Silhouette Cameo 2

I finally got around to installing Leslie's new toy, the Silhouette Cameo 2. I'm anxious to see what other projects we can create using this new die cutter. We also own a Pazzles die cutter we purchased a few years back. As of right now, I haven't had enough time with the Cameo to make an in depth comparison. With the little time I spent with the Cameo, I can honestly say that I do like the experience thus far.

Software is probably the single most important key to any new machine I use. Since I am a primary Adobe user, it's mandatory that any new software I use is compatible to Illustrator or vector files. One added feature that the Cameo has over the Pazzles is that there is a plug-in software (Cameo Connect) that can seamlessly take you from Illustrator directly to the Cameo software and begin cutting. This can make it a breeze for those who want to transition directly from Illustrator without going thru the hassle of learning too much of another software. At this point, I have NOT used this plug-in and have only seen it being used on YouTube, but it does look promising. It is not mandatory to purchase and use this plug-in to cut your Illustrator art work as I have demonstrated below.

Within a few minutes, I managed to cut out our logos I created in Illustrator WITHOUT the Cameo Connect plug-in.

When it came to importing vector files into the Pazzles software, it was much more daunting to say the least. Being a relentless tech-guy and after many hours of troubleshooting, I eventually found a way to import my .eps files into Pazzles. I wouldn't recommend this to the average crafter/user unless you are well versed with converting files and saving your designs in a specific format. There were so many steps to successfully creating a compatible file that I had to create a .txt file with detailed instructions in case I forgot.

Cut using the Cameo using standard copy paper. Lines were crisp and clean enough for our use.

Overall I would recommend the Silhouette over the Pazzles just based on it's compatibility to Illustrator alone. I'm not sure at the point of writing this blog if Pazzles has updated to a new version of their software or even a new machine that works in conjunction with Illustrator, but I wouldn't even bother. I believe the Silhouette Cameo is crafter's weapon of choice when it comes to home use die cutting machines. For what it's worth, I'd rate it a "Must Buy" for any serious crafter or artist looking for a die cut machine.

Our Cameo came with additional goodies that I have yet to open such as these sketch pens. I'll be looking at more tutorials of advance functions to see what other projects we can create.

Stay tuned for upcoming projects with the Silhouette Cameo.