Bosch GCM12SD vs DeWalt DWS780: Which One’s Best?

  • June 26, 2018
Image
The Runner-up (#2)
Bosch Compound Miter Saw GCM12SD - 120-Volt,...
The Winner (#1)
DEWALT DWS780 12-Inch Double Bevel Sliding...
Model
Bosch Compound Miter Saw GCM12SD - 120-Volt,...
DEWALT DWS780 12-Inch Double Bevel Sliding...
User Rating
User Reviews
354 Customer Reviews
430 Customer Reviews
The Runner-up (#2)
Image
Bosch Compound Miter Saw GCM12SD - 120-Volt,...
Model
Bosch Compound Miter Saw GCM12SD - 120-Volt,...
User Rating
User Reviews
354 Customer Reviews
The Winner (#1)
Image
DEWALT DWS780 12-Inch Double Bevel Sliding...
Model
DEWALT DWS780 12-Inch Double Bevel Sliding...
User Rating
User Reviews
430 Customer Reviews

In the world of power tools, the names Bosch and DeWalt have real meaning. Bosch is associated with durable elegance, and DeWalt is known for value quality. Which brand has the best compound miter saw? We looked at Bosch’s GCM12SD and DeWalt’s DWS780 to test that out. It’s not quite “fate of Western Civilization” stuff, but if you need a great saw it’s probably a pretty big deal.

What we learned was pretty much what you’d expect. Both companies make a great saw with a lot of important features and that can deliver where it counts most for a compound miter saw. Both had a nice, powerful 15-amp motor that isn’t going to wear out after casual use and 12-inch blades to accommodate large work pieces.

Our decision fell to three things: price, bulk and the straight cut.

Bosch GCM12SD in workshop

What’s the difference between them?

You’re probably not going to be disappointed with either saw if you do a lot of miter and bevel cuts. Both were designed for that kind of work.

Performance

The space between these two saws in terms of bevel and miter cuts is big enough that you can wedge a butterknife into it and really that’s about it. Both deliver outstanding results and both deliver in terms of flexibility. The Bosch was a little easier to adjust and hold large work pieces in place, but not enough to call this contest based solely on it.

In fact, while the GCM12SD edged out the DWS780 on angled cuts, it underperformed on straight cuts. We expect some calibration right out of the box, but in the case of the Bosch it didn’t appear to be a problem of calibration. It just felt like that so much thought was put into the miter part of miter saw that they assumed that if you need a precision straight cut that you’d use a different tool.

DEWALT DWS780 diagonal cut

Design

Our nod here has to go to the DeWalt. It delivers similar results, but in a more compact, lighter design. And by lighter, we mean about 30 pounds. That means it’s more portable so it’s easier to take it to the job rather than trying to take the job to it. That might not sound like a big deal if you’re looking for a tool to put in your home workshop, but if you need to go mobile with it, it’s no small thing.

Bosch GCM12SD cutting wood

Price

This is as simple as looking at the price tag. While that is not a static thing, when you’re talking the number of dollars between these two it’s a safe assumption that the numbers will always side with the DeWalt.

Quick Rundown of Bosch GCM12SD

Sale
Bosch Compound Miter Saw GCM12SD - 120-Volt,...
354 Customer Reviews
Bosch Compound Miter Saw GCM12SD - 120-Volt,...
  • COMPACT CUTTING WITH PRECISION CONTROL: Our saw (GCM12SD) measures 31 x 23.8 x 22.5 and features a...
  • VERSATILE AND ADJUSTABLE MITER SAW: Woodworking tools and accessories pair well with our miter saw....
  • DURABLE PRECISION AND CONVENIENT SAW: Axial-Glide system for durable precision, complete control,...

The GCM12SD is just fun to work with. That’s the allure of Bosch power tools in general, they are sleek and comfortable to the hands and are very smooth to operate. This miter saw is no exception. It also performed great in making angled cuts. If that was the only criteria, this contest would be a no-brainer.

But, it’s also more expensive than the DWS780 and enough more expensive that the value is very diluted. it’s also more difficult to move around and we had trouble getting it to make straight cuts. So, if money is no object and you want something that is pure joy to use, this is great. If not, consider its drawbacks.

Pros
  • Held work pieces in place well
  • 12-inch blade delivers great reach
  • Powerful motor
  • Precise, clean angled cuts
  • Smooth to use
Cons
  • Big and bulky
  • Expensive
  • Didn’t do well in straight cuts

Quick Rundown of DeWalt DWS780

DEWALT DWS780 12-Inch Double Bevel Sliding...
430 Customer Reviews
DEWALT DWS780 12-Inch Double Bevel Sliding...
  • New precise miter system
  • Handle design for added portability
  • 90 day money back guarantee

For the DWS780. it’s not a matter of where it falls short. It’s a matter of where it doesn’t excel. It does everything well. It holds work pieces firmly in place and then delivers great, powerful cuts courtesy its 15-amp motor. It can even cut as cleanly straight on as it does at angles, which is a mark up from the Bosch.

It’s also cheaper. What you pay for in the GCM12SD is comfortable, easy use. If you consider the aesthetics of a power tool to be a vital component, maybe that extra money is a good investment. If you just want something that does its job, you can’t go wrong with the DWS780.

And, watch the sawdust. DeWalt miter saws in general have difficulty managing waste. It’s something to consider if your workspace is small and confined.

Pros
  • Accurate cuts
  • Portable
  • Powerful motor
  • 12-inch blade delivers great reach
Cons
  • Dust collection system leaves much to be desired

General user impressions

We’ve told you what we think, but we also wondered how our experiences matched up against those of other users. Maybe the GCM12SD we looked at was just the one apple in the batch that couldn’t saw straight. Maybe our DWS780 threw sawdust everywhere and everyone else’s kept it clean and contained.

Other users loved both saws. In fact, they raved about them. Each had their own partisans declaring their purchase the be-all/end-all of miter saws. That’s a pretty good indication that while neither saw qualifies as a budget model, you can probably but with some assurance that you’re getting real bang for your buck.

Both models also excelled at sustained customer satisfaction. There were a few people who reported defective tools that had to be returned, but by and large people who bought one of these models said they used it regularly with no problems.

The biggest gripe was the Bosch GCM12SD’s straight cutting ability. Although some people said that this was the result of poor calibration that could be corrected by a skilled user, some of those complaining felt it was really a design flaw. That aligned with our experience.

Conclusion

Both saws delivered great miter and bevel cuts, and both had great features to make that job as simple and straightforward as possible. In terms of price, bulk and ability to deliver a straight cut, the DeWalt was simply the better saw. It was more affordable, more portable and if you need something to give you a straight cut while delivering excellent angles, it just performed better.

About the Author Adam Harris

Hi there! My name is Adam and I write for HealthyHandyman. I have a great passion for writing about everything related to tools, home improvement, and DIY. In my spare time, I'm either fishing, playing the guitar, or spending quality time with my beloved wife. You'll also often find me in my workshop working on some new project!