Sunday, November 27, 2011

The different cricut design programs pros and cons

Okay so with the release of cricut craft room there have been a lot of people on the various groups and message boards I participate in asking about the benefits of a program if you can still only use the cartridge images and what the differences are between Design Studio (DS), Cricut Craft Room (CCR), and the handheld Gypsy

Here's a quick compilation I made... If you have anything to add please comment and I'll add it on! :)

You can do all sorts of things with any of the 3:
-Weld letters together so they cut as a word instead of individual letters

-change the height and/or width by ANY increment (instead of only the height and width proportionately by 1/4" increments only)

-see exactly where you cut will be in the mat which is great for many reasons: able to use small scraps and know exactly where to put it on the mat, you can put cuts on top of each other so you can cut a square with a circle inside it for instance, I use it to cut the backing from sticker paper and then all the way through just the outside then I peel off one section of backing at a time and apply glitter or flocking and can create a flocked Elmo for instance or a glittered circle in white to stamp my image on with a red scallop around it with something else with a different colour around that all on one layer (probably not explaining that very well lol), I also use it to line cuts up on one side of a card shape and then cut the whole thing out of cereal box... Apply glue to the pieces that would fall out of the cut... Fold the other side of the card over and let it dry to the glued pieces then when its dry remove from cutting mat and voila your very own embossing folder!

-in CCR you can also view your cuts filled with colour so you can design your card completely on the program and see EXACTLY what it's going to look like before even taking out your paper great for deciding what colours to cut from (you can do this in DS as well just not while designing only in a preview screen)

-you can rotate things around getting optimal use of your paper (ie if you have ever cut large circles out of your paper and your machine thinks you can only fit 4 on the page when you know if it moved them to the corners you could fit another one in the middle you can do that on the screen)

-can hide fold lines or any other pieces of a cut that you don't necessarily want (some of the layers on the Disney carts for instance really are supposed to be from 2 different colours so you can hide one of the shapes on the layer for cutting from one colour and tge other for the other colour)

Now for each one individually...

Design Studio:
-view on big screen with all these capabilities (except viewing in colour while designing however can preview it in
-fairly slow to use and really slow to load
-sometimes hard to select the shapes on your mat to move around
-design with any cartridges out there so you can see if you might like to get one or if you order one online you can play with it before it arrives
-not Mac compatible
-not compatible with net books as you need a certain resolution screen which the tiny laptops just don't have
-don't need the layouts but still need the actual cartridge(s) every time you go to cut
-can use different cartridge images together (it will ask you to put one in the cricut and then the others until you've put all of them in that are used in the project you are cutting and then it will cut)

-easy to use
-fairly fast
-stores all your cartridges so you don't have to have the actual cartridge or keypad with you when you go to cut
-has all the benefits of DS except the large screen
-portable (no computer needed), about the same size as a cartridge box and you can design on it whenever wherever and save your project and cut to your cricut whenever you want to using your gypsy in place of your cartridge

-all the benefits of DS except you MUST have Internet connection in order to use it
-can view images in colour
-can link cartridges that you own so you don't have to have them with you when you want to cut once they're linked
-Mac compatible
-no limit on what screen size you need so can use on a NetBook
-can save in gypsy format to your computer for use in DS or gypsy when Internet is not available
-can see your projects anywhere you have a computer with Internet and design so you don't need a flash drive with your projects saved on it or anything at all ... Just go to cricut website log in and go for it (all your projects are stored on the Internet remotely so you have them wherever you go)
-can only install cut ability from the program for 2 computers for each cricut account

I am certain others can come up with more but this is just what I can come up with off the top of my head. :)

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