Makita LS1219L Review: Great Compound Miter Saw

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The Makita LS1219L is a sliding compound miter saw with a massive cutting capacity, simple adjustment system and versatile feature set. Makita has spent many years building a strong reputation with its line of power tools. The ls1219l certainly lives up to the family name.

While there are newer kids on the block, this saw will still work very well in certain situations. This review will run you through the strengths, drawbacks and unique features of the Makita LS1219L and help you decide if it’s right for you.

Makita LS1219L Review and Buyer’s Guide

The headline is that this compound miter saw is easy to use and easy to adjust. The size and weight mean you’re unlikely to be carrying this around with you all day, but the massive cutting capacity, soft-start system and accurate cuts more than make up for the hefty size.

Makita LS1219L 12' Dual-Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw with Laser

The Specs

Make sure you read the rest of the review to get the full picture.

Motor: 15-amp

RPM: 3200

Weight: 65 lbs

Left miter angle: 60°

Right miter angle: 60°

Blade: 12 inches

Performance and Cut Quality

This tool is built to deliver powerful and accurate cuts. The 15-amp motor drives the blade effortlessly through your workpieces. The Makita ls1219l uses “Deep and Exact Cutting Technology” to significantly boost cutting capacity, accuracy and performance.

This is especially noticeable when making a vertical cut. The guard system and motor leave you tons of room for cutting vertically. This is great for applications like cutting crown molding. If vertical cuts are a must for you, this Makita workhorse is worth considering.

If you’re mostly looking to use Makita ls1219l for quick cuts, it’s ready to go almost immediately and requires very little initial setup. It won’t surprise you to learn that more detailed work might require a little more tweaking.

The heavy construction and stable design of the Makita ls1219l make it very easy to cut confidently. The sliding mechanism is refreshingly easy to use and the guard system never gets in the way. Crosscuts can go up to 15 inches at 90 degrees with this saw!

Overall, this is a tool that delivers phenomenal cuts for a wide variety of applications.

Accuracy

Getting accurate cuts is important no matter what you’re working on. Luckily, Makita has added a number of features to the ls1219l to help you get the right cut every time.

Built-in Laser

Knowing exactly where your cut is going to be is half the battle. The built in laser on the ls1219l makes it much easier to see where you’re going. The red light is consistent, reliable and accurate time after time.

Bevelling and Adjustment System

The adjustment system on the ls12191l is refreshingly easy to use and provides super-accurate read outs for all of your cuts. The high number of positive stops makes it easy to get the angle you need.

The one-touch adjustment system makes it an absolute breeze to switch blades. If you make tons of different cuts that require multiple blades, this system could save you a lot of headache.

Removable Guide Fence

The guide fence on this model can be removed quickly and easily. This can provide some much needed extra visibility when making more delicate cuts.

Other Features

While Makita has released a few new models since the ls1219l, the feature set here paved the way for many new tools and it still stands up today. There’s plenty to sink your teeth into here. Read through this section of the review to see if this miter saw works for you.

One-touch Sliding Lock

The locking mechanism for moving the saw blade can be engaged or disengaged with one fluid movement. This makes quick adjustments easy and headache-free.

Dust Extraction Nozzle

Makita baked in some good dust collection features on this miter saw. Dust and other debris can really affect accuracy, safety and performance, so using a setup with good dust collection is important.

The included dust extraction nozzle on this Makita miter saw is positioned right by the blade to immediately collect any debris you produce when cutting. It really makes quite a difference and will go a long way to keep your work station clear. Dust can also be managed by attaching a shop vac to the miter saw.

Ergonomics

Comfort is a big one when working with a miter saw. Your first few cuts might be perfect, but your accuracy will soon suffer if your tool tires you out quickly. Makita has built a sturdy, comfortable machine with the ls1219l.

The user trigger is huge which makes it super-easy to find and use when working. The rubberized handle grips have obviously been designed with comfort in mind. This tool will stay comfortable no matter how long you use it.

Soft-Start Technology

When you start up the blade on a miter saw, the first few seconds can be jarring and unsmooth. The soft-start technology from Makita ensures that cuts are buttery-smooth from the second the blade starts spinning. This kind of feature has been around of a while now, but it was a big deal back when Makita first released this model.

It remains an excellent addition that allows for perfect, dependable cuts.

Belt-less Direct-Drive Motor

This system significantly improves durability and the amount of headache involved with servicing your miter saw. A tool that doesn’t use a belt doesn’t encounter issues like the belt slipping or breaking off entirely. This consideration alone from Makita makes this a miter saw that is likely to stick with you for years to come.

Pros

This is a slightly older Makita miter saw, but it still packs a punch:

  • Huge cutting capacity
  • Laser guiding system for best accuracy
  • Super comfortable and easy to use
  • Very easy to adjust
  • Good, sturdy support rails

Cons

  • It’s pretty bulky
  • Not a brand new Makita option

Miter Saws – Our Buying Tips

Just because a saw has been on the market for a few years, that doesn’t mean it isn’t worth your money. Newbies are easily tricked by flashy marketing and misleading brands, so it’s important to get clued up before spending your money. We’ll just give you some quick-and-dirty tips in this review.

Check out our in-depth guide to miter saws on this site for more details. As a general rule of thumb, offerings from Dewalt, Milwaukee, Makita and Bosch usually deliver high levels of performance and durability.

Knowing if a miter saw is right for you is all about understanding what you need your tool to achieve. The more you know about what you need, the easier it will be to know which model will work best. Consider the following:

  • The kind of material you’re going to be cutting. Hardwood? Metal? Softwood? This will determine the motor and blades you choose.
  • The size of your workpieces. This will help you decide between a compound saw, a sliding saw, or something else altogether.
  • The level of finesse you need. The smoothness and precision you demand from your work will affect the type of machine you need.
  • Portability. The amount you need to move around with your tool will determine the type of machine you buy. If you’re only in one place, a heavier tool will be fine. If you’re a contractor, this probably won’t cut it.

The answers to these questions will help you find the best tool for the job. Read our full guide for more insight into which saw is right for your needs.

Conclusion

We hope this review has made it clear that the ls1219l is still excellent in the right context. It might not be the youngest tool around, but it’s still well worth considering. The main thing we’d recommend is to take a look at some newer Makita, Bosch or Dewalt saws and see how they compare.

You might find that the ls1219l has everything you need. If this is the case, then we say it’s definitely worth going for it. A good second-hand model could save you hundreds. Use our tips above, and our more in-depth guide elsewhere on this site, to determine what you need out of your miter saw.

The clearer you are about your tool requirements, the shorter and easier to understand the list of suitable saws will become. Whichever tool you choose, we hope you have fun using it!

Makita LS1219L 12" Dual-Bevel Sliding Compound Miter Saw with Laser
  • Unique 2-steel rail sliding system design offers single slide-glide operation; reduced saw footprint allows operation flush against a wall
  • Increased capacity for up to 8" Crown molding (vertically nested), 6-3/4" baseboard (vertical), and 15" crosscuts at 90
  • In-front bevel lock for convenient operation
  • Dual dust collection ports provide excellent dust extraction performance
  • Innovative direct drive motor and guard system is engineered for increased vertical cutting capacity (6-3/4")

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