Silhouette Cameo - High Performance Vinyl Cutter
I got the bug one night looking at cool decals, thinking I could make those if I had a vinyl cutter. I had purchased a few decals for the RCR-GT40 that were done with a vinyl cutter and they looked good. I had some background in the color separation business as a youth and understood the process of layering and such. So WTF, time to find a machine that was inexpensive and had good software. One thing I understood was that the software is key, their were plenty of low cost machines but the software was another story. I had looked at some of the home maker machine like the Cricut which was advertising like crazy. Inexpensive but lacked any sort of software and used some sort of cartridge system. Brother also recently releaced one like the Circut but again, cartridge based. Enter the Silhouette Cameo. The machine looks and sized like an Ink Jet printer but cuts vinyl, paper and does all sorts of other things. You can get the vinyl from Amazon or online shops. I picked up some quality vinyl at H & H Sign Supply. They had a great selection, sampler packs, etc. My advice is to get Oracal or other quality product, some of the product I picked up from Amazon was no-name and not so good.
The software that comes with the Silhouette is so easy to use and yet very powerful. I had not use such well thought out CAD style software in a long time. It has many features and if you upgrade to the 'Pro' version it unlocks a few more things as well as ability to import addition formats which I needed. I run the package on the PC but it's support also on the Mac if you that sorta' person.