Best Cordless Chainsaw of 2021
$349.00 at Amazon
$339.97 at Amazon
$297.33 at Amazon
$399.95 at Amazon
$251.89 at Amazon
|Pros||Top-notch cutting performance, long-lasting battery, easy chain tensioning system, many other tools that use the same batteries||Excellent sawing power, good battery life, relatively inexpensive||Phenomenal charge time, long bar, metal bucking spikes||Instant wind-up time, metal bucking spikes, M18 battery system works with many other tools||Spectacular battery life, two chain speed settings, barely consumes bar and chain oil|
|Cons||So-so wind-up time||Heavy, noisy, one battery size, limited line-up of other tools||Heavy, noisy||Expensive, uses a lot of oil, bulky||Not the strongest cutting power, plastic chain tensioning system, electronic controls slow down sawing|
|Bottom Line||One of the best options if you're looking for bar length, battery life, and tool-free chain tensioning||The most sturdy and effective 16" model we tested||This cordless chainsaw has a battery that charges ultra-quick to keep you plugging away at your project||This has a short wind-up time, cuts like a dream, and has a battery that works with a massive list of other tools||A good degree of performance at a reasonable price|
|Rating Categories||EGO Power+ CS1800||ECHO CCS-58V4AH||Greenworks Pro 80V||Milwaukee M18 FUEL||Husqvarna 120i|
|Saw Performance (35%)|
|Ease Of Use (30%)|
|Specs||EGO Power+ CS1800||ECHO CCS-58V4AH||Greenworks Pro 80V||Milwaukee M18 FUEL||Husqvarna 120i|
|Bar Length||18 inches||16 inches||18 inches||16 inches||14 inches|
|Measured Weight w/ Battery||12 lbs 4 oz||14 lbs 4 oz||15 lbs 2 oz||14 lbs 4 oz||10 lbs 11 oz|
|Measured Battery Weight||3 lbs 8 oz||4 lbs||3 lbs 8 oz||3 lbs 6 oz||2 lbs 12 oz|
|Included Battery Size||5 Ah||4 Ah||2 Ah||12 Ah||4.2 Ah|
|Measured Runtime||60 minutes||34 minutes||27 minutes||33 minutes||40 minutes|
|Measured Run Time Eco Mode||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a||54 mins|
|Measured Battery Charge Time||1.5 hr||1 hr||.5 hr||1.3 hr||2 hrs|
|Measured Average Cutting Time||5.876 seconds||6.136 seconds||5.32 seconds||8.316 seconds||13.486 seconds|
|Measured Wind Up Time||1.25 seconds||.5 seconds||1.15 seconds||Instant||.5 seconds|
|Measured Decibel Reading at 48in||88.8 dBa||87.5 dBa||86.8 dBa||86.8 dBa||85.9 dBa|
|Control Type||Side safety w/ chain brake||Thumb safety w/ chain brake||Electronic button, side safety, and brake||Side safety w/ chain brake||Electronic button, side safety and brake|
|Chain Replacement and Tensioning Type||Tool Free||Included Tool||Tool free||Included Tool||Tool free|
|Metal Bucking Spikes||Yes||No||Yes||Yes||No|
|Bar & Chain Tank Location and Type||Side, Screen||Side||Top||Side||Side, flip-up|
|Measured Body Dimesions||16x9x8 inches||16x8x9 inches||14x9x7.5 inches||18.5x9x8 inches||19x7x7 inches|
Best 18-inch Cordless Electric Chainsaw
EGO Power+ CS1800
When it comes to these machines, it is hard to top the EGO Power+ CS1800. With a 56V 5Ah battery, this version provides abundant power to rip through any trees and logs that may lie in your way. Then, once the battery is out of juice, it charges surprisingly quickly. During our side-by-side tests at the lab, the CS1800 was one of the fastest to make cuts through the standardized size of lumber. Once we got it out into the forest for some bike trail building, we completely fell in love. This model offers several bonus elements that aid in overall ease of use and performance, such an LED light that illuminates the bar and work space, metal bucking spikes, our favorite of all — the 18" bar.
We didn't come across many flaws while testing this model, but we'd like to mention that it doesn't have the snappiest wind-up time. This is not a big deal unless you require a quick wind-up to get your job done as fast as possible. The bar's length could be a little much for those that only need a cordless electric chainsaw for smaller projects. If you are looking for an easy-to-use cordless electric chainsaw with a lengthy bar and a long-lasting battery, then the EGO Power+ CS1800 is the way to go.
Best 16-inch Cordless Electric Chainsaw
The ECHO CCS-58V4AH cordless chainsaw is simple to operate, and we love that the battery is a no-brainer to change with one hand. The bar & chain oil tank has a clear window so you can easily inspect the level, and the cap has tabs to aid in leverage if you're sporting gloves. It has an ergonomic rubber handle, a solid battery life, and a safety switch that ensures the device will never engage unless you are 100% ready. When it comes to cutting performance, the Echo cuts like a hot knife through butter. During our quantitative woodcutting tests, this saw was nearly unmatched. Once we could get this model to the wood yard and rip into some pine rounds, we fell in love with its high execution level.
The Echo does have a few flaws. It is one of the heaviest and most cumbersome chainsaws in our review, and it also has a wrench that is tricky to remove from the body if you don't have something to pry it out. That said, we believe these downsides don't compromise its phenomenal overall performance.
Read review: ECHO CCS-58V4AH
Best Bang for the Buck
The Husqvarna 120i is a high-performing cordless chainsaw that won't leave you running low on funds. This version is capable of beyond adequate cuts, and it's relatively straightforward to use. We also love that this saw consumes a small amount of bar & chain oil compared to many other models. Our favorite thing about the 120i is its unmatched battery life. This device has one of the longest-lasting batteries that we've tested, and in "savE" mode, it further increases battery life by reducing the chain speed for less than heavy-duty tasks. The combination of effective cutting, a pleasant design, low price, and an unrivaled run time makes this saw a great choice.
The 120i's main flaw is that the control system can slow down your workflow. It also has a chain tensioning and changing system that, although it's tool-free, can add a couple of extra minutes to your project. Another small snag is that it doesn't make the speediest cuts, but it does cut well enough to gain our approval. If you don't mind your task taking a few extra minutes, we think this saw offers fantastic performance for the associated price tag.
Read Full Review: Husqvarna 120i
Best 20V Model
The Worx WG322 has many attractive elements that the competition does not offer. Not everyone needs a colossal saw with a sizeable clunky battery. The 20V battery used on this model is significantly lighter and smaller than the ones used by most saws, which range from 36V up to 80V. A significantly reduced weight coupled with its 10-inch bar and smaller body size allow the sawyer to tote, lift and operate the WG322 a breeze. This model is also quiet, which is ideal for residential or workshop settings. Finally, it's affordable. These tools can get very pricey — if you don't need the extra bar length, battery life, and power, then there's no need to drop the extra cash on a super high-performance model.
Along with the advantages brings a few drawbacks. The 20V battery life is quite a bit shorter than most higher voltage models. Also, the WG322 can't hang with the best in overall cutting performance. It's a bit slower and less powerful than top-tier saws, and its shorter bar limits the diameter of cuts it can make. Despite these flaws, we still think the Worx is the way to go when it comes to 20V cordless electric chainsaws.
Read review: Worx WG322
Best for Battery Expandability
Milwaukee M18 FUEL
The Milwaukee M18 FUEL is a beast of a chainsaw. It is one of the best at executing cuts and has a long-lasting battery. One of the Milwaukee's best traits is that it goes from being completely stopped to full speed instantly. This can be very useful on occasions when time and workflow efficiency are essential. With their M18 battery platform, Milwaukee supplies a massive lineup of tools for all kinds of applications. This well-known brand boasts more than 175 unique tools that use the same battery connection. If you own any Milwaukee cordless tools, there's a chance that you already have a battery or charger that will work with this chainsaw. If not, but you're interested in buying tools with interchangeable batteries, we recommend going with the Milwaukee line of products.
The Milwaukee M18 FUEL's main drawback is the incredibly loud and annoying noise it produces. One of the best things about electric tools compared to gasoline-powered machines is that they are much quieter. This one? Now so much. It's also pricey, especially compared to the budget models. Still, if you are already a Milwaukee power tool owner or you require a chainsaw with quick wind-up, then the M18 FUEL is the way to go.
Read review: Milwaukee M18 FUEL
Best for Quick Battery Charging
Greenworks Pro 80V
If you're a two-stroke fanatic and are worried about the charge time associated with cordless electric chainsaws, look no further than the Greenworks Pro 80V. The Greenworks 80 Volt Lithium Max charger juices the battery from zero to one hundred in an impressive thirty minutes leaving you with less down time than it takes to run to the gas station and mix another gallon of 50:1 fuel. We tested the 18" model, and were happy to be able to buck large pine rounds without huffing exhaust fumes, yanking on a pull cord, or destroying our eardrums as we would have been with a two-stroke motor. The Pro 80V performed exceptionally well during our timed wood-cutting assessment — it cuts through Douglas Fir about as fast as any model we've ever used. The metal bucking spikes that are integrated into this model are far superior to the plastic nubs that several cordless chainsaws use.
There's no getting around the fact that the Greenworks Pro 80V is downright heavy. At more than 15 pounds, this model is undoubtedly going to require more strength to wield than most cordless saws. Although the battery charges very quickly, it doesn't last as long as some of the other models on the market so if battery life is a determining purchasing factor for you, it'd be wise to go with a different model. We noticed that the Pro 80V uses a fairly large amount of bar & chain oil, but considering the long bar coupled with the quick cutting capabilities, this comes as no surprise. Drawbacks aside, we think this saw is the way to go if you want a longer bar and don't want to wait all day for your battery to recharge.
Read Full Review: Greenworks Pro 80V
Why You Should Trust Us?
At TechGearLab, we purchase all of the products at everyday prices from typical retailers to reduce bias while creating reviews. And wouldn't you know it, we have a chainsaw expert in-house. Our review editor Ross Patton has spent hundreds of hours with a saw in his hand cutting, trimming, and bucking all types of trees from the oak in the foothills of California to the pines of Lake Tahoe, and the elms and cottonwoods of Northern Nevada. With his formal education in environmental science, you can rest easy knowing that he has created tests to compare the saws as accurately as possible.
We began by carefully inspecting each saw for subtle nuances in the design of each model. We then measured and weighed each model to verify the manufacturers' claims. Next, we sliced a ton of wood up to time cuts and measured each saw's performance. We also timed how long each battery lasted and how long it took each one to recharge. Finally, to confirm our accuracy, we took our fleet of cordless electric chainsaws to a local tree service's wood yard for some consultation. We let the crew get a feel for each saw and make some cuts to get some input from the true professionals.
Related: How We Tested Cordless Chainsaws
Analysis and Test Results
Our goal is to help you decide which cordless chainsaw is right for you, so we started with the most obvious way to test — we cut a whole lot of wood. However, to test these awesome tools side-by-side, we went well beyond just the saw performance. We measured, weighed, timed, and took note of more than a dozen variables on each one of these models over the course of a month. We grouped our tests into four individually weighted categories — Saw Performance (35%), Ease of Use (30%), Battery Life (25%), and Noise (10%) — which are discussed in detail below.
Related: Buying Advice for Cordless Chainsaws
If you're shopping for a cordless chainsaw, the most pivotal element to consider is what its primary application will be. There is a large range of prices for these devices, and a larger cost doesn't axiomatically mean a saw will work well for your planned use. You should also make sure to consider battery sizes and some chainsaws may seem expensive but make up for it with a larger battery.
If you are looking for a model with maximum bar length and maximum battery life, it's hard to beat the price for the performance of the EGO Power+ CS1800. The Echo CCS-58V4AH isn't very easy on your pocketbook, but considering how well it cuts, we think the price tag is as fair as can be. If you're on a bit of a tighter budget, the Husqvarna 120i is far from the costliest saw in our review, but it outperformed most of the competition in several key ways. If you need a saw that offers professional-grade performance with a very fast charge time, we suggest the Greenworks Pro 80V 18". The Milwaukee M18 FUEL may come at a premium, but buying from one of the most trusted names in power tools has its benefits. The FUEL costs more initially, but if you plan to buy more Milwaukee tools in the future, you can shave some costs by purchasing the "tool-only" models because you will already own a battery and charger. If you rarely need to make serious cuts and are searching for an alternative to a big and heavy saw, then the Worx WG322 is the way to go.
First and foremost, the saw performance metric makes up 35% of the score for each chainsaw. To test this, we took the average of several timed cuts through a specific dimension of wood from the lumber yard to ensure that each saw was tearing through the exact same volume for each cut. For the second part of this metric, we took our fleet of saws to a commercial wood yard for a more subjective test to see how they functioned bucking rounds of pine. During these two different tests, we closely monitored how quickly the saws went through bar and chain oil. We also timed how long it takes each saw to go from stopped to full speed. We call this number "wind-up" time. Lastly, we considered bar length in this metric as a smaller bar simply cannot complete larger tasks.
There are three saws that we awarded a 9 out of 10 for this metric — the EGO Power+ CS1800, the Greenworks Pro 80V, and the Echo. During our dimensional woodcutting tests, the Greenworks Pro 18V showed an average cutting time of 5.32 seconds while the CS1800 put up a time of 5.9 seconds. The Echo was just behind the two 18-inch bar models with an average time of 6.1 seconds and made up for the 16-inch bar with one of the fastest wind-up times at 0.5 seconds.
With a score of 8 out of 10 for this metric, the Makita LXT displayed cutting times ever so slightly slower than the Echo with an average of 7.9 seconds. At 0.75 seconds, its wind-up time is also just behind the Echo. Our favorite part about this saw is that we found that the LXT easily turned pine to sawdust at the wood yard. It has an innovative adjustable oil pump so you can change the feed rate depending on the air temperature and the type of oil you are using. For any sawyer that will be doing a lot of firewood bucking, the Makita comes with metal bucking spikes to make the job easier.
Waiting for a saw to wind up can cost you time and energy, which in some circumstances can also mean you're losing money. The Milwaukee M18 FUEL exhibited an instantaneous wind-up during all of our tests. The M18 FUEL had a great average cutting time of 8.3 seconds in our lab test and also dissected logs like nothing during our field tests. The Milwaukee is another model that has metal bucking spikes to help get the job done faster. We gave the M18 FUEL an 8 out of 10 for this metric. One area where it falls a bit short, however, is that it does go through more bar and chain oil than we'd like to see.
The EGO Power+ 1400, on the other hand, went through almost no bar & chain oil during our tests and has sufficient cutting power with an average time of 9.5 seconds during the lab tests. This saw is one of the slowest to react to a fully pulled trigger and took 2.5 seconds to get up to speed. We docked it a little bit for this slow wind-up time. The Power+ still scores a solid 7 out of 10 in this metric.
Tying at a score of 6 out of 10 for saw performance are the Greenworks G-MAX, Worx WG322, and the Husqvarna 120i models. Both of these saws had average cutting times that were more than twice the time of the Echo. The Greenworks showed an average cutting time of 12.5 seconds with a lethargic wind-up time of 2.25 seconds. The 120i barely used any oil during the tests, and the Greenworks only trickled a tiny bit more. The Husqvarna had one of the fastest wind-up times at 0.5 seconds, but it was a bit slower than the aforementioned models in our dimensional test, finishing with an average time of 13.5 seconds. Both of these cut fairly well, they are just a bit slower.
The Worx WG322 had an ok wind-up time of 2 seconds and a rather slow average cutting time of 38 seconds, but taking into account the 20V battery and 10-inch bar we were pleasantly surprised to see this thing ripping it up in the woodlot. Don't let the light weight and compact size fool you, this tool is not a toy and is well suited for many chainsaw uses.
Rounding out the bottom of saw performance metric scores are the BLACK+DECKER 40V MAX Cordless Chainsaw, Oregon CS300, and the Ryobi 40 V RY40530 each with a score of 5 out of 10. The MAX stalled many times during both our lab and our field cutting tests and had by far the slowest average cutting time at a whopping 35.5 seconds. It also dumped a ton of bar & chain oil and had a sluggish wind-up of 1.75 seconds. The Ryobi was on the lower end of wind-up times at 2 seconds, but it had a fairly decent average cutting time at 10 seconds. Unfortunately, however, it tore through bar and chain oil much, much faster than any other saws in our review. The Oregon CS300 was on the lower end of cutting times at 15.9 seconds and even stopped a few times mid-cut. It also has a slower wind-up time at 1.25 seconds and isn't the greatest in the bar & chain oil department. However, it does get bonus points for its metal bucking spikes.
Ease of Use
One of the best things about cordless chainsaws is their ease of use compared to gas-powered chainsaws, which is why this metric contributes 30% to the total score. Cordless saws, however, are not all created equal. To establish the scores for this metric, we used a panel of judges to decide which saws had the best balance, were the most comfortable to hold, and were the easiest to turn on and off. We also removed and reinstalled the chain on each saw several times to gauge how difficult or technical the various tensioning systems are to operate. We then noted how difficult each battery was to attach or remove from the saw. We paid close attention to how difficult it was to slide the bar cover off or back on and how well they do at actually protecting the chain. Finally, we noted the location of the bar & chain oil tank, the type of cap each tank has, and how difficult these tanks are to fill.
When it came to ease of use, the EGO Power+ CS1800 and the Echo once again top the list with a solid score of 8 out of 10. Among the various types of controls that these saws have, our consensus is that simpler is better. Both of these saws have the system that we like the most with a simple thumb safety switch and a chain brake. It's the least complicated to use and the fastest to go from storage to slicing and dicing. The bar & chain oil tank on the Echo has a see-through window that makes it easy to see the amount of oil in the tank, and the cap features tabs for leverage in case your gloves are oily or slippery. Although many cordless chainsaw manufacturers have moved to tool-free chain tensioning systems, the Echo keeps it old school. To tension or change the chain, this saw has a screwdriver/wrench tool that's stored in the handle — commonly referred to as a "scrench." For those that are already used to this system, this might be the way to go.
The battery compartment is located on the top of the saw body, which makes attaching it simple. Many saws have this feature, but what sets the Echo apart is that it has a handy loop that makes connecting or removing a potentially oil-covered battery much easier with gloves on. This model also has the only bar cover that clips into place on the saw body to ensure that your chain is always protected while in transit or storage.
The CS1800 has done the opposite — EGO has made the most innovative, easiest to use tool-free chain tensioning system that we have seen. For those that have no interest in fumbling with or losing tools while trying to tune their saw, this is the way to go. This model also has an LED light for use from dusk 'til dawn.
Close behind the Echo and the CS1800 with a score of 7 out of 10 are the Milwaukee M18 Fuel and Worx WG322. The Milwaukee bears nearly all of the same features that make the Echo so simple to use, except the battery lacks a handy loop, and its bar cover does not clip to the saw body. In general, this saw is very easy to use; however, it can't quite match the Echo in this regard.
One area where both the Echo and the Milwaukee may lose a little appeal to some people is the weight. They are some of the heaviest saws we have tested, tipping the scales at 14.25 pounds. Although we did not find the weight to be a huge influence on the Ease of Use of the various saws, we did dock the scores of heavier models for users that might struggle to lift those few extra pounds.
Another saw that uses the simple thumb safety & trigger system is the Worx WG322, which also features a tool-free bar mounting and chain tensioning system. We like the way the system operates, but we did notice that you have to keep a big of a closer eye on the chain than with the Ego CS1800
The majority of the remaining models received a 6 out of 10 for this metric.
Similar to the top tier models, the EGO Power+ 1400 has a simple control system that we like but is lacking any features that set it apart from the rest.
The BLACK+DECKER 40V MAX has the simple-to-use control system that we like, which consists of a thumb safety and the standard trigger. The oil tank cap is located on the top of the saw body, which is convenient, but unlike the Power+ 1400, the BLACK+DECKER model goes through a lot of bar & chain oil, so you end up dealing with the cap often while operating the saw. Also, the tool-free tensioning system on this saw is a bit troublesome to get the chain to proper tension or change the chain out. The one performance aspect where the BLACK+DECKER is at the top of the field is its weight. At 8.4 pounds, it is more than 2 pounds lighter than any other model.
Unlike the aforementioned saws, the Greenworks G-MAX, Greenworks Pro 80V, and the Husqvarna 120i all have an electronic button that needs to be engaged before the safety switch, the chain brake, or the trigger will turn the chainsaw on. We feel this is a bit excessive considering that there are already three different mechanisms in place that all must be in the proper position for the saw to start. It can get annoying when you have positioned yourself to make a cut, and then you pull the trigger only to realize that you have forgotten a redundant step.
The G-MAX , Pro 80V, and the 120i do, however, have the battery compartment on top of the saw body where we think it's the most convenient and ergonomic. The tool-free chain tensioning system still isn't the easiest design to use on either of these models. At 10.7 pounds, the Husqvarna is one of the lightest chainsaws in our review.
One saw with a very innovative feature is the integrated chain sharpening stone on the Oregon CS300. It's very convenient just to pull a lever that holds the stone against the chain for a few seconds while you hit the throttle to give the chain a quick tune-up. Although the CS300 scores extra points for this sharpener, it loses points because it lacks a window on the oil tank to monitor oil levels. The bar cover on the Oregon is the only one out of the entire field that was falling apart at the end of our tests.
The Ryobi 40V has an onboard scrench for changing and tightening the chain, but this scrench is extremely difficult to remove from the saw handle.
At the bottom of the pack for this metric is the Makita LXT, with a score of 5 out of 10. The Makita has the best of the tool-free chain tensioning systems, but it has an extra electronic button that we found frustrating. Unlike other models with an electronic button, the LXT requires you to push the button much more often because it has a short shutoff time. The largest flaw that we can see with the Makita is that it requires two batteries to operate. While it could make sense for you to buy this saw if you already own other Makita power tools, we find that the added inconvenience of having an extra battery to attach, remove, charge, and keep track of is not conducive to efficient chainsaw operation.
Usually, the main concern that die-hard gas-powered chainsaw fans have before switching to cordless is skepticism about the battery life. And with good reason. There was a significant degree of fluctuation in battery life among the saws we reviewed, so we weighted this metric as 25% of our total score. The battery evaluation consisted of two individual tests: how long the batteries ran at full throttle with no resistance and how long the batteries took to charge. We weighted our scores slightly more towards battery life than charge time, but we recognize that charge time is important to many folks as well.
If battery life is your key deciding factor while shopping for a cordless electric chainsaw, look no further than the EGO Power+ CS1800. Earning a 9 out of 10, this model lasted an entire 60 minutes during our runtime assessment. Surprisingly, even with its extra-long runtime, it only took an hour and a half to charge.
Just behind the CS1800 is the Husqvarna 120i with a score of 8 out of 10. The 120i has two different settings- normal mode and an additional "savE" mode, which reduces the chain speed to save battery during lighter jobs that require less power cutting power. In normal mode, the Husqvarna is already ahead of the field with a run time of 40 minutes in normal mode, but once switched to "savE" mode, it lasts even longer with a measured time of 54 minutes. With a charge time measured at 2 hours, the 120i wasn't the quickest in this aspect, but it also isn't anywhere near the slowest.
Also scoring an 8 out of 10 for this metric is the Greenworks Pro 80V. We measured a solid runtime of 27 minutes during our assessment, which is far from the longest-running models. However, where the Pro 80V really shines is its charge time — the Greenworks rapid charger is able to bring the massive 80-volt battery up to 100% in a lightning-fast 30 minutes.
Tying with a score of 7 out of 10 for the battery metric are the Echo and the Milwaukee models. These two models have a run time of 34 minutes and 33 minutes, respectively. The Echo has a charge time of 1 hour, and the Milwaukee took 1 hour and 20 minutes to get back to full charge.
Just behind the longer-lasting models are the EGO Power+ 1400 and the Makita XLT, which each earn a score of 6 out of 10. The Power+ 1400 has a decent run time of 24 minutes and a very impressive charge time of only 45 minutes. With a charge time of 1 hour and a run time of 28 minutes, the XLT is also about in the middle of the pack for battery life.
The Oregon CS300 has an honorable run time of 25 minutes, but with a charge time of 1 hour and 50 minutes, we decided to give this saw a mediocre score of 5 out of 10.
We gave the Ryobi 40V and the Worx WG322 each a score of 4 out of 10 for this metric because their charge times are 2 hours and 45 minutes and 3 hours, respectively. Considering that the Ryobi's run time is 24 minutes and the WG322's only 22 minutes, if you buy either of these saws, you will be spending a lot more time watching the charger than making cuts. That said, it should be noted that the Worx battery is only 20V and it is not intended to be a long-running tool.
Lastly, the BLACK+DECKER only earned a 3 out of 10. Its battery only lasted 18 minutes during our run time test. Meanwhile, it took a staggering 3 hours and 28 minutes to charge.
One of the main ways that cordless chainsaws are superior to gas-powered models is that they are much quieter. Many manufacturers use this fact to entice people to buy battery-powered saws, so we decided to make this our final metric. However, because all chainsaws are inherently loud due to the spinning of the chain and the tearing of cutting wood, we only weighted it 10% of the total score. To measure sound, we used a sound level meter at a distance of 48 inches from the chain while the saw was at full throttle. Our testers also paid close attention to whether or not certain saws subjectively stood out as being unpleasant to use while cutting due to excess noise. Because these are largely considered to be consumer models, we also wanted to consider how much the sound produced by the tools might bother your neighbors. To get a gauge on this, we used a panel of judges at a distance of 50 feet from the saws to get some opinions on whether or not any of the tools were particularly aggravating to listen to.
The quietest model in our review is the Worx WG322. During our SPL meter tests from a distance of 4 feet we measured a mere 80 dBa. Our panel of judges had nothing to complain about the pitch or tone emitted from this tool.
Just short of the Worx WG322 for this metric, we awarded both the BLACK+DECKER 40V MAX and the Greenworks G-MAX an 8 out of 10. During our sound meter reading test, the MAX only registered 83.3 dBa, which is the lowest of any of the saws that we reviewed. We'd say this model is quiet and only kind of whiny. The G-MAX produced 83.8 dBa, barely more than the MAX, and it's only moderately whiny.
Scoring just below the quietest saws are the EGO Power+ 1400 and the Husqvarna 120i earning scores of 7 out of 10 for the Noise metric. During our sound meter test, we recorded 85.3 dBa for the Power+, and the 120i was slightly louder. We found that the EGO Power+ 1400 wasn't especially whiny and that the Husqvarna had no whine.
The Echo, EGO Power+ 1800, Greenworks Pro 80V, and Milwaukee are all near the middle of the pack with a score of 6 out of 10. We found all of these saws to be loud and whiny, and they each registered in the upper 80s in decibels on the sound meter.
Earning a score of 5 out of 10 for the Noise metric is the Oregon CS300. Despite its relatively middle-of-the-road decibel reading of 87.3, from a distance of 50 feet, it seemed to be just outright annoying. We won't be quite as harsh with our description of the pitch of the Makita LXT, but the sound meter told a different tale. Anyone operating this saw is going to be subjected to a head-splitting 105.7 dBa.
This metric's bottom score is a 4, and it was given to the Ryobi 40V. It registered close to 100 dBa on the meter and had a pitch that we would describe as really loud and annoying.
We hope that this review gives you the insight and the certainty to make the right choice on the best cordless chainsaw for you. Just as every person has a different application for their chainsaw, every chainsaw has its own strengths, weaknesses, and features. Have fun out there, and be safe!
— Ross Patton