This system allows you to update to the Maker-only tools that are currently available and will be available in the future. An example of the several different tools that the company has given out to the public is the Engraving Tip, Double and Single Scoring Wheels, Wavy Blade, Fine Debossing Tip, and Perforation Blade. This gives you an idea of what possible tools the company will provide you in the future.

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The Rotary Blade and Knife Blade from Cricut have broadened the creative possibilities with fabric materials. Sewing patterns available in Design Space will surely be appreciated by people who enjoy sewing and DIYs.

Subtle Design

The Cricut Maker has a more polished design with available storage, while the Cricut Explore Air 2 is lighter than ever and more colors to choose from

Sophisticated and chic is the design philosophy for the Cricut Maker when compared to the Explore Air 2. Having only 4 buttons, it has achieved a sleek look, unlike the Explore which still has the materials dial. The deeper trays and pockets on the Cricut Maker provide more storage space that will be highly commended by consumers using more tools from the Adaptive Tool System. If you have limited workspace, the Cricut Maker package comes with a device docking station to create a clutter-free space while working.

Color options are aplenty for the Explore Air 2 such as persimmon and matte black. It is travel-friendly as well with it being very lightweight and portable.

Downward Force

The Cricut Maker has the unmatched cutting power of up to 10x the downward force of the Cricut Explore Air 2

Downward Cutting Force reaching new heights provide a wider range of craft materials to work with

The Explore Air 2 is perfect for the crafters who enjoy working with materials such as paper, cardstocks, iron-on, and vinyl. But because of the pressure, the Cricut Maker is capable of doing, it expands the range of materials it is able to cut such as balsa wood, heavy-duty chipboards, lace, crepe paper, leather, etc. You can be worry-free from the thought of the blade getting stuck due to an unstable material.

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The Cricut Maker is a great purchase, but the Cricut Explore Air 2 is still competitive with its features and lower price

Cricut Maker Machine

Cricut Explore Air 2

The Adaptive Tool System alone makes the Cricut Maker a worthy investment. It makes a great partner to those interested in sewing, DIY projects, 3D projects and the likes. The powerful system is future-proof regardless of what other tools the company would be releasing moving forward.

For a basic cutting machine, the Explore Air 2 is a decent choice to those who finds not much use for the Adaptive Tool System. Vinyl, Iron-on, and paper is where this machine performs at its best. Consider the value of the Explore Air 2 though by the time you will consider an upgrade because the price will surely depreciate even more.

These two machines are a great buy for 2020 regardless on which one you go for.

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