Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Make The Cut vs SCAL vs Design Studio

Imagine It. Create It. Cut It. It's That Simple.

Heres some info on the different softwares. Sure Cuts A Lot (SCAL) and Make The Cut (MTC) are software programs for use with the Cricut.  They both allow you to easily cut almost any shape you can imagine using your Cricut machine without needing to purchase expensive cartridges.  Its really easy-to-learn, if I can you can! Unleash the real creativity of your Cricut! These programs allow you to cut the most True Type Fonts and true type dingbats.  You can also import SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) files.  A Vector Graphic is a graphic image drawn in shapes and lines called paths. There are many programs out there that will create svg files.  The ones most often used by Digital Cutter File designers are Adobe Illustrator which is a program you can purchase from and then there is Inkscape which is an open source (FREE) vector graphics editor with capabilities similar to Adobe Illustrator. However, I do not use any of these as I don’t know how. Though I do believe, SCAL 2.0 also now does the direct conversion between .bmp and .svg, so Inkscape isn't absolutely necessary with the newer version of SCAL. Unlike the Cricut Design Studio (CDS or DS), which only allows you to use images from the cartridges. You can only cut images from cartridges you physically own, as they have to go into the machine or a Jukebox for the ability to cut.

Both Software Programs allow
  • use any true type font or dingbat
  • Import SVG's
  • Trace Images (Convert coloring pages or other b&W images)
  • Allow you to make your own designs 
  • Use fonts and Dingbats you download from Internet Work with all Cricut Machines
    Shadow and Blackout features
I think personally, MTC is better than SCAL for these reasons:
It allows you to edit existing fonts/svgs, preview SVGs before you import them, import from TTF files directly (no more installing fonts on to your computer!(which i have not done yet)). You can also trace BMPs, JPGs, PNGs, etc and convert them into paper.
Has a “Notes page” that allows you to keep track of what you did when you created or used this file for future reference. Also, it allows you to Work with multiple projects at once (which i absolutely love) and Cut, Copy and Paste shapes between projects.  It also allows you to Create and Edit Image Layers

MTC has a user-contributed SVG/Project gallery built right into the program. You can upload your hard work from within the application and share with everyone. Or find what others have shared!

I also, have not had any issues with any the letters, especially “r”, “s” & “t” not being able to shadow properly. That was the biggest frustration I had with SCAL. I didn’t upgrade to SCAL 2.0 and don't know if it was resolved or not?

The only cons  MTC, that I have found is you can't type directly on the mat you have to type in the box that pops up or double click the letter/image from the library. And unfortunately No MAC version, which doesn’t effect me as of yet, but I sure hope they do find a way to get a MAC version.

One place I’ve learned a lot from their tutorials is

I say if you have a cricut and think this is something your interested in try it for free


  1. I would like to thank you for all the information on both SCAL and MTC. I have been doing research on both of these programs. I must say that at this point I am leaning towards MTC. One of the main reasons is that upgrades have been for free where in the past any upgrades for SCAL has not(except for the last one). Another reason is that the interface seems more familiar to me than SCAL. However I still wanted to do more reading on how others seem to view these programs. That's how I got here. But your view was more straight forward. It was not you opinion but just the straight facts-- the good, the bad and the ugly!
    Thank you

  2. I was also leaning towards MTC but when I went to their site, it says:

    "Works with all Cricut™ machines We no longer support the Cricut™"

    Do you know if this is valid or not? Didn't know if they had to say that for legal reasons or if they really can't support it.


  3. Thanks to ProvoCraft getting greedy, neither MTC nor SCAL are compatable with the cricut machines any more. So I guess Provo has screwed us all over because you either deal with having to use their cartridges and the crappy design studios software or you have to go and buy another cutting machine. Wow, what a way to treat their followers.


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