Best Professional Jigsaws – 2021 Buyer’s Guide

Cody
| Last Updated: January 30, 2021

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The idea of using one of the best professional jigsaws is something both experts and amateurs should probably get behind.

The additional build quality, power, versatility, and comfort when using such a cutting tool will quickly make you forget about all those entry-level jigsaws that are only attractive in price.

​Snapshot​! Best ​Professional Jigsaws

​In a hurry? Here are our top picks​:

Best Overall
Runner-up
Best for the Money

Comparison Chart of the Best Professional Jigsaws

Product

Our Rating

​Price

Makita XVJ03Z

​Best Overall

Dewalt DW317K

​Runner-up

Porter Cable PCC650B

​Best for the Money

Craftsman CMES610

Best Craftsman Professional Jigsaw

Bosch JS572EK

Best Bosch Professional Jigsaw

Skil 4395-01

Editor's Pick

What Makes a Jigsaw Great for Professional Use?

We've seen tons of saw types at construction sites, but we almost ALWAYS see a jigsaw and a circular saw.

Cutting Versatility

What can a jigsaw offer a professional woodworker? It’s great for creating intricate cuts and can make straight, curved, and angled cuts. also

Is the end result always super polished? No. But it is a handheld tool that allows tons of cutting freedom. Due to its design, it can also be used to start cutting from inside the workpiece, not just at the edge. With a jigsaw, you’re ready to tackle a variety of new cuts.

Balance

A well-balanced jigsaw can make a huge difference. This type of tool is already known for being not the easiest to control, especially on straight cuts. So having a professional-grade jigsaw with great counterbalancing will not only speed up your workload but also improve the quality of the cuts.

The less time you spend sanding a finished piece, the faster you can get to the next one and maximize your productivity. In short, it’s about saving time without sacrificing quality.

Great for Freehand Work

If you’re into anything artsy, a jigsaw can be like a pencil to you. You can do a lot of freehand work due to how maneuverable the tool is. Provided of course that you use a narrower blade with optimum flex when making narrow curves into the workpiece.

​What Size of Jigsaw Do I Need?

The size of your jigsaw is often directly proportional to the type of material you’re working with, not necessarily how thick it is. That can be solved with a simple blade change.

But the general rule of thumb is that a bigger jigsaw, albeit harder to control, will have a bigger and more powerful motor. Therefore it will offer more cutting power for you to tackle materials that are harder or slower to cut into.

Sometimes cutting power is also related to the build quality. A flimsy jigsaw may not be durable enough for you to comfortably cut a denser workpiece accurately.

Quick Take: Best ​Professional Jigsaws

Hoping to cut right to the chase? Below are the best ​professional jigsaws:

  1. ​Best Overall: Makita XVJ03Z
  2. ​Runner-up: Dewalt DW317K
  3. Best for the Money: Porter Cable PCC650B

Review of the Best Professional Jigsaws

Professional jigsaws rarely get better than the ones featured below. Once you go through their features, specs, and functionality traits, you’ll understand why.

​Best Overall:
​Makita XVJ03Z

PROS

  • Up to 2,600 spm
  • ​Large two-finger trigger
  • High-precision, heavy-duty
  • 4-1/8” 9 TPI blade included
  • Variable speed Makita motor
  • ​Three well-optimized orbital settings
  • ​Cordless build for extra range of motion

CONS

  • Inconsistent base plate quality
  • ​The charger and battery are not included
  • ​May have a higher power draw than others

Our Review

When everything turns out great out of the factory, the Makita XVJ03Z is a tiny beast. The jigsaw weighs just over 6lbs and that’s with the standard battery. The motor runs smoothly, doesn’t overheat, and can deliver up to 2,600 spm.

That’s more than enough to cut through any jigsaw-appropriate material while also maintaining rather smooth edges on the workpiece. The precision on the base plate is something to behold, even though it may not always come as flat as you hope for.

What Makes This Product Stand Out?

The Makita motor quality is the standout feature. It’s durable, powerful, and reliable. Also, having three orbital settings makes it easy to work on a wide range of materials. The overall comfortable grip and larger trigger help with the control and accuracy, especially on curved cuts.

​Runner-up:
​DeWalt DW317K

PROS

  • ​Up to 3,100 ​spm
  • Four orbital settings
  • Tool-less blade clamp
  • Comes with a carry bag
  •  Impressive shoe/base quality
  • ​5.5A motor with plenty of power
  • ​Metal gear case for added durability

CONS

  • Corded design
  • Doesn’t come with a blade kit
  • Slightly short cable for some workshop setups

Our Review

If we’re being honest, the DW317K really only lacks portability. The saw weighs over 6lbs, which also brings some comfort as most of the weight is from the all-metal gear casing. It’s a durable jigsaw that’s good for use in a workshop.

The included carry bag is a nice touch. The saw features a reliable motor that can work the blade up to 3,100 spm. That’s more than enough for a wide range of materials, from soft wood to cement plates (provided you use an appropriate blade).

Its four orbital settings also make it more versatile and easier to control in a wider variety of projects and types of cuts.

What Makes This Product Stand Out?

Two specs stand out the most, the four-orbital design and the 3,100 spm max blade speed. These two ensure that the saw can be used on any type of light to medium-duty projects. It also means that with the right blade, it will be easier to get smoother edges and minimize sanding time.

​Best for the Money:
​Porter Cable PCC650B

PROS

  • Built-in dust blower
  • Quick blade changes
  •  Lightweight construction
  •  Maximum of 2,500 spm
  •  Three orbital settings for added control
  • ​Variable speed trigger for a smoother operation

CONS

  • ​Battery not included
  • The casing is flimsier than that of other models

Our Review

If you’re looking for a top-notch jigsaw without spending too much, the PCC650B is an interesting choice. It does have a flimsier build but it’s also backed by a three-year warranty. On top of that, the jigsaw offers high performance and accurate calibrations.

The blade can reach up to 2,500 spm, which is no small feat and often more than enough. The three orbital settings will let you optimize the blade action for different materials or working speeds.

Although the speed trigger doesn’t require two fingers, it’s still great because of its positioning. You won’t have to use your guide hand to change speeds mid-cut.

What Makes This Product Stand Out?

The fact that it combines so many desirable features and specs at a low price point is what sets this model apart. It also helps that unlike similar tools, this one comes with a dust blower that doesn’t draw too much battery life. It can keep the work surface cleaner without hindering your workload.

​Best Craftsman Professional Jigsaw:
​Craftsman CMES610

PROS

  • Highly affordable
  • Up to 3,000 spm
  • Three-year warranty
  • ​Features four orbital settings
  • ​Ergonomic over-molded handle
  • More control with the two-finger trigger
  • ​Designed for both U-shank and T-shank blades

CONS

  • ​No dust blower or work light built-in
  • ​Not the sturdiest design on the market by comparison

Our Review

If you’re a Craftsman loyalist and are looking for a professional jigsaw, the CMES610 is worth looking into. It features above-average build quality, a decent warranty, and accepts both U- and T-shank blades.

It’s also highly versatile in what and how it can cut. 3,000 spm is plenty of speed and having four orbital settings can really help you optimize the jigsaw for cutting intricate patterns into a wide range of materials.

The two-finger trigger may also add more value. Even though there might be some kinks with its locking mechanism that makes it sometimes awkward to control.

What Makes This Product Stand Out?

In all honesty, for the amount of power it provides, this model really offers a lot of value for the money. Yes, you still have to add a battery and it doesn’t have some cool perks like a dust blower or light. But it packs quite a punch for its size, weight, and retail price.

​Best Bosch Professional Jigsaw:
Bosch JS572EK

PROS

  • Motor consistency
  • Surprisingly lightweight
  • Bosch quality certificate
  • Variable speed dial for precise calibrations
  • Good vibration dampening through counterbalancing
  • ​Very powerful 7.2A motor for cutting the toughest workpieces

CONS

  • Slightly higher price tag due to the brand name
  • Speed control is done from the dial and the trigger

Our Review

Maybe getting a high-powered motor from a Bosch jigsaw is not surprising. But it’s impressive that you get 7.2A on a 5lbs tool. Between its raw power and precise speed adjustments, the JS572EK is a true powerhouse against any material.

Also important to note is that you will be getting three different jigsaw blades as part of the deal. A carry case is included too. What is a bit disappointing is the use of a plastic shoe that just isn’t as durable as metal alternatives.

That said, it’s all about precision and raw power with this jigsaw, which is sometimes just what a woodworker wants.

What Makes This Product Stand Out?

To a Bosch loyalist, everything about this saw looks great. But, to an objective observer, it’s clearly the 7.2A motor that stands out. This can help you create even smoother edges with high TPI blades and also power through hardwood, metal, and the generally more difficult workpieces and materials.

​Editor’s Pick:
Skil 4395-01

PROS

  • Reliable 5.5A motor
  • Carry bag included
  • Precise base plate/foot
  • ​Foot forward adjustments
  • Affordable and lightweight
  • ​Four-position orbital settings
  • Well-calibrated startup system
  • ​ Accepts U-shank and T-shank blades

CONS

  • U-shank blades included
  • Adjusting the Skil foot is not easy for the unfamiliar

Our Review

This is another favorite four-orbital jigsaw with a 5.5A motor. It has a nice balance of power and maneuverability. Granted, the construction is not the sturdiest. But this saw handles beautifully, which is great for extended projects.

The startup system is well-thought-out as there’s little to no risk of a false start. We may also like the fact that the speed is easy to control and the trigger is responsive. However, this model doesn’t have a high peak speed.

Unlike other models, this one comes with some U-shank blades to get you started right out of the box. It’s just that the blades don’t exactly scream quality.

What Makes This Product Stand Out?

One of the standout features is the unique Skill foot adjustment system. It allows cleaner starts by pushing the foot into the material. Another great perk is the lightweight build that really eliminates the risk of fatigue.

What Are the Benefits of Professional Grade Jigsaws?

All of the reviewed models add a certain amount of value over what’s possible with entry-level and regular jigsaws.

  • Consistent Cutting Power

A professional jigsaw will almost always have a superior quality motor. That doesn’t just mean raw cutting power but also stable startups, speed consistency, and less overheating.

  • Superior Precision

The precision refers to everything from the design of the footplate to the speed trigger calibration and orbital settings.

Of course, having access to at least three orbital settings can make a huge difference. It essentially allows you to use one jigsaw for all your projects, as long as you have the right blades.

  • Brand Reputation

This is almost a given with any kind of power tool. Professional-grade quality often only comes from the highest-rated manufacturers in the industry.

As such, when money is not the biggest issue but performance and durability is, you will have to pay extra attention to the big brand names that have earned spurs with tradesmen through the years.

  • Ergonomics and Design

A jigsaw can be a compact cutting tool. And even very light in some cases. But it’s nothing if not hard to control if it’s poorly built. One of the things that separate professional jigsaws from DIY entry-level jigsaws is the actual design. How comfortable is the handle, how responsive is the trigger, can you control the speed with the trigger or somewhere else, and such are the things that you want to consider.

What Do I Need to Know Before Buying?

Let's find out:

Know Your Work Space

There are cordless jigsaws and corded jigsaws. Your work area will have a big impact on what jigsaw model you should get if you’re to get the most out of. If you work off site, then a cordless model is a must. But, if you’re doing all your work in the workshop, you might want to consider a corded model too as it could be lighter and certainly more powerful.

How Much Power Do You Need?

You don’t need a car engine to run a jigsaw effectively. However, if you want to cut through more than wood and plastic, you might want to consider a bigger and better motor. For example, a 5A motor might not always give you the best performance on thicker metal workpieces, even if you’re to use the best T-shank blade on the market.

Know Where to Cut Costs

Sometimes jigsaws come with tons of extra perks such as multiple blade sets, blade change tools, even dust blowers, laser guides, and work lights. Some of these features are worth the extra buck but not all of them.

Stock blades won’t always be great. And to be fair, a proper workshop work light will always outclass a built-in LED work light. So, balancing your budget is all about figuring out what perks you need the most. Even a dust blower may not always be the best idea if you know that the battery would be depleted too soon.

Conclusion

As you can see, a professional jigsaw does come with extra perks. Or at least higher levels of quality and performance. This is the range where you can find bigger motors and high build quality. And whether you do DIY work or take on pro gigs, the cutting versatility of the jigsaw may not always if without a good motor or competent speed trigger calibration.

Cody

My name is Cody and I've been a writer for Tool Tango for quite some time now. I've always had a knack for building things with my hands and creative writing, so being able to combine the two has been great. I love being able to give back to the DIY-community, while also learning a thing or two along the way. When I'm not writing, I enjoy watching Netflix with my girlfriend, fishing, and working in the shop.