Should I buy the Silhouette CAMEO 3 or the GCC Expert II LX?


One of the most grueling parts of starting your own business or just making apparel for fun is undoubtedly picking out a cutter. To make this easier for you, we have compared two of the most affordable vinyl cutters that we sell to help you out through this tough decision.

First up- The Silhouette CAMEO 3! Don’t let the CAMEO fool you into thinking that it is only good for crafting. People have started full-fledged businesses for years with the Silhouette CAMEOs. Although it is possible to start your business with one of these machines, there are some things you need to be aware of when making your decision. Below I have laid out the specs of the Silhouette CAMEO 3.

Specs of CAMEO 3

  • Stepper Motor
  • 12 Inch Cutting Width
  • Comes with a Cutting Mat
  • Comes with Decal Vinyl
  • Includes Basic Design Software
    • Only $45 to upgrade to next level
  • Cut Force: 210 Grams
  • Speed: 3.93 Inches/Second
  • 1 Year Warranty
  • Can Cut Around a Pre-Printed Design Using Registration Marks
  • Includes Weeding Tool
  • Includes Auto-Blade (Only Compatible with CAMEO 3)


One of the most important aspects to consider, perhaps, is the fact that the Silhouette CAMEO 3 comes with its own basic software. You can certainly get away with making your own designs with this software. If you are planning on working with rhinestones or buying SVG designs, you will want to upgrade to at least the Designer Edition of Silhouette Studio. By upgrading, you will unlock the rhinestone panel allowing you to create and edit rhinestone designs. Also, when you upgrade from the basic Silhouette Studio, you will unlock the potential to bring in SVG files. With the basic program, you can only bring in files that were made and saved in Silhouette Studio format. Other design software out there is more advanced and will run for several hundred dollars. Another perk of purchasing the CAMEO is that it is small and portable so you can take it on the go, and the bundle runs for $269.99 on our website!

Next up is the GCC Expert II LX. The GCC Expert II LX is one of the most affordable cutters and has some great features when compared to the Silhouette CAMEO 3. The Expert is faster and has more downforce when compared directly to the CAMEO 3. Checks out the specs below.

Specs of GCC Expert II LX

  • Stepper Motor
  • 24 Inch Cutting Width
  • Includes Great Cut Software
  • Force- 350 Grams
  • Speed- 27.75 Inches/Second
  • Can Cut Around a Pre-Printed Design Using Registration Marks
  • Warranty- 90 Days
  • Includes 45-Degree Blade

Noted above, the GCC Expert II (LX) does come with basic software, just like the CAMEO. However, the software that comes with the Expert (Great Cut 3) is not as open or functional as Silhouette Studio. It is more so used for sending designs to your cutter. If you plan on using an Expert for your business, you will need to have some sort of additional design software if you plan on making your own designs. This is an area where you would need to be prepared to invest more money if you’re going to utilize an Expert seeing as how you would need design software. Some areas where the Expert comes out on top are in Speed and in Force. Some areas where it falls short are the fact that you must buy an additional 65-degree blade to work with rhinestones and the warranty is only 90 days. The Expert II LX is $645 and does not include any decal vinyl or a weed edge, either.

To summarize, both vinyl cutters mentioned above are great options for starting or expanding your business. If you are looking to stay within a budget and want to start out slow, the CAMEO 3 is perfect! If you want to start out with a faster, larger machine- The Expert II LX will get the job done.


About Author

Lexi is one of The Rhinestone World’s call center representatives. She loves pugs and giraffes, if she could she would own all the pugs and giraffes in the world. She describes herself as kind, caring and sensitive, and her best feature is how hard she works. If there was one time that Lexi would travel to, she would go back to the 90’s when she grew up. If you want to entertain Lexi all you have to do is play any Taylor Swift song and bring her dog, Sophie.


  1. Jennifer Lakos on

    Hello my mother-in-law and I are starting our own business, she is retiring from her 4th career she is 74 and we have been thinking of what wld be a great business that we would love to do and is needed in our area. We currently make memory blankets/quilts, with other tshirts and we are doing well, but cutting is the hardest part and I was considering the Cricut Maker and I see u guys use the Cameo and it is 200 less, do u have any suggestions, we also want to do custom shirts, hats, hoodies and the Rhinestone option is getting big here in Michigan, my boys wrestle and if u know anyone who has a child in wrestling the spiritware is non-existent and if it is they r all the same and I am tired of the same boring stuff. Also, our schools HS and Jr High really does not support wrestling like football, basketball and our Cheerleaders who r 6X State Div. 2 Champs. I want to create some great designs and be able to present them to our coaches and Ath. Director or parents. Do u have any wrestling designs? Our school is Gibraltar Carlson in Michigan we are the MARAUDERS but the most popular mascot design is the skull and cross bones and if u cld add wrestling headgear that and be great, can u design something for me I need help.

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