Makita XSL05Z Review – Is This The Best 6-1/2″ Miter Saw?

Cut Quality: 3/5
Ease of Use: 4/5
Durability: 5/5
Service: 5/5
Overall Value: 4/5
5/5 Out of 2 Reviews on Amazon
(Last Updated 7/27/18)

Type: Dual Bevel Compound
Right miter: 52°
Left miter: 52°
Right bevel: 46°
Left bevel: 46°
Blade size: 6-1/2″
Voltage: 18 V
RPMs: 5,000
Weight: 14.6 lbs

Makita continues to extend their LXT® Lithium-Ion category of cordless power tools with the XSL05Z, a 6-1/2″ miter saw.  The XSL05Z is one of the most portable cordless miter saws on the market today.  Although this is just about the smallest blade size option for a miter saw, don’t think that it can’t handle it’s fair share of cuts.

Our Makita XSL05Z Review

Cut Quality

The XSL05Z was designed for extremely portable performance.  A large aluminum base, an electric brake, and a soft grip handle provide greater comfort and control while users make cuts.

Although it’s lightweight and compact, this miter saw has an impressive cut capacity.   It can cut 1-13/16″ x 3-5/8″ at 90° and 1-13/16″ x 2-9/16″ at 45°.  It miters 0-52° left and right.  It bevels 0-46° left and right.  The only potential negative aspect of this saw’s cut quality is the fact that it is powered by a single 18 V battery.  A similar lack of substantial power was an issue for some owners of the XSL01Z, which is essentially the 7-1/2″ version of this miter saw.

Ease of Use

Weighing in at under 15 lbs, this may very well be the lightest miter saw on the market today.  The lightweight and cordless design of this miter saw makes it convenient for a range of uses.  But it’s portability isn’t the only thing that makes the XSL05Z easy to use.

Making good cuts is easy with features like a built-in laser, a built-in L.E.D. light, and a see-through blade guard system provide increased visibility.  Making adjustments is simple due to positive stops at: 0°, 15°, 22.5°, 30° and 45° left and right.  One aspect of this miter saw that outshines the XSL01Z model, is that the XSL05Z is truly dual bevel.

Although lack of voltage could be an issue for tougher cuts, the battery-powered nature of this miter saw is a plus for convenience.  Makita has ensured the reliability of their LXT® Lithium-Ion batteries with advancements like the Rapid Optimum Charger and Star Protection Computer Controls™.  The Rapid Optimum Charger charges Makita batteries faster than any other charger out there and the Star Protection Computer Controls™ makes sure that every bit of juice is used as efficiently as possible.  To further provide reliability, a built-in 3-stage L.E.D. gauge lets users know exactly how much battery is left.


The Makita XSL05Z was built with long lasting performance in mind.  It features a BL™ Brushless Motor capable of a 5,000 RPM no load speed.  This BL™ Brushless Motor doesn’t utilize carbon brushes which allows for more efficient operation and mechanical longevity.  The motor is also electronically controlled to maximize battery run time.


Makita has always backed up their products with a solid warranty.  In regards to their LXT line of power tools, Makita goes a step further to ensure customer satisfaction by offering an an impressive 3-Year Limited Warranty.  This is in addition to their standard 30-Day Satisfaction Guarantee.  Utilizing Makita’s warranty offer should be painless with numerous authorized service centers located all over the United States (and the world).

Included in the box:

  • Triangular Rule
  • Dust Bag
  • 64T Micro-Polished Miter Saw Blade
  • Vertical Vise
  • Hex Wrench

Overall Value

The real value of this miter saw lies in its portability.  Not only is it one of the lightest miter saws available, it’s cordless, and it is powered by industry-leading battery technology.  For craftsmen looking for a versatile option for projects that require room-to-room mobility, this saw might be perfect.  Keep in mind this is not a general construction site workhorse miter saw.

Our Verdict

It’s difficult to thoroughly evaluate the XSL05Z because there are so few reviews on it.  But a combination of cutting-edge technology and Makita’s decades-long track record of manufacturing quality tools should give confidence to any potential buyer.  The pros of this miter saw seem to greatly outweigh any cons.  The XSL05Z would be a nice addition to any tool shed.  It is especially useful for projects that require maneuverability.  If you’re thinking about buying one, take a look at Amazon’s price on the Makita XSL05Z.  Or compare it against the best saws on the market with our comparison chart.

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