It can sometimes be tricky to review ‘budget’ oriented tools. These are tools designed for beginners and it’s not fair to hold them to the same standard as something that is more expensive but more powerful. You can’t expect to get a ton of power out of them and you can’t expect them to have all of the same settings.
But at the same time, you still need to have a decent level of power to make sure that the tool will be suitable for taking on bigger challenges as the hobbyist progresses. Moreover, you need to ensure that the tool will be made to a good standard and from quality materials. It’s no good to have a tool that will shake violently when it is used, or one that feels like it would smash into a thousand pieces if you were to drop it.
The question always comes down to what kind of compromises are okay for you. Do you want something that will be more powerful but a little more cheaply made, or do you want premium quality without the horsepower and features?
Of course the best tools are the ones that make you take on the minimal compromises. So is the Hitachi C10FCE2 just such a tool?
At least it’s very ergonomic…
On the face of it, the Hitachi C10FCE2 is a standard looking miter saw. This tool is colored in green and grey and definitely looks functional rather than exciting – but that’s fine. It feels well made though for the most part, if a little light and it has all of the parts right where you expect. The handle is nicely designed and particularly ergonomic though. We found it very comfortable when we first used it and when researching further, found that it was because of a ‘vibration reducing elastomer’. Not sure about that, but it’s certainly a nice handle to use, which is a very welcome feature.
As is fairly standard for a miter saw at this price point, you are getting 15 amps of power. That’s enough to handle most of the tougher jobs and it’s something that we have had no problems with in our testing. This is a nice feeling tool to use and you shouldn’t have to apply too much force to get it to cut. At 10”, this is not a replacement for a professional tool however.
The miter range is 0-52 degrees, while the bevel range is 0-45 degrees. There’s a large and well-made flip fence that raises to 4” and that is very useful for holding things in place. What’s also nice is the inclusion of positive stops – highly recommended for any miter saw – which will help you to easily find the most common miter positions.
The tool also comes with a laser which is very handy and that helps you to cut with even more confidence (with minor caveats, read below).
Advantages and Disadvantages
This is a very ‘basic’ miter saw then. It has most of the features that you could want, average-to-good power and versatility and a decent build quality with a nice handle.
But it’s also held back by a couple of minor points. For one, the dust evacuation is not good. You’ll find your workspace gets a little dustier using this than with some other tools but that’s less of a problem for a miter saw. It’s also a shame that the laser wasn’t accurate out of the box. It’s actually relatively common to have to calibrate lasers on these kinds of tools but it shouldn’t be and it does mean you feel a little more anxious when using it.
Blade changes can also be a little bit of a pain.
So overall, this is an average miter saw for the price. It’s not going to blow you away and it does have some minor drawbacks but it’s also perfectly good for the job that it’s intended for. It’s well made, the handle is pleasant to use and it is a reasonable introduction to the world of miter saws. If you’re looking for something that will tick all the right boxes and you don’t want to break the bank, this is one to consider. Just know that you could get a bit more performance and functionality for not too much more…